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View Full Version : How I had my Hexar AF repaired


andersju
09-02-2010, 08:45
For anyone interested in how to repair the Hexar AF:

The Hexar AF is my favorite camera ever so I was frustrated when I experienced the (in)famous problem with erratic shutter release/focus. Sometimes it worked fine, sometimes it worked only 30-50% of the time, the inreliability making it an unusable camera for me.

I tried the fix described on Silvergrain (http://silvergrain.com/labs/Konica_Hexar#Shutter_release_.28erratic_pre-focus.29_problem) more than once. First time, it solved the problem... for a while. When the problem came back again, the fix only improved the situation a little. Something else had to be done.

I searched around and saw a lot of talk about scarcity of parts. I couldn't find a clear answer to the question "can someone provide a REAL fix for the problem?" (not just cleaning the contacts). I then stumbled upon the camera parts & repair service (http://www.japanexposures.com/services/#parts) that Dirk Rsler/Japan Exposures provides. Basically, you send the camera to him (he's in Japan), and he takes cares of the rest. I saw the Hexar RF among the examples of recently repaired equipment, so I sent an email and he replied that they still repair the AF in Japan. ("They" being Kenko, these days, but according to this post (http://www.dyxum.com/dforum/kenko-servicing-minolta_topic63817.html) it's the same repair shop as before, just different owners.)

I sent the camera to Dirk, who was very communicative through the whole process, and after almost exactly a month I had the camera in my hand again. Pretty good for shipping back and forth to Japan (and within Japan)!

The repair ended up costing 21.000 - more than Dirk expected (he hadn't had anyone send in a Hexar AF for this problem before), but apart from replacing the shutter button switch they also did "AF focus adjustment and external cleaning". The LCD wasn't perfect before, but it looks good now, and it feels like the viewfinder is clearer. So 21.000 + 5000 for Dirk's handling fees + 3000 for shipping back to Sweden - that's about $340-350 USD. Definitely worth it to me - my favorite camera functions perfectly again!

raid
09-02-2010, 10:29
This is costly. I would have bought another camera instead.... at a cost of $400.

andersju
09-02-2010, 11:44
This is costly. I would have bought another camera instead.... at a cost of $400.
This was like buying a new camera, really. And $400 is more than $350, no? ;) I had a useless camera. Which, in practical terms, is like having no camera. $350 gave me one that is guaranteed to function; $400 (plus shipping and whatnot) would give me one that might or might not exhibit the same problem.

And, of course, it's my camera with a lot of history and scars... but even from an economical standpoint I can't see how it would be wiser to spend more for another one, when the one I had would have been nothing more than a paperweight.

camera.bear
09-02-2010, 11:47
Anders,

Glad that you could get your Hexar AF fixed and that you are enjoying it again. That was a bit pricey, but sometimes an object's sentimental or personal value out weighs its market value. If everything was a matter of cost vs. value, there would be no chrome rims on Chevy Impalas. Sometimes how it makes you feel is the most important thing. Happy shooting with your Hexar.

RayPA
09-02-2010, 11:55
... but even from an economical standpoint I can't see how it would be wiser to spend more for another one, when the one I had would have been nothing more than a paperweight.

Even though that's a lot to spend for a repair on a p&s (albeit a very nice p&s), I have to +1 this sentiment. There are enough camera paperweights in the world! :D Good shooting to you, andersju.


/

raid
09-03-2010, 05:20
This was like buying a new camera, really. And $400 is more than $350, no? ;) I had a useless camera. Which, in practical terms, is like having no camera. $350 gave me one that is guaranteed to function; $400 (plus shipping and whatnot) would give me one that might or might not exhibit the same problem.

And, of course, it's my camera with a lot of history and scars... but even from an economical standpoint I can't see how it would be wiser to spend more for another one, when the one I had would have been nothing more than a paperweight.

If the Hexar is not working, then you need to fix it. If it were showing once in a while something annoying, then I would look at the cost of repair.

Congrats on getting back a "reliable" camera. [hopefully]

Ljs
09-03-2010, 05:32
Andersju,

glad this worked out for you. I also think that this was smarter than getting another used body... first it is "your" camera that you have a history with, and second, a used second body could (and probably would?) at some point develop the same problem, and you would be without a reliably working camera again.

Funny, yesterday evening I thought about the Hexar AF... I was at a poetry reading, very few in the audience. I started to take pictures (with M2) only after the end of the official part, mainly because the lighting and backdrop were not favorable. But it occured to me that a totally silent camera like the Hexar AF would have been just the ticket for this kind of situation.

Greetings, Ljs :-)