How to Use the Sensor Gel Stick

In this video, I decided to cover a couple of important aspects of using the sensor gel stick. First, I wanted to show what the product looks like when shipped and what it comes with, then answer some of the most frequently asked questions by our readers (see below for the text version), before actually showing how to use the product on a camera sensor.

DISCLAIMER: Not responsible for any potential damage of the camera due to misuse of the product! Please watch the video carefully and follow the instructions step by step.

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions from our readers regarding the sensor gel stick:

  1. How long does the sensor gel stick last? It depends on the frequency of use and how many cameras you will be cleaning with a single sensor gel stick. If you are a professional photographer and you plan on using the sensor gel stick before every photo shoot, it might only last 5-6 months. For occasional use, the sensor gel stick should last 1-2 years. While the manufacturer told me that the stick can last up to 2-3 years, I don’t think it is very realistic for it to last that long.
  2. Does the sensor gel stick clean up oil? Yes, it does, as long as the oil spots are relatively new. If the oil is dated and has become hard on the sensor, you might still need to get the sensor cleaned through thorough wet cleaning. You can either attempt to do it yourself, or you can send your camera in for service, then use the sensor gel stick later to clean up regular dust / new oil spots.
  3. When will PL start selling the sticky paper? While we will soon start offering the extra sticky paper for purchase, you should not have to be concerned about that for a long time, if you use the provided sticky paper sparingly. I have cleaned sensors about 20 times using my sensor gel stick so far and I have only used about 1.5 sticky papers. Since the sensor gel stick surface is not as sticky as the paper, you should not have to worry about picking up stuff from the paper back to the sensor gel stick (as long as it is dust and not something like oil). If the sensor gel stick is too dirty, or you have cleaned up oil before, then it might be best to use untouched sticky paper.
  4. Is it OK to clean the sensor gel stick with water or some other chemical solution if one runs out of paper? It is safe to use tap water to clean the gel head, as instructed in this article. Please do not use any chemical solutions, as you might damage the sticky surface of the sensor gel stick.

The video is quite detailed and covers the many different steps of cleaning a sensor using the sensor gel stick – everything from charging the camera battery to checking for dust spots using the camera zoom function.

Comments

  1. December 21, 2013 at 2:27 pm

    Thank you Nasim. I now feel confident about using the gel stick.

    Regards,
    Sandipan

    • December 21, 2013 at 2:46 pm

      You are most welcome Sandipan! Sorry that it took so long to make it!

  2. December 21, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    Thanks for this;)

    • December 21, 2013 at 2:47 pm

      You are most welcome Chris, let me know how it goes for you :)

      • December 22, 2013 at 3:18 pm

        Went great, for sure a great product and tut from you thanks;)

  3. Avatar of Edward
    3
    ) Edward
    December 21, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    Cant get any easier than that Nasim. Got my gel stick the other day and was just showing my wife and she even thought that was very innovative. Not quite ready yet to clean but when I do I will have to provide some feedback.

    Excellent job on finding this product. Still has me wondering why no one else thought of advertising this in the US??

    • December 21, 2013 at 2:51 pm

      Edward, let me know how it works out for you! It really is pretty simple to clean compared to everything else out there.

      As for why no one else thought of advertising this product, I don’t think there are good margins for selling the product (it is not cheap to buy, since it is made in Germany) and it is definitely not for everyone. Most people still prefer to ship their cameras to manufacturers, which is sadly the reality for most beginners out there. Our readers are a lot more advanced I guess, so it is a perfect fit for our audience :)

      • Avatar of Edward
        11
        ) Edward
        December 21, 2013 at 4:39 pm

        Nasim, considering the cost for pec pads and eclipse liquid and the risk of damaging the filter or sensor with liquid (not to mention streaking or film residue), I see this as a bargain! I still carry my little air rocket for blowing off the easy stuff but have been hesitant to go back to wet cleaning since I changed from a 20D to a 5D3. I have the fortune of being 10 min away from the Canon facility that does EOS but you are absolutely correct, its at least $200 just to walk it in the door.

        • December 21, 2013 at 5:28 pm

          Edward, looks like you have tried the pec pad method as well :) I have two packs of that stuff still left. Ended up using my own method using scotch tape + pec pads on a FF stick + eclipse. Was cheap, but so much stuff left inside the camera chamber! Hated putting that stuff on my sensors. Switched to VisibleDust and those were so much more expensive. Couldn’t really afford cleaning sensors with those anymore. A single pack of 12 was like $45 or something crazy like that. Worked much better than pec pads, but man, the corners were complete trash. So you can imagine my excitement when I realized that I did not need to spend all the money and time trying to clean darn sensors with the sensor gel stick :) Rocket blowers are OK for some stuff, but they don’t really work on sensors when something is stuck.

          • Avatar of Edward
            18
            ) Edward
            December 21, 2013 at 8:36 pm

            Absolutely. We are on the same page. Somehow I didnt see this as PPE (live in NJ so easy train ride for me every year) but its folks like you that keep your eyes open for great opportunities.

            For me, if I had to spend $40 a year for a product like this that will keep my sensor clean with no fear of scratching the filter, I am all for it.

  4. 7
    ) Steve E
    December 21, 2013 at 3:09 pm

    Thanks for taking the time to do this.
    It was very helpful!!!

  5. Avatar of Timothy John
    8
    ) Timothy John
    December 21, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    Good tutorial! When are you shipping out my order from the 12th? Can’t wait to try this out

    • December 22, 2013 at 3:42 pm

      Timothy, we only have a few orders left from the 12th that need to be fulfilled, including yours :) Will be shipping those out tomorrow. Thank you for your patience!

  6. 9
    ) Daniel Michael
    December 21, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    Thank you Nasim, a very clear instructional video again!

    Daniel

  7. 10
    ) Volker Sellmann
    December 21, 2013 at 3:38 pm

    Great job with doing the Gel stick video. Looks easy and simple enough.

    • December 21, 2013 at 5:29 pm

      Volker, it is even easier than on the video – I can go through several DSLRs in just a couple of minutes now. Could never do that with any other cleaning method.

  8. Avatar of Michael
    16
    ) Michael
    December 21, 2013 at 5:55 pm

    Thanks Nasim, really a great product. Cleaned three sensors in under 10 minutes. Much easier than the other wet methods. I nominate the Gel Stick camera accessory of the year. Thanks for bringing it to our attention.

  9. December 21, 2013 at 6:08 pm

    Hi Nasim,
    Thanks for a very clear and excellently detailed explanation of the right techniques to use the Sensor Gel.
    Can’t wait now to get one and try out, would be a great gift for some of my friends I think.

    Top job.

    David

    • December 22, 2013 at 3:46 pm

      David, you are most welcome and thank you for your feedback!

      We are expecting another batch of 500 units later next week.

  10. 19
    ) Isam Osman
    December 21, 2013 at 11:03 pm

    Nasim I’ve ran into a problem. Tried using the stick on the sensor and found that the stick came off the gel! So the gel was stuck on the sensor. Tried to put the stick back on to remove the gel but now the gel will not stay onto the nub of the stick, it seems to be too small for the gel to stay onto it. So I kept trying to use the gel but now I’ve noticed that marks come off on the sensor, which seem to come from the edge of the gel ( May have come from my fingers). Tried to remove those marks with the gel but they refuse to come off. On top of that the gel will not remove the dust that is visible on the sensor!

    • December 22, 2013 at 3:39 pm

      Isam, where did you order the sensor gel stick from? I did not see any orders coming from you, so wondering if the one you have is a fake. As I have stated before, the only legitimate copy of the product is sold here at PL, on Amazon.co.uk and on Amazon.de. Everything else, especially eBay is fake.

      • 43
        ) Isam Osman
        December 23, 2013 at 2:04 am

        I found it being sold at a local shop here in Brunei. Packaging looks similar to what you have, except it came in a blue box instead of the white.

  11. 20
    ) Bella
    December 22, 2013 at 12:02 am

    Hello,
    Just wondering if you ship to Melbourne, Australia?

    • December 22, 2013 at 3:39 pm

      Not yet, but on the next batch we are planning to do start offering shipping to other countries, including Australia.

  12. December 22, 2013 at 1:27 am

    Nasim,

    Thanks for taking the time to shoot this video! I’ll be on cleaning duties soon – will keep you posted on how that goes.

    Happy Holidays! :)

    • December 22, 2013 at 3:46 pm

      Ankur, please keep us posted!

      • December 23, 2013 at 8:41 pm

        Great product I’d say – took less than 8-10 minutes to clean a Sony Nex and a D800. I was being cautious at first, but I can see this being a quick yet elegant way to clean the sensor. I did the way you explained in the tuts and voila! – the sensors are now clean!

  13. 22
    ) Arun
    December 22, 2013 at 2:04 am

    Hi Nasim, Thanks for the video. It will be helpful :)

  14. 23
    ) R
    December 22, 2013 at 4:10 am

    Thanks for posting this Nasim…got my new (refurb) D600 and it had lots of dust/oil issues…did a quick wet clean and then used the gel sensor and it is now clean and working beautifully…great camera, great cleaning product.

  15. 24
    ) Federico
    December 22, 2013 at 6:04 am

    Hi Nasim, my only doubt about the sticky gel is: after several cleaning session there is no risk that the sensor becomes sticky too? (because the viscosity of the paper is transmitted to the surface of the sensor maybe)

    • December 22, 2013 at 3:50 pm

      Federico, no, nothing is transmitted from the paper to the stick, as long as you use the provided cleaning paper.

      • 39
        ) Federico
        December 22, 2013 at 4:06 pm

        Not even the “glue” on the paper? How con you be sure thath the sensor doesn’t became sticky and the dust sediments more easily on the surface?

        • 41
          ) plevyadophy
          December 22, 2013 at 6:43 pm

          Hi Federico,

          I think most people, or at least a great many, will have the same concerns as you do. However, it is to be noted that this tool and the method illustrated by Nasim Mansurov can be seen used by Leica when cleaning the sensors of the Leica M9 (the video of a tour of the Leica factory is available for viewing over at The Luminous Landscape, and if my memory serves me correctly, it’s also on the DPReview site).

          A good thing about this tool, which is worth considering, is that it totally avoids any issues of transporting banned fluids on aircraft when one is travelling abroad.

  16. 25
    ) Steve E
    December 22, 2013 at 6:35 am

    Nasim, when I placed my order I thought I read they 2nd round would ship on the 23rd?
    Please confirm.

    • December 22, 2013 at 3:53 pm

      Steve, there were delays due to US customs, but we are expecting the next batch either right before or right after Christmas (shipping centers are super busy). We will start fulfilling those orders as soon as we receive the product, in the order that we’ve received them.

  17. 26
    ) plevyadophy
    December 22, 2013 at 8:27 am

    Well done, a great service to photographers the world over (this instructional video of yours).

    Firstly, for those looking at your video and wondering as to the approprateness of this method of sensor cleaning, it should be noted that it’s the method used by Leica on the Leica M camera production line (the technician can be seen using this very same technique in a video post over at Luminous Landscape of a tour around the Leica production facility).

    Secondly, similar or alternative products.

    Have you (or any of your readers) tried Dust Aid Platinum? It seems to be exactly the same method of cleaning as this Sensor Gel product and, on the face of it, a lot faster to use given its larger surface area. The only question for me would be whether or not this Sensor Gel produc is more effective at cleaning than the Dust Aid product. The company that makes the Dust Aid Platinum is North American so I guess that makes it a lot easier for North American customers (lower transportation costs). I would love to hear from those who have used both products. The Dust Aid product can be seen here: http://www.dust-aid.com/08DAplatinum.html

    A second product, which is great for a few localised areas of dust and for cleaning/polishing off smears on the sensor cover glass is SensorKlear II by LensPen (however, do be careful of copycat products (there are a few about) as they are unlikely to be made to the same standard can lead to sensor damage). Here is the SensorKlear product: http://www.lenspen.com/?resultType=category&params=17&tpid=0&tpid=323

    Declaration: I have recently started to use both these two products. I have found that the Dust Aid product is OK for light static dust but not so great for any particles that have stuck a little bit more stubbornly to the sensor. The SensorKlear pen I find excellent for times where the sensor is essentially clean but you want to home in on, and deal with, a few small areas and is great for “polishing” off the sensor cover glass as well good for cleaning your reflex mirror (especially if you have a medium format camera with removal viewfinder prism as you can have the mirror locked up facing you and you then have unrestricted access to the mirror’s entire surface).

    I am of course, still interested in this Sensor Gel if it is more effective at cleaning than the Dust Aid product.

    Warmest Regards,
    plevyadophy

    • December 22, 2013 at 3:31 pm

      Plevyadophy, I have tried pretty much all methods of cleaning sensors out there, including the Dust Aid. The problem with Dust Aid is that it has two problems: a) the silicon gel often comes off the plastic surface (my copy started peeling off pretty much right away) and b) the silicon gel is not very sticky. It picks up stuff that you could blow off with a blower, but it won’t pick up anything that sticks more. The sensor gel stick is very sticky and that’s what actually helps with removing stuff from the sensor. On a single pass you could get rid of all the dust that sits on the filter.

      As for LensPen, haven’t tried that one yet, as I thought it would be too small to properly clean a full-frame sensor and what happens if there is something hard stuck on the end of the pen? Is there a risk scratching the filter? With the sensor gel, you never move it – you just push it down and then lift it…

      As for the method that I have used above, yes, it is essentially the same way as demonstrated in the Leica video. I have posted that video before a number of times – see this.

      • 40
        ) plevyadophy
        December 22, 2013 at 6:36 pm

        Hi,

        Thanks for the prompt and detailed response.

        Yes, as I indicated in my original comment, I do agree with you that the Dust Aid product seems only to deal with light dust; I got this impression without having anything to compare it to so I guess my instincts were correct from what you say of your experience with it.

        As for the SensorKlean product by LensPen, after a clean what you are supposed to do is to push the cap back on and give it a twist as there is some element inside the cap that cleans the head of the SensorKlean pen. However, like you, I have instinctively not entirely trusted the product and would never do the entire clean with the product. How I use it, as indicated before, is for localised spots of dust that I can pick up with dabs of the pen; I tend to clean the sensor by othe means and when it is pretty clean and only in need of finessing do I introduce the LensPen SensorKlean and I do find it very good for polishing out any smears left by a wet clean or like I said earlier, for cleaning the reflex mirror of a DSLR. After each use of the LensPen SensorKlean I give it quite a few blasts with an air cannister or bulb blower holding the cannister or blower extremely close to the tip of the LensPen SensorKlean to ensure any grit is removed.

        Based on your recommendation and review, I would definitely like to give this new product a try. Only thing is though, I live in the U.K. and know of no-one over here who sells the Sensor Gel.

        Regards,
        plevyadophy

  18. 42
    ) Jags
    December 22, 2013 at 9:37 pm

    Hi Nasim,
    Will you ship it to India as well?

    Regards
    Jags

    • December 28, 2013 at 10:04 pm

      Jags, can you find out what the import / customs regulations are?

  19. Avatar of notefield
    44
    ) notefield
    December 23, 2013 at 6:22 am

    Hi Nasim – I registered my interest in the Sensor Gel Stick – is shipping to Australia something you have still to work out? $200 for a sensor clean? – for once we are getting a better deal in Australia – I have my D800 cleaned recently for AUD70. I found the Leica video fascinating from the point of view of clean manufacturing facilities – no face masks – it seem that they rely on the final test and clean, rather that ensuring that no dust gets into the “works” alone the way. Fred

    • December 28, 2013 at 10:04 pm

      Fred, shipping is now open to Australia and New Zealand :)

  20. December 23, 2013 at 11:42 am

    Nasim i have one of these and used it on my D600 a true Blessing. i have a tip for you . i noted that i still had dust after i cleaned the very edge three time i could not understand why. i then got to thinking why then i looked at the gel tip then i saw why. the tip is not flat so it was not reaching the very edge. the easy way to overcome that was tilt the stick toward the edge so the edge of the gel stick was in contact, first time it was clean all over . steve

    • December 28, 2013 at 10:04 pm

      Steve, thank you for the tip! Yes, corners can be tough to clean, but a slight tilt does the job. Should have added that to the video, since I have been doing it on my sensors myself :)

  21. 46
    ) No Way!
    December 23, 2013 at 11:54 am

    The gel stick is reminiscent of the old piece of web lore regarding the use of a piece of sticky tape for sensor cleaning!

  22. 47
    ) Sridhar
    December 23, 2013 at 4:03 pm

    Hi Nasim

    Is there any chance you can ship to Australia ? Its not available here.

    • December 28, 2013 at 10:02 pm

      Yes, shipping is now open to Australia :)

      • Avatar of Sridhar
        73
        ) Sridhar
        December 28, 2013 at 10:48 pm

        Thanks for your reply, already pre ordered done. Thanks again

  23. Avatar of Alain
    49
    ) Alain
    December 24, 2013 at 8:59 am

    Hi Nasim

    Thank you to bring this product to us. I ordered this product and it should be on its way.

    I have a question. I own a D600 and like you can imagine, the sensor is dirty. Cleaned it once few months ago using the copper hill pads with eclipse solution. I wasn’t able to remove everthing since I did not find this solution easy to use.

    When I looked at the sensor using a sensor magnifying glass, I see several dirt spots, but I see something that looks like a smear. I don’t know if it’s oil or a smear left by the eclise solution. However, I did not remember seeing this when I looked with the magnifying glass few months ago.

    My question is: Will the sensor gel stick remove the smear left by eclipse product or I will need to try removing it using a wet clean technic?

    • December 28, 2013 at 10:02 pm

      Alain, if the smear is very old and contains oil/grease or other chemicals, it might not remove it. If you do a pass and cannot remove it, then use the same copper hill wet cleaning method, then use the stick to clean up the results :)

      • Avatar of Alain
        85
        ) Alain
        January 7, 2014 at 4:42 pm

        Nasim

        I just received the stick. Canada post put it in my mailbox outside. The temperature is around zero F here. It passed all day long at this temperature. I just wondering if that could have damage it?

        (Did not use it, waiting to get it to the ambiant temperature)

        Thank
        Alain

        • January 7, 2014 at 4:44 pm

          No, it won’t be damaged. Just let it sit in room temperature for a few hours before putting it to first use.

  24. 50
    ) Trung
    December 25, 2013 at 11:36 am

    Just got my gel sensor stick in the mail on Monday. Gave it a try today and here are my results!

    Both taken at f/32 on a blue sky. Adjustments made in lightroom to enhance presence of spots and even out exposure of the sky.
    Before: http://www.flickr.com/photos/54115211@N02/11550928584/
    After: http://www.flickr.com/photos/54115211@N02/11551043083/

    Looks like it worked great on my gross D600 sensor. After each cleaning, I imported the test photo and checked out where the spots were. I then went back over the whole sensor again, paying extra attention to the dirty areas. Its tough getting right to the edge of the sensor, you kind of have to press down decently firmly while leaning to the edge side, since the gel has rounded corners. You also have to remember the sensor is a 180 degree flip of the image, so dust in the top left of an image is actually on the bottom right of the sensor.

    Thanks for offering this great product Nasim!

    • Avatar of Michael
      52
      ) Michael
      December 26, 2013 at 1:37 am

      Great post– Thanks

    • December 28, 2013 at 10:01 pm

      Awesome stuff, thanks for sharing Trung! That big large spot on the image is probably coming from the rear lens element :)

      • 74
        ) Trung
        December 29, 2013 at 1:17 am

        I believe you’re right about that spot. It was a cheap lens I had just picked up to give a try, probably not the best tester lens, haha. No signs of the large spot on my other lenses.

  25. Avatar of David
    51
    ) David
    December 25, 2013 at 11:46 pm

    Nasim, you are a true treasure to the photo community. Thank you for all your efforts and insights!

    If possible could you please let me know if order 65438 has shipped yet? I placed it on Dec 14, and sent funds by paypal as soon as you emailed me :)

    • December 26, 2013 at 11:27 am

      David, it will be shipped this week – my wife and I are preparing around 400 packages to ship! Lots of work to do :)

  26. 53
    ) Nicolas
    December 26, 2013 at 9:01 am

    Hi Nasim,

    Thanks for the video. I would have added two advices to the community:
    * when the camera is turned off to release the mirror, attach first a lens on it. This avoids particles in the air to enter the sensor chamber due to air flow.
    * to check if dust are still present on the sensor, I have found useful to take several pictures of the same white wall but by moving a little bit every times. Then, when looking at the pictures (either in the camera or in the computer), it is obvious to see if some dark spots are due to the wall or to the camera (the latter are always in the same place in the pictures).

    Nicolas

    • December 28, 2013 at 9:59 pm

      Nicolas, another idea would be just to use a body cap when not cleaning :)

  27. 54
    ) plevyadophy
    December 26, 2013 at 10:05 am

    Sensor Cleaning Mode, Mirror Up Tip
    ===============================

    I don’t know if this works for Nikon cams or whether it works for all Canons, but on a Canon 1D there is a little trick you can employ that allows you to clean your sensor even if your battery is nearly dead; and in fact I regard it as the safest method of cleaning a sensor.

    What you do is this; you put the camera in Sensor Cleaning Mode, and as soon as the Mode is entered and the mirror moves out of the way and the shutter curtains retract to reveal the sensor, what you do is remove the camera battery. The mirror and the shutter curtains will stay in place (i.e. exposing the sensor) indefinitely until such time as you replace the battery.

    Why I feel this is a safer way of doing things is that there is no chance that you might inadvertently press a button that triggers the mirror or shutter whilst you have got tools within the mirror chamber. Also, if you have a MILC (mirrorless interchangeable lens camera) you will note that the sensor is always exposed; there is no particular Sensor Cleaning Mode that you enter. For these cams, cleaning the sensor runs the real risk that whilst handling the camera you may inadvertently press the shutter button and cause the shutter curtains to activate whilst you are still working on the camera sensor, so for such cameras, I ALWAYS remove the battery before cleaning.

    I hope my tip helps.

    Regards,
    plevyadophy

    • 57
      ) bratvlad
      December 27, 2013 at 12:36 am

      this is the craziest tip I have ever read on the topic!

    • December 28, 2013 at 9:59 pm

      That’s a good tip, thanks :) Charging the battery is still a good idea though, since most cameras won’t let you even raise the mirror without a good charge.

  28. Avatar of Jason
    56
    ) Jason
    December 26, 2013 at 11:44 am

    Nasim,

    Many thanks for bringing this product to our attention. It works great. I was actually able to get a sensor clean in under 3 minutes. I have horrible arthritis in my hands from years of rock climbing and have never been able to clean a sensor myself. This stick made it easy. Going outside to take a test shot to verify the results was the most time consuming part of the process.

    Thanks,

    Jay

    • December 28, 2013 at 2:42 am

      Jay, thank you for your feedback, glad you like the product!

  29. 58
    ) Vlad
    December 27, 2013 at 3:20 pm

    Got my stick today and tried it out immediately on my D800. Unfortunately, it does not look like it worked for me (or more specifically, for my sensor). I have about 15 or so very distinct round dots throughout my sensor and there was absolutely no difference after I used the gel stick. I have a feeling that those are either very tough oil spots or what possibly even worse, they are not actually on the filter covering the sensor, but on the sensor itself – and if that is the case, there is no way I can get to them. The reason I think they are possibly on the sensor itself is because 2 or 3 of them appear to have a shadow, almost like I am looking at it through a glass. On the other hand, it means that my glass covering the sensor otherwise is pretty clean. Oh well…

    • December 28, 2013 at 2:34 am

      Vlad, could you post a sample image of the dots so that I could take a look? That’s strange – definitely not possible that those round dots are on the sensor. Could be old oil that’s tough to remove, but that’s rare. Can you also check the rear lens element? Sometimes dust on the back can create very large dark spots in images, especially when taken at smallest apertures.

      • 62
        ) Vlad
        December 28, 2013 at 11:54 am

        Nasim, after your note I started to have doubts about my outcome and gave it a bit more thought and time. I “took out” my dust reference image from when I just received my camera and compared it to the “after gel stick cleaning” image. I am extremely conservative when judging my images so when I still was able to see even the slightest spots on the sensor (after major contrast adjustment) I made the assumption that it did not work as well as I have expected. However, when I compared my reference image to the after cleaning image, it became pretty obvious that the stick does indeed work and works pretty well. You can look at the before and after pictures on my site here:

        http://www.fotografyart.com/temp

        Thank you for your time and all of the effort you are putting into this site – you are doing an amazing job.

        • December 28, 2013 at 9:57 pm

          Vlad, that actually looks pretty good. The remaining spots should be easy to clean as well – just identify where they are on the sensor (looks like the center area) and once you clean the gel stick using the sticky paper, do another run. The stick should be able to clean the rest of the stuff as well :)

          Good luck my friend!

  30. 61
    ) Richard Schwanhausser
    December 28, 2013 at 10:41 am

    Nasim,

    Received my sensor stick yesterday, unfortunately I was sick and did not get to try the stick on my 15 month old D600 until this morning. Have tried the Copper Hill wet cleaning method once before with mixed results so was anxious to give this a try. First determined that I indeed still had numerous oil spots on the upper left corner and after watching your video proceeded to use the stick. First try pretty clean but I didn’t get into the extreme corner, second try cleaned the sensor completely – very happy with the results and ease of use. Thanks for bringing this product to my attention!

    • December 28, 2013 at 9:58 pm

      Richard, awesome feedback, thank you! Glad you are enjoying the product and results :)

  31. 75
    ) Edward Lee
    December 30, 2013 at 7:17 pm

    Nasim,

    Thank you so much for introducing this product to everyone. I appreciate it so much, it just came in today and I cleaned my D600 sensor 5 minutes ago. Now its perfectly spotless!! Again thank you so much for this amazing product.

    Eddie

  32. 76
    ) Dharmesh Jani
    January 1, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    I used it on my D600 and the results are amazing! A ton of thanks to Nasim for introducing this to us.

  33. 77
    ) David
    January 2, 2014 at 1:25 pm

    Wish I could say I have been as successful as others. I’ve used the Gel stick multiple times — and I even did a wet cleaning* — but there are still spots that I cannot remove.

    http://www.dblanchard.net/tmp/DBP_5896.jpg

    * The wet cleaning did a better job than the Gel stick.

    David

    • January 2, 2014 at 1:47 pm

      David, wow, that looks really bad! And that’s after wet cleaning?

      I think you are not using the stick properly, or there is something wrong with your sensor. The many dots on the bottom frame that your wet cleaning is done from top to bottom, which is not right either. Have you tried wet cleaning and then immediately using the sensor gel stick to remove the remaining stuff? Those dark spots are very large!

      • 79
        ) David
        January 2, 2014 at 3:12 pm

        Nasim,

        In response to your comment/questions:

        I always do the wet cleaning from side to side — never top to bottom.

        The Gel stick is easy to use: touch and lift; move; repeat. I will say that it removed a lot of dust but it left a lot as well.

        I did two cleanings with the sensor gel — then a wet cleaning — followed by the sensor gel again.

        Oh, and that big blob in the upper-mid section: I can see it easily with a magnifying lens. Repeated dabs of the gel failed to remove it.

        I’ll try again when I have another chance next week but I’m not going to worry too much about it.

        Thanks,
        David

        P.S. It’s a Nikon D700.

        • January 2, 2014 at 3:28 pm

          That’s odd – I wonder why so much stuff is left in the corners. In this case, I gave wrong orientation – I meant to say from bottom to top, since the sensor is flipped. Perhaps you are not fully covering the sensor when wet cleaning?

          As for the sensor gel stick, it should pick up everything you have there, unless those are old oil marks that are hard to remove. You’ve indicated that wet cleaning does not remove them – can you actually do another wet clean and then finish off with the sensor gel stick and look at the difference? If the images come out the same, then there is something very stuck on the sensor – might need to be sent to Nikon for repair. If they appear in different spots, then you just have to do a better cleaning job :)

  34. 81
    ) Andrea
    January 4, 2014 at 7:09 pm

    Nasim,

    Thank you so much for the product, it is a gem. I’m using it with my new D610 that seems to have the same issue than my previous D600; if I had the gel two months ago I would not have sold the D600.
    It works great and it removes almost everything, with the exception of a few spots on the right upper corner that the don’t seem to go away.
    The image shows only a few spots at f22; however when I increase the mid-tone contrast the image shows much more spots, most of the ones that I thought I had remove it. Is it something expected?
    I’m not able to differentiate between dust and oil, and it would be great if someone more expert than me would post an image that shows the difference between the two spots.
    Thanks again and looking forward to buy more strips and/or another gel stick when available.

    Read more: http://photographylife.com/how-to-use-the-sensor-gel-stick#ixzz2pU7Rhgbf

    • January 4, 2014 at 7:45 pm

      Andrea, glad you are enjoying it!

      I would not worry about those small spots and definitely don’t be too obsessed with doing the contrast in Photoshop to check for stuff – it will always reveal something! As long as the big ones are gone, you will be in good shape. The corners are tougher to clean, but if you angle the stick a little, you can get most of the junk out…

  35. 83
    ) Michael Switzer
    January 4, 2014 at 8:59 pm

    It seems that ever since the D600 issues so many are concerned with dust/oil on sensors, shooting the sky at f22 then pumping up mid-range contrast, or maybe examining their cameras with an electron microscope. But are they actually having problems with their pictures? I know that some D600 had easily recognized problems. Oil and dust are not a very good mixture, but all these other cameras? C’mon. I think the gel stick is great–much easier than wet cleaning and more effective than just blowing with a rocket, but I rarely (actually only once) have seen the symptoms of a dirty sensor in a photograph I or my wife have taken. Just sayin’.

  36. 84
    ) Andrea
    January 4, 2014 at 9:24 pm

    Michael
    I agree with you and Nasim thanks for your prompt reply. The gel-stick is a great tool to remove the dust, it gave me the confidence to do by myself and not spend 70$ for a wet cleaning – My D600 produced so many spots that my images were dirty at F8 and very difficult to post-process since they had splatters of spots starting from the left corner down in the middle of the image.
    So yes, the issue was real…. and very annoying.
    As I said in my post I don’t know how to distinguish dust from oil and I followed only the instructions posted in some other web that suggested to increase the contrast to identify the spots – I’m not obsessed, only burned by my 2 D600s.

  37. 87
    ) Eka
    January 7, 2014 at 5:30 pm

    Hi Nasim,

    I found this thread interesting. Have a few questions for you (hope you dont mind answering it):

    1. As the gel stick’s surface that make contact with the sensor itself is a sticky surface, would it leave marks on the sensor?

    2. You mentioned about method using a Scotch tape. Can you share more on this? The reason I am asking is that it is quite hard getting a sensor cleaning kits here in my place. Closest Nikon Service Center is quite far and costly to go, gel stick on ebay are fakes, while I am not sure you will ship to Switzerland.

    3. Are you shipping to Switzerland .. :) ?

    • 89
      ) codrin
      January 16, 2014 at 3:32 am

      Hello Nasim and many many thanks for this product!

      Eka, i bought mine in France (http://www.digitaltoyshop.fr/Pinceau_adhesif_Eyelead_SCK-1_Nikon_D800_t2704_6789), it’s the good one, Eyelead and it works perfectly!
      50 chf with transport, no duty taxes.

      • 93
        ) Eka
        January 26, 2014 at 9:19 am

        Hi Codrin,

        Thanks for your info. In desperation I ordered mine from amazon.de and it arrived safely. Initially I hesitated to try it as I was worried that the stickiness of the gel will leave mark on the sensor. But again, in desperation I tried it as I plan to travel to mountain and can’t afford to bring a camera with a dirty sensor. I don’t want my blue sky pictures contaminated by those ugly dots.

        And guess what – it works perfectly. My sensor never been any cleaner than before. Yes initially i still had some dust spots in f/22 or f/36 but then it was gone when I changed lens. It’s dust issue in lens, not on the sensor.

        Perfect product that you introduce, Nasim. Practical and works like a charm. Thank you very much.

  38. 88
    ) Justin
    January 9, 2014 at 10:50 am

    Nasim, in your post, you say that the stick is basically trash if the gel loses its sticky, and not to use any chemicals or water on it.

    However, in the instruction sheet, it says you can clean the head with 75% medical alcohol to restore stickiness. Thoughts?

  39. 90
    ) Steve E
    January 16, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    Where do you get 75% medical alcohol?

    Also I have a Fuji XE1 body for sale , Perfect condition $435

    • 91
      ) Justin
      January 16, 2014 at 12:56 pm

      Steve, I think that just means Isopropyl Alcohol (aka, rubbing alcohol) that you can get at pretty much any store. Not sure about 75% exactly, I’ve seen 70% and 91%.

  40. 92
    ) Timothy
    January 25, 2014 at 11:09 am

    This is a terrific product. I have a D600 that is 10 months old, thousands of shots. I shoot only with prime lenses, so I have plenty of opportunity to collect dust (and live in a dry, dusty climate). I’ve only cleaned this camera with a rocket blower and have had previous Nikon DSLRs (D70 & D90) cleaned professionally. I’ve noticed a large blob in the upper left of sample shots and so purchased the sensor stick, watched the video and used it. Fantastic!

  41. 94
    ) Sean
    February 2, 2014 at 9:54 pm

    Hi

    Will this be appropriate to use on a medium format sensor ( they usually don’t have anAA filter) similar to 800e

    Thanks

  42. 95
    ) dg
    February 6, 2014 at 8:41 pm

    It would be important to me to get one as soon as possible, because my D7100′s sensor is very dusty and I have to use it.
    But I cannot find it on amazon.de and even here it says that its available from 15 March.

    Is it possible somehow to get one in the very near future?
    Someone any idea?

  43. Avatar of Umair
    96
    ) Umair
    February 8, 2014 at 7:30 am

    Hi Nasim, my order # 67535 was shipped out on Jan 27, 2013. Do you have any idea how long it takes for Delivery to Canada? I have been checking the delivery status but it has not changed sine Jan 31.

    Thank you.

    • February 9, 2014 at 8:44 pm

      Umair, shipments to Canada take quite a bit of time – they have to go through customs as well. Hopefully you will receive it this week!

      • 98
        ) Umair
        February 10, 2014 at 8:14 am

        Thank you for your reply Nasim. I hope to receive it this week as well. I will let you know how well it works on my D7100.
        Umair

  44. 99
    ) Mike D.
    March 20, 2014 at 9:55 pm

    Hi Nasim,
    I just received the gel stick today and tried it out on my Nikon Df. Unfortunately, it seems to have made matters worse. There is a very visible sticky-looking residue that was left behind by the gel stick. I followed your video, making sure to clean it on the paper before applying to the sensor. A couple passes with a wet cleaner seemed to have cleaned off the residue, but was wondering if you’ve heard of this issue from anyone else. Thanks.

    • March 20, 2014 at 11:56 pm

      Mike, I also have a brand new Nikon Df, on which I have not yet used the sensor gel stick. Right after seeing your comment, I gave it a try and I do not see any residue whatsoever. Is this the first camera you are using the stick on, or have you used it on another camera? My recommendation is not to mix different cameras, because they might have different coatings.

      Also, please make sure that you are doing this in a dry environment – high levels of humidity can be a problem, as stated on the product page.

      • 103
        ) Mike D.
        March 21, 2014 at 8:41 am

        Thanks for the response. I live in LA, so I don’t think humidity is a factor. The Df was the first camera I used it on, right after receiving the product. I also have a D700 I was going to try it on to see if I had the same problem, but it sounds like you wouldn’t recommend trying the gel stick on a different sensor. Is it possible to send this one back and exchange for a new one? Maybe this was just a bum gel stick.

        • 105
          ) Mike D.
          March 22, 2014 at 11:13 am

          Just a follow-up. I did try the gel stick on the D700 and it worked fine. No residue at all and it didn’t feel as sticky when I applied it to the sensor, unlike the Df.

        • March 24, 2014 at 6:43 pm

          Mike, I apologize for a late response. I know you might be hesitant about this, but can you give it another try to see if the problem persists on the Df? Sometimes a brand new coat on the sensor might be a little bit more sticky, but after a single clean it should not be an issue.

    • Avatar of Alain
      104
      ) Alain
      March 21, 2014 at 8:52 am

      Mike

      I own a D600 and I experienced the very same issue. But my D600 sensor had a lot of oil on it. I don’t know if it has something to do. I had to wet clean the sensor to get rid of the residue left by the gel stick.

      I cleaned up the gel stick with the paper provided. I used a hole one to get everything out. Then I tried it on a d300s and I did not have this issue.

      I did not tried it again on my d600 since it just came back from Nikon servicing (under the recall).

      Alain

  45. Avatar of Michael
    100
    ) Michael
    March 20, 2014 at 10:24 pm

    I had this very same issue on my D800 after cleaning a Sony Nex 7 before the advisory not to clean Sony Sony sensors with the Gel Stick. I’m thinking that, since so many of the Nikon cameras have Sony sensors, (I’m not sure the Df sensor is Sony) this maybe be a problem with Nikon as well. All we really know is that it works really well with Leica sensors.

    • Avatar of Michael
      101
      ) Michael
      March 20, 2014 at 10:28 pm

      Also I have no problem with the X-Pro 1

  46. 107
    ) Henry
    April 22, 2014 at 10:23 am

    I did my first clean on my D800E last night. It did left quite a few residue on my sensor. Fortunately I was able to clean them using VisibuleDust wet clean method (used 6 sensor swabs, ouch!) I followed the video carefully before the cleaning. One thing I noticed that was different from your video: after I applied the stick head on the sticky side of the clean paper, I had a very hard time pulling the stick head away from the paper. The head was so sticky to the paper it was almost out of shape when I was pulling it hard. When I applied the head on my D800e sensor, it was also very sticky that i had to apply force to pull the head away. I didn’t see the same thing on your video. Could this be product inconsistency?

    I was about to introduce this product to my students. Apparently I’m not going to do it for now.

    Henry
    Order: #72875

  47. 108
    ) Geoff
    April 30, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    Hi Nasim… I have profound hearing loss and cannot properly hear the video on how to use the product, but am interested in learning this.

    Do you have transcripts of this video or text description that you could post for me and others with hearing loss so that we can learn to use this product?

  48. 109
    ) Oleg Melnichenko
    July 29, 2014 at 10:42 am

    Hi Nasim,

    Could you please let me know how different is model for Sony from the original one? If my main camera is Canon and second is Sony A6000, do I really have to by two gel sticks?

    Thank you,

    Oleg Melnichenko

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