Photo tip: New dust control strategy for your camera’s sensor

I hate dust.  I hate dust bunnies on my images.  I have cleaning my sensor.  … but I love photographing in dry, dusty locations.  On past safari trips, I have accepted that dust is part of the deal.  Every other day or more often as needed, I am willing to clean my sensor while in the bush.  I have tried to minimize the dust by a) carrying along 2 bodies to limit lens changes and b) be careful when changing lenses.  With this process, I actually didn’t clean my sensor for a week. When I clean the sensor, I hope that the dust will come up with a simple Rocket Blower.  When that fails, I have two paths.  The best method is as described here by Thom Hogan using sensor swabs.  In the tutorials, it looks easy.  Unfortunately I have fat fingers, the opening is small and … well, I’m just not very good at it.  My Plan B has been to use “Dust Aid Platinum“.  This little kit is basically a slick with a special adhesive attached for capturing the dust.  Since it does have an adhesive, I use this only as a back-up and when traveling (the kit is very portable).

Unfortunately, good photography requires one to be willing to change lenses, so I know my strategies are not the best.

With this as a background, I was EXTREMELY excited when I found an article on sensor cleaning with the phrase “I may never need to clean my sensor again!”.  The article is at “Photo Blog – Niebrugge Images” and is specifically at this link.   Note that the product discussed is by the previously mentioned Dust Aid.  They have given me great service in the past, so I immediately went to their web site to learn more about the new product.  To save you a little effort, below is the instruction video for the new solution:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dxmsIaequ8A[/youtube]

As you can see, the solution is quite unusual.  Does it work?  I am not sure.  I have lost a little of my zeal when I noted that at the information page (link here), the Ron Niebregge ( the owner of the blog where I first found note of the product) is quoted all over the place.  Is this coincidence? Is he a paid spokes person?  I just don’t know.  I have also lost a little zeal realizing that I am now placing an inexpensive clear membrane between my $$$$ lens and my $$$$ camera.  I do not know the optical quality of the Dust Aid Dust Shield, but cannot believe it is up to the optical quality of a Canon L lens or even a top Nikon product (yes, I am slamming Nikon, but all in jest).

Resolution: I am going to try this product.  If it performs well, I will report back.  It may not be a perfect solution, but it just might be the right solution if you are going to a dusty place for a few days or weeks and will need frequent lens changes.

4 comments for “Photo tip: New dust control strategy for your camera’s sensor

  1. March 8, 2010 at 1:21 pm

    Hi,

    I will be interested in your thoughts.

    I thought the product might be a bit controversial, I didn’t expect so many comments (not just yours) directed at me personally, but I suppose they are fair observations.

    I was given some the the cleaning supplies to try for free, in then latter the shield. I really liked the cleaning supplies, finally something that could be shipped to Alaska, and I loved the shield because it meant no more cleaning supplies.

    Because of the reasons I listed above, I was very excited about the products, and wrote glowing reviews which not surprisingly have been picked up by Dust-Aid. I’m not an affiliate, I don’t received kind of commission, kickback or any compensation of any kind. I haven’t even met the owner in person, so this wasn’t even a favor for a friend – Heck, I can’t even get free shieds because they don’t produce them for my camera! I liked it and wrote about it, and that is the end of the story.

    Ron

  2. March 8, 2010 at 1:21 pm

    Hi,

    I will be interested in your thoughts.

    I thought the product might be a bit controversial, I didn’t expect so many comments (not just yours) directed at me personally, but I suppose they are fair observations.

    I was given some the the cleaning supplies to try for free, in then latter the shield. I really liked the cleaning supplies, finally something that could be shipped to Alaska, and I loved the shield because it meant no more cleaning supplies.

    Because of the reasons I listed above, I was very excited about the products, and wrote glowing reviews which not surprisingly have been picked up by Dust-Aid. I’m not an affiliate, I don’t received kind of commission, kickback or any compensation of any kind. I haven’t even met the owner in person, so this wasn’t even a favor for a friend – Heck, I can’t even get free shieds because they don’t produce them for my camera! I liked it and wrote about it, and that is the end of the story.

    Ron

  3. P. B. Eleazer
    March 8, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    Ron, Thanks for the clarification. I have always respected your photography, but wasn’t sure if Dust Aid was a sponsor for you. I look forward to reading as well as posting more on this product. I am a person fan of the original Dust Aid adhesive stamp as it was nice and portable for a camera bag.

  4. P. B. Eleazer
    March 8, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    Ron, Thanks for the clarification. I have always respected your photography, but wasn’t sure if Dust Aid was a sponsor for you. I look forward to reading as well as posting more on this product. I am a person fan of the original Dust Aid adhesive stamp as it was nice and portable for a camera bag.

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