Wednesday, February 18th 2009

Sucessfully Cleaned My 30D Sensor

My sensor swabs and cleaning liquid arrived extremely quickly, considering they shipped across the Atlantic. I bought them last Saturday and I picked them up yesterday, only three days later. That’s impressive! The weird thing is that I only paid for slow postage …

Anyway, today when I got home from work I decided to have a go at cleaning the sensor of my beloved Canon 30D.

I took a test shot at f/22 before I started. Quite a few specks of dust as you can see, after almost three years of use, only having cleaned it with a hand blower:

Before cleaning

I also used my hand blower thing to clean the outside of the camera, as well as the sensor before I did the real thing. As you can see, this didn’t do much good at all. Only one tiny speck of dust disappeared in the bottom left corner:

After blowing

Next I cut open the plastic container for a swab and unscrewed the top of the bottle. Then I set my camera in cleaning mode to expose the sensor. I put five drops of Eclipse on the swab and stuck it in the camera.

I did a first swipe, flipped the swab over and did a second swipe in the same direction. I’m quite impressed by how effective this was. All the major dust specks are gone and only a few tiny specks are left on the right side, which is where I lifted the swab. With some practice I will hopefully get even better at this.

After swiping

It struck me as being tighter than I expected to get the swab into the camera. And I was surprised that I didn’t see the cleaning liquid (methanol) drying up in the light reflecting off the sensor. (I didn’t see the liquid at all.)

All in all I’m glad I gave this a go. Finally I can use small apertures without having to do a load of spec-hunting in Lightroom.

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