Digital SLRs and fungus contamination?

Discussion in 'Digital Cameras' started by Mario Guimaraes, Sep 27, 2004.

  1. Hello!

    I am considering to buy a Nikon D70, but will be moving to a very
    hot and humid place in the near future, then came the doubt about how
    DSLRs deal with fungus and mildew contamination.
    On film cameras all optical surfaces are reasonably resistant to
    cleaning, but I wonder how CCDs react to wiping? Or perhaps there are
    special procedures for CCD cleaning?
    I would really apreciate any thoughts on this, and I believe this
    info would be helpful to other people living in tropical/sub-tropical


    PS.: Regarding preventative measures such as silica gel, they were not
    enough to prevent contamination. I used to live in very humid places and
    despite all care had to run all my gear to a thorough cleaning at least
    every two years!
    Mario Guimaraes, Sep 27, 2004
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  2. Mario Guimaraes

    Jer Guest

    During my forays in more tropical climates, I imagine DSLRs will have
    the same problem as FSLRs - frequent cleaning. Canned air helps
    dislodge loose materials (spores), but not all. Also, I would NEVER
    consider wiping across a sensor, especially for the purpose of removing
    surface contamination. Not exactly the same thing, but there's one
    location in S. Costa Rica with a PC on a generator. PC replacements are
    an annual affair due to mold taking root on all the internal components.
    In the early days, floppy disks had a MTBF of six months. A lot of
    this was likely due to the internal heat, and a DSLR won't suffer *that*

    jer email reply - I am not a 'ten'
    "If one dives and returns to the surface inarticulate with amazement and
    with a deep realisation of the marvel of what he has seen and where he
    has been, then he deserves to go again and again. If he is unmoved or
    dissappointed, then there remains for him on earth only a longer or
    shorter period of waiting for death." --William Beebe, "Half Mile Down"
    Jer, Sep 28, 2004
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  3. Sensor cleaning is a fact of life of owning a dSLR. It is easily
    accomplished using methyl alcohol (Eclipse) and lint-free pads (Pec-Pads)
    Look at . There's a nice step-by-step illustration
    of sensor cleaning of a dSLR at .

    Canned air OTOH is an extremely BAD idea for dSLRs since the propellent
    (usually liquid freon or something similar) will definitely not do your
    sensor any good. Best way to initially address the sensor in a dSLR that
    shows "dust-bunnies" in its images (usually sky) is a hand blower such as
    the Giotto Rocket (no-brush-blowers!)

    Howard McCollister, Sep 28, 2004
  4. Mario Guimaraes

    Jer Guest

    I love it when I leave smarter than when I arrived. Thanks. I suppose
    Mario and I will eventually learn if this info keeps the spores out.
    Jer, Sep 28, 2004
  5. Thanks a lot for the info!



    Mario Guimaraes, Sep 28, 2004
  6. Mario Guimaraes

    Ken Tough Guest

    I was disturbed to see one of my old zooms developed a fungus
    between some of the internal elements; just a big of fogging
    you could only see in direct light. Silica gel won't prevent
    everything, but I'd sure keep any new stuff as cool and dry
    as possible..
    Ken Tough, Sep 29, 2004
  7. Humid environments are a problem more for lenses than for cameras. Fungus
    growth in lenses in not uncommon and will ruin a lens. Having spent a fair
    amount of time in Dominican Republic and Haiti over the years , my approach has been to
    store camera and lenses in an airtight Pelican case with a few bags of
    silica gel. During the day, I carry the stuff in a LowePro Computrekker,
    then at the end of the day, I blow out the camera with a Giotto Rocket and
    seal the stuff back up in the Pelican. Works for me.

    Howard McCollister, Sep 29, 2004
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