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Digital SLR Sensor Cleaning
We have been performing routine professional image sensor cleanings since 1999.  Our skilled technique includes the light application of compressed air, isopropyl alcohol, and cotton swabs.  The entire mirror cage as well as the focus screen is cleaned along with the image sensor.  Before and after images are taken for comparison.


Example
Leica M8
Before
After


Frequently Asked Questions
Q.How does the image sensor in my camera get dirty?
A.Dust from the environment enters the mirror cage of the camera when changing lenses. Zoom lenses with external moving zoom mechanisms also draw in air and dust into the mirror cage when they are zoomed in and out. The dust particles inside the mirror cage are attracted to the image sensor as the shutter blades move up and down. The actual piece of glass the dust particles collect on is called the low-pass filter.

Q.What can I do to keep dust from getting on to my image sensor?
A.You cannot totally prevent the dust problem but you can minimize it. Before changing lenses, turn the camera off, face the camera and lens in a downward position, and then quickly but carefully change lenses. Keep the back of your lenses clean, as well as the back cap and camera body cap. Try to keep the external moving zoom barrels of your zoom lens clean, but there is only so much you can do here as dust particles will always be in the environment collecting on the lens. The self-cleaning sensor units on most new cameras can also only do so much. Eventually, a professional cleaning is needed to remove all the embedded dust particles on the image sensor.

Q.When should I bring my camera in for sensor cleaning?
A.Cleaning the image sensor of your camera is comparable to cleaning the windshield of your car. The moment you start driving your car, you will slowly start to collect dust on the windshield. After you purchase a new camera or have the image sensor cleaned, it is only a matter of time before there are so many dust particles collected on your image sensor that the quality of your images are negatively affected. This could be within a month, six months, one year, it is hard to say. It depends on the environment in which you shoot and how well you take care of your camera. Even one large piece of dust can negatively affect the quality of your images. If you start noticing dust spots on your images, bring your camera in to us for a professional sensor cleaning before your next important event.



Sensor Cleaning Examples

Nikon D3X
Before
After
 
Canon 1Ds Mark III
Before
After
 
Canon 5D Mark II
Before
After
 
Canon 5D
Before
After
 
Canon 50D
Before
After
 
Hasselblad H3DII 50mpix
Before
After
 
Nikon D3
Before
After
 
Nikon D3s
Before
After
 
Nikon D300
Before
After



Extreme Sensor Cleaning Examples

Canon 5D
Before
After
 
Canon 5D Mark II
Before
After
 
Nikon D40
Before
After
 
Nikon D70s
Before
After



Scratched Sensor Cleaning Examples
You can buy off the shelf sensor cleaning kits and attempt to clean your image sensor but if you are not careful you can do a lot of expensive damage, very quickly.  The cost to replace a scratched low pass filter / image sensor assembly ranges from $600 to $1,600 (parts and labor) depending on the camera.  Below are examples of image sensors that we tried to clean but the damage was already done by a previous improper cleaning.

Canon 5D
Before
After
 
Nikon D3
Before
After
 
Nikon D300s
Before
After