Question about Sharp Viewcam VL-Z1 Mini DV Digital Camcorder

13 Answers

DEW indicator / battery

DEW indicator comes on and camera shuts down when operating on battery only. I took battery out, operated camera on DC (plugged into wall), and camera worked fine. No DEW indicator. I put battery back in, DEW indicator comes back on, and camera shuts down again. Battery is one that came with camera (Viewcam Z Li-ion battery, Model #BT-L226U). Camera used very little prior to this problem. Any help appreciated.

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  • Trent Weaver Oct 28, 2006

    DEW indicator now comes on, camera shuts down, when operating on both battery and plugged in. A "Sharp Authorized" repair shop advised that it would cost more to fix than to replace, due to shipping, and other bullcrap fees. Hate to replace it. Heck... I bought it new and only used it a couple of times. Would like to have it repaired at a REASONABLE price. Guess I could just throw it against a brick wall and watch it explode into hundreds of pieces, then send it back to Sharp!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • txrus Nov 20, 2007

    Same problem..dew indicator shows in both battery and AC power.
    want to resolder the DEW SENSOR, but how to OPEN camera (some screws somewhere?) My unit is QUASAR Model VM-L450.
    HELP!

  • txrus Nov 20, 2007

    Same problem..dew indicator shows in both battery and AC power.
    want to resolder the DEW SENSOR, but how to OPEN camera (some screws somewhere?) My unit is QUASAR Model VM-L450.
    HELP!

  • Wyseguy Dec 17, 2007

    Same problem with the dew indicator. Sharp knows it's a problem with design and just don;t give a damn. It always happens when u are on vacation, or Halloween, or Christmas. Even in a house with dry heat where peoples skin cracks from the dry air, you get a dew sensor warning. If sharp doesn't step up and fix the problem, I won;'t, and noone should, but sharp again.

  • Anonymous Dec 27, 2007

    yes, my problem is the same frustrating one as all the others.

    The sharp viewcam Vl Z1 shows the dew light and then shuts down.



    I have not tried any repair options but it is off warranty so would be too expensive to repair. I surely will not buy ANY sharp product agin if they do not step up to the plate and repair this one.

  • mescrap Dec 28, 2007

    I, too, have the VL-Z1 and thought it was just a problem with my camera until I found this website. I got it to work for a little amount of time on Christmas morning and haven't been able to use it since. I've had the camera open since then, which is what the instruction manual suggests, and have had no luck!

  • Anonymous Jan 07, 2008

    Sharp knows this is a problem. If they have any care about the cost of good will with their customers they really shoul;d recall this item and have them repaired. I bought this when I had a baby. I've had to, on several occassions, run out to CVS and buy those expensive disposable video cameras.

    SHarp has a main headquarter in Mahwah NJ, where the Ford Plant used to be, I went there with the unit to see if there was a teck dept or someone who would speak to me about it. They gave me a list of outside vendors approved to fix tyhe unit (none of them Sharp).

  • sjxray Jan 19, 2008

    I have just recently purchased a new battery charger and battery for my Sharp. I lost those on a trip to Fl. a couple years ago. When I got those in my camera worked for a little. I left my camera outside overnight and then I had the dew warning. Should I just buy a new camera or try and fix this one, I don't have many repair shopd here. Does anyone know if Radio Shack can fix these problems????Thanks

  • niravj Jul 08, 2008

    Same problem. I am guessing that someone must have filed a lawsuite against Sharp for this horrible camcorder. I am pisssssed.

  • responsehamm Aug 07, 2008

    dew sensor sharp camcorder same as all the others

  • Sharpless Aug 17, 2008

    I had the same problem with a Sharp VL-Z5. (It was stolen in a burglary; serves the thief right!). My VL-Z7 is starting to act up with the DEW warning intermittently, but I bought it at Costco when they still had their lifetime satisfaction guarantee. If the problem becomes permanent, I'll just get my money back; it's the only reason I bought a Sharp camcorder a second time. Sharp truly did ruin their camcorder reputation by not offering to repair this problem. BTW, Solution 3 below looks like the best fix.

  • Anonymous Sep 26, 2008

    how the hell can I fix that DEW problem

  • takis56 Nov 23, 2008

    Same problem since I bought this piece of ****. I would never buy a Sharp in my whole life. Every time I am in a store and somebody looks at sharp products I "advertise" them.
    I wish I could do something in a search engine and every time somebody put the word "sharp" a pop up to come up and say DO NOT BUY SHARP.


  • megweh May 17, 2009

    dew in display and keeps ejecting the cassette

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13 Answers

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I opened tape area and battery area and ran a hair dryer behind the tape area on the sensor. Worked immediately!

If I hadn't read the other solutions on this page I wouldn't have known it was the sensor at all. I thought it was the batteries. Thanks u guys saved me some money!!

Posted on Feb 21, 2010

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Hi
i simply removed the smaller coin shaped battery and the DEW warning disappeared. The camcorder had been sitting idle before this, so perhaps this is a contibutor to the problem.
Anyway i refitted the same battery and all is still fine, fingers crossed.
Deanyor

Posted on Dec 06, 2009

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I just take the tape out, the battery out and disconnect the poer and firewire to make sure the machine is totally reset and it seems to work. This is on a VL-Z5 though

Posted on Sep 22, 2008

The solder joints to the DEW Sensor were "cold joints" which means that the solder joint is defective - is not a sound joint. This means that with temperature variation, the solder joint can intermittantly separate and break the circuit, causing the DEW Indicator to come on and completely shut down the camera. The first problem I had with the camera was on a cold day, so it seemed to make sense. Here is a picture from the perspective of the tape cover being at the top of the picture and the rest of the camera at the bottom. The dew sensor will be on your left. go to:http://omlets.tripod.com/sharpdew.jpg (if clicking on the link doesn't bring up the picture, copy and paste the link into your browser) Then, get a real slim soldering iron with a fine point. Open the tape cover and take the tape out. Get a strong light to shine down into the mechanism. If your camera is like mine was, you may see a brownish material on or around the solder joint - this is flux used in soldering which was applied too heavily, and not heated long enough to burn off. The joint therefore doesn't quite connect the dew sensor to the terminal post - depending upon heat/cold ambient conditions, sometimes it makes contact and sometimes it doesn't . If your eyes happen to be elderly like mine, I put on one of those magnifying head-bands. Heat up the soldering iron - make certain the point is tinned (has a thin film of solder on it). Carefully just touch each solder joint for a couple of seconds - just enough for it to melt, and then quickly remove the soldering iron. You don't want to leave the iron in contact with the solder too long or it may melt other insulation around the terminal. This all probably sounds more complicated than it really is - but it really is just a 5 minute operation. If you've not done much soldering, and feel uncomfortable about trying it, you may want to take it to a radio, tv or computer repair shop and ask them to do it for you. A couple of TEMPORARY fixes which have been reported: 1. Sometimes removing the small CR1216 battery which keeps the time display, and apparently also powers the dew sensor will get it working again, though most report it only works for a little while. When you remove the main battery, this little battery is located under a small plastic slide at the upper right of the compartment. 2. One person reported that out of desperation he put the camera in the refrigerator for 4 to 6 hours and that it began working again. 3. Another said: I wrapped aluminum foil around the contacts in order to lower the resistance and it worked. 4. And finally, another person reported cleaning the contacts with a cotton swab soaked with alcohol, got his camera working again. You may want to try some of these other reported fixes, however remelting the solder joints are more likely 'the long term fix.'

Posted on Apr 26, 2007

  • 1 more comment 
  • makiniraq Jan 18, 2011

    Dude YOU are the man, took me 2 min to find my iron, 2 min to plug and heat, 2 seconds of contact on either side, and bam...Johnnys got his camera back..the world needs more people like you...third best solution my a$$.

  • silectech Mar 23, 2011

    i am in sri lanka,thank your advaice.i do it ,my camara i no working.thank

    chamika udaya

  • johnnysocko May 06, 2011

    Brilliant. Thank you. I was getting ready to trash it but resoldering the sensor solved the problem. I could not have done it without your photo. Thanks again.

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I had the same problem
We only film on hi-times and if your camara doesn't work then it is very frustrating so we where already talking about buying a new camara.
Fortunately I'm not afraid to try thinks and I tryed solution nmb. 3 (the soldering one) and it work (for now).
It was very easy to do so anyone with a soldering iron can do it, specially if you are, like us, about to buy a new camara and for that you have nothing to lose but only to win
Thank you very much, for us it was very helpful

Posted on Feb 21, 2010

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Hi I'm from Philippines I have the same problem with my VL-Z1 camcorder I bought long time ago in Hong kong sometimes it has dew message and sometimes not when I leave for a long time without using it. And I found a solution that I read from it's manual just leave the dv tape cover open for a long time and presto you can use it again without the annoying Dew message. Hope it helps.

Posted on Dec 09, 2008

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Blow dryer was by me also but for 30 minutes and worked. Next time it happened again.

Anybody can help me take it apart? I don't know how to get to the sensor.
Thank you.

Posted on Nov 24, 2008

**** sharp shame thier brain aint like their name never by their **** again 

Posted on Sep 22, 2008

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I have the sharp ZL-V1 and have the same problem, but is nothing to do with the battery, all i do when it comes up dew is take the tape out for a couple of minutes and then pop it back in then it seems to work again.

Posted on Jan 31, 2008

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I removed the tape and hit the internal mechanisms with a blow dryer set on "low" for about 15 seconds. Camera works fine now! Blonde logic, LOL.

Posted on Jan 06, 2008

Same problem, I will never buy anything from Sharp again.

Posted on Dec 22, 2007

This is the worse camera i have ever owned. Sharp wont support it because they know its a crap camera. I will never buy any sharp product ever again. I dont usually check the internet when i buy electronics for problems before i buy, but know i check everything on the net before i buy.

Posted on Jun 05, 2007

You are a smart guy.

Posted on Mar 16, 2007

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- the solder joints to the DEW Sensor were "cold joints" which means that the solder joint is defective - is not a sound joint. This means that with temperature variation, the solder joint can intermittently separate and break the circuit, causing the DEW Indicator to come on and completely shut down the camera. The first problem I had with the camera was on a cold day, so it seemed to make sense.

Here is a picture from the perspective of the tape cover being at the top of the picture and the rest of the camera at the bottom. The dew sensor will be on your left.

go to:
http://omlets.tripod.com/sharpdew.jpg
Then, get a real slim soldering iron with a fine point. Open the tape cover and take the tape out. Get a strong light to shine down into the mechanism.

If your camera is like mine was, you may see a brownish material on or around the solder joint - this is flux used in soldering which was applied too heavily, and not heated long enough to burn off. The joint therefore doesn't quite connect the dew sensor to the terminal post - depending upon heat/cold ambient conditions, sometimes it makes contact and sometimes it doesn't .

Heat up the soldering iron - make certain the point is tinned (has a thin film of solder on it). Carefully just touch each solder joint for a couple of seconds - just enough for it to melt, and then quickly remove the soldering iron. You don't want to leave the iron in contact with the solder too long or it may melt other insulation around the terminal. This all probably sounds more complicated than it really is - but it really is just a 5 minute operation. If you've not done much soldering, and feel uncomfortable about trying it, you may want to take it to a radio, tv or computer repair shop and ask them to do it for you.



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The solder joints to the DEW Sensor were "cold joints" which means that the solder joint is defective - is not a sound joint. This means that with temperature variation, the solder joint can intermittently separate and break the circuit, causing the DEW Indicator to come on and completely shut down the camera. Here is a picture from the perspective of the tape cover being at the top of the picture and the rest of the camera at the bottom. The dew sensor will be on your left.

go to:
http://omlets.tripod.com/sharpdew.jpg

Then, get a real slim soldering iron with a fine point. Open the tape cover and take the tape out. Get a strong light to shine down into the mechanism.

If your camera is like mine was, you may see a brownish material on or around the solder joint - this is flux used in soldering which was applied too heavily, and not heated long enough to burn off. The joint therefore doesn't quite connect the dew sensor to the terminal post - depending upon heat/cold ambient conditions, sometimes it makes contact and sometimes it doesn't .
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