We've been using the D70 for more than three years without a problem. Suddenly, when you look through the viewfinder, the image is dark, the autofocus has trouble locking on and the pictures are dark and unusable. We've checked and changed asettings without any luck. Just a bad lens or could it be something else?
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Re: In the dark
Hey yorkshireboy, If the viewfinder is dark the only cause of this could be the aperture is stopped down to a smaller opening, which is probably an indication that your lens is not working properly. One way to tell for sure is to bring the camera to a retail location and try out a brand new lens on it, and if the problem persists then your lens is probably fine and the problem is in the camera body. On the front of this camera is a button that stops the aperture on the lens down so the photographer can preview the depth of field, and if this function is broken somehow it might be stopping the aperture down at all times which might be causing your problem. Either way this is a nice camera and I would have the camera or the lens (whichever ends up being the culprit) looked at by an authorized service technician. If the problem is the lens and the lens is a Nikon lens it most likely has a 5 year manufacturer warranty on it and the repair would probably be free of charge. I hope this helps! Sincerely, Allan Go Ahead. Use Us.
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No, you shouldn't. The D70 works as SLRs have worked for half a century, allowing you to compose your photos through the viewfinder. The ability to use a dSLR as a point-n-shoot camera, wobbling at the end of your arms, is a relatively recent development. Nikon introduced it into their lineup with the D3 and D300, released years after the D70.
The D40 does not have the LiveView capability. It works as SLRs have worked for half a century, showing the image through the lens via a viewfinder. This has changed in the last two or three years, now the only current dSLR in Nikon's lineup without LiveView is the D3000.
Sorry that wasn't the answer you wanted to see, but I can't tell you how to do something the camera simply cannot do.
Check the mirror. The image you see in the viewfinder comes through the lens, and is reflected by the mirror. If it's dirty, it will affect the image you see. When you take the picture, the mirror lifts up, the viewfinder image is interrupted, and the light from the lens goes to the image sensor. So...if the mirror is dirty, the picture will be fine but the viewfinder image will be dark or out of focus.
I have had "dark pictures" from each of my Nikon DSLR (D70, D80, D200, D300) cameras usually when taking pictures from a tripod and/or the self timer. Situations where you take your eye away from the viewfinder which allows stray light to enter thru the viewfinder and throw the auto exposure way off. Not sure if this is what is happening to you.
One problem is that a D70 viewfinder is dark to start with. I don't notice this when shooting with mine unless I pick up my old Pentax Spotmatic for some reason, and then I am reminded how bright an optical viewfinder can be. So, in many cases, you will find the DOF preview useless not because it isn't working, but because the scene is simply too dark for you to see the differences.
Second thing is to notice what DOF you are seeing when you DON'T have DOF pressed. I think all modern cameras give you viewfinder at wide open aperatures -- so until you press DOF, you are seeing the focal depth produced by your lens' widest aperature. So don't expect to see much difference if you hit DOF with the aperture set at 2.2 on a F/1.8 lens -- you're comparing very similar lens apertures.
In fact, I notice that with my F/1.8 lens, I don't see any differences in where my focus lies until I have closed the lens down to maybe F/8. But beyond there, I can clearly see that more and more of the scene is in focus.
If you're still curious but not seeing it, try some test shots. Change the aperture and using shutter time to compensate, and see if your photo DOF matches the preview.