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:
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.