Archive for Teardown

DSLR Poetry in (Slow) Motion

Posted in Photography with tags , , , , , , , , on 18 May 2011 by Richard Hornbaker

“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” – Arthur C. Clarke

Gently, you squeeze the shutter release.  You hear a satisfying “clack” and your DSLR captures the perfect slice of time.  As if by magic, an image appears on the camera’s LCD and gets written to a flash card.  We don’t know how all the parts work together, but we’ve come to accept that they do – and we expect they’ll keep doing it, over and over, for hundreds of thousands of clicks.

But beyond the electronic gadgetry that we see, DSLRs are mechanical marvels crammed with complex movements.  It’s impressive how they can mass-produce a device with so many moving parts, at a relatively “cheap” price, and still deliver the long-term reliability and accuracy we’ve come to expect.

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Pimp your Mac Mini!

Posted in Misc with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 09 August 2010 by Richard Hornbaker

I think the Mac Mini is the unsung hero of Apple’s computers – it offers the power of a nice laptop for a fraction of the price; however, like a laptop, its compact size makes it trickier to upgrade.

Below is my photo journey through upgrading the guts of a 2008-era Mac Mini (also known as a “MacMini2,1″ in System Profiler – 1.83GHz Core2Duo, 1GB RAM, 80GB disk).  This is my second venture under the hood of this compact little gem – the first was for a RAM upgrade; this time it’s for a new hard disk.  Hopefully this post will give others the confidence to beef up their own Mini!

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Fixed in a flash

Posted in Electronics, Photography with tags , , , , , , , , , on 30 November 2009 by Richard Hornbaker

Posting this as a work-in-progress.  I’ll get photos posted shortly.

[Insert photo of broken SB-800 LCD]

My Nikon SB-800 speedlight took a nosedive during a recent project, and the impact hit the LCD display squarely.  The outer LCD protective cover survived intact, but the shock shattered the fragile LCD panel inside, and most of the display became unreadable when the LCD fluid leaked.  Rather than ship this flash unit back to Nikon, I opted to buy a replacement LCD panel for about USD$50 and tackle the repair myself. Continue reading

Nikon D2H goes to pieces

Posted in Electronics, Photography with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 10 October 2009 by Richard Hornbaker

 

Nikon D2H body

If you’re curious like me, you’ve wondered what’s inside your camera, especially a pro DSLR.  So, of course, I couldn’t resist the idea of a “teardown project” with this broken Nikon D2H.  I really wanted to see if I was up to the task of replacing the shutter – get it working again, not just tear it apart. Continue reading

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