Sunday, April 29, 2012

Konica Minolta 7D- Notes and Update

Today I did some basic maintenance servicing on both of my 7D's. I removed the focusing screens (no tool needed if you know how) and cleaned off  a couple of annoying dust specs/threads out of both viewfinders- both are perfectly clean now. I'm a stickler about my equipment being spotless, so it's nice to do this maintenance myself. I've also cleaned both of the 7D's exterior very thoroughly. More...
 Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D 6MP DSLR Availability and Price

I also made sure to check all the screws etc. all over each body. Both bodies screws were tight and nothing else was wrong with either body. I love shooting with freshly cleaned, perfectly operating bodies that have new fully charged batteries in them- it's a must for me.

Also today, I cleaned both sensors with a new method that involves using the reflection of the sensor to see any big specs, then after those are removed, using a sensor cleaning wand/cloth for a once over. It's a new method for me that makes cleaning the sensor much more simple than ever before. Those are life's little victories worth celebrating indeed!

Autofocus Notes:

I've been observing a very high accuracy with both bodies- more so than my other DSLRS. Both focus extremely accurately with about 4 different lenses I've tried on them so far- it's actually highly impressive. Although the focusing is definitely a bit slower than other camera models, with some practice I find that accuracy seems to actually be more appreciated especially on still life subjects.

My Maxxum 7D and Alpha 7 in great shape! The Maxxum has the Tenpa 1.36x Magnification Eyepiece to aid in macro and portraiture photography- a huge view!

The 7D has a reputation for being a good autofocusing body with very few exhibiting back or front focus issues. I can see why they do. I find that in general, either the 7D will confirm focus or won't but that when it does, you can almost 100% guaranty that it will nail it. I like that about the 7D for several reasons, but mainly because nailing focus ensures that the areas I need sharp in the photo will take the most advantage of its 6MP sensor. With 6mp you really do want to take advantage of every little pixel.

Overall you could say I'm just smitten with this performance.

In General:

I've just been having a ball with the 7D's lately and tomorrow, the smaller brother arrives- the Maxxum 5D I've wanted for a while. I've had one before but not in the condition I wanted, nor with all the original paper work, cables, and box etc.

There's plenty of life left in both of my 7D DSLRS, and the handling is just top rate. I don't think that any DSLR's I've used can beat the 7D's in handling or ergonomics- controls are right where they ought to be.

Today I purchased the service manual for the 7D and plan on getting some available spare parts in the event either camera will need them in the future. The kind of parts I'll be getting are the typical wear and tear items that 7D's are known to need replacing eventually. 

As far as photography goes, I've been out shooting more than I have been in a long time. Partly because the 7D's are such a joy to use, but mainly because I have a serious photography bug going on right now that I'm rather enjoying. I'll be posting some pics later on after I've processed a few.


P.S. I see no reason not to continue to write articles on cameras I feel are very important in DSLR or SLR history- especially when I am still using them frequently and getting excellent results. There's always more to reveal or talk about when discussing the use of these cameras, so therefore I will exercise the freedom as I see fit in the future as well. After all, I know there are many others out there that use the 7D, and its not bad to read good news (or bad) about cameras we are still using that might be a bit dated.

Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D 6MP DSLR Availability and Price


  1. Thanks for the update Carl. The 7D is a marvelous camera and I'll never part with mine. I liked your full review of it on alpha mount world . com and always like hearing your new or updated experiences with it- keep it going.


  2. Dear Carl,
    Thanks for the update.
    Could you provide more detailed information concerning new method of sensor cleaning that involves using the reflection of the sensor to see any big specs you mention in the beginning your update?

  3. Does anyone know where I can purchase a 7d low pass ccd sensor? The camera repair shop has had my camera for a month now (what seems to me dragging their feet). I am having to resort back to my 700si's. Please help!!!
    Please contact me ASAP at or
    Thank You!!!

  4. Hi Peter,

    Basically I put the KM 7D into cleaning mode, then use a light source behind me to illuminate the sensor as if I were using a mirror. When the CCD surface is in full clear view, I maneuver it around a bit until I can locate the specs of dust (ironically you can see them on the sensor). At that point I use a cleaning wand (or very very lightly use a soft cotton swab in a twist motion) to remove each spec I find. I don't like to use cleaning solutions on the sensor at all, and this method helps me to avoid it.

    Its fast and easy to me. Trick is to be very gentle and be 100% sure you are using a completely clean wand or cotton swab. Take your time with each spec.

    Some of those specs are stubborn.

    The Copperhill method also works well, just takes more time.


  5. Dear mr. Garrard,

    How did you clean the dust out of the viewfinder? Please let me know as one of my trusty 7D bodies also has dust inside it.


  6. Hi--
    I love my 7d, but lately I've been getting very poor much so that I've gone back to my Lumix fz30. Any ideas?
    Thanks for your time...

  7. Yep, have your focus adjusted by a competent shop like Precision Camera- may not be the body either, could be the lens- or other intangibles.

  8. I was fascinated to read that the Minolta 7D is still very useful for a few people. I have had mine since 2000 give or take a year. I agree the hand fit is perfect for me. Tried the newer cameras (sony) but unless you go for the top line they feel awkward. 7D color is great , I print 13x19 on epsons and people can't believe it's a 6MP . Portraits with the 28-105 minolta af xi lense come out extremely well. Unfortunately I haven't been ab;e to do much in last year.

    What parts are know to fail? I have never had a problem or cleaned the sensor. Photo shop doesn't show up any pixel problems yet.

  9. Recently I bought the SONY a65 mainly because my trusty old Maxxum 7D was firing off a few black frames at random, and all too frequently. I really enjoy the a65, but still could not get over the fact that the 7D was sitting, and not being used much. A couple of weeks ago, it got the better of me, and even though the repair experts told me numerous times that nothing could be done to help the situation, I decided to try something on my own. I removed the flash card, and put the 7D in continuous shooting mode, and held the shutter down. It fired off a few shots, and then another blank frame again. After turning the camera off, I turned it on again and continued this procedure and this time no blank shots. The camera was turned off,and then on again, and I fired off about 30 shots and it did not miss a shot. After doing this for about 2 more times, it now seems to be working just fine. No, I have no idea what exactly this did, but thought I would pass it on to anyone who was having trouble with the 7D shutter firing black frames. It appears to have resolved itself for some reason, and I am thinking that it could be just something as simple as dirt in the shutter mechanisms that caused it to jam up periodically. Hope this will work for others as well....Cheers!