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Author Topic: Problems with my old D80  (Read 2838 times)

Offline Sarasocke

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Problems with my old D80
« on: October 23, 2011, 11:05:52 AM »
Well it's not soooo old ...  :(

Not sure if this belongs in this section, Admins feel free to move it wherever.

I'm starting to give courses for beginners - my guinea-pig run was on Tuesday and went well. Really only for beginners, like what is an aperture and what different does it make. Anyhow, I thought I'd get out my D80 for the "students" to play with in case they didn't have a DSLR.

It doesn't work properly!
I cannot for the life of me get a sharp photo out of it, except with flash and an object which is extremely still. I realise it's softer than my D700, but still ...

Examples including a couple taken with the D700 at the same time with a similar lense, apart from the last two.
I almost always work in aperture priority, as are all these examples, the ISO on all these photos is 250. All photos are out of cam, apart from conversion from RAW to JPEG, I haven't changed anything at all, not even cropped.

D80, Tamron 28-75mm, 2.8 lense. A sunny afternoon about 10 days ago. 55mm, 1/4000, f2.8.
Dogs out of focus.



D80, Nikon 24-70mm, 2,8 lense. Taken from a balcony through an open door, late afternoon. 58mm, 1/13, f2.8.
I set the aperture at 2.8, goodness only knows where the camera got 1/13 second from ...



One minute later, D700, Tamron 28-75mm, 75 mm, 1/350, f2.8



These last two were taken yesterday, a sunny afternoon around 3pm.
D80, Nikon 70-300mm, 180mm, 1/2000, f5.3.



A couple of minutes later, but this time not directly in the sun. It was still quite bright though.
D80, Nikon 70-300mm, 105mm, 1/100, f5.



Just out of interest, this was also taken with the D80 a couple of days ago. It has been "processed", but the original was just fine. However, the flower wasn't moving, the settings were in manual and I used flash. Tamron 28-75mm lense, f8, 1/200, ISO 1600 (should have been less, my mistake), 60mm.



I am so used to setting the ISO/aperture etc, point the camera at my subject with the focus point in the right place, and my pictures are sharp.
The D80 has been slumbering in it's carton for the last two years, could this have some effect?
It seems that sometimes the focus doesn't work, sometimes the exposure.

Looking at the photos here in the thread, the last two don't look too bad, but they are really.

Any thoughts?

Do I hope that the D400 will come on the market soon, so that I can get a D300 cheap?



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Offline Alfonso_Frisk

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #1 on: October 23, 2011, 11:34:57 AM »
Have you tried cleaning the contacts on the camera?
White balance settings? (long shot I know)
Auto iso isnt selected is it?
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Offline Sarasocke

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2011, 11:42:00 AM »
The only auto I use is WB, as I always shoot in RAW. The ISO was 250 on all photos as all were shot in pretty light conditions.

I haven't cleaned the contacts - do you think this could be the cause of my problems?
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Offline spinner

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #3 on: October 23, 2011, 12:53:25 PM »
Carol, 

This may seem odd question, but have you pulled up any of the 2 yr. old shots from the D80 and compared them? Maybe the newer camera is just better and you've forgotten?
And more, much more than this, I did it my way
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Offline Sarasocke

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #4 on: October 23, 2011, 01:05:32 PM »
Almost to the day, two years ago. Even the exifs are almost identical to the two pics I took yesterday.

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Offline Sarasocke

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #5 on: October 23, 2011, 01:08:14 PM »
It did cross my mind too, that I was just spoilt by the D700, but I really couldn't remember having such a large number of duff photos. There is more or less nothing from the lot I took yesterday, that I would even want to keep.

Actually I'm doing some cleaning up on my hard drive and I came across my very first digital photos from 2005 taken with a Power Shot. Even they are "crisper"  :-\
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Offline Jonathan

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #6 on: October 24, 2011, 08:02:46 AM »
Time to do some proper tests.

Sit it on a tripod and take a bunch of shots using (1) aperture priority with matrix metering (2) then set the D700 up the same and copy the meter readings from that to the D80 in manual mode.
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Offline Hinfrance

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #7 on: October 24, 2011, 09:40:52 AM »
After you have checked the contacts and the battery voltage (is it within specification?) do some more test shots; I presume that you have more than one lens you can attach to the D80? It could, after all, be the lens.

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Offline Sarasocke

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #8 on: October 24, 2011, 10:33:41 AM »
I'll do the tests Jonathan suggested this afternoon.
I don't know what happened with the photo which is too light - even with a black dog etc etc, this shouldn't happen imho.

What bothers me more is the fuzzy stuff with the action shots.
The camera seems OK when the object is stationary and the camera is stable - see the flower shot. I would hazard a guess that it has problems with the dynamic focussing, i.e. can adjust quickly enough. I've taken plents of photos in the past which were OK, not the quality of the D700, granted, but nevertheless OK.

The lenses I used for the shots below have all been used on the D700 lately with no problems.
I haven't had a look at the contacts on the camera - I must admit I don't know what to look for except dirt ...
I have three batteries which I rotate. They fit both cameras.

Anyhoo, will get back to you when I've done the test shots.

Thanks for your help guys, I do appreciate it - I posed the same question in a german forum and got some really unhelpful comments back - the general opinion seemed to be that the camera was OK,  and I didn't know what I was doing. The fact that the photos were OK two years ago but not now didn't seem to interest anyone. Why do people have to be rude on forums? Anyway, thanks again :)
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Offline Markulous

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #9 on: October 24, 2011, 10:51:07 AM »
Depending on your results elsewhere, maybe worth trying a newer battery. Li-Ion batteries start to deteriorate the minute they come off the production line - so have a limited life of only a few years. The battery's being asked to focus (and so run the focus motor), read the light, set the shutter and then take the photo - all of which drain the battery to an extent (and something that may not show up on the battery status)
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Offline Jonathan

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #10 on: October 24, 2011, 11:00:58 AM »
Why do people have to be rude on forums?

I've been thinking about that a lot lately.  Most weeks (in fact most days) I get some "contact" via social media that I know the person wouldn't say to my face.  Bizarrely yesterday 3 strangers actually came up to me and said "oh, I saw what you posted on Twitter recently - you are so right" - but none of them had agreed with me online.

Here's an interesting article - http://www.penn-olson.com/2010/09/21/why-are-people-rude-online/

There was a great story about a sports writer who got the most horrific abuse from people reading his column.  He tracked one down and phoned them up.  To his utter dismay he found the chap to be reasonable, polite and likeable.

----

Your camera's doing weird things.  But all of the examples are in situations where you *might* have accidentally done something wrong (eg knocking it into spot metering or selecting "sports" which can give weird focusing modes).  Let's eliminate that and then look at some other possibilities.  A collection of different symptoms that suddenly start are usually user error ;)  But not always.
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Offline Hinfrance

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #11 on: October 24, 2011, 12:28:49 PM »
Carol, to clean the contacts on the camera a soft lint free cloth and a spot of ethanol will do the trick.

I have one other thought, bizarre though it may seem - if you haven't used it for a while it is possible the circuitry is still 'waking up'. Try using it quite a lot, which you will be doing when you run Jonathan's suggested tests, and see if it improves.

I say this because I have a whole bunch of sound studio electronics which I now use infrequently and some processors and the odd amplifier don't work properly until they have been switched on for while and subject to a bit of use.

Meanwhile I've fixed my PC - the problem was a failing external drive that somehow split itself into two logical drives.
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Offline Oldboy

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #12 on: October 24, 2011, 07:12:08 PM »
Might suggest you reset the camera to factory default before doing the tests. It is possible that a setting has caused this problem and by going back to factory default it will clear it.  :o

Offline Sarasocke

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #13 on: October 25, 2011, 02:31:30 PM »
Been busy with my PC (it's at the PC doctor right now) so didn't get round to doing the tests yesterday. Right now I'm sitting at my lap top having taken advantage of a PC-less day and cleaned the living room windows.

I'm afraid I have to go to the vet in half an hour but I will do the tests tomorrow, when I will hopefully also have my PC back - I prefer to compare details in photos on the PC rather than lap top.

OB - I set everthing back to the factory presets before I took the last three shots, just in case.

I'm still trying to figure out what ethanol is in German ...
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Offline Hinfrance

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Re: Problems with my old D80
« Reply #14 on: October 25, 2011, 02:55:23 PM »
Good luck with the tests Carol.

According to google translate the German for ethanol is  . . . ethanol. You can buy litre bottles of the stuff in the supermarkets here in la Belle.
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