Category Archives: Nikon repair experience

Is your lens busted?

I’ve just had my first absolutely awesome experience with the Nikon USA repair department (all previous ones having been abysmal). They did a bang up job (for a price!) of bringing my many times dropped 70-200mm VR (V1.0) lens back to spec. And the proof is in the images!

 

This was shot with the 70-200mm, a TC14E, and a crappy Tamron 2x extender, on a D7100 (for a grand total of 840mm equivalent in 35mm) and it STILL looks good (in my opinion)

 

I’ve never personally sent a lens in for repair to Nikon–only bodies. And we all know how bad that went!

 

So with my first decent Nikon repair in hand, I was surprised to read this article by the venerable Roger Cicala over at Imaging Resource: http://www.imaging-resource.com/news/2013/11/14/inspecting-an-in-spec-lens-what-does-it-mean-and-could-factory-service-be

 

Perhaps I got lucky? Or they do a bang up job when it’s on my dime? Or maybe Nikon actually has some good test gear for lenses, but not bodies? Time will tell, since I still need to send my 17-55mm lens in!

D7000 update

People keep asking so here’s the deal: yes, Nikon finally fixed my D7000.  Focus works acceptably.  However, it’s not as good at low light as my D700, so I’m looking at selling it and getting another D700 or maybe a D800.

All in all, it’s a pretty damn good camera.  The quiet shutter is almost indispensable.  The video is superb.  High ISO looks better than the D90 it replaced.  The battery life is great (I usually never get past the AAs in the grip!).  It’s not a bad camera.  It’s just not what I need right now.

The video slack is being taken up by a pair of GX1 bodies.  I’ll post a review of them and their capabilities soon.  Anybody interested in my D7000, please call or email!

I will say that the D7000 did well at my last two weddings.  I feel confident it works now.  But I just really like my D700 that much better.  Video doesn’t need to be on the same device for me.

…a parting shot from the D7000.

D7000 back focus issue

A brief glance at google will tell you that there’s a lot of noise about the D7000 and back focus issues.  As an adept googler, I couldn’t seem to find any images illustrating the issue, so here we go…

baseline/no correction

baseline/AF fine tune turned off

This is not absolutely horrible, but it is troublesome.  This is wide open with an 85mm 1.8D Nikon lens, of a test chart available here: http://regex.info/blog/photo-tech/focus-chart

There is a slight amount of focus error visible here, but in real world shots I am Continue reading

The Neverending Story of My Nikon Repair Experience

I’ve been waiting for Nikon USA’s repair department to adequately repair a D700 since March of 2011.  We’re about half way through January 2012.  Is it me, or is that too long?

My agony results from more than just how long I have been waiting.  It stems from the number of times I’ve received an improperly repaired camera from them.

Here’s a view through the eyepiece of the last camera they sent me:

This is not something you should ever see through the finder of a D700 camera.  There is a darkened area outside the DX crop and EVERY single AF point appears to be activated simultaneously.  There are no settings or circumstances under which you should see either of these things in the viewfinder of a D700 individually, let alone both at the same time.

Here’s how things should look (with one AF point selected)

this is normal

this is normal

Note that these two images are the same scale, from the same camera.  It’s possible to get more than one focus point to show under normal circumstances, but never all 51 points.  And only the D3 series will darken like this with any setting.  The D700 should only show a line around the inner DX crop box.

After I took these pictures and provided them with an explicit description of the problem (which is intermittent with no clear steps to reproduce) and sending the camera in, they miraculously turned it around in a single day!  …without doing a bloody thing but messing with settings and telling me I’m doing it wrong.

Without any sort of repair having been done, is it reasonable that they sent it immediately back?  Should I accept the same camera back ever at this point?  How could I possibly trust that they’ve done any sort of repair at all at this point?

Continue reading