Not speaking for the group here, as I am a total newb, but it was a big factor for me. Dust kills great photos, and while I am yet a newb, changing lenses will probably take longer than the normal, seasoned SLR folk, thus allowing more time for dust bunnies to accumulate where they shouldnt. ..
I personally wouldn't make a buying decision based on the dust removal system or if the camera even had such a system or not - when one can buy a blower for $10..
Dust removal systems don't seem to work all that well - I think it's just a marketing feature to promote like more mega-pixels, but not all that useful (at least not nearly as much as the manufacturers imply) in reality:http://pixinfo.com/en/articles/ccd-dust-removal/.
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To give a direct answer to your question... No, a dust removal system should not be the deciding factor in buying a camera. If the camera that seems to suit your needs best has a dust removal system, that is a plus, but it is not a minus if it does not..
The whole dust *problem* with DSLR's is vastly overblown. Yes, sensor dust does occur and may happen frequently or not, depending a lot on when and where you shoot and how often you change lenses..
When it does occur it can be easily removed by purchasing one of the many dust removal devices on the market. Personally, I use the visible dust brushes..
The greatest of mankind's criminals are those who delude themselves into thinking they have done 'the right thing.'- Rayna Butler..
Have you decided not to live in a house because they often collect dust, or did you just get a vacuum?.
Dust in DSLRs is no different. Yes, it will happen; so clean it once in a while..
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The only dust removal system generally regarded to work is the Olympus one. The rest are a bit half baked. CameraLabs did a test a while back you should be able to access on their site..
Having said that I change lenses, am relatively new to DSLRs myself and not the tidiest person alive, and I've only had one dust 'incident' that affected the image. And it only affected one image in a batch of thirty - dust is spots don't show up in most images - usually just in flat areas of color..
A cheap blower and a little common sense and observation of what the manual says usually works fine..
I'd agree it's not something to define your choice of DSLR. If you still worry get an Olympus..
You want to worry - worry about kids smearing their hands all over the lens !.
The benefits far out weight the minor risk from dust..
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Dust removal system is not a determining factor. I've quite a few lens so I switch lens quite often still dust isn't something I 'd worry about..
Can't speak for other brands, but later Nikon models have much less dust problems..
All that I need is to use blower to remove the dust. I've never used those "sensor cleaning" kit, my 2yr old D200 don't need it, rarely need to blow away dust on my 1yr old D40. I definitly need to blow away dust more frequently on D70 (sold), and my father's D100 did 've lots of dust problem before it's sold..
Dust removal system can't shake dust off your lens, so you need to occationally blow your equipments anyway..
Have you decided not to live in a house because they often collectdust, or did you just get a vacuum?.
Dust in DSLRs is no different. Yes, it will happen; so clean it oncein a while..
This perhaps is not the best analogy. When you vacuum yr house, it is clean..
When you take a picture with a "dusty" sensor, the dust spot in the picture stays forever. You can't turn back the clock..
Depending on the pictures being taken.The more open spaces, beach, skies, the more important dust issue becomes..
In some types of photography, particularly indoor with non-uniform darker backgrounds, dust will never be an issue. It will not show.Rgds..
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When you take a picture with a "dusty" sensor, the dust spot in thepicture stays forever. You can't turn back the clock..
Depending on the pictures being taken.The more open spaces, beach,skies, the more important dust issue becomes.In some types of photography, particularly indoor with non-uniformdarker backgrounds, dust will never be an issue. It will not show.Rgds.
Clone tool in photoshop can take care of any dust that does show up. Its easy enough to remove dust on the sensor the old fashion way once you notice it, those self cleaned sensors still need to be cleaned the old way anyways. Proper care goes a lot farther than a sales gimmick antidust system...
As others have said, just use a blower. In most photographs a few dust specks will be completely invisible (I mean 100%, you cannot see them). Where they do show up is at very small apertures when there is a bright, featureless area in the shot. So landscapes with a lot of sky, and also macro work because of the predominantly small apertures and blurry backgrounds..
I gave mine a quick clean with the blower yesterday as it happens. I always do a test exposure to check that it has worked, and it's a good thing I did because I must have dislodged a hair from somewhere and it chose to relocate itself on my sensor! But a few more seconds with the blower soon shifted it..
On the subject of test exposures, the usual recommendation is to point at the sky and use the smallest aperture your lens allows - which works very well. But I'm normally indoors when I'm doing this, so I just point at a blank wall and move the camera during the longish exposure that results. What I normally see is no visible dust, but if I use extreme Levels adjustment in Photoshop I can see it. The fact that I have to go to these lengths to see the dust, shows that it is not much of a problem...
I personally wouldn't make a buying decision based on the dustremoval system or if the camera even had such a system or not - whenone can buy a blower for $10..
I agree that it should not be a primary decision point. However it IS an important secondary factor, I think.
Dust removal systems don't seem to work all that well - I think it'sjust a marketing feature to promote like more mega-pixels, but notall that useful (at least not nearly as much as the manufacturersimply) in reality:.
My experience with my E500 does not support this point. I have never had to manually clean the E500 sensor and I have changed lenses on the beaches of Jacksonville, Florida, the corn fields of of Central Illinois at harvest time, etc. i.e extremely dusty situations..
Would I refuse to buy a camera that didn't have anti dust measures but otherwise met my needs? No I would not, the other stuff is more important. But would it be one of the tie breakers between two cameras? You betcha, sure.STOP Global Stasis! Change is good!.
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Even if you have to use the wet method on stubborn grime (as maybe if you live in a marine environment) with a special solvent and a swab it is still very easy to do. Wipe one way, turn the swab around and wipe back the other way. Remember, the sensor is covered by a glass filter so light pressure doesn't hurt it..
Dust is an irritation-level problem and usually shifts with a blower so there is no need to make a drama out of it. They would never have sold millions of DSLRs if it was unworkable would they?.
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Initially when looking to purchase a DSLR I was concerned about the dust issue & was consequently tempted to limit my choice to Olympus, where the "dust sytstem" works well..
However I saw sense & bought the DSLR which best met my overall requirements - a wise decisions, I've not had any issues so far with dust spots on my GX10 sensor.
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