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Gear Cameras D70s CHA error, what's the deal?

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Old Dec-27-2007, 07:18 AM
#1
BRATCH is offline BRATCH OP
What I want, when I want
D70s CHA error, what's the deal?
Here's the deal. I'm using a D70s with a couple of SanDisk Ultra II CF cards in 1 GB and 512MB versions.

A few months ago I was shooting a soccer game and all of the sudden my camera wouldn't shoot. I then noticed I was getting a CHA error. I turned the camera off and then turned it back on and everything was relatively cool. Then I got the error again and I started checking over my photos and noticed that randomly some of them were nothing but black. Like I had been shooting with the lens cap on or I would get a "Image Contains No Information" message. The one thing that I found to lessen the likelyhood of it happening is to format the card I'm usingly like 20 times before shooting, but now that isn't working as well as it used to. I also got a messege during some of these instances to format my card.

Anyway, I don't think I have to explain this problem any further because I've been researching it for a while and everyone seems to have heard of it. However, I've never seen anyone on the internet give a solution.

There seems to be two groups. Those that believe it's all in the memory cards and those that throw the camera away and upgrade. I've seen that a few sent their D70 off for repair and when it got back nothing really changed except they spent some cash and were without the camera for six weeks.

Here are my questions: Let's say it's not the memory cards, what is the problem then? It is safe to say that the camera needs to be repaired, but has anyone sent their D70 or D70S off with this problem and it was actually fixed? And how would a repair like this cost or is it even worth fixing?

I've got a little less than 20,000 shoots on this camera and have really only had it for 18 months or so I believe.

I just want to know what the deal is with this. Everyone seems to be talking about it, or at least were talking about it, but not a single person has come up with a solution that I could find.

I would explain more, but I have two basketball games to shoot with this ailing camera in about 45 minutes so I gotta run.

Thanks for the help.
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Old Dec-27-2007, 07:45 AM
#2
jdryan3 is offline jdryan3
tao te grin
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Given that they are relatively inexpensive (compared to a new camera), why not go out and get some new cards, maybe Lexar or another brand. I use the SanDisk Ultra II 2GB (never any problems), but have used Lexar 256MB & 512MB in the past. That should at least eliminate the cards as the issue.

However I use a Canon 5D, so I have not heard of this issue with the D70 before.
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Old Dec-27-2007, 07:59 AM
#3
HarveyMushman is offline HarveyMushman
.
HarveyMushman's Avatar
My D70 does the same. I don't know what causes the problem, although I am a firm believer in paying the absolute minimum for CF cards. Turning the camera OFF/ON usually makes things right. Also, make sure you do not delete individual files in-camera. Mine seems to behave better since I made a habit of formatting "new" cards in-camera and never deleting in-camera.

Buying a whole new camera because of this? There's no shortage of stupid in this world . . .
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Old Dec-27-2007, 08:03 AM
#4
greenpea is offline greenpea
Major grins
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I was having similar problems with my D70, although less so with the CHA (I saw that rarely... and that was always fixed by pulling the battery and putting it back in). But I was getting a fair number of "Image Contains No Information" messages, maybe one or two per filled CF card. They seem to occur with older more heavily used CF cards, with newer CF cards didn't seem to have the problem. My camera as at 60K+ images.

For an unrelated reason I sent my D70 off to Nikon for repair, they fixed it as a "goodwill" repair and charged me nothing, and since I got the camera back I haven't seen any CHA messages and haven't seen any "Image Contains No Information" messages (although I don't really use my old CF cards anymore).

Although Nikon charged me nothing, someone had told me that they generally charge around $300 for most any repair (and my D70 was completely broken). The full process from shipping it to Nikon to getting it back was maybe 4 weeks.

Hope this helps.
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Old Dec-27-2007, 02:40 PM
#5
BRATCH is offline BRATCH OP
What I want, when I want
Quote:
Originally Posted by HarveyMushman
My D70 does the same. I don't know what causes the problem, although I am a firm believer in paying the absolute minimum for CF cards. Turning the camera OFF/ON usually makes things right. Also, make sure you do not delete individual files in-camera. Mine seems to behave better since I made a habit of formatting "new" cards in-camera and never deleting in-camera.

Buying a whole new camera because of this? There's no shortage of stupid in this world . . .
First off, my newspaper will be purchasing the new camera this is just a reason to do so because we are a small paper and can't be without a camera for an extended period of time.

Normally in a situation like this I would blow it off, but I'm not a big fan of shooting a ballgame or whatever only to find that some of the photos aren't there anymore.

The first time this really happened I shot most of a soccer game and throughout the game I noticed some shots I loved on the viewfinder. About five shots that I really loved. Then the CHA error comes up. Turn it off and back on, everything seems cool right up until I'm thumbing through my photos and notice that about 80% of what I had shot was corrupt and history.

I would say that it wouldn't bother me otherwise but knowing I lost five or more photos I really liked, it irks me.

I use SanDisk Ultra II cards and in fact, I had never used my 512MB card at all until this started and it happens even more with that card than the 1GB that I used all the time before that.

All I'm asking is what is causing this if it isn't the cards. Because I've seen this problem all over various messege boards on the internet with the D70 and the D70s with every kind of memory card under the sun. Something is causing it and I know that there has to be someone out there that had the problem, sent the camera off to be fixed and it was fixed. Or maybe it wasn't fixed and Nikon doesn't know how to fix it. My buddy has a D70 and it's got well over 20,000 shots on it and it's doing just fine.

Either way, all I know is that I have a camera that I can't depend on anymore. It's officially unreliable and I can't have that.
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Old Dec-27-2007, 04:00 PM
#6
greenpea is offline greenpea
Major grins
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Ultimately, while my D70 was off for repairs, I got a D200 because (like you) I was concerned about reliability. My D70 will have its 4 year birthday in March and the way I figure DSLRs don't have about the same lifespan as a laptop.
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Old Dec-27-2007, 04:13 PM
#7
HarveyMushman is offline HarveyMushman
.
HarveyMushman's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by BRATCH
First off, my newspaper will be purchasing the new camera this is just a reason to do so because we are a small paper and can't be without a camera for an extended period of time.

Normally in a situation like this I would blow it off, but I'm not a big fan of shooting a ballgame or whatever only to find that some of the photos aren't there anymore.

The first time this really happened I shot most of a soccer game and throughout the game I noticed some shots I loved on the viewfinder. About five shots that I really loved. Then the CHA error comes up. Turn it off and back on, everything seems cool right up until I'm thumbing through my photos and notice that about 80% of what I had shot was corrupt and history.

I would say that it wouldn't bother me otherwise but knowing I lost five or more photos I really liked, it irks me.

I use SanDisk Ultra II cards and in fact, I had never used my 512MB card at all until this started and it happens even more with that card than the 1GB that I used all the time before that.

All I'm asking is what is causing this if it isn't the cards. Because I've seen this problem all over various messege boards on the internet with the D70 and the D70s with every kind of memory card under the sun. Something is causing it and I know that there has to be someone out there that had the problem, sent the camera off to be fixed and it was fixed. Or maybe it wasn't fixed and Nikon doesn't know how to fix it. My buddy has a D70 and it's got well over 20,000 shots on it and it's doing just fine.

Either way, all I know is that I have a camera that I can't depend on anymore. It's officially unreliable and I can't have that.
If your income depends on the thing by all means do what you must, but to broad-stroke it as "officially unreliable" strikes me as a bit over the top. For me, this little problem has never risen beyond "mildly annoying," but I've never lost more than a few photos, never anything approaching 80% of my shots.

If you are truly curious you could always send it back to Nikon for a look-see.
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Old Dec-27-2007, 06:49 PM
#8
ziggy53 is offline ziggy53
Still learnin'still lovin
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It appears that a Nikon D70/D70s CHA error is a general "cannot write to card" error and can be caused by many different situations including:

1) CF card fault/failure
2) CF card fragmentation
3) CF connection, camera contacts
4) Camera internal failure with card write circuit board
5) Power supply in camera, potentially also related to the battery.

To rule out the Compact Flash card(s) as the fault, try a brand new card (not Lexar 80x, as those seem problematic), format in camera and do not field erase images. Reformat card in camera to start over. If this procedure works, format the older cards in the camera and then work the cards by taking images, preferably RAW to fill up the card as quickly as possible. Do not completely fill the card but stop at around 10 remaining images and format the card in camera once more. You might be good to go.

If these procedures don't work, it is recommended to return the camera to Nikon for a checkup. If Nikon cannot diagnose a problem, you might try a new battery as some claim a weak battery to be part of the problem, but I don't see that "cure" mentioned often enough to know if really is a cure or not.

Repairs for an out-of-warranty repair for the problem relating to the camera seem to run around $300USD from those few folks who reported a cost.
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Old Dec-28-2007, 04:37 AM
#9
bkatz is offline bkatz
Major grins
also the lock switch
I have seen it only twice on my D80 and that was when the lock switch on the SD card was mistakenly moved to locked. What I have seen more commonly is that if I don't format the card in camera I sometimes get funky (old images still there - less space)

By default I recommend formatting your card everytime you put it in. Haven't seen any issues since I started that.
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Old Dec-28-2007, 06:38 AM
#10
BRATCH is offline BRATCH OP
What I want, when I want
Quote:
Originally Posted by ziggy53
It appears that a Nikon D70/D70s CHA error is a general "cannot write to card" error and can be caused by many different situations including:

1) CF card fault/failure
2) CF card fragmentation
3) CF connection, camera contacts
4) Camera internal failure with card write circuit board
5) Power supply in camera, potentially also related to the battery.

To rule out the Compact Flash card(s) as the fault, try a brand new card (not Lexar 80x, as those seem problematic), format in camera and do not field erase images. Reformat card in camera to start over. If this procedure works, format the older cards in the camera and then work the cards by taking images, preferably RAW to fill up the card as quickly as possible. Do not completely fill the card but stop at around 10 remaining images and format the card in camera once more. You might be good to go.

If these procedures don't work, it is recommended to return the camera to Nikon for a checkup. If Nikon cannot diagnose a problem, you might try a new battery as some claim a weak battery to be part of the problem, but I don't see that "cure" mentioned often enough to know if really is a cure or not.

Repairs for an out-of-warranty repair for the problem relating to the camera seem to run around $300USD from those few folks who reported a cost.
Thanks Ziggy and everyone, this is the information I'm looking for.

The only way I've really found that can solve the problem most of the time, but not all the time, is that I have to format the card I put in the camera at least a dozen times in a row. I usually will do it 15-20 times before shooting, but that's a little ridiculous.

I've also put a card in before and the top display went from -E- to 291 and back to -E-. Then I had to pull the card out and put it back in for it to pick up the card again. That's why it seems to me like the contacts in the camera are malfunctioning. Honestly, thats why I figured more cameras were using SD cards now instead of CF.

I'm not sure what you mean by "weak" battery. Do you mean weak as in not fully charged or weak like the battery itself is malfunctioning?

Another reason why this is a serious problem is that on Wednesday I drove across town just to get a single mugshot of someone. All I needed was one photo.

When I got back to the office where my editor was waiting for my photo so we could get the paper out, only one of the photos I took would open. If that first shot doesn't open, I'm driving back across down and delaying everything and everyone.

At that point time is money.

Since we have to send off the camera for repairs anyway, a D80 is on the way. I think I will prefer the D80, but I do love the D70s' 1/500 flash sync.
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Old Dec-28-2007, 07:14 AM
#11
photocat is offline photocat
camera crazy kittie
photocat's Avatar
I would immediately think of battery problems. Either the battery is not put in well, of has a bit of lee way to go. I have that problem if my battery grip is not tight enough on my D200.
It could be the contact points that are a bit dirty.
It should not last half your shots as previous poster said. It can ruin one shot, but you will notice it does not fire. I've "repaired" it with wiggling the battery grip a bit more, or trying to turn it to the camera a bit more steady.
Try cleaning out the contact points of the battery chamber... No need to get a new camera for that one. If you do, have a look at my D70 for sale in Nikon Land on Dgrin. Another shameless plug. You guys will be so tired of me...
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Old May-13-2010, 03:45 AM
#12
jmkermath is offline jmkermath
Beginner grinner
Nikon D70 CHA error
can anyone post a solution to this common error on the Nikon D70? Did you find a solution? Thanks, Jeff

Quote:
Originally Posted by BRATCH View Post
Here's the deal. I'm using a D70s with a couple of SanDisk Ultra II CF cards in 1 GB and 512MB versions.

A few months ago I was shooting a soccer game and all of the sudden my camera wouldn't shoot. I then noticed I was getting a CHA error. I turned the camera off and then turned it back on and everything was relatively cool. Then I got the error again and I started checking over my photos and noticed that randomly some of them were nothing but black. Like I had been shooting with the lens cap on or I would get a "Image Contains No Information" message. The one thing that I found to lessen the likelyhood of it happening is to format the card I'm usingly like 20 times before shooting, but now that isn't working as well as it used to. I also got a messege during some of these instances to format my card.

Anyway, I don't think I have to explain this problem any further because I've been researching it for a while and everyone seems to have heard of it. However, I've never seen anyone on the internet give a solution.

There seems to be two groups. Those that believe it's all in the memory cards and those that throw the camera away and upgrade. I've seen that a few sent their D70 off for repair and when it got back nothing really changed except they spent some cash and were without the camera for six weeks.

Here are my questions: Let's say it's not the memory cards, what is the problem then? It is safe to say that the camera needs to be repaired, but has anyone sent their D70 or D70S off with this problem and it was actually fixed? And how would a repair like this cost or is it even worth fixing?

I've got a little less than 20,000 shoots on this camera and have really only had it for 18 months or so I believe.

I just want to know what the deal is with this. Everyone seems to be talking about it, or at least were talking about it, but not a single person has come up with a solution that I could find.

I would explain more, but I have two basketball games to shoot with this ailing camera in about 45 minutes so I gotta run.

Thanks for the help.
Old May-13-2010, 07:02 AM
#13
ziggy53 is offline ziggy53
Still learnin'still lovin
ziggy53's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmkermath View Post
can anyone post a solution to this common error on the Nikon D70? Did you find a solution? Thanks, Jeff
This is a common error message with many causes, kind of like a "check engine" light on a car. It tells you that there is a problem without telling you exactly what the problem is.

As I mentioned above:

It appears that a Nikon D70/D70s CHA error is a general "cannot write to card" error and can be caused by many different situations including:

1) CF card fault/failure
2) CF card fragmentation
3) CF connection, camera contacts
4) Camera internal failure with card write circuit board
5) Power supply in camera, potentially also related to the battery.

If the problem occurs with a single card, then it probably relates to that card.

If the problem occurs with a singular battery, then it probably relates to that battery.

If the problem occurs with a particular combination of equipment, like a VR lens or a vertical/battery grip, then it is probably a power and/or contact issue.

etc.
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Old May-13-2010, 10:01 PM
#14
NikonsandVstroms is offline NikonsandVstroms
*and Olympus
I had that same exact issue/error on my D50 and sent it to Nikon service.

They replaced the shutter assembly and even now with my friend giving it heavy use there are no issues.
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Old Sep-27-2010, 06:11 AM
#15
JohnBouy is offline JohnBouy
Beginner grinner
I have the same issue
Quote:
Originally Posted by BRATCH View Post
Here's the deal. I'm using a D70s with a couple of SanDisk Ultra II CF cards in 1 GB and 512MB versions.

A few months ago I was shooting a soccer game and all of the sudden my camera wouldn't shoot. I then noticed I was getting a CHA error. I turned the camera off and then turned it back on and everything was relatively cool. Then I got the error again and I started checking over my photos and noticed that randomly some of them were nothing but black. Like I had been shooting with the lens cap on or I would get a "Image Contains No Information" message. The one thing that I found to lessen the likelyhood of it happening is to format the card I'm usingly like 20 times before shooting, but now that isn't working as well as it used to. I also got a messege during some of these instances to format my card.

Anyway, I don't think I have to explain this problem any further because I've been researching it for a while and everyone seems to have heard of it. However, I've never seen anyone on the internet give a solution.

There seems to be two groups. Those that believe it's all in the memory cards and those that throw the camera away and upgrade. I've seen that a few sent their D70 off for repair and when it got back nothing really changed except they spent some cash and were without the camera for six weeks.

Here are my questions: Let's say it's not the memory cards, what is the problem then? It is safe to say that the camera needs to be repaired, but has anyone sent their D70 or D70S off with this problem and it was actually fixed? And how would a repair like this cost or is it even worth fixing?

I've got a little less than 20,000 shoots on this camera and have really only had it for 18 months or so I believe.

I just want to know what the deal is with this. Everyone seems to be talking about it, or at least were talking about it, but not a single person has come up with a solution that I could find.

I would explain more, but I have two basketball games to shoot with this ailing camera in about 45 minutes so I gotta run.

Thanks for the help.
I am new to this site. I have had this issue on more than one occation and to me, once is too many. I was using a Nikon d 70s with a SandDisk Ultra II 8gb. card. After about 130 pics I got the CHA error , tried turning the camera off then on the error cleared but when I went to view the pics I took it said there were none on the card. When this happen the last time the camera put the pics in a DCIM folder that I could see on the computer and was able to retrieve the pics that way. This time, unfortunately I wasn't so lucky. This isn't GOOD... when I take pictures I take them because I want to PRESERVE the MOMENT..... these were pics of our grandchildren a special event, so that would make it something that can't be DONE AGAIN....like a sitting or a table top. It hurt..
I reallly appreciate the forum because it let me know I wasn't alone out here and others were having the same issue. Also that it wasn't particular to just me, being as I am relatively new to this and just recently lost my mentor and BEST and ONLY SOURCE for anything I needed to know on the subject of photography. It also let me know of the others reasoning and what they thought the cause might be.

What I did try is, in the comfort of my computer room, I snapped off about 200 pics in about 10 minutes, I would delete them on the camera and then shoot some more. Delete again, shoot some. Format in the camera (as I was told to do from day one) Shoot some more and delete again . Even after doing this for about an hour and utlizing a SanDisk 512 mb card also [FONT=Verdana]and I could not recreate the CHA ERROR. I have a thought to put out there if anyone is listening , I seem to remember that the couple of times this happened that the air temperature was cool (below 65 degrees frnt) Just a thought…… I hope someone can help solve this one, its really hard to deal with....Thanks for allowing me to bend your EARS..[/FONT]
Old Dec-08-2010, 12:13 PM
#16
Sally Cinnamon is offline Sally Cinnamon
Beginner grinner
Smooch CHA Error
I got this error message for the first time when I maybe stupidly took my d80 out in the snow to get some pics of my kids. It just popped up with the CHA and I couldn't get rid of it. I took out sd card, and the battery, waited a couple of mins then popped them back in. Nothing changed. So I just put it to the side before I got myself worked up. Once we, and the camera had warmed up it seemed to work again. It happened again today though and it had not been out although it's still snowy outside the heating has been on full blast all day. So I started googling for answers and the long and short of it is this. The camera cannot read the card. The card may have the "lock" switch on, may need formatted or be corrupt. It may also be an issue with a weak battery or even connections within the card reader circutry. I kept finding links that told me to format my card in camera so I tried and it kept saying formatting then "done", but this didn't help. Eventually I put it back into the laptop card reader and the camera had not wiped the information at all so I formatted via the laptop and thankfully, when I put it back in the camera I got the proper display back and can now use again. phew! hope this helps someone.
Old Dec-09-2010, 08:18 PM
#17
M38A1 is offline M38A1
Curious. Very curious.
M38A1's Avatar
This will sound silly, but I had the same error on my D90 a while back. Turns out I had flipped the lock switch on the SD card as to prohibit access. A simple flick of the little lock on the card and life was good again.
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My digital footprint
Old Dec-11-2010, 10:18 AM
#18
glockman99 is offline glockman99
Big grins
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This might be way out in left-field, but does your D70 have the latest firmware installed in it?
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Old Dec-11-2010, 01:48 PM
#19
digger2 is offline digger2
Big grins
Page 200 Of The Manual
It's a card issue. either a card needs formatting or its a bad card
Old Jan-02-2011, 12:23 AM
#20
Lumo is offline Lumo
Beginner grinner
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sally Cinnamon View Post
I got this error message for the first time when I maybe stupidly took my d80 out in the snow to get some pics of my kids. It just popped up with the CHA and I couldn't get rid of it. - - - Eventually I put it back into the laptop card reader and the camera had not wiped the information at all so I formatted via the laptop and thankfully, when I put it back in the camera I got the proper display back and can now use again. phew! hope this helps someone.
Sally, thanks (loads!), this worked for me. I've got D80, got the CHA message yesterday for the first time ever, ok, out in the cold and snow - but I regularly use my camera even in -20C/-4F or colder weather. Formatting the card in the camera didn't help, another SD card worked fine however, so followed your advise about formatting the 'faulty' card via the laptop, and bingo! the SD card works again. As a precaution formatted the SD card again in the camera. A good lesson though; should always carry at least 2 cards with you to be safe(r).
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