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Weird A700 behavior

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momech View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote momech Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Weird A700 behavior
    Posted: 27 March 2011 at 18:43
Went out with my A700 and the 600/4 and F58AM flash this morning and encountered a series of problems that I don't understand.
First, the flash quit working, and I mean just died. Installed new batteries, even though the old ones were relatively fresh. Nothing happened, the flash stayed dead. I use it on a bracket, so disconnected and reconnected the cable, reinstalled the new batteries and it came back to life for a few shots.
Next, the image review started acting up. I tried to review an image to check exposure and it came up for a split second, then the monitor went blank and then back to the normal info display. Turned things off and on a couple of times and that seemed to work, but I was getting concerned.
Then it did the same kind of thing when I tried to change ISO, flashed the ISO screen, went dead, then back to display.
After restarting a couple of times, it took two shots, which look normal, but then the shutter speed display on the monitor started changing extremely fast, couldn't even read the numbers. Turned it off and on again, and all symptoms started happening simultaneously.
I took everything apart, batteries from camera and flash, CF card, cables, took it off the lens, etc., put it all back together one step at a time checking it as I went. It behaved perfectly for the rest of the morning.
Only other component I had in the system was my Quantum battery pack for the flash, but I hadn't even turned it on when the craziness started, so don't think it was a contributer.
I bought my A700 when they were released so it's an older one, has Firmware 1.04, and I sent it in to Precision for cleaning and "tune-up" last fall. Never had any problems with it before.
Would appreciate any input you can give me.
 



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Wirralpix View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Wirralpix Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 March 2011 at 19:32
I can't tell you what is wrong but I can tell you that my A700 also acts strangely from time to time. For instance I took a shot, reviewed it and the camera went mad quickly flipping through all of the images on the card and the only way to make it stop was to turn the camera off.

I also have a problem with the Sony HLV-F56AM on the A700. It's a very loose fit so tends to misfire at times which is very annoying.

George

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waleskeg View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote waleskeg Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 March 2011 at 21:42
Originally posted by momech momech wrote:

I bought my A700 when they were released so it's an older one, has Firmware 1.04, and I sent it in to Precision for cleaning and "tune-up" last fall. Never had any problems with it before.
Would appreciate any input you can give me.


Version 1.04?
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Pirate View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Pirate Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 March 2011 at 22:10
Sounds partly like the dreaded control wheel issue on the A700. I have the same thing happen on mine. It'll scroll through images and/or adjust EV, aperture or whatever without any input. It's a PITA, but if I'm right, you'll just have to live with it.

Also, update the firmware to v4.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote momech Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 March 2011 at 22:11
Originally posted by waleskeg waleskeg wrote:

Originally posted by momech momech wrote:

I bought my A700 when they were released so it's an older one, has Firmware 1.04, and I sent it in to Precision for cleaning and "tune-up" last fall. Never had any problems with it before.
Would appreciate any input you can give me.


Version 1.04?


Sorry, Ver. 4.

After reviewing the images on my computer, I'm beginning to think it was caused by the flash. At least, the only image I got before the flash went dead has a strange blue cast to it. Maybe that could cause the camera's computer to have a problem with the exposure and shutter speed (?), but I have no idea why it would affect other functions the way it did.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote momech Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 March 2011 at 22:17
Originally posted by Pirate Pirate wrote:

Sounds partly like the dreaded control wheel issue on the A700. I have the same thing happen on mine. It'll scroll through images and/or adjust EV, aperture or whatever without any input. It's a PITA, but if I'm right, you'll just have to live with it.

Also, update the firmware to v4.


Pirate, thanks for the reply. I haven't been following the control wheel thread. But could it cause these problems when I hadn't used either wheel? The problems with image review and ISO happened so fast I never had a chance to use them, just press the button and WHAM!!

Wirralpix, I've had a little of what you described with image review although nowhere near as bad, but this looked very different.

Edited by momech - 27 March 2011 at 22:22
 



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Pirate View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Pirate Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 March 2011 at 22:25
Originally posted by momech momech wrote:

Originally posted by Pirate Pirate wrote:

Sounds partly like the dreaded control wheel issue on the A700. I have the same thing happen on mine. It'll scroll through images and/or adjust EV, aperture or whatever without any input. It's a PITA, but if I'm right, you'll just have to live with it.

Also, update the firmware to v4.


Pirate, thanks for the reply. I haven't been following the control wheel thread. But could it cause these problems when I hadn't used either wheel? The problems with image review and ISO happened so fast I never had a chance to use them, just press the button and WHAM!!

The control wheels issue is now well documented and the A700 can have a mind of it's own quite regularly once it's 'set in' and adjust settings willy nilly, so you need to keep an eye on the viewfinder data to check the EV hasn't altered and/or the shutter speed and/or aperture depending on your shooting style; and yes, it will flip your images very fast as well when it feels like it.

I'm only guessing it's the control wheel(s) based on your cameras 'symptoms'.
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momech View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote momech Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 March 2011 at 23:19
OK, I've read through the wheel problem thread, not sure if that could cause everything that happened but it's a start.
Couple of other things: I use the joy stick to scroll through my images and I still get a bit of skipping from time to time. Only use the wheel to enlarge, etc.
Also, I just tried the original set of batteries in my flash and it fired right up. But they were fairly low on charge, pretty slow cycle time. Then again, the new batteries I used this morning didn't wake it up right away.
If this really is part of "Wheel Syndrome" then it may be more trouble than anyone realizes.
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Mark L View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Mark L Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 March 2011 at 00:25
I think control wheel problems could account for several of your symptoms, but it does sound like an extreme case. Try one of the cleaning methods indicated in the other thread. I have to say that since the last air blast I gave my A700 some time ago, I have not experienced any more problems - yet .

However, I don't see how your flash problem could be caused by the control wheel. If the flash is just dead, try cleaning the battery contacts. If it appears to be working normally but won't function correctly with the camera, clean the contacts on the flash and hotshoe.

The blue cast on the photo sounds as though the camera didn't register the presence of the flash and set an auto WB for tungsten. But then the flash fired, resulting in a blue photo. This probably means that only some of the contacts between flash and camera are working. Again, cleaning the contacts on the flash and hotshoe is likely to solve this problem.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote mpb Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 March 2011 at 00:37
As Mark L said above it sounds like most of the problems are related to the control wheel, I have had most of the camera issues you have described but behave again with a clean or just a spin of the wheel if I am out shooting.

The flash problem sounds like a connection issue. So one other thing to check is the flash cable.
Mark
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momech View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote momech Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 March 2011 at 01:21
Guys, thanks for the responses. I think you're right about the flash, although the camera recognized it well enough for it to show in the metadata.
But all this concern about cleaning contacts and connecters got me thinking; I believe name of the culprit is HUMIDITY. We've had weeks of mild temperatures with moderate to heavy cloud cover and not much sun; and fairly constant winds coming off the water. All of which adds up to a very soggy atmosphere. Neither the AC or central heat runs much so indoors isn't much better. I thought I had plenty of dessicant to protect my gear but I'm going to add a few packs and make sure the AC runs some no matter the temperature. Also going to give all my lenses a thorough cleaning and whatever sun is available, don't need fungus getting a start.

Edited by momech - 28 March 2011 at 01:30
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