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by Ed Okie on Wed Feb 06, 2019 1:35 pm
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Sony a7RIII sensor cleaning:  a search on NatureScapes forum pages reveals no new commentary on the Sony-specific "Sensor Gel Stick" in the past year.
   NatureScape's store doesn't carry the product.
   Specific Sony cameras allegedly require different Gel Stick types.
   PhotographyLife website is allegedly the exclusive provider (the product is made in Germany), but it's continually listed as "out of stock." No response from the PL store as to availability. Nor does the site itself seem to function properly when registering a new account. 
   Sony's infamous 400 page manual, sensor cleaning, is useless ("blow the dust out," which doesn't do the job. Likewise the camera's built-in sensor-shaker doesn't clear the dust after a dozen attempts.
   Anyone with sensor-cleaning product suggestions specific to the a7RIII?
 

by Jeff Pearl on Wed Feb 06, 2019 1:54 pm
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Not sure if this will help with what you are searching for? I thought I remember gel sticks being mentioned not too long ago?

https://www.naturescapes.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=57&t=277976&hilit=cleaning+sensor
 

by Mike in O on Wed Feb 06, 2019 2:27 pm
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Just do a wet clean with eclipse...the orange gel stick for Sony has had mixed reviews.  There seems to be a lot of counterfeit gel sticks which can skewer the results.
 

by E.J. Peiker on Wed Feb 06, 2019 4:14 pm
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In the USA, only get the gelstik from Photography Life - anything else could be counterfeit. And if Sony or Fuji, only get the orange one made for Sony.

A less intrusive contact cleaner would be the DustAid Platinum which has no risk of leaving sticky stuff behind.

No matter what the method, if you are using a Sony camera with IBIS, make sure you first do a internal sensor clean from the menu, then turn off the camera and then do the clean. You MUST do this to lock the sensor in place and not risk damaging the IBIS mechanism.
 

by Arnie Berger on Wed Feb 06, 2019 6:30 pm
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E.J. Peiker wrote:
No matter what the method, if you are using a Sony camera with IBIS, make sure you first do a internal sensor clean from the menu, then turn off the camera and then do the clean.  You MUST do this to lock the sensor in place and not risk damaging the IBIS mechanism.


E.J. after doing the internal sensor cleaning, I thought I read that you leave the camera on.  Is that correct?
Thanks
Arnie
Arnold Berger
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by E.J. Peiker on Wed Feb 06, 2019 11:14 pm
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Arnie Berger wrote:
E.J. Peiker wrote:
No matter what the method, if you are using a Sony camera with IBIS, make sure you first do a internal sensor clean from the menu, then turn off the camera and then do the clean.  You MUST do this to lock the sensor in place and not risk damaging the IBIS mechanism.


E.J. after doing the internal sensor cleaning, I thought I read that you leave the camera on.  Is that correct?
Thanks
Arnie


You can do that but I recommend against it because that leaves the sensor charged which attracts dust.  The sensor stays locked until you power the camera up again.  It even says to turn it off on the rear LCD.
 

by mikeojohnson on Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:02 am
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E.J. Peiker wrote:
Arnie Berger wrote:
E.J. Peiker wrote:
No matter what the method, if you are using a Sony camera with IBIS, make sure you first do a internal sensor clean from the menu, then turn off the camera and then do the clean.  You MUST do this to lock the sensor in place and not risk damaging the IBIS mechanism.


E.J. after doing the internal sensor cleaning, I thought I read that you leave the camera on.  Is that correct?
Thanks
Arnie


You can do that but I recommend against it because that leaves the sensor charged which attracts dust.  The sensor stays locked until you power the camera up again.  It even says to turn it off on the rear LCD.



EJ, do you still recommend the gel stick method?
mike
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by E.J. Peiker on Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:06 am
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I like the gel stick method but it is not for the faint of heart as it takes quite a tug, especially with the blue gel stick for non Sony/Fuji camera, to get the stick off of the sensor. I had grown more and more wary of this method until I watched a video on how Leica cleans sensors at the factory and what they use is a very aggressive application of a gel stick. However, for a similar but much gentler method, the DustAid Platinum just feels like a safer way to go with no chance of leaving any gel behind on the sensor.
 

by signgrap on Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:31 am
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E.J., I did a search for Dust-Aid Platinum on Adorama- did not carry, BH no longer carry, then on Amazon and found it but the reviews were mixed with some saying that it left a film on the sensor (I'm always a little nervous about Amazon because of the number of counterfit items they carry).
Then I went on the http://dust-aid.com/ and couldn't find Dust-Aid Platinum.
Are they still making Dust-Aid Platinum ?
Dick Ludwig
 

by E.J. Peiker on Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:56 pm
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The old DustAid had that risk but the newer Platinum has no chance of that.  I'm guessing that some old reviews are creeping into the current product.

Update, just went to their website and it looks like they are no longer making that product.  Weird!!!!  I have always liked it and have never had a problem with any camera system but there's probably some reason they pulled it off the market, even if it's just slow sales.
 

by SantaFeJoe on Thu Feb 07, 2019 6:03 pm
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This is from ebay:

Ebay listing

I have no knowledge of authenticity, but seller rating looks good.

Joe
Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.  -Pablo Picasso
 

by E.J. Peiker on Thu Feb 07, 2019 8:36 pm
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SantaFeJoe wrote:
This is from ebay:

Ebay listing

I have no knowledge of authenticity, but seller rating looks good.

Joe


Yeah it's available on Amazon too but is no longer listed on the Dust-Aid website.
 

by signgrap on Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:56 pm
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I asked Dust-Aid "whether they were still making Dust-Aid Platinium?"
Here's the response I got:

"Hi Dick,
We are no longer selling on our site, but I have some stock that Im happy to sell to you directly.
Just let me know what you want and send your address and we can bill/ship via PayPal if that works.
THank you for contacting us
Best, Andrea
DUST-AID"

She really did not answered my question but instead says she has some "stock" implying the stock is limited (perhaps in short supply).

What do you make of this?
Dick Ludwig
 

by E.J. Peiker on Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:13 am
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I think it was just not selling well once the Gel Stik came out. I still think it is the safest of the dry contact sensor cleaning systems.
 

by Primus on Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:45 am
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I've used the orange gel stick to clean my Sony sensors in the past. However for at least three years now, have not had to use it at all.

I try to be careful and avoid getting dust on the sensor the usual way while changing lenses as I am sure everyone else does. If I do see a few spots I find it easy to get rid of them in the following manner.

I detach the lens, turn the camera facing down, activate self-clean, leave the front open, turn off the camera and using a Giotto Rocket blower, give the sensor a good clean out with the nozzle of the blower inserted into the front chamber (careful not to touch the sensor of course). I may have to repeat this exercise again, but I have NEVER had a problem with this method.

I've used this in the field in Botswana, Japan, Antartica, Namibia (with the dunes and the constant dust), with great results.

Pradeep
 

by Ed Okie on Thu Mar 14, 2019 5:53 pm
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Ed Okie wrote:
Sony a7RIII sensor cleaning:  a search on NatureScapes forum pages reveals no new commentary on the Sony-specific "Sensor Gel Stick" in the past year.
   NatureScape's store doesn't carry the product.
   Specific Sony cameras allegedly require different Gel Stick types....


   It's now a month later and a solution at hand:
   Sony a7R3 sensor cleaning – one year of ownership, after weeks of using the camera’s built-in sensor-shaker, and occasionally an external air-blower bulb – nothing worked. Dust spots remained, never moved.
   Shaker is useless, blowing didn’t work - tried the opposite: held a vacuum cleaner nozzle at the side of the lens face-plate mount thinking the turbulence created might move or collect dust spots. Same story: didn’t work. Assumption: the spots are really bonded, I’m in trouble.
   Options available: The Photolife Store for months has listed their “Sony special” $60 gel-stamp tool as “out of stock.” No response to the inquiry “when will it be in stock?”
   Dust-Aid Platinum – the name, platinum, sends it into a questionable category – is it pure marketing hype? One of those alleged “magical” terms.
   Digging deeper on Dow Chemical’s website, it’s simply a curing step used in the manufacture of silicone sheeting, to change liquid into semi-solid. Other forms of curing exist, but there is no platinum within a gel-stamp tool (today’s cost of platinum is approximately $815 per ounce).
   Ebay and Amazon both list Dust-Air Platinum (and as is typical, $5 higher on Amazon). In both instances the product supplier is actually Outdoorphotogear.com, a highly reputable photo store in Louisville KY. $30 their cost, free shipping. I bought it direct.
   Dust-Air Platinum’s external box says the silicone is made in the USA, plastic parts made in China. “Holding” flag and stick, along with plastic box seem very cheap. Silicone pad on the end arrives uncovered resting on a holder within the plastic box. Obviously not assembled in a sterile “clean room.”
   Six sticky tape tabs are included, one-time use items. Before initial use the pad requires cleaning; neither the tape nor the pad itself seem sticky, pad definitely doesn’t have the feel of sticking to the camera sensor (nor the tape!) Not what I expected.
But does it work? To my astonishment: sensor is spotless, for the first time ever no white dust spots! Required three applications. Unnerving and a bit awkward to poke something into the camera, plus the sensor itself moves slightly as the pad touches. But there is no sticky-feel to the sensor itself. Straight up and down movement.
   After next day’s shooting… three tiny dark fiber spots appeared on the sensor (possibly from the edge of the black silicone pad?). Pad-use cleaned off fiber spots.
   Another shooting day and a large white dust spot appeared; where it came from I haven’t a clue. No lens changing involved other than during the prior cleaning stage.
   Definitely buy the extra package of 12 tapes ($10), six come with the stick-pad, a minimum of two are used the very first time.
   Worth a try, worked in my instance, but it is – not – for removing oil stains. Since the white dust spots had remained on the sensor for months, “bonded,” I was doubtful the (non-sticky) silicone pad would work. To my surprise it did!
   One note worth passing along, something I forgot initially: When a dust spot(s) is viewed on a test exposure… the location is – inverted, but not L-R reversed. If the spot appears at say, 1 O’clock at the top-right in the test view… the physical spot is actually located at 5 O’clock bottom-right on the sensor. Right to Left remains the same, but the top of the viewing image is actually recorded on the bottom of the sensor - upside down. (The view we see on the backside LCD has electronically been corrected in orientation, the same as we see when viewing an image file during post-processing.)
 

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