Scroll wheel on my VX2000 acting up at DVinfo.net

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Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion
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Old February 13th, 2006, 02:52 PM   #1
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Scroll wheel on my VX2000 acting up

What's up, people! Just wanted to see if anyone had this problem. All of a sudden, my scroll wheel on the back used to change settings is acting all stupid. It's acting like a mouse with a dirty scroll ball cause it jumps the cursor on screen all over the place. Does anyone know how to remedy this cause it's really a pain. ThankS!
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Old February 25th, 2006, 06:24 PM   #2
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I have the same issue with my PD-170. No idea whats causing it.
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Old February 25th, 2006, 07:30 PM   #3
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The fix has been, in the past, a replacement of the control. Not hard to do if you want to do it yourself and don't mind disassembling part of the camera.
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Old March 14th, 2006, 01:20 PM   #4
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Hello,

I'm sorry I did not see these posts earlier - I'm usually around the Sony FX1 and Sony Vegas threads - but also have a Sony VX2100E.

I had the same problem a while ago so I called Sony and they said 'it sounds like there is a bit of dirt on the contacts - bring it in and we'll have a look'.

From past experience I did not have the patience for this (and my VX2100E was already out of warranty) so I took some electrical contact cleaner - NOT AN OIL BASED ONE I.E. OIL FREEE - sprayed a small amount of it directly into / onto the scroll wheel so that some of the spray was forced to go between the scroll wheel and its housing on both sides AND THEN IMMEDIATELY PUT MY MOUTH OVER THE AREA OF THE SCROLL WHEEL AND SUCKED AS HARD AS I COULD.

Dont laugh.

I repeated this three or so times and, guess what, my VX2100E has been fine ever since (it seems to be even more responsive and 'clicky' than when it was new).

The trick I think is not to spray too much contact cleaner into the scroll wheel housing AND IMMEDIATELY SUCK HARD as this will ensure that no contact cleaner works its way into the rest of the camera (I assumed that the scroll wheel housing is not a closed unit inside the camera).

I suppose taking some sort of blower and blowing into the scroll wheel housing from outside of the camera might also have worked but I was just a bit worried about blowing junk INTO the camera as opposed to sucking it out.

Although this might put you on a small short high (depending on the chemical composition of your contact cleaner) this really is no joke - it worked perfectly for me.

Regards,

Dale.
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Old March 16th, 2006, 06:30 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dale Paterson
Hello,

I'm sorry I did not see these posts earlier - I'm usually around the Sony FX1 and Sony Vegas threads - but also have a Sony VX2100E.

I had the same problem a while ago so I called Sony and they said 'it sounds like there is a bit of dirt on the contacts - bring it in and we'll have a look'.

From past experience I did not have the patience for this (and my VX2100E was already out of warranty) so I took some electrical contact cleaner - NOT AN OIL BASED ONE I.E. OIL FREEE - sprayed a small amount of it directly into / onto the scroll wheel so that some of the spray was forced to go between the scroll wheel and its housing on both sides AND THEN IMMEDIATELY PUT MY MOUTH OVER THE AREA OF THE SCROLL WHEEL AND SUCKED AS HARD AS I COULD.

Dont laugh.

I repeated this three or so times and, guess what, my VX2100E has been fine ever since (it seems to be even more responsive and 'clicky' than when it was new).

The trick I think is not to spray too much contact cleaner into the scroll wheel housing AND IMMEDIATELY SUCK HARD as this will ensure that no contact cleaner works its way into the rest of the camera (I assumed that the scroll wheel housing is not a closed unit inside the camera).

I suppose taking some sort of blower and blowing into the scroll wheel housing from outside of the camera might also have worked but I was just a bit worried about blowing junk INTO the camera as opposed to sucking it out.

Although this might put you on a small short high (depending on the chemical composition of your contact cleaner) this really is no joke - it worked perfectly for me.

Regards,

Dale.
Good work! That sounds like just the kind of thing I would try.
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Old March 16th, 2006, 11:59 AM   #6
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Thanks, it really works.

What really upset me though is the fact I look after these cameras of mine like babies - they are never out of their cases unless being used and they have never been used in dusty environments so I was just a little upset that this stupid thing started happening and now more so to find out that I am not the only one that had the problem.

I hope the FX1 doesn't start playing up a couple of days out of warranty!

Regards,

Dale.
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Old March 16th, 2006, 06:37 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dale Paterson
Thanks, it really works.

What really upset me though is the fact I look after these cameras of mine like babies - they are never out of their cases unless being used and they have never been used in dusty environments so I was just a little upset that this stupid thing started happening and now more so to find out that I am not the only one that had the problem.

I hope the FX1 doesn't start playing up a couple of days out of warranty!

Regards,

Dale.
A couple of years ago, my No.1 digital camcorder came to the end of its 3-year extended warranty. The company sent me a notice and said that for $129., they would extend it for one more year. Pah! I said, that's more than I paid for the first 3 years. It ran just fine, so I tossed the offer. Exactly 2 days after the 30-day renewal period had expired, the tape drive went south and would have cost me big dollars to replace. Now, I use it as a non-recording desktop camera. But, for $129. I could have had it rebuilt and it might not have been necessary to buy another new one. I'll never pass up an offer like that again
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Old March 20th, 2006, 04:28 PM   #8
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Damn, I'm gonna try this tonight. Where can I pick up some of this contact cleaner? CompUSA? Target? Home Depot? I've never heard of it. Thanks, Dale!
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Old March 21st, 2006, 04:20 AM   #9
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Hi,

The one I used is made by a company called 'Spanjaard' and the product is called 'Lectro Kleen' and is described on the aerosol can as an 'Electronic Contact Cleaner' - I live in South Africa and buy this stuff from one of my customers who sell auto parts and ball bearings - and I have seen it in what we call 'hardware stores' so I assume that is the same as your 'home depot'.

Be careful if you can get a hold of the Spanjaard product - they make two versions - one is 'highly flammable' (red and white aerosol can) and the other one has some or the other additive mixed in with it so that it is 'non-flammable' (black and gold aerosol can) - DO NOT USE THIS ONE - you need the 'highly flammable' one.

Basically it is a general purpose contact or switch cleaner but be careful that you don't buy one that has some type of oil base i.e. cleans and lubricates - you want one that just cleans.

This stuff comes out of the can wet, fizzles a bit, and then evaporates very rapidly - I think that is the key.

Whatever product you are able to source it should come with a tiny tube that fits into the spray nozzle and enables you to direct the spray - you need to use this so that you can direct the spray between the wheel and the housing on all sides of the wheel.

Apparantely it also cleans tape heads, lasers, etc. etc. (according to the label) but I would not take a chance spraying this stuff into the tape transport of any of my cameras but it sure did sort out my scroll wheel problem.

Basically - spray a little all around the wheel into the housing - blow into / suck spray out - spray a little more - move scroll wheel up down / push in - blow into / suck spray out - repeat - you get the picture!!!

Please let me know if it works for you.

By the way - It has many, many, different languages on the actual can itself so I am sure that you will be able to source it just about anywhere.

Regards,

Dale.
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Old March 21st, 2006, 04:48 AM   #10
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I believe you can find a similar electronic cleaner in the U.S. in places like Radio Shack, Office Depot, etc. It is basically a highly volatile solvent that emulsifies oil and dirt and then it all vaporizes and goes away. But, be very careful that you don't get any inside the camera or recorder compartments. The dirt it lifts up could settle out on places that can't tolerate any contamination. Some dirt is better left where it is, rather than be put into circulation and end up in far worse spots. This is the same reason doctors are reluctant to do chelation procedures on people with mild to moderate amounts of lead in their bodies. If the lead is pulled out of the places it has settled and put into the bloodstream, it's likely to find its way to parts of the body where it will do more damage.
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Old March 21st, 2006, 06:49 AM   #11
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Good point.

However - the more I think about it - the scroll wheel housing MUST be a sealed unit with the connections on the other side of the housing inside the camera so I can't forsee causing too much of a problem.

The trick is to not flood the thing just enough to get in and clean the contacts.

BYTHE WAY - AND THIS IS SOMETHING I FORGOT TO MENTION BUT WOULD STRONGLY SUGGEST - I MADE SURE THAT I HAD REMOVED THE BATTERY FROM THE CAMERA - NO POWER TO CAMERA WHEN DOING THIS!

Also - try and spray into the scroll wheel housing holding the camera vertical i.e. with the scroll wheel facing the ground - if you DO spray too much stuff into the cavity it would then theoretically run down and out and not into the camera (if the scroll wheel housing is indeed not a closed unit - but - like I said - logic tells me that it is a sealed unit).

Regards,

Dale.
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Old March 21st, 2006, 07:10 AM   #12
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Additional comment:

Quote:
Some dirt is better left where it is
I would be inclined to agree with you except for the fact that this scroll wheel thing is a far greater problem than one would think at first.

If it were just a problem of setting things up in the menu then I probably would not have taken the chance but remember that this same scroll wheel also changes your aperture or shutter speed on the fly when in manual mode (depending of course on which AE option you have selected). When this thing started playing up on my VX2100E it was impossible to change settings if and when necessary - I would use, for example, 1/50sec shutter speed and maybe just needed to change it to 1/60sec for some or the other reason and it would then jump right up sometimes to 1/200sec and then come back down to 1/120sec all by itself!

Of course you could send it in to Sony but I HATE parting with my cameras - for any reason.

All I can say is that this worked for me and saved me the hassle of driving to Sony, waiting 2 weeks, collecting the camera and then spending the time testing every single thing on the camera to make sure that nothing else has been tampered with etc. etc.

Funny enough my VX is the only camera that has had to go to Sony for anything - not so much to sort out faults but because I was initially not happy with the quality of the picture (first problem) and the sound (bad background noises). Sony did some or the other adjustment for the picture quality and performed the PD170 mod to the audio setup for which I was not charged (even although the camera was out of warranty).

Anyway - Sony sorted out both problems well and I'm happy.

I was dissapointed at first though - I have had a TRV27E for a while and never had a problem with it whatsoever and that camera has had much much more use than the other two i.e. I pick it up, shoot, edit, job finished!!! Every time I use the VX2100E or the FX1E it is sort of like going on safari - especially after you have mounted mics and lights and huge batteries etc. etc.

Regards,

Dale.
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Old April 25th, 2006, 01:40 AM   #13
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Just thought that I would update this thread with some additional info.

I do not use my VX2100E that much (about once a month) and when I took it out of its case this month the scroll wheel was acting up again and I am 100% sure that when I used it about six seeks ago there was no problem at all.

Using my contact cleaner again sorted out the problem immediatley and I have been using it for the last couple of days and everything is perfect.

I am starting to think that it is not really dirt on the wheel contacts but, maybe, either oxidation or it just does not like being left in the same place or position (the wheel) for too long.

I can't think of anything else - the camera is stored in a cool dry place with no battery attached and I always ensure that one of those little silica gel packets are in the case to absorb any possible moisture.

Regards,

Dale.
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Old April 26th, 2006, 06:17 AM   #14
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Works with a Sony Hi8 too!

I spotted this discussion yesterday, and it brought to mind my Sony TRV65 Hi8 camcorder that's been retired for the past 6 or 7 years.The scroll wheel developed the same problem back around '99 and that's when I decided to retire it and buy my first digital camcorder.

Anyway, I took it off the shelf last night, popped in a battery, called up the menu, and, sure enough, the scroll wheel was still acting squirrely. I gave it a shot of contact cleaner as suggested here, gave the wheel a few turns, and BINGO, it now works just fine!

BTW, I decided not to suck.
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Old April 26th, 2006, 12:48 PM   #15
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Aw - that's the fun part!

I'm glad it worked for you.

What I don't understand is how it can be fine and then a couple of weeks later (with no use at all) it starts acting up again!

Regards,

Dale.
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