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Old February 9th, 2008, 09:07 AM   #1
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ND filter definitely malfunctioning

I have mentioned about it already elsewhere, but decided to make it a separate thread because it's more serious than I hoped it was. It happens to me more and more often, that the filter doesn't snap completely and firmly into position, and partially obscures the picture (see grabs below). The most common situation is trying to engage the ND1 (middle possition) from either ND2 or OFF position - sometimes it will go too far, and end up between ND1/ND2, or between ND1/ND2, respectively.

Before I send my camera for repair, I'd like to know whether this is an isolated case or if it happens on every unit. I'd prefer to wait until Sony is made aware of it and develops some effective fix, rather then send the camera at once and let them experiment on my unit...

Therefore, please everybody observe yours and comment in this thread. Thanks.
Attached Thumbnails
ND filter definitely malfunctioning-image66.jpg   ND filter definitely malfunctioning-image65.jpg  

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Last edited by Piotr Wozniacki; February 10th, 2008 at 03:58 AM.
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Old February 9th, 2008, 09:14 AM   #2
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Yes it has happened on occasion where it has stopped in a viewable position. I try to be precise and deliberate when I change it. Has yours become stuck in that postion?
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Old February 9th, 2008, 09:31 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Charles Dasher View Post
Yes it has happened on occasion where it has stopped in a viewable position. I try to be precise and deliberate when I change it. Has yours become stuck in that postion?
You mean, stuck for good? No, it's possible to be corrected with a more deliberate and precise switch movement, but still...Should NOT be happening!
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Old February 9th, 2008, 10:43 PM   #4
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This very same thing happened to me today.

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Old February 9th, 2008, 11:26 PM   #5
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Happens if I'm not aggressive and firm. Stupid thing, like the power switch needs a lever pointing out. In fact I'm thinking of drilling an ever so tiny hole in the middle of the two switched and putting a small self-tapping pin in so you can get a good grip with the end of the finger. Also thought of epoxying a few grains of sand to the switches to give them more purchase on the fingers.
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Old February 10th, 2008, 03:56 AM   #6
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Happens if I'm not aggressive and firm. Stupid thing, like the power switch needs a lever pointing out. In fact I'm thinking of drilling an ever so tiny hole in the middle of the two switched and putting a small self-tapping pin in so you can get a good grip with the end of the finger. Also thought of epoxying a few grains of sand to the switches to give them more purchase on the fingers.
Exactly what I'm planning to do - there should be a lever, not slider, to operate it quickly and firmly - the only thing is I'm afraid it could void the 2 years of my warranty...
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Old February 10th, 2008, 04:00 AM   #7
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Very annoying, especially for a pro unit - never found such a mechanical problem at a consumer cam.
Quality control, please!

Any more users out there that are experiencing this malfunction? I'd hate to send in my cam just for fixing this. (Might come back more malfunctioning than before.)
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Old February 10th, 2008, 04:15 AM   #8
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Michael, in my opinion there are several "features" in the EX1 that make it very difficult to use in run'n'gun style (like I could with my old good V1E) - this is just one of them. With your camera on tripod and plenty of time, when you can afford to stop the camera and prepare it for next scene etc. - it's OK; but when in walking shots one would like to switch those things without being afraid of missing the target, which may happen so often!

Another example are the buttons in the front, underneath the lens barrel; how many times I pressed the WB button instead of sliding Shutter On/Off, and spoiled the colour temperature completely!

Well, at least good to know there is no point in sending mine in for servicing; they'd probably return it as "within the specs"...
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Old February 10th, 2008, 04:38 AM   #9
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... there are several "features" in the EX1 that make it very difficult to use in run'n'gun style ...
Piotr, I see, and that's what I am a little worried about, since run & gun is more than 50 percent of my filming.
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Old February 10th, 2008, 05:35 AM   #10
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I have a little "conspiracy theory" of my own, and would like to ask as many of you as possible for feedback, in order to validate it:

- How many of those who have even a slightest vignetting problem, also have their ND filter malfunctioning?

Since the ND filter was never reported by the users with vignetting issue, I'm suspecting the two might be correlated...
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Old February 10th, 2008, 07:00 AM   #11
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Piotr, I see, and that's what I am a little worried about, since run & gun is more than 50 percent of my filming.
Well, I can see your problem... I enjoyed the V1E so much also because - while being "professional" enough in terms of picture quality and manual controls availability - it is lightweight, perfectly balanced and unobtrusive enough for the run and gun type of shooting. This is why I feel sort of "post-purchase remorse", having replaced it with the EX1 (I initially planned to keep both, but decided it's not economically justifiable, so I sold my V1E - for a good price, but still I miss it)...

Anyway, I guess what I will do is buy a really small camera to complement my EX1 in those situations when using the latter might be difficult, if only for the reasons we're discussing in this thread. It'll have to have native progressive, full raster 1920x1080 capabilities; I wouldn't like to go back to tape though.
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Old February 10th, 2008, 07:55 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piotr Wozniacki View Post
I have a little "conspiracy theory" of my own, and would like to ask as many of you as possible for feedback, in order to validate it:

- How many of those who have even a slightest vignetting problem, also have their ND filter malfunctioning?

Since the ND filter was never reported by the users with vignetting issue, I'm suspecting the two might be correlated...

I've still got a minor vignetting issue and if I try hard yes I can get the ND filter between clicks. It's easy enough to test what you're getting at, just estimate how far the edge of the filter moves out of the frame as you move it.
One thought though, it's pretty cold where you are now, mechanisms tend to bind in the cold. There is on my camera a quite definative 'click' when the filter is in the correct spot. Come to think of it I'm pretty certain I could get any camera, even a PD170, to half engage a ND filter, don't know what that proves though.
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Old February 10th, 2008, 08:28 AM   #13
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I've still got a minor vignetting issue and if I try hard yes I can get the ND filter between clicks. It's easy enough to test what you're getting at, just estimate how far the edge of the filter moves out of the frame as you move it.
One thought though, it's pretty cold where you are now, mechanisms tend to bind in the cold. There is on my camera a quite definative 'click' when the filter is in the correct spot. Come to think of it I'm pretty certain I could get any camera, even a PD170, to half engage a ND filter, don't know what that proves though.
Thanks Bob, I see your point. However, whereas on other cameras one needs to really try to get it half-way, on the EX1 one needs to really try to get it where it should go... And yes, there is a "secondary", inside click when it snaps in the proper ND1 position; it's very easy to jump over it - it's not "deep" enough, if you know what I mean. And considering that - without a lever - one must exert a considerable force on the slider (especially to move it up from the OFF position), it may and WILL happen quite often, I'm afraid.

Installing a lever and/or a grip of some kind on this silly, recessed slider is a must for me... But you're right: with temperature change (and with wear) the problem may vanish (or increase).
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Old February 10th, 2008, 09:35 AM   #14
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Unless this issue is only a select amount of defective EX1 cameras, I have never witnessed this problem. I guess it would be possible to have the switch not fully engaged, but I never thought about it, or had an issue.
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Old February 10th, 2008, 09:42 AM   #15
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Piotr,
If you're having ""post-purchase remorse", I bet you could sell it fast on ebay.
If you think your camera is more sensitive to the ND setting, send it in for repair.

Having said that, the only way I'd give my camera up is by gun point. Well, maybe not even that! LOL
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