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Olympus EM-1 Won’t Turn On

Discussion in 'The Olympus Outlet' started by Randallr, Aug 14, 2019.

  1. Randallr

    Randallr Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: New York, NY
    Anyone else experiencing this? I’m shooting with an EM-1 Mark 1 in Nauticam housing, no problems until this year. On some dives, the camera simply won’t turn on - black screen, as if the battery is dead. But the battery is fully charged - and I always test the connections and everything else before I dive. Taking the battery out and putting it back in fixes the issue - but that’s not really feasible underwater (especially on a shore dive).

    Today’s dive was even weirder. I’d tested the camera and strobes in the housing pre-dive, and everything went swimmingly. But in the water, I got just the dead screen. An hour later, on land, the camera turned on fine. I’m wondering if there’s some issues with sudden temperature changes, or perhaps moisture in the battery compartment. Maybe a glitch when the camera auto-shuts down. Anyone have any reality checks here? I updated the firmware, but it didn’t solve the problem.
  2. Chris Ross

    Chris Ross Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Sydney Australia
    Could be a number of things. Is it only with one lens?, I had an issue with the micro switch in the locking pin, one particular lens when mounted would result in a blank screen, jiggling the lens would sometimes get it to work, other lenses were fine. I think that lens had a slightly different depth of the hole in lens flange so the pin didn't seat fully. I think it was stuck in a state between no lens and mounted lens. Fix was quite cheap at Olympus repair centre. It was diagnosed by seeing if mounting a different lens restores things.
  3. Edward3c

    Edward3c Instructor, Scuba

    I experienced an early camera (35mm) not working in water, but did dry.

    It was the housing supports that hold the camera in position had warn, allowing the camera to move just enough that the on/off button didn’t work.
  4. chris kippax

    chris kippax Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Australia
    Try and recreate the fault outside the housing, if you hold down any buttons and try using the camera does the same issue happen? Could be a weak spring depressing a button?
  5. bvanant

    bvanant Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives:
    Location: Los Angeles (more or less)
    I had the exact same issue several times and after extensive testing it appears that some SD cards cause the problem. Since switching to use only high speed (meaning expensive) name brand (Sandisk and ProGrade) cards the problem has not occurred again, but switching back to some no-name cards often has the problem.

  6. fmerkel

    fmerkel Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Salish Sea (Seattle)
    If the camera ALWAYS works out of the housing, but fails IN the housing, I'd suspect some button possibly getting sticky, pushing on a control, and messing things up. Try the suggestion of @chris kippax.
  7. bvanant

    bvanant Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives:
    Location: Los Angeles (more or less)
    In my case the problem happened in the water, but continued to not work when taken out of the housing. I could reproduce it on land.
  8. gert7to3

    gert7to3 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Northwest Michigan now, formerly Chicago
    Check the end of the ON/OFF housing button actuator arm which contacts the switch on the camera. If there is a pad it may have shifted or even fallen off. If the actuator mechanism is articulated there may have been some sort of shift resulting in the arm missing the button. Also, mentioned above, check the positioning pads for the camera body inside the housing. Cleaning the battery and camera housing contacts with electrical contact cleaner might be another possibility.
  9. Karloss

    Karloss Barracuda

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Braselton, Ga.
    It could be from over time moisture has gotten in and corroded some contacts. I like the Idea of cleaning them.

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