|Home >> Ask Olympus: Cleaning your Digital SLR|
My E-500 works well, but it has a tiny black dot, apparently a speck of dirt or dust, on its focusing screen. Cleaning is a daunting task with any SLR, and air blasts might freeze the sensor, I hear. How might I clean this mildly distracting anomaly without risking damage to a fine body or incurring a large cost for a miniscule aberration? And how do I prevent cloning this dot when changing lenses in the future?
Answer: Dust you see in your viewfinder will not show up in your images—it is only annoying to see it all the time.
Olympus innovated the Supersonic Wave Filter to vibrate dust off the imaging sensor, but dust may still adhere to other surfaces in the camera’s mirror box. The method of cleaning dust out of the mirror box is to gently blow out the surfaces of the mirror box with a blower bulb—the kind that does not have a brush on it. To create a gentle flow of air, squeeze the bulb slowly.
When blowing out the mirror box, use the camera’s CLEANING MODE to raise the mirror. Refer to the camera manual for the CLEANING MODE procedure. While the mirror is raised, blow off the sensor and the autofocus sensor well in the bottom of the mirror box. If a piece of dust or lint is resting on the autofocus sensor, it can result in inaccurate autofocus function. When you have turned off the camera, blow off the mirror and the focusing screen in the roof of the mirror box.
Never use “canned air” to blow out the camera’s mirror box.If the can is being moved while blowing out the mirror box, it may spit the liquefied gas and leave a mark on the mirror, sensor, autofocus sensor, or focusing screen. If this occurs, it will require a repair to replace the damaged component. In addition, the high pressure of “canned air” may actually blow dust into the viewfinder system where it cannot be removed with a blower bulb.
Never clean the mirror with a brush or lens tissue and never touch the mirror with your fingers. The mirror in a digital SLR is what is called a “first-surface” mirror, which has the silvering material on the front surface of the glass, unlike your bathroom mirror which has the silver behind the glass. The silvering on a first-surface mirror is susceptible to damage and should only be cleaned using a blower bulb.
Archive - E-System:
- Advantages of digital lenses
- Transferring your photos to a CD
- Printing the date on your photos
- Best image sizes for emailing
- Lens connections and F-stop
- Indoor sports photos
- AF illuminator and camera flashes
- Camera locks up while shooting closeups
- Taking photos of the Northern Lights
- Shooting in cold weather
- Pixel Mapping
- Waterfall and Stream Effects
- Camera unable to secure autofocus
- Night sports photos
- Can I use a teleconverter with my kit lens?
- What is MY MODE?
- Saving Your Camera Settings
- What does the Fn button do?
- Tips for shooting holiday lights outdoors
- Tips about memory card usage
- The purpose of IMAGE ASPECT when shooting?
- Tips for digitizing 35mm color slides
- Double exposures and xD card questions
- Taking better indoor photos
- Shooting in RAW
- Battery charging guidelines
- E-System Compatibility
- Cleaning your mirror box
- Studio Lighting
- Tricks for manually focusing
- Focusing E-System cameras in low light
- P, A, S and M modes
- Keeping a zoom lens steady
- What lenses can I use with my DSLR?
- High Dynamic Range (HDR) Photography
- Post-processing color controls in OLYMPUS Master
- How do I use bracketing modes?
- Save a zoomed playback image
- How can CONTRAST, SHARPNESS and
SATURATION be applied creatively?
- Shooting indoors in the winter
- What does the GRADATION feature in the menu do?
- Using OM-System lenses and accessories