Celebrating 58 Years in the Camera Repair Business
Camera Club Newsletters
Winter Camera Careby Gerald L. Sanford, MNEC
Winter is upon us again, bringing all the usual problems, but wait! Do not "moth-ball" your camera! There are many gorgeous pictures just begging to be taken! Not far away, either! The "key" is to think very close-up, or macro! Imagine a sparkling frost on a grass stem or a late blossom! Like a diamond in the "rough!"
Another "key" is the condition of your camera! Batteries OK? Does the diaphragm function normally, even in the cold? To test this, have camera empty, set iris at 16 or 22, shutter on low speeds, rear cover open, look directly into back of lens, have light background, and fire shutter. If diaphragm is OK, it will be closed to 16 or 22 BEFORE shutter opens. Do this several times to check consistency of closing. However, if you are not certain, it is best to have a professional shop re-check it. Any erratic iris action will grow worse with time and cold air, and you may be baffled as to why the film is constantly OVEREXPOSED to varying degrees.
The growing popularity of digital "point-shoot" or single-lens reflex cameras seems to have brought on a change in our customer's complaints!
The traditional one of "I never dropped it" has evolved into, "it only fell about a foot!" At least this gives the technician a reason for the malfunction! In most all digital models, the control wires are not soldered, but use tiny plug-in connectors which can disconnect if the camera is hit hard or dropped. Many of the "point-shoot" digital models come with a factory supplied strap that is too tight for neck, but too loose for wrist and easily get in the way of all the small buttons, wheels and zoom rocker switch. Small fingers are distinct advantage! This makes one wonder if we have reached the limit of practical smallness for this model camera! From a service standpoint, we are there Now! However, they have a lot to offer despite their small size, so take advantage of their large LCD display panel to check on light and dark areas, the colors, brightness and composition. If the image is showing too much digital grain, use your flash to increase the over-all light level. Remember, the life of the battery is heavily reduced if the flash is fired constantly whether your camera is a digital or film model, so always keep extra batteries in your bag.
This lens test we present
is typical of what usually happens to a very sharp zoom lens after receiving
a strong blow which altered the internal elements enough to destroy the
pin-point sharpness we all desire. Soft focus on one side is a good
indicator of this problem.
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