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Old Aug 18, 2010, 11:57 AM   #1
BDD
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Default Faint translucent circle in viewfinder

Just noticed a faint translucent circle in the center when looking through the viewfinder. Did the sensor cleaning. This circle was still there. Is this normal? Don't know why I didn't see it before or pick up on it in the roughly 2 years since I've had my Nikon D300. Doesn't affect the photos produced though.

I swapped in a few lenses to see if it wasn't the particular lens. But no. Still saw the faint translucent circle in the very center of the VF.
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Old Aug 18, 2010, 2:22 PM   #2
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I don't know what you are seeing but based on the fact that it's not showing in photos suggest that the sensor has nothing to the sensor but rather generated in the viewing optical system. That is the mirror, focus screen, pentaprism, or eyepiece optics.

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Old Aug 18, 2010, 5:05 PM   #3
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If I could take a photo of it I would. But since is this tiny circle I see when I look through the VF...Not sure what it is. But yes it's not on the sensor nor on any of my lenses. But it is dead center. Faint.

Odd that it's dead center and not off to one side. But as long as it's not affecting my photos. It's probably on the pentaprism, or mirror or focusing screen. I guess I'll have to take it into a camera shop one day and have something look closer at it. Don't know if a can of air would do the trick. I've never used it to blow out the inside of my camera.
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Old Aug 18, 2010, 5:14 PM   #4
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Maybe it's a light reflection off your eye you see
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Old Aug 18, 2010, 10:20 PM   #5
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Most everyone will tell you not to use canned air to blow out your camera. It can force dust into places it really shouldn't get, and can potentially damage sensitive components and alignments. Try a sqeeze bulb type blower instead.
You should be able to determine where the circle is by looking at the camera's insides with the lens off, and a small LED light. My guess would be the mirror, as I have seen others where partial silvering is apparent. Something on the focus screen would likely be more noticeable.
Since it isn't affecting the photos, unless it causes you problems with manual focus, or metering, it probably isn't worth doing anything about.

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Old Aug 19, 2010, 1:55 AM   #6
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VTphotog,

That was what I was thinking actually. Since it's not affecting my photos at all and the tiny circle is only visible if I really squint. And there is a certain amount of light...

Besides, this will become my backup as soon as Nikon puts out a D700 replacement based on the D3s sensor adding 1080p video recording ability. Come on Nikon!!

But thanks for warning me about using compressed canned air.

I know there is a bulb based one called "the rocket" or something to that affect.

Did try looking at the mirror with the lens off. Didn't see it. Will try again today with my mini-MAGLITE. What should I use to wipe it away? Can I use Kleenex? Or would that just introduce more dust? It probably would wouldn't it? Heh...

But as I said...I probably won't do anything about this...

UPDATE: Today (19 August 2010), Nikon announced their successor to the D3000 the D3100. First Nikon DSLR to have 1080p video recording ability. Soooo then it's likely that the replacement for the D700 will have it too now that the technology is available & Nikon needs a model to compete with the Canon 5D Mark II. Nikon needs to catch up in this segment. Though, some would argue the D700 is it with better high ISO performance and is also a FF body. I would say not since it lacks 1080p video rec capability. Plus the D3100 has a 14MP sensor. So, it's very possible the new D700 will have more than 12MP...do I hear 18MP?

As for the faint tiny circle in the dead center of my VF...I looked inside...using my mini-MAGLITE...don't think I spotted what was in the center. Did see "3 dots" which I think are supposed to be on the focusing screen. So I suppose one of these days I'm going to have to take my D300 for a cleaning at a Henry's Camera (local franchise shop...top 2 franchise camera shops in Toronto and the rest of Canada). They have the tools and should have the experience to offer basic services.

20 August: Used a soft cloth provided for my Pioneer Elite plasma monitor to wipe the dust from the mirror and focusing screen. Did the job. The dust was on the focusing screen. And while cleaning the dust I noticed the grain on the glass of the focusing screen. the faint dot I saw was from the glass. So really there was no problem.

Last edited by BDD; Aug 20, 2010 at 10:44 PM.
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