My D3 developed an electric fault. It started by slowly discharging batteries even when the camera was not in use. I should have send it in for repair at the time, but stupidly I did not and just got used to removing the battery every time I stored the camera away.
What started as a minor nuisance developed into total failure overtime and one day the camera stopped operating altogether, leaving with it the unmistakable smell of a short.
I sent the camera to the local nikon authorized service center. These guys have terrible customer service (long storiES), but as they are the only nikon authorized repair shop in the country, most nikonians just put up with them.
It took them two weeks to send me an estimate, claiming that the DC/DC board as well as the image compression board needed replacement. Total cost over 700 euros.
I did an additional inquiry to a reputable independent service shop in the UK that provides good service, but their cost estimate, based on the "official" nikon diagnosis, was even higher. I found it strange as they usually have competitive prices, but as a result, I ended up ok'ing the local nikon service estimate.
As all of this was sounding somewhat fishy to me, I asked for the replacement parts to be returned together with the repaired camera.
Over a month later (!), I got a call saying that I could pick up my camera. When I dropped in to the nikon center reception desk, they returned the camera but the replaced parts were nowhere to be seen (neither were the battery door or LCD protection screen, but that is a different story). As I complained, they called the lab, and I was then told that they would ship the parts directly to my place, as the "technician" was away for a few days and they had to wait for him to sort it out.
The parts did end up returned by mail to me. Two circuit boards, part numbers 1S598-015 and 1S598-014. I have some electronic engineering background and none of these boards look like an image compression board, but I could be wrong.
I don't have access to a parts or service manual. I did some google lookups, and the only thing I found was a post on a german board ( http://www.dslr-forum.de/showthread.php?t=1082510&page=2 ) with a problem similar to mine, that state that these boards 1S598-014 DC/DC1 1S598-015 DC/DC2 were replaced and that the cost of the repair was 250 euros.
There is a guy selling a service manual and parts list on ebay, but before I spend any more money, I was wondering if there are any technicians around this board or someone that has access to these manuals, that could look up these part numbers, and also what the part number of the image compression board is.
I really want to get to the bottom of this, as if these guys are not being honest then they should be put right, for the sake of the local nikonian community.