Jump to content

How Do You Clean the A7iii sensor?


Recommended Posts

First off, how do you know that it needs cleaning? If it’s not showing dust in the images, then not cleaning it is the safest approach. Use the classic “shoot a clear sky at f/22” approach if you don’t have a better option.

Secondly, if it does need cleaning, the first step should always be to use a blower to blow away any large particles - do NOT blow with your mouth (you’ll put saliva on the sensor!); do NOT used “canned air” (that will likely put propellant on the sensor and in extreme cases could crack the cover glass if the gas is really cold); get a rubber bulb and use that. The reason to do this first is in case you have something like bits of sand on the sensor - if you do, the wet clean can drag them across it, and potentially scratch the cover glass.

Then check if it needs further cleaning. Quite possible that it won’t. I rarely need to use more than a blower bulb.

Then consider a wet clean - there are multiple options, but follow the instructions carefully - one offers the classic mistakes is to use too much fluid. Too much fluid and you can get it running down the sides of the sensor stack - you don’t want that.

Then check if it needs further cleaning. Sounds like your local camera shop can’t help, so consider finding a repairer to do it if you need.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Agree.

First. Verify that you have dust spot on your sensor. The best solution is to take a picture of a plain surface, e.g a wall or the sky at f22. No need to have the camera focusing on the subject.

Once you realise that you have dust particles on the sensor, then I use the camera self-cleaning mode with the camera pointed down. It works in 50% of the cases, invaluable on the field, if the dust particle is not sticked.

Next step, blowing, with a good blower, the best ones have a filter on the air that is sucked to make the blow. Remember to replace the blower after a few years, as rubber might start to crack and become a source of dust itself. Blowing is mandatory before wet sensor cleaning, because sand is easy to remove by blowing but with wet cleaning it might result in sensor scratch. 

Next comes wet cleaning, with fluid and swab. To me, this is the last resort and so far I had to resort to it in a very few cases. I have digital cameras since 20 years but I had to clean the sensor the wet way only in a handful of situations. However, I am super scrupolous when changing lenses in the field, keeping the camera pointing downwards, minimising the amount of time with the exposed sensor and cleaning the rear lens of my lenses regularly, as dust on the rear lens element can go to the sensor when the lens is mounted. 

Keep in mind that if you see a dust spot in the bottom left side of the picture, then the actual dust particle is in the upper right part of the sensor, as the image is reversed.

However, make sure that yours is actually a dust problem and do cleaning properly, albeit low, the risk of damaging the sensor is not zero.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...