When it comes to cleaning SLR camera lenses, professional photographers use different methods that work on their behalf. In this article, I will show you my method to clean DSLR camera lenses. We often get emails and responses from our readers, who ask to supply detailed information on this process, so I feel including a detailed article along with a good accompanying video to thoroughly clarify the process. Cleaning lenses is a pretty straightforward process and is almost free of risk, as long as you are using proper tools for your job. If you are impatient and want to view the video where I show the whole process of cleaning a lens, neglect all the way down. I hope you find the particular below article and video helpful.
1) Exactly why Clean Camera Lens?
Besides the obvious answer “ because it is dirty”, keeping your lens clean will ensure that you get the best plus highest quality results from using your gear. Throughout a Photo Moves that I led a few years ago, a novice approached me using a question about his camera. This individual told me that his images appearance cloudy and he had no idea precisely why it was happening. I asked basically could take a look at his camera to find out if I could find anything wrong from it. As soon as I opened the front zoom lens cap, I knew exactly what the issue was. The front element of the zoom lens was very dirty and had greasy fingerprints and other stuff all over the place. We showed him the lens plus asked if he knew regarding the problem. He told me that he a new toddler that likes his digital camera too much and apparently, that’ s i9000 how the lens ended up getting everything on it. He did not know how to thoroughly clean the lens properly and after investing so much money on the camera equipment, he was too scared to wash it himself. Gladly, I always have my cleaning kit with me, therefore i took a picture before and then one more after cleaning the lens. We all compared the images and as anticipated, the first one indeed looked cloudy, as the second one was clear plus sharp. This is one example of how dirt, dirt and oil can affect your pictures.
Another important reason to wash your camera lens is maintain your images free of particles that might appear in background highlights and other areas of the image. Take a look at my earlier write-up on “ the result of dust on lens bokeh ” – you will see, that will dust on the rear element of your own lens will show up in your pictures, especially if you have large specks associated with dust there.
Dirt is a normal part of a photographer’ s life. While it is a good idea to avoid dust from landing on your equipment, whether you like it or not, you can eventually end up in a dusty atmosphere some day. So , it is not a matter of just how, but when. If you see a beautiful sun on a windy and dusty time, are you not going to take a picture? Several photographers say things like “ having your gear dirty in 1st place”, which I consider to be an absurd statement. I would never want to skip an opportunity for a good picture, simply because I wanted to keep my gear thoroughly clean. Every time I go to places such as the Great Sand Dunes NP, I realize beforehand that it is most likely going to become windy. Take a look at this shot:
I taken it on a very windy plus cold day. The sand had been all over the place and it ended up going into each hole in my camera and zoom lens. It took me several hours to get every thing cleaned and even after cleaning, the zoom lens had some screeching noise after i moved the zoom and concentrate rings. If I worried too much regarding dust and sand, the above picture would never have been captured.
2) Problems of Improper Lens Cleaning
Most people end up with poor equipment because of their creative ways to thoroughly clean it. Remember, camera lenses are extremely similar to glass lenses on eyeglasses, meaning that they can be easily scratched. Lenses are usually made of tough optical glass, when you attempt to clean it along with cloth that might have sand contaminants on it, you will surely scratch the particular optical surface. That’ s since sand is harder than cup. If you use a wrong type of chemical water on lenses, you might damage the particular lens coating. If you put a lot of liquid on the lens, some of it may get inside the lens and give a person all kinds of trouble afterwards. The list goes on and.
If you decide to clean your own lenses yourself, it is very important that you select the right tools for the job and utilize them properly.
3) Using Protective Filter systems
Every zoom lens I own and use includes a high quality protective filter in front of this. I also suggest protecting expensive lens in my articles on purchasing camera gear and other gear-related articles We post on this blog. Why? Mainly because filters make it easier not only to shield your lens, but also to clean this. Some lenses have threads or even “ steps” right by the front side lens element (separate from filtration system threads), which attract dust and also cut off pieces from microfiber fabric. Overtime, it gets difficult to keep your front of the lens clean because of all the stuff that gets attached to those people threads. A protective filter should go over those threads and you will invest much less time cleaning your lens. If you are too worried about image high quality, don’ t be – check out my gallery and Lola’ h weddings page. Every picture the truth is was taken with a lens that will had a protective filter. Do you find any problems with image quality? Simply use professional multi-coated filters through companies like B+W and Hoya . Individuals filters will have the least impact on picture quality, because they are made of high quality cup. They are expensive, but definitely worthwhile. When you consider the amount of time you will be investing in cleaning your lenses and when a person weigh in all potential problems for example scratching your lens, you will rapidly realize the benefits of using filters. If you scratch or break your filtration system, you just buy another one and your zoom lens stays protected.
4) Tools to wash lenses
There are many different tools available on the market today to take care of your lenses. I have used a variety of solutions before and I found a few products to be more effective than other people. Here is the list of tools that I individually use and recommend for cleansing lenses:
- Zeiss Liquid Lens Solution or Eclipse Optic Lens Cleansing Solution are the fluids I personally use and recommend for cleansing lenses
- Visible Dust Magic Cleaner is a large piece of microfiber cloth for cleaning lenses. Get a couple of these.
- Tiffen Lens Cleaning Papers to clean the optic lens elements.
- Giotto’ s Rocket Motorized inflator to blow from the dust from lenses.
- A hard toothbrush or some other tough brush for cleaning the rubberized focus/zoom rings.
There are many other types of liquids plus tools you can find online or in the local camera shop that work great. Giotto’ s Lens Cleaning Kit is also great if you don’ t want to spend much – just don’ t buy the various other kit that comes with a small blower, you will require the large one.
5) Lens Cleansing Process
The process of cleaning lenses is split into three parts:
- Cleaning the exterior from the lens, including the lens hood – I first start away by using wet microfiber cloth to eliminate any dust or dirt through lens exterior and lens cover. I apply the same optical method that contains anti-static material on microfiber cloth or if the lens is simply too dirty, I start off by using normal water (distilled water would work best) and then finish off with using the alternative. To clean the rubber zoom plus focus rings, I use an ordinary toothbrush, which works great for removing contaminants in between the rubber lines.
- Cleaning the zoom lens mount – an essential part of the process that sometimes demands me to clean the mount many times due to oil and dirt. Apply the same zoom lens cleaning solution on microfiber fabric and clean the mount completely. Don’ t forget to clean the particular round contacts on the lens too.
- Cleaning the trunk and the front optical elements – I find microfiber cloth to be unsafe for cleansing optical lens elements, especially if you recycle the same microfiber cloth that you value to clean your lenses outside. Furthermore, sometimes microfiber cloth will depart particles that are hard to remove using the rocket blower, so I rely on zoom lens cleaning tissues instead. They thoroughly clean glass very well and if they depart anything on the lens, it can be very easily removed by the rocket blower.
The process is pretty simple and you can do it with ease yourself. The following is detailed video of the entire procedure:
Good luck and tell me if you have any questions!