The Nikon 9000ED is a dedicated Film scanner and was introduced in (2004) implementing its ability to scan at a resolution of 4000 dpi as well as now supporting 16bit compared to the 8000 which was 14 bit.
like the Minolta Dimage scanners, these were the only film scanners that, due to a special version of Digital ICE, were able to scan Kodachrome film reliably both dust and scratch free.
The Nikon 9000ED was discontinued in 2010 and to this day it is regarded as the crème de la crème when it comes to 35mm and Medium Format film scanners for use in the home and has a small footprint.
The Dying Nikon 9000ED
I personally do not own a Nikon 9000ED but a friend of mine, Martin Henson has owned one for about 5 years which he purchased used from eBay. The issue started a few weeks ago whereby the scanner would not turn on and then it would.
Pressing the on/off button several times sometimes brought the scanner back to life and would stay on for the full duration it was being used for. One interesting phenomenon was that after it had cooled down, getting it to switch on again was becoming more annoying.
Some online research revealed that the Nikon 9000ED did suffer from two component failures both of which gave the symptoms Martin was experiencing.
One of the components to fail was the actual on/off switch and the other was a power IC for quasi-resonant type switching power supplies.
The On/Off Switch
This seemed to be the most likely cause judging by the fact that pressing it in several times brought the scanner back to life. The switch is an ALPS SDL1P-D made in Japan.
After some digging around online, we managed locate an ALPS SDL1P-A which looked to be very similar apart from the fact that the ALPS SDL1P-A was intended to be mounted via two small screws through a fixing plate whereas the ALPS SDL1P-D was held in position directly on the PCB via two metal lugs soldered directly to the board.
Martin received the switch and through the power of Skype screen sharing I watched him attempt to replace it. It was decided that fitting the original switch cover onto the new switch was a logical idea but boy was this a bad move :-).
After Martin removed the cover from the new switch, it collapsed into several bits, tiny springs, metal objects now scattered all over the work-bench. The air was blue and a few chosen words could be heard echoing across the Skype air waves. EEEE Deary me I said, what have you done.
For the next hour or so, all I could see was Martin crouched over the work-bench, torch in one hand and tweezers in the other trying to reassemble this pile of bits. I have to hand it to him though, eventually he did managed to piece it all together again. Now it was time to solder the switch onto the PCB.
This was the first time Martin had done any intricate soldering. Watching him solder the switch back onto the PCB was painful, the closer he got the soldering iron to the PCB, the more shaky his hands became. He finally got the switch back in position but guess what, the fault was still there.
Having changed the switch with no improvement, and reading more from the data sheet of the power IC, it was decided that this was probably going to be the culprit.
As it turns out, this particular IC is used widely in TV switch mode power supplies so unlike the on/off switch, sourcing it was much easier. Martin was not that happy with the way in which the switch had been re-assembled so he decided to order a replacement along side the power IC.
From his previous experience with intricate soldering and shaking hands, we decided that I would undertake the task. This type of soldering is something I have done for many years in my previous electronic employment.
The rest of the power supply was inspected for dry joints and then everything was put back together ready for testing.
The scanner fired up first time and fully completed its diagnostic tests. As I turned towards Martin, he was grinning just like a “Cheshire Cat” as the thought of probably having to buy another used scanner was painful to say the least.
The scanner is now back in Martin’s office and the last I heard, was that he was buried deep inside his 35mm and medium format film negative binders extracting negatives to scan.