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  1. #1
    SilverGlow's Avatar
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    Fading LCD Displays on Film Bodies.

    I just had a conversation with a man who sales used camera gear. He told me that cameras made in the last 5-20+ years that have LCD displays will have faded LCD's in another 5-20 years of life. In other words, indicators on those displays like P, Av, Tv, M, etc will be faded away forever.

    Anyone hear anything like this before? I currently have two EOS-3 film bodies, and the LCD on one of them does show about 1/3 the contrast as the other.

    Before this conversation, I was worried that the battery the EOS-3 uses might no longer be in production in the years to come. Now I worry that the LCD display will be faded to a murky blank. What good is battery power, if the LCD lights up and shows nothing?
    Coming back home to my film roots. Canon EOS-3 SLR, Canon EOS 1V SLR, 580ex flash, and 5D DSLR shooter. Prime lens only shooter.

  2. #2

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    Its an old worry that so far hasn't come to fruition. Nikon used to warn about it in their manuals. I say use your camera until it stops working.

  3. #3
    BradS's Avatar
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    It is a common issue. Just about all LCD have this problem. It is just a matter of time. It is fairly easy to fix - once you have access to the point where the glass of the LCD makes contact with the electronic circuit board. Polutants in the atmosphere cause corrosion at this interface and eventually, the segments of the digits go dark and then the whole display goes dark.

    Live in the here and now. Don't worry. Be happy.

  4. #4
    AgX
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    I have seen some LCD displays who are malfunctioning within 5 years or so. With some it could be a problem of electrical joints, but at least one disintegrated. The displays of my Canon T90, more than twenty years old, are absolutely fine.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by AgX View Post
    I have seen some LCD displays who are malfunctioning within 5 years or so. With some it could be a problem of electrical joints, but at least one disintegrated. The displays of my Canon T90, more than twenty years old, are absolutely fine.

    ...and film cameras are so cheap who cares..........come to think of it, if all film cameras die of old age, there is always digital.

  6. #6
    Poisson Du Jour's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverGlow View Post
    I just had a conversation with a man who sales used camera gear. He told me that cameras made in the last 5-20+ years that have LCD displays will have faded LCD's in another 5-20 years of life. In other words, indicators on those displays like P, Av, Tv, M, etc will be faded away forever.

    Anyone hear anything like this before? I currently have two EOS-3 film bodies, and the LCD on one of them does show about 1/3 the contrast as the other.

    Before this conversation, I was worried that the battery the EOS-3 uses might no longer be in production in the years to come. Now I worry that the LCD display will be faded to a murky blank. What good is battery power, if the LCD lights up and shows nothing?

    You have a point: any camera is literally useless without display feedback and once the display dies... [ ?! ]. And yes, this fading of internal and external LCD displays has been a problem with some EOS bodies. I have heard of it on the first-release EOS 3 body, but the EOS 10 and EOS 1 and later EOS 50/50E bodies also suffered from it. My veteran EOS 5 has this irritating fading display problem whenever it is cold, wet and literally quite miserable weather-wise. It flared up very badly in the torrentially cold and wet wilds of South West Tasmania in May of 1999. Taken in for repairs, the problem was traced to internal corrosion in the display driver circuit from years of exposure that shorts with high humidity, and thus the displays fade from normal contrast to nothing. As bad weather passes, like a child with a fever, so do, does the malaise and the displays return to normal. Canon believed it would be uneconomical to repair it but I persisted, and repairs have now been made 3 times over the camera's 15 year service life.

    A link was established during repairs to adverse battery consumption so my 2CR5 battery doesn't last too long in conditions that favour the problem developing, so the camera is not used as much now (only when sunny and dry!!).
    Last edited by Poisson Du Jour; 12-16-2008 at 06:11 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    “The photographer must determine how he wants the finished print to look before he exposes the negative.
    Before releasing the shutter, he must seek 'the flame of recognition,' a sense that the picture would reveal
    the greater mystery of things...more clearly than the eyes see."
    ~Edward Weston, 1922.

  7. #7

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    Though it will be a bit of a hassle at times, as long as the viewfinder info remains, you will at least be able to use the cameras.
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

  8. #8
    David Brown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Excalibur2 View Post
    ...come to think of it, if all film cameras die of old age, there is always digital.
    .

    You're new here, aren't you?

  9. #9
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AgX View Post
    I have seen some LCD displays who are malfunctioning within 5 years or so. With some it could be a problem of electrical joints, but at least one disintegrated. The displays of my Canon T90, more than twenty years old, are absolutely fine.
    While there are many still going, LCD bleeding and failure does seem to be a common problem with T90s at this age. I was shopping around for one for a while and ultimately decided to stick with my trusty "New" F-1 mainly on account of this issue.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
    Academic (Slavic and Comparative Literature)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com

  10. #10

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    FWIW, the LCDs on my 1992-vintage EOS Elan and early-'90s Nikon N90 are still fine.

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