Nikon Coolpix 5000: Flash card eject button will no longer stay in!

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Technology
November 14th, 2004 • 3:48 am

I cannot believe this. First, it was the mini USB port on the camera, which somehow “fell” inside the camera and became unusable. And now this…

In order to eject the Compact Flash card inside the camera, you open a small door on the side, and press the Eject button once to make it pop out. Then you push on the Eject button all the way in to eject the card.

After you’ve done what you needed to do with the card, you insert it back in. Then you press on the Eject button again, which is still sticking out and preventing you from closing the door. But you don’t push it all the way in, obviously, otherwise it will eject the card again. No, you just push it far enough so that it “clicks” in and stays in, which then allows you to close the door.

In other words, this Eject button has three positions:

  1. all the way out — the button sticks out (and prevents you from closing the door); it needs to be in that position so that you can push it all the way in to eject the card
  2. all the way in — when the button sticks out, you push it all the way in to eject the card; the button never stays in that position; it has a spring that makes it come back out to the first position
  3. closed — the button is not pushed all the way in, but is pushed far enough and held in place by some kind of lock that prevents it from popping out; it needs to be in that position so that you can actually close the door.

Well, thanks to Nikon’s marvelous mechanics, position #3 no longer exists on my Coolpix 5000. I didn’t do anything wrong. I never forced anything. All of a sudden, the Coolpix has decided that position #3 will not work. The button stays permanently in position #1. The “locking” mechanism that prevents the spring from pushing the button all the way out, keeps it in and enables you to close the door is obviously broken.

What this means, quite simply, is that I can no longer close the door! I can use the camera, but with the door of the Compact Flash compartment permanently open, which is obviously inconvenient, and will increase the risk of my accidentally damaging the card. I will probably end up half-ejecting the card all the time, simply because of the way the camera is held, with that side of the camera resting against my right hand’s palm.

This is extremely irritating. You spend $1,500 on a high end camera, and then basic, cheap mechanical parts end up breaking under perfectly normal usage, and the camera becomes almost unusable! Of course, it’s no longer under warranty, and God knows if my local camera shop will be able to repair it, and at what cost.


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