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Cleaning the viewfinder screen (EOD 5D)

David McCracken , Mar 28, 2007; 11:39 a.m.

Searching the forums here suggests the best thing to do with dirt on the focussing screen and / or viewfinder screen is to leave it alone.

However, the dirt on my viewfinder screen is excessive and very annoying. Is there a method of cleaning the viewfinder screen that is reliable and 'safe.'

I presume Canon can do this professionally. If anyone can give me the approximate cost of this, I would be grateful.


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Walang Pangalan , Mar 28, 2007; 12:00 p.m.

I've used "canned air", brushes, and blower brushes. I've even used my own breath. One day I'd like to try the trick some car-wash joints use, and bring hydrofluoric acid to bear on the problem. What's a little toxicity when it comes to such a critical problem?

So I suggest you use your head. But remember that whatever you choose, the absolute worst case is that you have to buy a new one. Maybe $35?

Steve Torelli , Mar 28, 2007; 12:18 p.m.

The 5D VF screens are $35, and they come with a little plastic clipper that's useful for unlatching the frame so it can drop down after which the screen is easily removed for cleaning or replacing. You can do the same thing with a pair of tweezers. Unfortunately, the only diagram showing the procedure AFAIK, is included with a new screen from Canon. Without buying a new screen, I don't know where else a description of this rather easy once you've seen it done procedure is available. Good luck.

Jason Kim , Mar 28, 2007; 12:42 p.m.

There is no charge for cleaning viewfinder, mirror or sensor even after the warranty has expired. I had mine cleaned at Irvine facility. I dropped off 5D and picked up after 2 hours.

David McCracken , Mar 28, 2007; 01:10 p.m.

I am more concerned with the viewfinder screen

Thanks for the responses so far. I am more concerned with the viewfinder screen and not the focussing screen.

Walang Pangalan , Mar 28, 2007; 01:24 p.m.

Your terminology is confusing: there isn't much difference between "viewfinder screen" and "focusing screen". Are you talking about the eyepiece?

Simon George , Mar 28, 2007; 01:30 p.m.

Can anybody who has bought a new focus screen perhaps scan and post the instructions that come with it?

David McCracken , Mar 28, 2007; 01:31 p.m.


I am talking about the viewfinder screeen which is where the focussing points are. With the focussing screen in its normal postion the viewfinder screen is above it.

David McCracken , Mar 28, 2007; 03:08 p.m.


I don't see how posting the instructions for a focussing screen would help me clean the viewfinder screen but thanks anyway.

Jack Aldridge , Mar 28, 2007; 03:20 p.m.


You can't get to it without taking it apart. Canned air will just blow more crap on it. Be careful...I tried a lens pen and marked the plate the focusing marks are on (finally got the marks off). There's no way inside where the crud lives that I can see without a major project. This link shows how to get into the viewfinder from the back if you have the cajones. Hope that helps.


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