Sony announces service plan for NEX-5N "click" issue|
(Saturday, September 24, 2011 - 15:14 EDT)
Sony has announced a service plan to eliminate the clicking heard in some NEX-5N models in response to camera movement during video recording.
While we didn't hear it in our own use of the NEX-5N, there have been reports of people hearing a clicking noise on the audio track in response to camera movement during video recording.
It's possible that we didn't hear the clicking because background noise was enough to mask it, or because we weren't moving the camera vigorously enough (it seems to require fairly abrupt camera movement to occur; more so than we'd be likely to subject it to in normal panning), or perhaps because our sample didn't exhibit the issue at all. - But some people have clearly experienced the clicking and find it objectionable.
The good news is that Sony's identified the source of the sounds, and has announced a service program by which people bothered by them can send in their cameras to have a fix applied. Sony has put up a page on their site with brief details and an offer to apply the fix to cameras under warranty. (In other words, if you hear the sound and it bothers you, don't wait two years before sending it in; you need to do so during the camera's warranty period.) There's not a lot of detail on the page; the main information is the phone number to call if you want to avail yourself of this service. (888-868-7392)
Individual users will obviously have to weigh whether the noises are enough of an issue for them to warrant shipping their camera off for a week or more to have the remedy applied. Kudos to Sony, though, for responding so quickly to customer concerns and implementing this program: Sony's consistently had a better than average track record of addressing customer issues like this; it's nice to see that trend continue.
Queried about ongoing production, Sony staff indicated that the fix is being applied on the production line going forward, so cameras manufactured from this point on shouldn't click regardless of how much you shake them. (Well, within reason anyway; we suspect knocking one full-tilt into a wall might result in a little clicking afterwards. :-)