The Lope: Sony DSC-H2 problems

Monday, March 26, 2007

Sony DSC-H2 problems

UPDATED December 21, 2007

I've never used this blog for a rant, but I feel compelled to do so tonight. I am occasionally asked what photographic equipment I use, and for the past five months it's been a Sony DSC-H2 mid-range digital camera I bought at Office Max in Seattle while on a trip last September.

Do yourself a favor; don't make the same mistake I did.

To give it its due, it's medium size and 12x lens would make it a great blogger's camera. It does have the "digital delay" on the shutter, just as all non-SLRs I've tried, but it's about half the cost of a DSLR and more suitable as a "carry it anywhere" camera. Also, I've been in a few places (i.e. concerts, Clinton's speech and Highgate Cemetery) that inexplicably would not allow SLRs or "larger cameras" but would allow "small cameras"; the DSC-H2 with lens retracted and the cap on passed for a small camera in these places and I got pictures while watching others have to take their cameras back to their cars.

The main problem is the shutter button function and the button itself.

In the last month of its life, the camera would re-focus just before taking a picture, even when the button had already been pushed halfway down to lock the focus. This was a problem for shots in which the foreground subject was to be off-center, as Ace Jackalope often is. The movable focus spot feature would solve this problem, but is another step to have to take in often rushed circumstances. Plus, the camera's tendency to re-focus added more shutter lag.

Then, just before I went to photograph President Clinton about a month ago, I was driving along with the camera in the passenger seat and heard a "ping" noise. I looked on my dashboard and there was my shutter button. It had popped off the camera all by itself, propelled by a spring that I never did find. The camera could still be operated by replacing the button, which has a thin plastic rod on the bottom, but it would fall off easily and even the slight weight of the button would keep the camera in permanent "half-way pushed" mode.

The camera is still under warranty but there was no time to send it away and get it back from Sony before doing the Clinton shoot and a vacation to the southwestern US which was coming up in a few days. So, I re-attached it by making a donut of thin foam rubber to substitute for the spring, and kept the button on with a short length of electrical tape. It was a workable, if somewhat ghetto-looking solution, and it kinda-sorta worked for awhile.

Finally, about two weeks ago in Santa Fe NM, it stopped working entirely; the button would no longer trip the camera. I tried using the pointed end of one of the hat tacks that I use as wardrobe for Ace, with the sharp end clipped to the right length, to trip the shutter, but that worked only in a haphazard manner.

Fortunately, the one time I had bought an extended warranty, it was for this camera back in September. I had office Max's "Max Protection" plan but it's only supposed to be in effect after the manufacturer's warranty is expired, which is months away. I took time that I'd ordinarily use to see Santa Fe and sought an Office Max. Thanks to an assistant manager in Santa Fe, who was sympathetic to a guy on a road trip, it worked. They called in my extended warranty and replaced the camera right there and then. I was such a happy camper that, even though I was out 50 bucks for the first extended warranty, I bought another.

I was back on Route 66 with a working camera...for awhile.

Eleven days later, the shutter button came off the replacement camera. I was shooting pictures at Palo Duro Canon near Amarillo and as I lifted my finger off the shutter button, it came loose. That's right - two cameras, same exact problem. At least the first DSC-H2 lasted five months.

My brother loaned me his DSC-H2 and I noticed immediately that the shutter lag was much less on it. All this time, with my two examples of the same camera, I had experienced a shutter lag longer than his example of the model. Fortunately, this was on the last day of that trip.

This time, I had the spring and I took time to photograph the camera's problem with my previous digital camera, a temperamental Olympus that still works sometimes.

Here's the grip area of the camera without the button. You can see the hole the shaft on the bottom of the button fits in.

Here's the underside of the button and the spring. You can see a small light spot in the middle of the shaft on the bottom of the button: that's the place the plastic shaft broke. It's less than a half-millimeter wide. That's right, the thing that keeps the DSC-H2's shutter button attached - the thing that lets you capture the sights you want to share - is a plastic shaft thinner than a toothpick, which is under regular pressure and has a spring trying to push it apart all the time.

Today, in Joplin MO, another Office Max replaced my camera. It was not necessary to use the extended warranty as the camera was still within the 14-day Office Max return period. They replaced it even though, by the letter of their policy, I was supposed to have the original packaging, which was miles away. I'm actually pretty happy with Office Max.

I did a little research tonight and discovered that I'm far from the first to experience the flying shutter button.

For instance, here.

Several different users commented on that they had the same shutter button problems, for example: "Yesterday I found another interesting thing about the DSC I hadn't used for about a week: the shutter button isn't anymore, it disappeared. Finally I found it somewhere on the carpet together with the spring but a part is stil missing as the button cannot release the shutter anymore."

And at "My Sony DSC-H1 was sitting on the desk all alone for about an hour when all of a sudden I heard a slight noise and saw parts flying. It was the shutter button and spring! No on had touched the camera."

I found more examples of this, but frankly I'm tired of thinking about it, just as I'm weary of borrowing other people's cameras to make due until I can take prime tourism time to find yet another Office Max in the middle to the urban banality I usually try to avoid.

My Canon AE-1 lasted 30 years. My Canon T-90 lasted 21 years. My First digital, an Olympus C-60, lasted 14 months. My first Sony DSC-H2 lasted five months. My second DSC-H2 lasted eleven days. I'm not liking this trend.

Learn from my mistake; don't buy the Sony DSC-H2. There are competing mid-range cameras from other manufacturers, try one of those or buy an SLR. I think that'll be my next step.

Update added May 1: On April 8, the focus lock on my third Sony DSC-H2 began failing. It would work for awhile on any given day, but would fail an hour or so into a shooting session. This was the pattern: it would work properly at first, the focus lock engaging when I pushed the button half-way down. Then, at some point, there'd be no halfway down and focusing would occur just before the picture was taken. The total time from pushing the button til exposure would be about 1.5 - 2 seconds at this point. Then, after a rest, the camera would work properly again.

Until April 22, when the absence of the halfway-pushed focus lock became permanent. As of now, May 1, it still only focuses right before a picture. This is a problem when shooting off-center subjects (i.e. person off to side of background) as the camera will focus only on the center unless the movable center spot is used, which is not a fast process.

Focus is stuck on the last picture taken, until refocusing, which results in taking a picture whether I want it or not. This is a problem when in flash mode as one flash is expended in the focusing process, forcing me (and my subject) to wait while the flash recharges after what may of may not be a good shot.

I have tried to return the unit to Office Max, but was informed it will expend my 2-year extended warranty to do so. Since I have no confidence in yet another Sony DSC-H2, I'm hoping that Office Max discontinues the DSC-H2 in favor of the DSC-H7 and I can exchange for it - if, I can tolerate the behavior of my H-2 that long (and the shutter button does not all off). Not that I'm eager to try another Sony, but at least the H-7 might not have the same defect.

Update, August 27: I'm on my fifth DSC-H2. I had to cash in the Office Max extended warranty to get the 4th one on May 7. It lasted less about 24 hours before focus lock broke during an assignment which included photographing the President. No kidding - I'm taking a picture of the President of the United States and the focus lock doesn't work. No matter what you think of him, that's a pretty rare opportunity. I was lucky enough to get a couple shots anyway, when Bush stood in the same place long enough that the extended delay was not a problem, but I'd have had more frames from which to choose if focus lock would have worked.

I was able to trade it out for the 5th one because the problem occurred well within the receipt period. Not all of my area Office Max stores were amiable to this, and many no longer stock the camera so it took awhile to do the switch. I think they're getting tired of me walking into the sore with a broken shutter button. I flirted with getting a demo model as it would have been manufactured much earlier and I think the problem does not date back to the very beginning of production, but was not able to do so.

So here I am with #5, which is behaving so far. If you ran across this little blog entry because you're having the same problem with yours, you might find the comments over at to be comforting. At least you're not alone.

Update, December 21, 2007 - The focus lock on my fifth DSC-H2 failed a few months ago and the shutter button popped off a month ago. For awhile I could still use the camera with the button held on with cellophane tape. I could not swap it out for another DSC-H2 as there were none left at any Office Max I checked. The model has been discontinued now.

On December 17 the camera stopped working; the taped-on shutter button would not trip the shutter. Based on information on Photographyblog, I ordered Release Assembly part #: X21083252 from Sony and received it on December 20th. I ordered that it be sent second-day shipping. The part was $18.61 and shipping and tax brought the total to 32.72. Had I gone with standard shipping, the total would have been $27.36.

(Note above model number updated to X21083252 from X21083262)

It arrived in a much-over-sized box about 11x5x5 inches. Inside that was this smaller box with the part.

Here's the part.

You can see two tabs that lock into slots on the camera body. They are fragile.

I was able to pry off the remainder of the old release assembly - a bezel that holds the button - with a thumbnail and slight counter-clockwise twist. This is what I found inside.

You can see a small piece of the shutter button shaft that has broken off, resting on the membrane that, when pushed, actually trips the shutter. As you can see, the shaft was indented, causing a distinct weak point in already thin plastic. I surmise that the camera worked as long as the two parts of the broken shutter button shaft were aligned and failed when this lower part turned sideways.

And here is the cause of the focus lock problem. A membrane underlying the shutter button shaft has become dented, probably from being held in the focus lock position as any user who is tracking a moving object would do. I presume that, as someone on Photographyblog has suggested, the membrane is supposed to touch another one beneath it to cause focus. Now it is in constant contact with whatever is beneath, causing the malfunction. I can't fix that right now. I believe it'll take a different part, probably the switch block control (Part No: 147969921) at $62.91.

However, I did install the new release assembly (shutter button) with a careful push and clockwise twist. The camera works now - as far as taking pictures - but focus lock still does not function.


Blogger Bubby said...

Sony has a reputation for having difficulties with certain production runs of certain products (can you say laptop batteries?). We had a problem with one of the compact Cybershots (a P-70 I think) a few years ago. It wasn't under warranty and would cost as much to repair as it did to buy. I finally sold it on eBay for ~$40.

Don't it figure that 6-months later I received a letter about a class-action lawsuit where I could get the camera repaired or replaced free. If I no longer had the camera, I think I could get a bunch of music downloads or something equally inappropriate.

We ended up replacing it with another Cybershot (P-93) and have had no difficulties with it.

Yes, Sony's been a bit of a crap shoot lately but many of the low-priced point-and-shoot cameras have some sort of common issue that disables them before they really should go out. I could tell a story about an HP camera my dad had but I'll spare you.

Tue Apr 17, 02:55:00 PM  
Blogger Hans said...

I sent the following e-mail to Sony today:

What about the ubiquitous shutter button problem on the DSC-H series camera, notably the DSC-H2 and DSC-H5 ? The internet is full of reports that the autofocus stops functioning after only 10 to 15 days and of the button suddenly coming off the casing ? For myself, I have now the third DSC-H2 after I exchanged the 2 previous specimen after only 10 days each when the autofocus did not work any more when halfpressing down the shutter button. I expect the same to happen with the third one.

What about the new model DSC-H9 ? If you have not eliminted this design flaw, you will be grilled on the internet. I advise to communicate to the few maybe still loyal customer what you have done and what you intend to do with the existing frustrated customers.

A formerly loyal Sony customer

Hans Wyssmann

Tue May 15, 12:13:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Count me among the many victims of the mysterious broken shutter button. I've been on the phone all morning with several reps with Sony who have names like Ronald, Robert, and Eric, but judging by their accents, I'd guess they've never set foot outside of India. In a true demonstration of Murphy's Law, my shutter button broke shortly after the warranty expired, and now the company expects me to pay $177 to get the tiny piece of plastic replaced. Or, of course, I can buy the technical manual and replacement part, and then try to repair it myself. Both are equally unlikely.

In short, I'm screwed and now have a $600 paperweight with the letters DSC-H5 on the side.

Sony, it's not cool to continue to sell items that have proven, consistent design flaws.

Tue Jul 31, 12:16:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Man dont get the H7 the picture quality is rubish. I bought one to replace my H2 when the focus lock stopped working.

Sony stinks.

Mon Aug 13, 01:47:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The focus lock on my second DSC-H2 just gave out. With the comments I've found regarding shutter buttons and focus lock I think I'm in for a lot of grief.
Like the previous entry said don't get the DSC-H7 I tried one recently and the image quality really sucks.

Mon Aug 27, 12:44:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is the first site I checked after my DSC-H1 shutter stopped working at the halfway position (clarification: cannot lock focus, but the fullway down works so may take shots).

As per Murphy's Law, the warranty expired about a week before the problem appeared.

After two weeks, the button has not came back to normal and there was no previous advide ever before.

Fri Sep 07, 10:05:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Tue Oct 09, 04:18:00 PM  
Blogger Waqas said...

Dear Hans Wyssmann,
Have you received any reply from sony regarding the shutter & focus problem? I was very much interested in getting a DSC H2, but now am not so sure...kindly do post any replies from Sony.

Sat Oct 20, 12:55:00 PM  
Blogger twisters said...

I was off on a 2 week trip with my family and the same thing happened to me. I was in Florida on day 2 and asked everyone to get together for a picture and looked down and there was not button to press. I ended up going to the grocery store and bought a picture hanging kit (with small nails), wire cutters, tape and cut a small piece of paper to push down on the cut nail that fit in the hole. Very kludgy but works OK. In general, I am very unhappy with this camera. Don't but it. Regardless of button problem, it often takes forever to take a damn picture.

Wed Oct 24, 05:09:00 PM  
Blogger Waqas said...

thank you all for sharing your experiences...
I have now decided to go for Canon PowerShot Pro Series S5 IS

Fri Oct 26, 09:33:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sony DSC-H1 owner of 2 yrs. Paid $500. Loved the camera until OUT OF THE BLUE, the shutter button popped off (when we were at a wedding that the camera was needed for, of course). Sony says it's out of warranty and will cost at least $180 and no telling when I will get it back. Furious. Bought a nice camera and now this. Given the amt of postings here, it's CLEARLY a problem that they should recall and fix. Annoying sony!!!!

Sun Dec 09, 09:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OH boy! This does not make for good reading! My focus button is still intact but not working! I am anticipating the button to pop off any second now...! I'm off to get this camera back to Sony before the really bad news kicks in.

Fri Jan 04, 09:18:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ok im in the sameboat as all the above shutter button and spring fell off had it for 7 months cant find recite paid 500 for it now target discontinued it i wonder i would love to know how to start a class-action lawsuit for this but not sure how. any help please. this is crazy it should have been a recall but they covered there butts by discont the item.

Fri Jan 11, 08:35:00 PM  
Anonymous charlie said...

The shutter of my DSC-H2 failed to focus when depressed halfway. It was repaired once under warranty in May 2007 at Precision Camera in Enfield, Connecticut.

When the problem recurred in December 2007, I called Sony at 1-888-449-7669 to receive an Event #, then wrote to:

Sony Electronics
Attn: Executive Review Committee
12451 Gateway Blvd.
Fort Myers, FL 33913

I also wrote to Sony executive offices in New York and San Diego, including an excerpt from this blog.

One Sony representative called me and offered free shipping to a repair facility and a 6-month extension on my 1-year Sony warranty, since it was about to expire.

Later a second Sony representative called me to say that a solution to the shutter problem had been developed 3-4 months ago. He said the top of the camera had been redesigned to keep the shutter button from popping off and that the problem with the shutter button not focusing when depressed halfway had also been fixed. He said that Precision Camera had just been informed of the fix. He said that my repair should be done at the Sony repair facility in Laredo, Texas.

I am hoping that the solution that has been described to me will prove to be a permanent fix for the problem.

I hope this helps others on this blog.

I have also posted this comment as comment #153 at:

Sun Jan 13, 06:52:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Charlie - I'm going to try your solution. My shutter button dropped off 1/5/2008, 4 days after the warrenty expired. I was in Guatemala at Tikal wanting good pictures for my website.

Here is a copy of my webchat with Peter at Sony (maybe good for a laugh or consumer education). Quick summery - the chat room is a waste of time unless you have a receipt and are under warrenty (or are willing to spend $181). Peter said "I'm sorry that I cannot assist you in this issue. However, I'm sure that Customer Information Service Center will provide you better assistance in this issue.(" I did try them and didn't have much more success.

Here is my chat with Peter (summary above, read only if you want a chuckle)--

Problem: I started a chat earlier. I just got back from Guatemala and my Sony Camera failed me. On the second day of my trip the button you press to take a picture fell off. How do we solve this one? Thanks Lynn End Session user Lynn Persson has entered room

analyst Jayson_ has entered room

Jayson_> Hi Lynn. Welcome to Sony Online Support. I'm Jayson. Please allow me a moment to review your concern.

Jayson_> Thank you for waiting, Lynn. I'm sorry that the shutter button of the Camera has fell off. I'll be glad to assist you with this.

Jayson_> Lynn, I suggest that you get the repair for the Camera at the Sony Factory Service Center.

Jayson_> Shall I forward the link where you can find a location to get your Sony product repaired, the Sony repair cost, and to initiate the repair?

Lynn> Yes - I hope Sony will stand by its product. I was thinking that the camera is only 11 to 13 months old. I bought it last year right before I headed to Guatemela then. What is your approach with warrenty and customer service? I don't feel I should have to pay for expensive repairs with a 11 to 13 month old camera. It was a major inconvenience for my business and website. Lynn

Jayson_> Lyn, the camera has the 1 year Warranty on the parts and the labour.

Jayson_> If the Camera is under warranty then the repair for the Camera will be free of cost.

Jayson_> Would you like to have their contact information of the service center?

Lynn> OK - I just checked and I bought the camera from COMPUSA on Jan 1, 2007. The shutter button fell off Jan 5, 2008. Is this normal status for Sony cameras?

Jayson_> Lynn, this is one of the rare case as we have a very good review of this Camera.

Lynn> Good. I hope you have similar good reviews of your customer service. Can you check with your supervisor to see if this camera repair can be done under warrently. Thanks!

Jayson_> Lynn, this is due to the mechanical issue that the shutter button has come out.

Jayson_> The Camera has only one year warranty and you need to pay for the service of the Camera.

Lynn> Jason - May I chat with your supervisor. Please also let me know where I can get it repaired and the likely costs. Thanks

Jayson_> Lynn, the supervisor is with me and he is reviewing my chat.

Jayson_> I would like to forward a link to a page where you can get the repair location and the rapair cost.

Jayson_> When you receive the link please click on it to open the page and let me know if you are able to view it.


Jayson_> Are you able to view the page?

Lynn> Yes

Jayson_> aer

Jayson_> Are you able to take it from here or would you like me to assist you with setting up service?

Lynn> I would like to chat with your supervisor directly. Thanks

Jayson_> Sure, Lynn.

Lynn> I just checked the cost is Repair Service Information. The cost to repair this unit under our Flat Rate Program is $181.00, (plus any applicable taxes). Return shipping is included in this price.

Based upon the information you have entered, your unit appears to qualify for the Flat Rate pricing quoted above. Not covered under our Flat Rate pricing is the following:

Units requiring replacement of display devices*
Internal corrosion or moisture damage
Cosmetic parts **
Physical abuse.
Misuse or excessive wear. ***
Units older than seven (7) years from last market date.
Damage resulting from prior service.

Jayson_> Lynn, please wait while I escalate the chat to next level.

Lynn> Glad to do so. Thanks! Lynn

Jayson_> Please wait, while the problem is escalated to another analyst

analyst Peter_ has entered room

Peter_> Hi Lynn, I am the supervisor. Please give me a moment while I go through the previous chat transcript.

analyst Jayson_ has left room

Peter_> Thanks for waiting, Lynn. First of all, I would like to apologize for the difficulties you're experiencing with your Sony Camera. I'm glad to assist you today.

Peter_> While going through your chat session with Jayson, I found that the warranty of your Camera expired on 1st of January and the shutter button went missing on 5th of January. Am I right, Lynn?

Lynn> Yes - it fell off. I have the button and spring, but am not sure those are all the parts involved. I was about to take pictures of Tikal in Guatemala for my web site plus had planned to take pictures of many of my artisans weaving. I had the camera in its bag so was able to retrieve button and spring.

Peter_> Lynn, I didn't received any response. Are we still connected?

Lynn> Yes

Peter_> Okay. Thanks for the information, Lynn.

Peter_> Also, on reviewing your chat session I came to know that you're aware that the flat repair cost of the repairs is $181.

Peter_> However, there are two ways to get the issue with the Camera fixed.

Peter_> 1. Send the Camera to Sony Factory Service Center for repair.

Peter_> 2. You can get fix the Camera by referring the service manual of the Camera and using the required accessories.

Peter_> Are you able to view my messages, Lynn?

Lynn> Yes. I think so???? I can see text

Peter_> Okay. If you're interested in fixing the Camera by yourself, you'll need to purchase the service manual of the Camera as it is not available for download from our support site at this point of time.

Peter_> If you wish to get the Camera repaired at the Sony Factory Service Center, you'll need to ship the Camera there for repair.

Peter_> However, if you contact our Customer Information Service Center before sending the Camera for repair, they can provide you some accommodations on getting the Camera repaired.

Peter_> Regretfully, at this point of time Sony Online Support Team does not have the authorization to provide accommodations for repairs.

Peter_> Would you like to have their contact information, Lynn?

Lynn> Yes.

Peter_> Okay. Lynn, I'll forward you a link where you can view information on how to contact our Customer Information Service Center.

Peter_> When you receive the link please click on it to open the page and let me know if you are able to view it.


Peter_> Let me forward another link where you can view the contact options for Direct Accessories and Parts Center to order the service manual for your Camera, in case you want to fix the Camera by yourself. Let me know when you're there.


Peter_> Are you able to view the pages, Lynn?

Lynn> Yes I am. I will take the next step. I may share this dialogue with my customers on my web when I explain why I don't have the good pictures I had hoped for from my Sony Camera. Lynn

Peter_ > Are you able to view the pages, Lynn?

Lynn > Yes I am. I will take the next step. I may share this dialogue with my customers on my web when I explain why I don't have the good pictures I had hoped for from my Sony Camera. Lynn

Lynn> You can check it out at my web site

Peter_ > As informed earlier, due to lack of the proper resources to help you, I'm currently unable to provide any accommodations to you for getting your Camera repaired.

Peter_ > Is there anything else I could assist you with today, Lynn?

Lynn> No. Wish you could!!! Lynn

Peter_ > Even I feel that, Lynn. I'm sorry that I cannot assist you in this issue. However, I'm sure that Customer Information Service Center will provide you better assistance in this issue.

Peter_ > Good bye and take care.

Peter_ > Thank you for contacting Sony online support today.

Peter_ > Analyst has closed chat and left the room

Thu Jan 24, 03:23:00 PM  
Blogger kh1234567890 said...

If it's any help to anyone, I've posted the Sony DSC-H1 service manual to :

Fri Feb 29, 06:41:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info! I have the Sony DSC W70 and have had it a little over a year and the stinken button fell off over the weekend. Thanks for the picts on the broken button and spring~ I have the spring and the button and they look exactly like the above picture. I am thinking about ordering the part above to replace my broken button. How can I find out if that part will fit my camera? By the way it looks like they raised the price of the button!

Mon Mar 31, 11:54:00 PM  
Blogger Ace Jackalope said...

I wouldn't think the button for a DSC-H2 would fit a DSC W70

Tue Apr 01, 02:46:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks ~ I just ordered part # a1166159a (release assembly) for my DSC-W70 and it cost me $43.03 plus $6.95 shipping. The first lady recommend that I send it in to get fixed. I hope to be able to fix it as easily as you! If I can't I'll take it in to my local Camera Repair Shop with the part.

Tue Apr 01, 10:20:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just wanted to say that I have owned an H1 since 2005 and have not had any problem with it.

I wonder what the actual percentage of failure is for the shutter buttons on these cameras?

But I wonder if it is possible to replace the button with something other than the original Sony part?

Sun Apr 06, 12:29:00 PM  
Blogger Ace Jackalope said...

Most recent "anonymous", I don't know anything about the reliability of the H1; the DSC-H2 is the only Sony I've used. In my experience, its failure rate is 100% as all five of mine have had the button pop off or the focus lock fail. That being said, it is my hunch that there was a production change in the DSC-H2 and that earlier units may be better. My brother has an early production model and, although his focus lock has now failed, his shutter button remains attached.

Mon Apr 07, 02:42:00 AM  
Blogger Ataraxia Now said...

The button on my H-2 has never fallen off, but the autofocus failed early on. The lag time between shutter release and lens reflex is also quite frustrating. I have since resorted to using the camera in CAF mode or manually setting the focal length in order to keep it from turning into an expensive paperweight. I own a P71 that has logged over 10,000 pictures, so I have to say that Sony does sometimes get it right; however, I will be giving Nikon my business when I can justify spending money for a replacement.

- Wishing I Had Bought a D40 in Washington

Tue Apr 29, 10:36:00 PM  
Blogger Retired_and_loving_it_2007 said...

The button popped off unexpectedly on my Sony DSC-H2 camera, just as others have described. When my husband bought the camera for me as a gift, he "thought" that Sony was a dependable brand for digital cameras. Thanks to everyone who has posted comments about this problem. I think I will order the part and try to fix it.

Sat May 03, 06:13:00 PM  
Anonymous Mike in Tuscaloosa said...

Count me in. My button popped off my DSC-H2 yesterday. It was just sitting on my desk when "ping" off it went and the office cat went running after it...ugh I have had the camera 2 years and absolutely no complaints until now.

Tue May 13, 02:15:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My Sony DSC-H2 was a replacement camera from Sony due to Auto-foucus issues with the H1 that I sent in 4 times for repairs. Last week while doing a photo session in Tuscaloosca AL I was trying to take a photo and the noticed that the camera button felt funny .. I kept pressing but no results. Finally my model asked if I was looking for that shiny thing that just flew off my camera. Sure enough, the shutter button had taken the leap on me. I stuck it back in took a few more shots before it quit altogether. I was also having issues with the autofocus on this camera as well. Its a shame that Sony took over Minolta because that was my fallback.


Wed May 28, 08:10:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We have the same problem with DSC-H2. Any way we can have class action law suit against SONY.

Tue Jul 08, 12:37:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, I'm quite unhappy with Sony just now. I like the DSC H-2 but that doesn't help if I can't use it thanks to the fact that there's no longer a shutter button.
I'm not sure I'm willing to pay the $150 for the repair if the issue's just going to come back.
Class Action Law Suit is something that's spooking around in my head aswell...

Mon Jul 28, 11:36:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ditto about the button on my DSC-H2 - fell off while shooting at a wedding reception. Thank God it wasn't during the wedding proper...I'm going to order the part - hope it's not $50 like one of you found.

Tue Jul 29, 12:24:00 PM  
Blogger sridhar said...

Thanks for all.My DSC-H5 issue resolved with all your help.I ordered the ( RELEASE ASSY (420) ), X21083262.I am able to fix it with all your support.

Mon Aug 04, 06:37:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I bought my DSC-H5 in January 2007. In November, I was about to photograph my son when something flew by and hit him. Of course, it was my shutter button. Sony repaired it as it was under warranty and this week as I was driving it flew off while on my counter. Sony should be held responsible for an issue that is definitely a major design flaw. Sony claims that this is not a common problem with this camera but it sure seems to be.

Wed Aug 06, 04:18:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Fri Sep 05, 11:30:00 AM  
Blogger Juanjo said...

Hi EVERYONE! Just to tell all of you that I GET THE SOLUTION! FOREVER! Do you want to know how could it be possible? Go to mi Blog. Infortunatelly is in Spanish but in a few days it will be in English too! I´m working on it.

Sun Sep 21, 09:06:00 PM  
Blogger Juanjo said...

Hi Everyone! just to tell all of you that I GET THE DEFINITIVE SOLUTION TO THOSE DSC-H(1 to 9) SHUTER AND AUTOFOCUS PROBLEMS! FOREVER AND EVER! Do yo wanna know how it has been possible?

Visit my blog:

Infortunatelly is in Spanish but in a few days it will be in English too! (i´m working on that).

Sun Sep 21, 09:55:00 PM  
Blogger Juanjo said...

Hi Everyone! just to tell all of you that I GET THE DEFINITIVE SOLUTION TO THOSE DSC-H(1 to 9)

SHUTER AND AUTOFOCUS PROBLEMS! FOREVER AND EVER! Do you wanna know how it has been possible?

Hola a todos! solo para contar a todos los interesados que YA PROPONGO LA SOLUCION DEFINITIVA


Quiere saber como es esto posible?


Now in English and Español!

Forget about shopping SONY replacement parts, they going to fail soon. The problem is the

quality on them.
Olvidese de comprar las partes originales SONY porque ellas van a fallar también en el mismo

tiempo debido a la mala... malísima calidad de sus componentes.

Nevertheless if you want to throw your money these are the references:
Sinembargo si Usted quiere seguir botando su dinero estos son los números de referencia de las


Shutter Part #: X21083262 $22.14
Autofocus Part #: 147969921 $62.91


fill with the code on the right side (just for U.S).

Thu Oct 02, 02:02:00 PM  
Anonymous Eliz said...

I am SO happy I'm not the only one with this problem! My warrenty is expired, I don't even have the box for this camera! My aunt left it to me when she died- thanks! Ha I'm about to order this button, I have stuff inside the old piece, how exactly am I supposed to get that out? Sony and all other camera repair shops expect me to pay about 200 dollars for this!.. In my opinion, I don't think this camera is worth that much anyways.

Wed Feb 25, 04:36:00 PM  
Blogger maestral said...

Thanks to Juan I fixed my H5, and autofocus works fantastic, eve better than it was repaired in waranty period.
Just a hint: make a new PET "confetti" with office paper hole maker

Sat Mar 28, 09:46:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Juanjo!

I fixed my H5 folowing your's instruction.

One more hint:
make a new "confetti" with Two-Hole Paper Punches. It makes perfectly round sample

Sat Mar 28, 10:03:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just had this happen to me. I have had this camera 2yrs +. I only have 1 month before going to Belize. They told me pretty much the same exact verbiage except there is no part #, today. This is good information. I think I may buy another camera as a back up even if I do get it fixed.

I have bought a lot of Sony products over the years. I always thought they had quality product.

... And one other thing... The guy in the chat room must have been chatting with multiple users as it took them for ever to answer a simple question.

Sun Mar 29, 05:33:00 PM  
Anonymous goodchardonnay said...

I just had the same thing happen in April when we were in Russia. I write a food blog and have been without the camera. I ordered the part from a camera shop thinking it would take a few weeks. I was just now told it may take 12 weeks. 12 weeks! I have to buy a new camera. We are going on vacation to NYC and I can't be without a camera!

Tue May 19, 11:45:00 AM  
Blogger maestral said...

If you are not under waranty...
do as I did. Just folow Juanjo's manual, or take those photos and camera to some tehnician

Wed May 20, 08:43:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From "retired_and_loving_it_2007": I have bought 2 of the buttons. The second one we bought IMMEDIATELY got a piece of cellophane tape on top of it. The focus does not always work for photos, but the video I have taken is still top grade for that size camera.

Wed May 20, 11:24:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hmm. I've had an H2 for about 2 years now with no problems. But I don't use it a lot. I also preferred the picture quality over the H5. So far I'm happy with the camera.

Mon Jul 20, 10:59:00 AM  
Blogger November7 said...

Nice article..... A bit of a pity I only came across it some years later when my own DSC-H2 shutter button popped out in the exact same way... Although, perhaps I should be thankful that my camera lasted for almost 3 years (I got it in Nov 2006 so it's only a few weeks away from it's 3rd year anniversary). The other two older Sony cameras which were obtained 6 and 5 years ago continue working fine though... And after having browsed for the repairing services costs I think I shall rather stick to my working cameras for now....

Tue Oct 20, 04:22:00 AM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

Im glad I found your blog, my sony dsc h7 has been plagued with problems, unfortunatley my warrantee exprired.My shutter button has also broken off, worse yet, the mode dial with "automatic" Manual" video", has always been strangely loose, but now without the dial being touched the menus go crazy and I can barely take a picture because the menus are constantly interrupting and changing my settings. after reading this blog my conclusion is SONY=FAIL

Wed Jan 27, 01:57:00 PM  

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