D600 Dust/Oil/Lubricant Issue discussion/Discontinuation and price reductions

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  • Checked my d600 out of the box, first shot no oil. Checked it after 222 shots, no oil.
    Serial 607...... bought in Holland. Keep you informed as something change.
    Those who say it can't be done, should not interrupt those doing it!
  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,396Moderator
    There are two sources of garbage on the sensor. Dust and liquid contamination. In the majority of cases the liquid is lubricant from the shutter/mirror mechanism. This problem resolves by itself after many clicks. My D4 had about 70 spots at 10,000 clicks, was cleaned by me, has no spots I have seen after about 8,000 more clicks.

    Of course, this is frustrating and very questionable quality control IMO, but this seems to be Nikon's philosophy to over lube the mechanism.

    Concluding, I would suggest an oil problem might best be handled by cleaning the sensor, not too difficult, but to be done by a professional or with a great deal of care using the proper technique.
    Msmoto, mod
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 6,442Moderator
    @Msmoto: So what do you say the the people who have sent their bodies in for sensor clean many times with no end in sight? Cleaning it ones self does carry a small risk - try going back to Nikon and saying they can change the sensor for free because you scratched it when they offer a free return for clean service.
    Always learning.
  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,396Moderator
    edited January 2013
    @ spraynpray
    I understand the issue of sending it back to Nikon for cleaning. And the risk of cleaning it oneself. I do not know how many clicks will be required before the issue is resolved. It may be that until the body has about 10,000 clicks the issue will remain. Maybe a way to solve this is to just begin with the highest frame rate and shoot 10,000 clicks on it and then send it in. Again, i did suggest the sensor cleaning be done by a professional, i.e, Nikon if available, or for those who desire, self cleaning with great care.

    OK, adding on here...does anyone know how many clicks are required on the D600 before the garbage stops showing up on the sensor?
    Post edited by Msmoto on
    Msmoto, mod
  • pippigurlpippigurl Posts: 241Member
    edited January 2013
    To both Spray and MsMoto...thx for your advise and suggestions. Especially a swap for aD800 refurb..but Christmas has passed! MsMoto to add to your comments about cleaning the sensor yourself, in a conversation discussing my first body Nikon service told me that if I did so it would void my warranty and any service thereafter would be at my expense...Spray...any idea what the number is for "new shutters"?
    Post edited by pippigurl on
  • roombarobotroombarobot Posts: 201Member
    OK, adding on here...does anyone know how many clicks are required on the D600 before the garbage stops showing up on the sensor?
    I don't believe that is yet known. There have been posts saying that it diminishes, some say after several thousand shots, but none that I have read say that it goes away. As a matter of fact, one ongoing thread at Dpreview, from Nikonfan99, documents thoroughly that he is still having very significant problems after 12,000+ clicks.

    I have only taken about 300 photos, but I have added about 3,000 clicks to try to fling off lubricant. I am still having the problem after sending it to Nikon twice. Nikon should be doing more than just a sensor clean, they should be fixing the cause of the problem. The last service didn't even have a good sensor clean, as it came back from service with more spots than I sent it in with. As customers of Nikon, paying thousands of dollars, we should not have this lubricant problem.

    I need to be able to shoot at f/11, f/16, and f/22. There are some on Dpreview that say to just shoot wider and don't worry about it. That is silly, I paid $2,100 for a camera and I expect it to work at all the apertures, shutter speeds, ISOs it has. Plus I have seen spots at f/8! I like to shoot landscapes and one often wants to be shooting at smaller than f/8.

  • MikeGunterMikeGunter Posts: 543Member
    Hi all,

    As an avid 'reader', I would submit that isn't really clear reason as to what is causing the problem, but a lot of conjecture. IOW, if someone really knew what was causing the problem and how to fix it, I suspect it would be fixed.

    I doubt that Nikon will officially weigh in (ever), but some potential buyers (one namely me) are still on the fence until it's settled.

    It's a real pity. In most respects, it seems like a terrific camera.

    My best,

    Mike
  • roombarobotroombarobot Posts: 201Member

    It is a great camera, I love the layout, the feel, and the beautiful images it can produce. I just want it to work without worry of spots. Every time I take it out I come back with spots.

    I don't really care if Nikon officially weighs in or says what the problem is, that is not very important compared to getting a fix to this issue for us D600 owners. I would be satisfied if sending it in to the Nikon factory service would end the problem.

    There have been several threads tracking serial numbers and hoping that Nikon fixed this on the production line. As far a I have read, there is no clear answer there either.
  • MikeGunterMikeGunter Posts: 543Member
    Hi roombarobot,

    "It is a great camera, I love the layout, the feel, and the beautiful images it can produce. I just want it to work without worry of spots. Every time I take it out I come back with spots."

    Respectfully, I disagree. Anytime you have a camera that you can not rely upon to take pictures without annoying blemishes, you mostly have a paperweight that looks like a camera. I'm sorry about that.

    I hope for you and other D600 owners that Nikon will fix the problem(s) - it could be more than one thing, heaven forbid, and fix the problem at the source as well for those of us who wish ownership.

    But as it stands now, the D600 doesn't seem to be much of a 'wishlist' item.

    My best,

    Mike
  • proudgeekproudgeek Posts: 1,422Member
    edited January 2013
    I would agree with Mike. On the surface, I should be the perfect D600 customer. I've been shooting DX for several years and am ready for the upgrade, I've already made the investment in FX glass, and I can absorb the $2k price tag. Hell, I even just celebrated a milestone birthday and could have justified treating myself to a new body. But when I hear stuff like this, I get gun shy. It's nice that Nikon is cleaning sensors free of charge, but I just spent a boatload on a trip that I won't be repeating anytime soon. What's Nikon going to do when I get back with 2,000 images with spots?

    Mike, let me know when you jump in.
    Post edited by proudgeek on
  • roombarobotroombarobot Posts: 201Member

    @MikeGunter, we are not disagreeing at all. We are actually in complete agreement.

    I too hope for a solution for current and future D600 owners.

  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 6,442Moderator
    To both Spray and MsMoto...thx for your advise and suggestions. Especially a swap for aD800 refurb..but Christmas has passed! MsMoto to add to your comments about cleaning the sensor yourself, in a conversation discussing my first body Nikon service told me that if I did so it would void my warranty and any service thereafter would be at my expense...Spray...any idea what the number is for "new shutters"?
    What numbers are those Pippi? To be frank, I would not enter into any conversations with Nikon regarding numbers. The fact is - as Mike said - the camera is useless as is and 'not fit for purpose' so unless they repaired it in one go for me, I would be all over them for refund or replacement with a D800. I would take a refurb in exchange but would not pay more.

    While writing, I have to say that this blasting off of the shutter to get past the problem is just wrong on so many levels - are Nikon going to guarantee a number that will suffice? If they do, are they going to reimburse people for the lost life? Another point on this - I have read that is would be best to put the camera on CH to give the camera the best chance of 'flinging it off'. There is no evidence that there is any difference in the speed of the movement of the mechanics when CH, CL or single shot is used, IME it is only the time between frames that reduces.

    Make no mistake people, they DO know what the problem is, their silence is just an outdated method of crisis (read financial loss) management. I know there are many people who will tire of this and not push things and that is money in the bank for Nikon. I have worked in a corporate company when mistakes have been made and have managed on-site reworks at our distributors of huge numbers of product to fix the problems. I also know what goes on in the board room when the distributors visit and the you know what hits the fan. All of the above is why I told Pippi to adopt a 'fix my D600 permanently, refund me or replace it with a D800 position.
    Always learning.
  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,396Moderator
    I would suspect, this will only resolve when someone takes Nikon into a legal battle under the "lemon law" of some state or country. Not an attorney, this may be the only way to get Nikon to do a recall, which would mean a resolution without cost to the consumer. If we have attorneys on NRF familiar with these consumer protection legalities, maybe they can anonymously give advice. The lack of response by Nikon except to say they will clean the sensor, is not an acceptable response.

    Nikon may be working on the solution. And this would be either a fix, involving paid shipping in both directions, or a refund of the purchase price.

    For me, looking for a third body, having been with Nikon for over forty years, my thoughts are to purchase nothing from Nikon at present but instead investigate other options. I suspect most of us have very grave concerns over the response to the D600 crisis. And, this could be a problem for the D400 and other new bodies. Maybe the same issue exists and Nikon has discovered this by pre-release testing. Yikes!
    Msmoto, mod
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 6,442Moderator
    "this could be a problem for the D400 and other new bodies. Maybe the same issue exists and Nikon has discovered this by pre-release testing. Yikes!"

    That's a depressing thought.
    Always learning.
  • roombarobotroombarobot Posts: 201Member

    It seems to have been an issue with a small number of D800 cameras and a large number of D7000 cameras. I am not sure if it has been noticed on D3200/D5200s. Thus it sounds like this has been an issue to some degree on the majority of Nikon bodies released in the last year or two. Certainly it is the worst for the D600, but this does not look good for Nikon quality assurance/testing. Add to that the fact that Nikon Service is not fixing it, so it does not look good for their support either. :( Depressing indeed.

  • pippigurlpippigurl Posts: 241Member
    edited January 2013
    +1 Mike as others have said. The camera was a really nice step up for me and I do love the D600 as most do. Idecided that I would take the plunge. And will see this through. Roombarobot for me on the second body the initial trip consisted of about 200+- actuations and it showed up. There is a discussion on Flicker in one of the D6oo groups that is reporting serial numbers and I believe actuation. Might want to add yours.
    Post edited by pippigurl on
  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,396Moderator
    edited January 2013
    OK, it was noted in another thread by ..darkslide... the following:

    <<<<<<"Now before you all tear into me, I'll just relate a conversation I had today with my Nikon dealers top repair tech.

    I decided that I don't really need to eat this month (or next) so I went to town (literally) and visited my Nikon dealer to see how easy it would be for him to sell me a 70/200 f/4. In the event, not long at all...but that's another story.

    While I was waiting, their camera tech was wandering around and we started talking - not unnaturally, considering what we're reading on the web at the moment, talk eventually got round to the 'oil' spots on D600 sensors. "Rubbish" says Francis, " this is complete nonsense - Nikon (and almost all the camera manufacturers) have been using electronically timed shutters since the early 80's and they discovered very early on that greasing or lubricating any of the mechanism actually tends to clog it up eventually, rather than make it run smoother. To this end, they simply do not lubricate the shutter systems. In addition, when the mirror rises, it has to reach horizontal before the shutter is allowed to open - so any lubricant would have dropped to the floor of the mirror box before the shutter has opened far enough."

    He went on for a while, ending up with his opinion that it was far more likely due to poor cleaning/lens changing protocol standards etc. etc. At this point I felt I'd better just smile and nod my head - after all, I might need him one day (!!) but what he said did seem to make sense - I obviously cannot vouch for what he says as I'm not in the business, but I have to say it all sounded reasonable.

    Just though I'd pass this on...(ducks to avoid the anticipated salvos....)">>>>>>

    What all this suggests to me is, the mirror is the culprit in all the garbage. I wonder what would happen if someone cleaned the sensor, then used live view exclusively for a few hundred shots and examined the sensor to see if garbage was still accumulating.

    Post edited by Msmoto on
    Msmoto, mod
  • roombarobotroombarobot Posts: 201Member
    Msmoto, what forum was that on?

    That is interesting, but didn't Nikon somewhat admit to oil/lubricant on the mirror box of the D7000 causing the problems there?

  • shawninoshawnino Posts: 453Member
    RBR: Msmoto copied and pasted it from another thread that was deemed redundant and closed.
  • KFW1982KFW1982 Posts: 17Member
    edited January 2013
    I'm new to the forum - I actually joined so I could post in a thread on the old forum - and because this forum has given me plenty of good tips and advice in the past.

    I purchased a D600 in December, 2012. I did research and was aware of the oil/dust on the sensor problems. I called Adorama in NYC and asked them the status. I was told it was an Internet rumor, and that there was no problem with the D600 at all. When I told the sales rep that there customer comments on their own page confirming the problem, I was told that the problem had been fixed by Nikon, that the problems were with the first run. I then called my local Best Buy, because I'd read many of the problem cameras had come from there. The sales rep admitted the problem but said it had been fixed by a ring added to the lens mount. Because I wanted the camera (yeah, that simple), I bought it.

    The camera is amazing - no denying it. But spots do appear on the sensor. I doubt that it's manufacturing "residue" or simple dust or dirt. I noticed my first spots when I took an image in early evening - upper left hand corner, in the sky. I adjusted the curves in PS and the spots jumped out - probably a dozen. First, I used a rocket air pump without success. Then I just brushed the sensor gently with a sensor swab. With my other Nikons in the past (D5100, D700) this has been all that's ever been necessary to clean the sensor. Didn't work. I gritted my teeth and got the a liquid cleaning solution. After four cleaning sessions the spots were finally gone.

    Since then I've noticed two more have returned - after cleaning it. Same area of the sensor - upper left hand corner. I'll eventually clean it again.

    I could complain, threaten to sue, whatever, but I bought the camera knowing about the problem, so my bad. I just wanted to say the problem is very real and as of December of last year has not been fixed.
    Post edited by KFW1982 on
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 6,442Moderator
    Hi KFW: When I read about your 'upper left corner' spots and how it took four cleans with liquid to remove them I wondered if you had been concentrating on cleaning the right area of the sensor - Bottom right? You didn't make it clear that you had done the correction for the image flip that occurs.

    I am pretty disgusted that Adorama were allegedly 'managing' the problem by denying it and when confronted further by saying it was fixed :^o but my personal experience of a certain large camera shop in NYC was like that it was like shopping in HK - you have to be on your guard or they will rip you off. Many years ago they sold me a 'very special' battery at a hugely inflated price which failed a few days later back in the UK. The shop was not Adorama. That was a long time ago, but I have a long memory.
    Always learning.
  • ben_v3ben_v3 Posts: 59Member
    I successfully cleaned mine for oil spots around 4300 clicks and haven't had another problem. I haven't shot much in the last two weeks though. :(
    D600 | AF-S 24-70mm 1:2.8G ED | AF 20mm 1:2.8 D | SB-800
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/ben_v3/
  • KFW1982KFW1982 Posts: 17Member
    edited January 2013
    Hi, Spraynspray.

    I'm pretty sure I was cleaning the right spot, but I'm also pretty gentle when I clean the sensor. As I said, I've never had a problem that couldn't be solved with a gentle sweep with a anti-static brush or sensor swab. I've never had to use liquid to clean a sensor before (D700 or D5100).

    Ironically and luckily, I live eight blocks way from the Nikon Authorized Service Center in my city and state. When I first got the problem, I took it there and was told by the center that I had two options. Option 1: Pay them $75.00 to clean my sensor. Option 2: Send it to Nikon (or pay them a small fee to do it for me). Then I asked them if they had any suggestions as to how I prevent or stop the spotting in the future.

    They're answer? "Don't change the lens on your camera."

    Really? That's what you got for me?
    Post edited by KFW1982 on
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 6,442Moderator
    "They're answer? "Don't change the lens on your camera."

    Really? That's what you got for me?"

    I would find it hard to contain myself if I got a smart-a$$ed response like that! ~X(

    My immediate response would be inform him that we now have this new thing called the internet and it helps people communicate about anything really easily so what do you say to people who have just had their sensor cleaned and then fired off a load of shots without changing the lens and still got spots appear?

    As I understand it, your camera is still under warranty so if you go spotty at Nikon, they will clean it for free BUT, that would mean sending an fragile camera body by mail so you could try asking them if the service centre next door to you has a relationship with them whereby they could clean it while you wait.

    I do practice what I preach, I am about to call Nikon to get them to clean mine for free and if they do, I will ask them if I can drop it off and wait to avoid postage. That would be most of a day and a 140 mile round trip at almost $10 per gallon! We'll see what happens.
    Always learning.
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