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Why doesn't my camera work for vertical shots?

Guy taking a picture while girlfriend looks on with concern.

(Photo: Flickr/Garry Knight)

Why doesn't my camera work for vertical shots?

August 21, 2013

Q: I have a Coolpix S8200. Sometimes, when composing a shot, the screen is fine when horizontal but goes black when I turn it to vertical. This has only recently started, and I've had the camera for about a year. Any thoughts?

A: Check the battery compartment, as to whether it has loose connections in it that might be causing battery power to fail in that vertical position -- I doubt that is it, but it just might be, and is something to check on.

Otherwise the question is, have you treated your camera well? You have if the answer to the following is "no" in every case:

- Has the camera been dropped or otherwise subjected to mechanical shock(s) in its lifetime?
- Has the camera been operated in or subjected to, temperatures below 32 degrees F (freezing point) or above about 100 degrees F?
- Has it ever been subjected to a humidity higher than 85%?
- Has the camera been operated in a gritty or sandy environment, such as a beach, a seaside, a construction site, or the like?

If it is actually less than a 365-day year since you bought it, and if you have treated the camera well, then its warranty still applies. You should get it sent in for servicing within warranty at once, before that 365-day year expires: This page for Nikon USA includes warranty-covered service/repair also, by the way.

To make sure to contact Nikon USA about warranty coverage and a repair claim for free servicing, you can call 1-800-NIKON US (1-800-645-6687) 8AM-12AM EST, 7 days a week.

I think what you have is a case of loose connection or connections inside the camera, to the big screen. If it is position-dependent -- e.g. stress enough put on the connection to make it fail only in certain positions -- then it needs repairing before it gets any worse, I would say -- or before the camera is damaged to a greater degree by irregular broken connections etc.

-- Answer from Russell H., consumer electronics expert on JustAnswer.

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