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 Post subject: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 19 Nov 2017, 05:24 
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Is there a safe or preferred way to gently clean dust from the laser lens? I found some posts on this but nothing really definitive.

I have a Sony MDP-600 which sat idle for several years. A lot of dust collected on the disc tray and the lens. This machine has never had a tracking problem - ever.

When I used the player recently, it had an issue tracking near the very end of the disc. I very gently dusted off the lens with a super-soft brush and gently blew it off with compressed air (from a good distance away from the lens).

Dusting off the lens improved the tracking issue 100%, but my feeling is there is probably a layer of filth on the lens (from the machine sitting idle for so long) that needs more than a dusting to clear off.

Obviously the best thing to do is not touch the lens at all but I have to believe there is a safe way to do this. Any suggestions?

I know better than to try using ammonia-based cleaners, rubbing alcohol, etc...

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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 19 Nov 2017, 18:50 
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high-purity Iso. Alcohol and a Q-tip has always cleaned laser lenses quite adequately, in my personal experience anyway...
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 19 Nov 2017, 19:12 
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tasuke wrote:
high-purity Iso. Alcohol and a Q-tip has always cleaned laser lenses quite adequately, in my personal experience anyway...


I bought 90% IPA* (isopropyl alcohol) from Walmart in their pharmacy dept which should be strong enough. The next step up in purity would be anhydrous IPA which you would have to buy from a chemical supply store (not a store on your average street corner).

If I remember correctly, the IPA used by a medical facility for sterilizing skin is 70%* which may not be a strong enough for cleaning laser lenses.

*The purity noted is for IPA with the remainder being water.


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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 20 Nov 2017, 00:20 
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Thanks for the feedback! Will give that a shot. As I understand it, the lens has a coating and I don't that to be eaten away by the solvent.
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 20 Nov 2017, 01:48 
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I’ve never successfully fixed an issue with an optical drive by cleaning the lens. Don’t get your hopes up, and don’t obliterate the lens trying to scrub non-existent filth off it. You may find the real fix some day.
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 20 Nov 2017, 02:11 
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signofzeta wrote:
I’ve never successfully fixed an issue with an optical drive by cleaning the lens. Don’t get your hopes up, and don’t obliterate the lens trying to scrub non-existent filth off it. You may find the real fix some day.


Amen to that.
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 21 Nov 2017, 04:58 
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According to techs you should never use alcohol as some lasers have a coating that can be removed and then you will be super SOL.

Try something less solvent so you will just clean and not remove any possible coating.
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 21 Nov 2017, 10:27 
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Accidentally removing the coating will result in cross talk. The air flow when playing a disc should be enough to keep the optics free of particles or dust, unless it has been sitting in an environment with tobacco smoke.
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 21 Nov 2017, 21:01 
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signofzeta wrote:
I’ve never successfully fixed an issue with an optical drive by cleaning the lens. Don’t get your hopes up, and don’t obliterate the lens trying to scrub non-existent filth off it. You may find the real fix some day.

I've twice made a non-playing or unreliable player work by cleaning the lens.
In one case it was a CD player which had been through a house fire. In the other, it was a LD player in which I found half a cockroach, with the remainder of the bug being spattered around the interior of the machine.
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 22 Nov 2017, 02:09 
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In all fairness, I rarely work on hardware in such a state. :)
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 23 Nov 2017, 07:19 
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My player has been in a smoke free environment forever. Dust is the only real contaminant but I figure window glass and other household things end up with layer of gunk just from things in the air, so I assume the lens is probably subject to that after 20+ years. Maybe not. I haven't done anything since dusting it off and so far the player seems stable. It's only messed up once in the last three or four nights but still nothing like it did before I dusted it off the first time ...
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 23 Nov 2017, 09:06 
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sjoerg wrote:
signofzeta wrote:
I’ve never successfully fixed an issue with an optical drive by cleaning the lens. Don’t get your hopes up, and don’t obliterate the lens trying to scrub non-existent filth off it. You may find the real fix some day.


Amen to that.


Boo to that. I fixed my Sony D-777 discman the other day by simply cleaning the lense.
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 24 Nov 2017, 14:23 
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forper wrote:
sjoerg wrote:
signofzeta wrote:
I’ve never successfully fixed an issue with an optical drive by cleaning the lens. Don’t get your hopes up, and don’t obliterate the lens trying to scrub non-existent filth off it. You may find the real fix some day.


Amen to that.


Boo to that. I fixed my Sony D-777 discman the other day by simply cleaning the lense.


With top loading stuff it can make a difference, didn't save my Gamecube though or anything else I've tried to clean.
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 24 Nov 2017, 19:25 
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randyv wrote:
My player has been in a smoke free environment forever. Dust is the only real contaminant but I figure window glass and other household things end up with layer of gunk just from things in the air, so I assume the lens is probably subject to that after 20+ years. Maybe not. I haven't done anything since dusting it off and so far the player seems stable. It's only messed up once in the last three or four nights but still nothing like it did before I dusted it off the first time ...


The amount of wind passing over an LD can be very impressive. Maybe someone here can work it out but a 12” disc spinning at 1800 RPM less than 5mm away. The end of a CAV side would represent max linier speed. Oh wheres that guy who does all the math, does he do aerodynamics now too hopefully? This has got me curious.

Depending on the shape of the insides I can certainly see dust accumulating somewhere in the player for sure but probabky not very much on the lens. I’ve opened every LD player I’ve ever owned though and I have to say I only remember them being clean. I completely rebuilt my MacBook (late 2008) twice though and both times it was pretty gross in there.
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 24 Nov 2017, 22:45 
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signofzeta wrote:
The amount of wind passing over an LD can be very impressive. Maybe someone here can work it out but a 12” disc spinning at 1800 RPM less than 5mm away. The end of a CAV side would represent max linier speed. Oh wheres that guy who does all the math, does he do aerodynamics now too hopefully? This has got me curious.

Depending on the shape of the insides I can certainly see dust accumulating somewhere in the player for sure but probabky not very much on the lens. I’ve opened every LD player I’ve ever owned though and I have to say I only remember them being clean. I completely rebuilt my MacBook (late 2008) twice though and both times it was pretty gross in there.

As a matter of fact, one of the early disc proposals which wound up being subsumed by the MCA-Philips standard was one proposed by Zenith & Thompson-CSF, using a thin disc which was to be aerodynamically stabilized. So there are discussions of the aerodynamics involved in the IEEE Transactions on Consumer Electronics.
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 24 Nov 2017, 23:36 
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Wow, yeah.
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 30 Nov 2017, 21:56 
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This is always a debated topic. The bottom line is you can listen to opinion or follow Pioneer's instructions.

If you are worried just used distilled water. The instructions say do not use alcohol or compound cleaning fluids.


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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 01 Dec 2017, 00:49 
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primetarget wrote:
This is always a debated topic. The bottom line is you can listen to opinion or follow Pioneer's instructions.

If you are worried just used distilled water. The instructions say do not use alcohol or compound cleaning fluids.



That is really helpful, thanks.

Also rather cool to see & if it is good enough for PIONEER.....

Is the image from the inside of a unit?

Thanks again.

Cheers
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 01 Dec 2017, 04:05 
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Yes it is from a LD-V200 laser inspection cover. I like the special tool that is in the picture to protect the pickup while cleaning :D
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 Post subject: Re: Cleaning the lens
PostPosted: 01 Dec 2017, 07:11 
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Perfect! Thanks for the info. If it's good enough for Pioneer, it should be just fine for my Sony. :)
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