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Railfan Technology > Half of a Picture - Error


Date: 11/04/16 19:03
Half of a Picture - Error
Author: wko

This evening while out shooting, I went to take a shot of the Grand Canyon Railway 539 on display in Williams with the red-hot sunset behind it. As I took it, I got a black viewfinder with "err" at the bottom, then looked at the screen to see "Error. Press shutter release again." When I do this, the shutter comes up, the error messages go away, and the viewfinder looks normal again.

I called my dad, who worked at photo stores for the better part of a decade (not recently, unfortunately), and his advice was to clean contact points between lens/body, battery, card, etc., then if those didn't work, charge the battery, or put in a new card. I've tried all the cleanings, and the new card, and after the battery was on the charger for 15 minutes I pulled it off and tried, but got the same message.

Anybody here know of a potential fix, or is something toast?
~wko - attached is the picture I got for reference. I wish I was posting this on a different board for the 'wow' factor, but here I am! And yes, I erased half of my name for kicks and giggles.




Date: 11/04/16 21:51
Re: Half of a Picture - Error
Author: lanewsman

You didn't mention what your camera's brand is.  This looks like it might be related to a verticle focal plane shutter that was not operating correctly.  If your camera has this kind of shutter--as opposed to a horizontal focal plane shutter or a leaf shutter--you should take a look at your camera's menu to make sure that shutter is operating in its default mode.

What happens when you shoot a scene that is evenly lit, without a hot spot?  Or a scene like the one you posted but with exposure compensation turned down by about two stops to see what happens.



Date: 11/05/16 07:05
Re: Half of a Picture - Error
Author: wko

Sorry about that, lanewsman, and everyone else. I'm shooting a Nikon D40, everything in full manual mode. I took what you said and did a little research, but couldn't find any useful information. I haven't tried the equal scene/exposure comp suggestion, but when testing in my hotel room, the light was pretty even, but no such luck.
I'm a little ashamed, however, to admit that until I posted this response, I had never thought to Google search the issue. I've seen a couple things there that I'll try, too.
~wko



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/05/16 07:15 by wko.



Date: 11/07/16 10:38
Re: Half of a Picture - Error
Author: tgcostello

Kirk, you sure get around!

My equipment is Canon, so I can't give a precise answer.  You may want to check your menu to see if there is a reset to default settings option, and try that.

Canon has a great tech support line, staffed by folks in Virginia.  Check to see if you can put in a call to Nikon.

One more thought, have you tried another CF/SSD card?

Good luck,
Tim Costello



Date: 11/08/16 05:46
Re: Half of a Picture - Error
Author: NDHolmes

Looks like a sticky / busted shutter to me.  I'm a Canon guy as well, and had this happen a few winters ago up on the BNSF east of Alliance.  Great snow, great light, and all of a sudden I start getting shutter errors and half the image is dark.  The shutter was sticking about halfway up, probably triggered by the nasty cold and the fact it had several hundred thousand shots on it by that point.

If you can pop it into sensor cleaning mode, take a look inside.  I'll bet the shutter only half rises.  You might delicately nudge it and see if it'll go all the way, but even if it does, my bet is that it's not long for the world.



Date: 11/11/16 00:41
Re: Half of a Picture - Error
Author: wko

tgcostello Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Kirk, you sure get around!
><SNIP>
>
> One more thought, have you tried another CF/SSD
> card?

Thanks, Tim! This was my first time in Arizona, so to have a full week was neat. But to answer your question, yes. That was on Dad's list of things to try, none of which worked.

NDHolmes Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> <SNIP>
>
> If you can pop it into sensor cleaning mode, take
> a look inside.  I'll bet the shutter only half
> rises.  You might delicately nudge it and see if
> it'll go all the way, but even if it does, my bet
> is that it's not long for the world.

Thanks, Nathan! That's similar to what I read when doing a Google search. It's old enough that it doesn't have a sensor cleaning mode, and I haven't had the time since returning to take it to a shop, so there's no way of knowing yet.
~wko



Date: 11/30/16 10:02
Re: Half of a Picture - Error
Author: fbe

Go to M manual mode. Set the exposure speed to B bulb. This means as long as you hold the shutter release down the shutter stays open. Remove the lens from the body, look into the shutter area and hold the shutter open. It is best if you do not have any bright light shining directly on the sensor since there is no cleaning mode and the sensor is busy counting photons.



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