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D600 Owners form Class Action Lawsuit

According to Nikon Rumors, D600 owners might have an opportunity to seek compensation for their defective Nikon D600 camera. The law firm Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein is currently seeking plaintiffs in the case that will be filed in the US. We showed you a time-lapse test for dust and oil accumulation on the D600 (seen here) way back when, and it became apparent that the oil and dust issue was pretty extreme, showing up after only 500 actuations.

Though some report that the problem dwindles off after 1,500 shutters, it was still a big deal. As a long time Nikon shooter, I've been disappointed with how Nikon has handled the dust and oil issue of the D600 (as well as the overheating issue of the SB900 before that). Nikon Rumors speculates that it's not very likely that this suit will ever make it to court because Nikon has begun replacing some defective D600s with the newer D610 on a case-by-case basis. At the very least though, this should be a wake-up call for Nikon and their customer service reps.

Fstoppers Nikon Sued over D600 1

What do you think of the D600 debacle? Have the oil and dust issues been as bad as reported in forums all over the internet?  Let us know below.

[Via Nikon Rumors]

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43 Comments

EnticingHavoc's picture

What goes around comes around ... eventually.

Spy Black's picture

This has been discussed at length over at Nikon Rumors the last few days. Ultimately the only people that may make out here are the law firm proposing the lawsuit. There's some doubt as whether there's any real traction here due to the way things have been handled by Nikon, but if there's enough legal wiggle room, what should happen, D600 owners get a D610 as a replacement, very probably won't happen.

Kevin Sutton's picture

As a non professional D600 owner I can say that the camera produces great images when it's clean. I have not sent my camera in for cleaning as I have been doing that myself. The warranty has since expired. I had elected (possibly my poor judgement) not to send it in only to have another defective shutter mechanism installed or just have it cleaned and be without the camera for a couple weeks at my cost. I had waited in the hopes that after the mythical 3k -5k shutter accuations it would clear up. This is not the case as I am sitting at 10,589 now.

Frankly I sold all my Pentax equipment since they weren't producing or possibly ever going to produce a full frame camera so I finally jumped ship. I invested in Nikon and thought I would be stepping up. However it stings to know that I bought into a model that was failed at launch with issues only to be discontinued after 1yr by the D610 with it touting 2 forgettable upgrades. We all know the D610 was the fix for the D600.

If I tried to sell the camera body alone it would only fetch maybe $900 from a dealer maybe a bit more if I sell it myself. Would I buy another Nikon body in the future? Probably not. My jump from Pentax to Nikon has not been all roses.

Nikon deserves a black eye for this as they have swept this under the rug. A recall would have done wonders for D600 owners and for Nikon itself.

Thien Nguyen's picture

welcome to Canon

Timothy Jace's picture

doesn't mean that canon doesn't have its faults :)

Thien Nguyen's picture

Lets face it. Canon has better customer support. That reason is compelling enough for me to stick with canon

chris embardino's picture

I will say this.... i had a nikon D700 that developed a shutter issue after about 10K shots (wasn't lifting the mirror fast enough and sometimes at all) and it took me weeks to convince nikon that it should be covered under warranty - even with all the proper documentation. I STILL have a Canon G12 that i was using on a tripod during a windy day. sandbag slipped and it blew over and smashed on the concrete. I called canon, told them exactly what happened figuring i'd have to pay for it and they said send it in. I got it repaired, beautifully (minus the one spot on the housing where it hit the ground) with a new and improved autofocus light, new guts and a new eyepiece at no cost they put it on warranty. By those two experiences i'd have to say Canon does have the better service.

Kevin Sutton's picture

If only I had the cash to just flip flop. But whose to say I would fair any better at this point.

Spy Black's picture

You were better off cleaning it yourself in the long run, because you did not have to be without your camera as many have been for prolonged periods of time, only to have the problem reoccur. I bought my D600 knowing the issue full well, I didn't care because I realized how great the camera is otherwise. I simply clean my sensor and move on.

Obviously it's not somethig one should have to do as often (all cameras are going to need periodic sensor cleaning), and I'm not trying to cut Nikon any slack for what's happened, but people, and specifically professionals, really need to know how to clean a sensor. You clean your lenses if they get soiled, right? Sensor cleaning is an essential part of modern digital camera maintenance.

Kevin Sutton's picture

It is completely understood that some form of maintenance would be required on any removable lens system. This one situation is a bit different as it seems required more often than what would be considered normal. I of course think the images are fantastic but the flaw is negligent IMHO. I have 2 Nikon lenses total and typically the 50mm never leaves the body. So debris gathers regardless if I remove the glass.

My real frustation is shedding my old Pentax gear in order to buy into this one, which didn't cover 1/3 of the cost getting into this one. It is a $2100 mistake that I won't soon forget. This is also a great reminder of why I used to buy used instead of new. Getting this body for 1k or less would have been great and wouldn't have felt slighted as I would have been informed ahead of time of my purchase.

Concerning the class action I personally am undecided as to whether or not to even bother with it.

Maybe I will just write Nikon and see what they have to say. It may be futile but it is worth a try I suppose.

Either way I will maintain it and keep clicking away to get the images that I want.

Spy Black's picture

Yeah, as I said I'm not trying to cut Nikon slack on it. There is obviously an issue. However I don't think the lawsuit if going to beneficial to anyone other than the law firm. It's unclear whether it will have sufficient traction. If it does all that's gonna happen is that the law firm makes $X millions and you get a check for $20, and you're still stuck with what you have. Ideally what you'd want out of this kind of lawsuit is the option to swap for a D610, but I highly doubt that will happen.

Kevin Sutton's picture

Just to see what the response would be I have emailed Nikon support today. Of course I am a realist and do not see anything coming of it, but I would be interested in their response.

Spy Black's picture

Good luck with that, and whatever response you get it would be interesting to post here.

Kevin Sutton's picture

So emailing them was fruitful. I explained the situation professionally and calmly and it looks like they are going to repair it outside of the warranty period. For those in a similar situation it may work to just email them. I read elsewhere that the phoning them doesn't work as well.

Spy Black's picture

Excellent. Hope the problem is permanently fixed for you.

Laurian Ene's picture

From the way you describe your regrets about the switch I would definitely think that the class action suit would be perfect for you. Even if its not about getting a shutter replacement for free (which are you are entitled), its about making sure that Nikon fully understands the mishap and responsibility in the future.

This sort of thing has happened in Canon as well, and fixes were provided after enough people complained free of charge even out of warranty. There is no reason Nikon wouldn't be able to do this as well, unless people keep quiet.

Kevin Sutton's picture

Just to see what the response would be I have emailed Nikon support today. Of course I am a realist and do not see anything coming of it, but I would be interested in their response.

Richy's picture

The benefit you would get by sending it in is to get the new shutter mechanism which is the same shutter mechanism as the D610, essentially upgrading your camera by 0.5fps. I wouldn't say the fps boost is worth while but the new shutter itself is. I sent mine back and it was only gone 12 days and had the shutter replaced.

Harry's picture

I do not believe that is true. I sent it in after D610 was announced. After 1500 shots, had the spots (test environment, same lens at F29). Returned it back to Nikon who are sipping a cup of tea as they contemplate what to do with my situation for the last 2 weeks.

Also, if the D600's fix had been found, why was it necessary to replace the D610. PR, you might say but I think this has created far more bad press than good. Testament to the fact is my camera after a shutter replacement manifested the same problem again. It appeared to be a design flaw they had no answer to. The 610's shutter mechanism was created (probably got a different part) to fundamentally avoid the problem. They could not do that in the D600.

jniz22's picture

can't we do the same for my stupid canon 7d?

Paolo's picture

Why, what's issue with the 7D?

jniz22's picture

insanely horrible autofocus... also hate the noise but thats i guess what you get when buying so many MP crammed into a little sensor. It has done a lot of great things for me but It is in the closet most of the time now because it is so unreliable.

Andrew Freeman's picture

Send it back in. I don't have an AF issue with my 7D. Yours must be faulty.

jniz22's picture

Ya man... I live in Mongolia and I'm just bummed that it would likely take awhile. I have read about others having this issue, but at this point I might just cut my losses, bide my time, and wait for price reductions in full frame.

Spy Black's picture

There's no repair service near you that can have a look at your camera?

jniz22's picture

Ya maybe in like HK or BJ... I have no faith of the quality control etc. here as much as i love the people :/ Shipping internationally in Asia is always a bit dicey.

Paolo's picture

Yours must be faulty, that the reason of the existence of service centers, since there is no such this as a perfect gadget... Had my 7D for 5 months now, now problem... Have you upgraded to the latest Firmware?

jniz22's picture

Ya all is updated. I have read of others also having this problem with their 7D... i again had a frustrating weekend. So many blurry photos :(

vicsottofanakosincebirth's picture

nice try nikon fanboy. ok, even if you really own one, i dont think there is a single Nikon model that can match 7d's value during its time. A stupid photographer, yes it exists!

jniz22's picture

A Nikon fanboy? Because my Canon 7D's butt licking autofocus is a disaster? What evidence besides me hating a SPECIFIC MODEL of Canon would give that impression.

I have actually never owned a Nikon. Besides that they have bitchin glass, I hate their interface. Thats just me though... still awesome cameras. I think poo pooing over brand names is a waste of time. And I think the term fanboy is reserved for all-day internet perusing jack offs.

I own a canon 7d, 10-22, 24-70, 70-200mkii, 580EXii, 2 430 ex's... Have Nikon started producing Canon products over night? Oh ya I own some Russian rangefinders, a zeiss ikon, a mamiya rb67, a bronica RF645. canonet. Fan boy? psssh.

A stupid response to a legitimate frustration? Yes, it exists.

Travis L. Smith's picture

I just got mine back from Nikon. I asked for an upgrade to the D610 which they said they could not do. I hope it works out this time. I am in the midst of possibly being sued for ruining a wedding due to the oil spots on the photos.

Spy Black's picture

Photoshop is your friend. Also, there is a process in the D600 body itself which many people aren't aware of. You can take a reference image of the spots by shooting a blank surface, and the D600 will modify luminosity data to neutralize the spots from the reference file! In as much as I would imagine this feature may be available in various Nikon (and perhaps other manufacturer) bodies, it seems almost clairvoyant on the firmware designers to include it on the D600. It's unclear to me if you can also perform the process within ViewNX, which would make life easier in the process.

Andrew Freeman's picture

to get sued would have to mean there is a lot of spots that are highly visible... I wondered exactly how bad an image would be so I googled some images. It's scary... big spots clearly visible on small thumbnails, so I'd hate to think what it would be like at full res. If it's anything like the samples, that's a lot of cleanup work and something that I wouldn't want to do. But if it keeps the wolves at bay.....

Jason Ranalli's picture

This is hardly believable.

Tam Nguyen's picture

Better call Saul!

Lorenzo Burbano's picture

I bought mine summer 2013 and It had the biggest dust issues. no oil issues. I cleaned it. now its gone. But is sucked big-time to photoshop every single image I took. There are still very few dust issues, but its microscopic and only noticeable when shooting against a white background that isn't blown out, and amplified. I didn't know I could upgrade!

Alex's picture

I am the (not so) proud owner of a Nikon D7000. As my photography has progressed I have started investing in faster glass. First a 35mm 1.8, then 70-200, then 85mm 1.8. At first I didnt realized that my camera had massive back focusing issues. f3.5-5.6 dont tend to show that your camera is back focusing. It has taken me a long time to realize that my focus problems are severe. All my lenses i listed above are set at -20 AF Fine Tune and that has helped them nail focus. I use "nail" cautiously.

The D7000 is a great camera for its price range. But it is very discomforting to know that my main tool for my photography is faulty and unreliable for taking the images that I need it to take. Why does my camera body have 1 year warranty when my lens has a 5 year warranty? Like I said, it has taken time for my photography to progress into smaller and smaller depths of field. And it has taken time to realize that it is not my lenses that suck, its my body.

On a side note, I purchased the GoPro Hero 3 Black edition only to find out that it has an absolutely horrible white balance problem. The images are awful. What does GoPro decided to do? Release the GoPro Hero 3 + just a few months later. Same camera, same everything, they just fixed the stuff that they shouldnt have released with the Hero 3. Nick Bowman even said this on his 60 Minutes interview.

Spy Black's picture

Have you done firmware updates on the D7000? They may correct the issue. Also, as a curiosity, have you tried a "D" series lens on the body like a 35mm f2 to see if you have the same problems? I'm on a hunch that a lot of these issues have to do lens/body communication errors. A "D" series lens is entirely controlled by the body. I shoot with a few screw-driven lenses on my D600 and they focus fine, but I've seen back-focus on my D5100 with it's kit lenses.

Richy's picture

Same here, I have 2 d7000`s and both have the same back focus issues with all my lenses except the D series ones.

Spy Black's picture

Yeah, this is where Sigma was brilliant is designing the control interface to modify the lens directly. This is especially important in light of Nikon's recent firmware updates which seem to try to sabotage third-party products. Whether that was intentional or not is nor clear, but Sigma was right on top of it.

EnticingHavoc's picture

Is your camera "unreliable" or does it suffer from back-focus ?
Back-focus can easily be remedied by sending the camera to a Nikon repair center. It's just a simple misalignment of some mechanical parts.
"Unreliable" on the contrary means that your camera works flawless most of the time but eventually fails in some areas for no apparent reason.
With regard to the warranty : A DSLR is comprised of many delicate mechanical parts that over the course of time wear out and fail. This pertains lenses to a lesser degree.
You should be much more infuriated about TVs and their measly 1 year warranted despite featuring no mechanical parts at all. That is a really gross rip-off.

Vince Ryan's picture

i wish they did the same with the canon 7d and the af in low light

frankdaniels's picture

No Problems here with my D600. But i think i have a pretty late version.