I recently purchased a refurbished D3200 camera with the 18-55mm lens. When I got it I started charging the battery and read the manual. Once the battery was charged I inserted it into the camera and looked through the viewfinder. What I saw was extremely dark and hardly recognizable. Also when the lens is in auto focus mode it will not take a picture. The lens keeps searching and will not lock onto anything. If I switch to live view I am able to take pictures or if I switch to manual focus on the lens I can take a picture. This is what I was looking at taking a picture of: http://i95.photobucket.com/albums/l136/canadakid67/Nikon/IMG_3778_zps3dd6fcd3.jpg This is what I saw looking through the viewfinder: http://i95.photobucket.com/albums/l136/canadakid67/Nikon/IMG_3805_zpsc052b54d.jpg Does anyone have any idea what the problem could be? Or how to fix it? Thanks!
Thanks, my dad told me about this site and so far I like what I see here. Yes, the battery was fully charged. I have verified that the lens is correctly mounted, seated and locked. The camera is indeed in AF-A mode and the AF mode on the lens is also on. I'm just using auto exposure mode.
Sun 06-Apr-14 01:35 PM | edited Sun 06-Apr-14 01:41 PM by pjonesCET
Can you put up a sample showing what your talking about. Doesn't Make any difference what subject about. Your dog, cat kid sister/brother a dirty pair of sock. If out side anything that exhibits the issue.
I have two D3200 and both work Great. I bought my original and after a while the LCD screen went Bonkers. Sent it off under warranty (through Sears) and stayed gone so long I thought it was lost so purchased another. Then Got original (was fixed Though) both work Like Champs though.
Here is a Sample photo taken with a New 17-50mm Sigma Lens:
Is a Fairly Close up of a Praying Mantis Egg case. I intentionally set F-stop for shallow DOF (Depth of field) so egg case was start of photo
Here is an Indoor shot taken with the 18-55mm Lens.
In the image you provided I can see the outline of the Teddy Bear with the headboard behind, though it appears very dark, it is difficult to tell from the image, just how dark it is.
There are a few things that can cause a very dark viewfinder: 1. A sticking aperture diaphragm in the lens. 2. A bent Stop-down lever on the lens. 3. A lens that is not fully seated and locked on the camera. 4. A Low or weak battery (some bodies are affected more than others). 5. A misaligned, jammed or broken; mirror, penta-mirror, or penta-prism. 6. A broken or bent stop-down mechanism in the camera body. 7. A very slow lens.
Since the camera is capturing reasonably well exposed images in Live View (per the linked image) and using the viewfinder (in the video), that should rule out: 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, & 7.
Since the AF Assist light is activating in the videon and the flash is firing, the ambient light level is low. Add to that the D3200 has a penta-mirror viewfinder which could make it appear a little darker than viewing the scene directly. The AF "Hunting" could be caused by the low ambient light level combined with an AF target with little contrast.
Try testing the camera outside in bright daylight ambient conditions.
I can see in the second shot that I can see the settings in the view finder are shown in the picture. If you don't have an eye looking through it you need to have the eyepiece cover on (little black cover you use by taking off the eyepiece by lifting it up) . Light leaks in through that and can offset the image processing a LOT! Try again holding the camera up to your eye. Notice the light meter reading too. You need to study the manual so you'll know better what everything in the view finder means. In auto mode it mostly shows what you need and not much else.
I can't tell for sure but the first shot is just a bit dark. Did the flash fire? I think it might be required.
Over all I'm thinking that camera is actually working properly. Take it outside in just about any light in the day time and take some more pictures. Parking the camera on a table and pressing the shutter indoors without a lot of light just isn't going to work UNTILL you get better. The D3200 may be the beginner level but it takes AMAZING pictures and you can do nice things with it.
Hang out here and ask away and just go out and shoot but take notes about what you do, how the camera is setup, and evaluate what you get. Seeing through the live view is OK but evaluate after you download to your computer to see the full range of how it really looks. It's what you'll do when you get really good so start doing it now. This is how you learn to be a pro. It's supposed to be fun! Taking bad pictures is how you learn! Don't be afraid! It's not like you had to pay for the film.
If you need help with all the many many settings study the manual and ask questions. It's easy for a lot of the folks here to help with that.
Looking at the video I agree, in Auto mode it is trying to take a picture but can't see a target to focus on, and so is refusing to take the picture.
The dark viewfinder plus the successful live-view pictures suggest the mirror is "up" and not returning to the "resting" position. (Live view lifts the mirror up) Is there a way to set the "mirror up" on a D3200?
Alternately is there a sensor-clean setting? That also would force the mirror "up," although I would expect the firmware to be smart enough not to take a picture in "sensor clean" mode.
Look in the manual for M-up or MUP or mirror-up etc . . . also take off the lens and look into the camera and see whether you see the mirror, or if it flipped out of the way and you look directly to the sensor in the back. (don't poke around in there with anything, you may be sending this back and don't want to break anything further)
I can't explain why the camera thinks 1/60 and f/4.8 are the right exposure . . . if there is no light coming in there should be some sort of "underexposed" indicator such as flashing digits or arrows . . . . something funny there unless you are set to manual shutter and/or manual aperture - try moving setting to P on your PASM menu or dial.
Try also a "reset" (have to look in the manual for directions).
The D3200 does have a mirror lock for cleaning purposes. Usually to do: that
you remove the lens all together with Power off. Turn camera on and put in Mirror lockup. When through Cleaning cut power off and the Mirror closes.
He could put in Mirror lock and look in Camera from lens position see if it up in position. The turn power off and watch it fall down in position. Shame he does not have a another camera, even if the camera was cell phone and take a picture with mirror up and mirror down so, some of you experts could tell him if everything is correct.
He may need to return camera to seller and swap for another one or buy one of the 3300 new after getting his money back.
Honestly, the D3200 is a Great camera. As with anything you can get a Dud.
Thanks for all the suggestions! I'm still having issues unfortunately so I'll be contacting the seller to see if we can figure out what the problem is. I even tried updating the firmware hoping it would help, but I'm still having the same issues.
So I just talked to the seller and they told me that the Nikon D3200 is built so that to take a picture through the viewfinder, it can not be in automatic mode. You must use manual mode and that way you get the feel of an old 35mm camera. Can anyone shed some light on this? Is anyone with a D3200 able to take a picture while using the viewfinder with the camera in auto and the lens in auto focus?
>So I just talked to the seller and they told me that the >Nikon D3200 is built so that to take a picture through the >viewfinder, it can not be in automatic mode. You must use >manual mode and that way you get the feel of an old 35mm >camera. Can anyone shed some light on this?
Yes - it's rubbish!
It is perfectly possible to employ AUTO mode and AF when using the viewfinder
>So I just talked to the seller and they told me that the >Nikon D3200 is built so that to take a picture through the >viewfinder, it can not be in automatic mode. You must use >manual mode and that way you get the feel of an old 35mm >camera.
That is completely false and an an outright lie!
>Can anyone shed some light on this? Is anyone with a >D3200 able to take a picture while using the viewfinder with >the camera in auto and the lens in auto focus?
Yes! One of the primary advantages of a DSLR is the viewfinder. The viewfinder on All Nikon DSLR's can be used in All exposure modes including Auto exposure mode! In fact, the only time the viewfinder is disabled is when Live View in On.
Reading between the lines, it sounds like the Seller knowingly sold you a damaged camera.
>So I just talked to the seller and they told me that the >Nikon D3200 is built so that to take a picture through the >viewfinder, it can not be in automatic mode. You must use >manual mode and that way you get the feel of an old 35mm >camera. Can anyone shed some light on this? Is anyone with a >D3200 able to take a picture while using the viewfinder with >the camera in auto and the lens in auto focus?
Downright lie. The D5100 next to me right now works just fine through the viewfinder, and except for the sensor it's the same AF, metering and everything else as in the D3200 (I'm packing it for a trip this weekend, and my D7100 is sometimes overkill).
FWIW, this series of symptoms to me occurred on my 55-200 mm lens (including the exposure bits), and it turned out the aperture lever disengaged from the aperture itself, so it was a lens problem. Without a second lens to test, however, you can't really tell for sure.
Either way, you should ship the entire kit back and get a new one, since it's new and within return policy. That's what such things are for!
Thu 10-Apr-14 05:16 AM | edited Thu 10-Apr-14 05:16 AM by sl01
Am I mistaken saying that there's no contemporary digital camera that can work only in Manual mode?
As far as I know, ALL amateur digital DSLRs... ALL digital cameras can work in Auto mode or A-S-P, which are "almost-auto". For instance - look at Nikon Df - this one is designed to really give you "35mm feel". Is it working only in manual mode?
>Am I mistaken saying that there's no contemporary digital >camera that can work only in Manual mode?
Yes, you are mistaken. All Nikon DLSR's will work in Manual mode.
>As far as I know, ALL amateur digital DSLRs... ALL digital >cameras can work in Auto mode or A-S-P, which are >"almost-auto".
All DSLR's have at least 4 exposure modes: P, S, A, and M. Entry level, and Intermediate level bodies usually have Auto exposure mode and Flex-Program (Pictogram) exposure modes in addition to P,S,A, and M modes.
>For instance - look at Nikon Df - this one is designed to >really give you "35mm feel". Is it working only in >manual mode?
No! The Df includes P, S, A, as well as M exposure modes.
Fri 11-Apr-14 04:30 AM | edited Fri 11-Apr-14 04:38 AM by sl01
Hi What I wanted to say was "there's no digital camera that works ONLY in manual", in other words "maybe not all digital cameras have manual, but all of them have auto or at least A, S, P mode." And even Df, which is supposed do be 'retro 35mm' style, has A,S,P in addition to manual. Regards S.
>Hi >What I wanted to say was "there's no digital camera that >works ONLY in manual", in other words "maybe not all >digital cameras have manual, but all of them have auto or at >least A, S, P mode." And even Df, which is supposed do be >'retro 35mm' style, has A,S,P in addition to manual. >Regards >S.
Cheaper ones are often only Auto, and there is no digital camera that lacks at least either an Auto or a P mode (they are subtly different, of course). You can find dozens today that lack A and S mode, instead having dozens of, "Scene," modes for the novice photographer.
At least from what I've seen, if a camera includes A and S modes, it also includes an M mode, but Auto and P can stand alone - particularly where the lens may have a fixed aperture, as on simpler basic point and shoot models.
It would seem that maybe I'm not supposed to own a D3200. After dealing with the seller of the first one telling me that mine was working correctly I decided to purchase one from a different seller. I bought one from Cameta Camera and it was scheduled to be delivered last week. First the delivery date changed and then it disappeared. I called FedEx and they informed me that it had been destroyed in a tractor trailer accident. I was hoping to compare the two cameras so I would have a valid basis to return the first one, but now I won't have time because the 30 day return window is fast approaching. My first foray into DSLRs is not going well.
I returned the first camera (the bad one) and got a full refund. I also just received my new one yesterday. The difference between the two is night and day! I'm actually excited to go take pictures now that I have a fully functioning camera. I'm headed to Hawaii this weekend and when I get back I'll be sure to post some pictures. Thank you to everyone for the advice and guidance regarding the bad camera.
>I returned the first camera (the bad one) and got a full >refund. I also just received my new one yesterday. The >difference between the two is night and day! I'm actually >excited to go take pictures now that I have a fully >functioning camera. I'm headed to Hawaii this weekend and when >I get back I'll be sure to post some pictures. >Thank you to everyone for the advice and guidance regarding >the bad camera.
Hi Shawn. Best of luck with your new DSLR! As a Nikon shooter for many years, once you send me a ticket, I'd be happy to tag along with you to Hawaii and offer free photographic advice!