I’m off to the Nikon Repair Depot next week with my D300 – it is stuck in “Flash Mode Select”. When I turn on the camera it immediately enters the Flash Mode Select function and nothing I can do will cancel it - on-off, pull the battery, press every button. The camera will take pictures but goes immediately back into the Flash Mode Select function as if I had pressed the Flash Mode Button. What makes this even odder is that I have never used any flash functions. Stuck button? Dirt in the contacts?
I only posted this to see if there is any history of this, or something like it, or does my life continue to be annoyingly unique. When I get it back I’ll post the diagnosis. Oh, off warrantee of course.
I was hoping to move to an fx body in the near future (dreaming of a D800E) and using my D300 as a "trusty" back-up body.
All the buttons are locked out except the shutter release including the reset function. I didn't know I had a clock battery! Oh yes, page 38 says that it is recharged from the main battery but get the idea that it is not removable. Regardless, I don't think that would help. I get the feeling that this is mechanical.
Cal, It appears a trip to Nikon service is necessary. They will give you a repair estimate and you can decide if it is worth repairing. I doubt the repair cost will be excessive. If you are going FX, the D300 will make a fine back up.
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You are not unique. I had exactly the same problem with my D300s last September. To add insult to injury the fault emerged during a leg of an international Catamaran racing event in the beautiful natural harbour of Plymouth UK.
Like yourself, I tried everything I could think of and other things which fellow camera club members suggested. Finally decided that it was a return to Nikon job.
My camera was returned with a repair report stating "Printed circuit board repaired,replaced and adjusted". The camera has been working perfectly ever since
Dropped off my D300 on June 24 and picked it up on July 5, a very reasonable turn around. The symptom was being locked in “Flash Mode Selection”. The real problem was a failure of the “Aperature Operation”. It was explained to me that when the computer senses the failure of a major system it limits what operations are available. In my case, only the Flash Mode selection and the shutter at f/22 were available.
As a part of the repair all of the grip covers were replaced as there are wires attached to them which are broken when the body is opened. The sensor was cleaned and the firmware was upgraded.
So I’m off to Stanley Park to enjoy some shooting in the summer - which I believe is scheduled for this weekend before we go into fall.