Oh no! You've dropped your digital camera. And it's out of warranty. And repair costs more than the camera is worth. What to do short of tossing the camera (or selling on ebay)? Well, believe it or not the average person has a good chance of diy fixing that camera themselves. All they'll need for most cases is some patience, and a little background knowledge. The intent of the posts on this blog are to help provide that knowledge.

But now for the WARNINGS! Many of the repairs posted here should only be considered as a last resort for a broken camera that would otherwise be considered for disposal. Also please consider those repairs that require removing the camera case to also require some electrical background and knowledge, and should not be attempted by anyone unfamiliar with basic electrical components and safety precautions.

Make sure you read this post and are aware of the potential DANGER OF SEVERE ELECTRICAL SHOCK should you decide to proceed with a "do it yourself" repair that involves removing the camera case.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Disassemble a canon A540/A530 to the sensor to remove the ir cut filter

This tutorial will show you how to disassemble a canon a540/a530 to the sensor to remove the ir cut filter.

#00 philips screw driversoldering iron

couple of notes:
- there is 300 volts or so inside the camera. canon has done a pretty good job shielding those areas, and I haven't gotten shocked even though my fingers have been everywhere, but be careful anyway. it's enough energy to kill you several times if you're unlucky.
- you may end up with an ir sensitive camera, or you may end up buying a new camera.

remove the green and red screws. the green screws are identical. take off the back cover. the back cover snaps together with the front cover at the top of the camera.

remove the screw and loosen the clips holding the lcd. disconnect the cables connecting the lcd and set the lcd aside.
remove the screw and take off the front cover. there's a thin dust ring between the cover and the lens barrel, don't lose it.

remove the screws. the red screw is a metal screw. pry off the plastic io panel and tripod thread assembly.

if you want to, now is the time to turn back first remove the two screws holding the control panel pcb, then disconnect and remove the control panel. very carefully disconnect the cables. the connectors are very delicate, and if you snap one, you'll be buying a new camera.

desolder the circled wires. it is not necessary to detach the crossed wires. remove the three screws holding the main pcb (not indicated here), and reflect the main pcb along the bottom, exposing the sensor.

circuit board pics...

remove the screws holding the sensor. the sensor is also glued down near the screw tabs. remove the sensor by prying near the screw tabs - the glue is brittle. do not pry at the center. there are three springs beneath the sensor, be careful and hold a hand over the sensor as you pry at it so the sensor does not pop out. my guess is that they are used for focus adjustment - the springs push the sensor back to to the screw, and the screws can be loosened to move the sensor back. then glue is applied to secure its position.

remove the ir cut filter (looks pinkish). you will need to move the sensor back slightly by approx 0.1 mm as removing the glass filter changes the optical path...

there are two ways that I can think of:
1. include the springs as you reassemble the sensor. screw the sensor down all the way, and loosen the screws by an equal amount to move the sensor back. glue to secure it
2. prepare three focus spacers out of a thin material (plastic, metal) and screw the sensor on top of that. you don't need the springs if you do this.

clean the sensor and the area near the ir filter, and reassemble everything. everything should work if you didn't break anything. have fun with your now ir sensitive cam

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