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Old Jun 3, 2009, 3:33 PM   #1
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Default Dropped D70 having issues

Hey everyone,

My wife and I were in Greece last week waiting to get on a tour boat. My D70 was sitting on my camera bag which was on the ground. I bent over to pick up the camera (with two hands even). Unfortunately I didn't notice that the neck strap slip just under the front of my shoe. When I came up with the camera, it was yanked out of my hands by the neck strap under my foot. The camera fell hard onto the rough cement surface. It was a shocking moment.

The brunt of the impact looks to be directly on the power switch & shutter release button. The camera still functions to a degree -- pressing the shutter release will take a photo. However, depressing the shutter release partially to do a meter reading and auto focus does not work fully. I now have to press and hold the button partially for a number of seconds in order for the camera to take a meter reading and auto focus, and sometimes it does not work at all. Two other symptoms that I've noticed - 1) I'm having a difficult time changing the focus area with the directional pad and 2) the image preview on the LCD does not go away when I partially depress the shutter release. I'm guessing that both of these are related to the button damage.

I'm really not sure what to do from here. Does anyone out there have any advice? Can anyone tell me if a repair would be worth it and where is the best place to get service like this done?

I appreciate any help.

Andy
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Old Jun 3, 2009, 4:09 PM   #2
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Ouch.

I'm not sure I'd fix it if it were mine. You can pickup a used D70 in Excellent condition now for around $300 or so from what I can see with a quick check of some of the reputable vendors that handle used gear (like http://www.keh.com and http://www.bhphotovideo.com ), and I don't know what Nikon would charge to fix it (and using Nikon in your region would probably be your best bet if you want to repair it).

You'd probably have to send it to them for an estimate to find out what they'd charge. But, I suspect that it would be more than you could buy a used one for, with the amount of damage you're describing.

Buying a used D70 would be a bit risky, since that model has a history of issues like "BGLOD" (blinking green light of death, which is how users refer to a common problem with these models that Nikon will fix if you're the original owner). So, if you go that route, I'd suggest sticking with a reputable vendor that will provide at least a short term warranty on used gear.

You may want to think about upgrading to a newer camera like a D90 if budget permits.
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Old Jun 3, 2009, 7:11 PM   #3
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Thanks, Jim. Yeah, a D90 is probably not in the cards right now unfortunately. Although if I did replace the camera though I'd probably get something a bit newer than the current setup. Regarding service, I've read plenty of nightmarish stories about people sending their gear in to Nikon. That's something I would certainly like to avoid.

Anyway, thanks again for your thoughts.

Andy
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Old Jun 4, 2009, 6:47 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ameierinco View Post
Thanks, Jim. Yeah, a D90 is probably not in the cards right now unfortunately. Although if I did replace the camera though I'd probably get something a bit newer than the current setup. Regarding service, I've read plenty of nightmarish stories about people sending their gear in to Nikon. That's something I would certainly like to avoid.

Anyway, thanks again for your thoughts.

Andy
I've read plenty of stories where Nikon did a bang up job for less than expected. Nikon service tends to be slow and their update system is pretty poor, but they generally get the job done.

As Jim said, it's probably not worth repairing. The D80 can be had for a reasonable price and would certainly be a step up from the D70. You could also pick up a d40-40x-60 fairly cheap too, although you'd lose the focus motor (rendering your non AF-S lenses a bit less useful with no AF). Otherwise IQ is a step up and you wouldn't be giving up a lot in terms of control.
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Old Jun 4, 2009, 8:59 AM   #5
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As rjseeny mentioned, you can find the D80 at a very reasonable price now. You may also want to consider going refurbished. Cameta Camera (a reputable ebay vendor) has the D80 in refurbished condition for around $529 right now. They refer to them as Nikon USA Factory Demos. Here's an example:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...m=350209603160

What lenses do you have? You could probably find a Nikon USA Factory refurbished entry level model for even less. But, you'd have to worry about lens compatiblity if you have any lenses that are not AF-S (Silent Wave Motor Focusing), since Nikon did not include a body based focus motor in their newer entry level cameras (D40, D40x, D60, D5000).
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Old Jun 4, 2009, 12:55 PM   #6
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Only two lenses at the moment - the kit lens 18-70mm AF-S and a Nikon 70-300mm AF. So yeah, the telephoto wouldn't work with the non-motor bodies.

I was playing around with the camera a bit more this morning. If I press the shutter release slowly it will AF just prior to releasing the shutter. It's frustrating that the camera is so close to working properly. I'm torn about sending it in to Nikon now after rjseeny's comment. I assume I would pay for shipping both ways even I didn't have the work done?? Any idea how much that is?

Anyway, thanks guys for the help. I may have to start saving my pennies for that replacement.
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Old Jun 4, 2009, 1:26 PM   #7
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Hmm... I just reread your first post in this thread. I had originally interpreted it as more than one control being damaged (thinking of the multi-directional pad to control AF point and more).

But, after reading it again, along with your latest comments about how it behaves if you press the shutter button down very slowly, it sounds like it might just be the shutter button causing the AF problems (and I can see where that could include not being able to select focus point and how the camera handles the LCD display if it's not seeing what's expected from it).

The only visible damage is to the power switch/shutter button, right?

If so, I'd probably let them take a look at it. If you're lucky and nothing else broke from the impact (mirror mechanism damage, etc.), it may not be too bad to fix it. But, for virtually anything, I'd expect a charge of around $200, even if it didn't sustain any other damage past the shutter button/power switch. I don't know how they handle shipping costs.
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Old Jun 4, 2009, 2:41 PM   #8
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That's right. Just the shutter button and power switch. I don't see any other significant damage.

So it sounds like I might save $100 if send it in since it sounds like I can get a used one for $300. Maybe I will send it in and at least getting a quote from them.

Thanks again.
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