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The Canon PowerShot A4000 IS is a digital camera offering the user 8x zoom, a 28mm wide-angle lens and a 16 megapixel image sensor. This camera can be directly linked to your computer to upload images and HD video.

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All pics, have a dark spot in their left central area

This Canon Powershot A4000IS camera is virtually new. This problem was not manifest when I first got the camera. I believe the dark spot in the pictures may be caused by a bit of dust on the sensor or its protective glass. It is visible in the displayed image also. The spot is visible on the display before taking a picture, and does not move during "optical" zoom. It will move off the display during digital zooming only. (How) can I open the camera far enough to clean away the problem?

Since this an almost new camera, (less than 100 shots thru it and it has not been used in any dusty/sandy locales), this could be a common problem with this model/series affecting many users.

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The camera has good reviews. Has it been exposed to some form of liquid?

No moisture that we know of unless it was condensation, doubtful of that though it could be. No signs of moisture on exterior, nor on lens or in battery/memory card compartment.

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Grady, to get to your lens assembly as well as the ribbon cable with the CMOS sensor attached to the back of the lens, follow this guide first. Then proceed with the main frame removal. Lay the camera on the front and remove the two screws holding the main frame to the plastic battery housing Red Arrows.

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There are two small Phillips screws holding the lens assembly to the metal camera frame (Blue Arrows.) These are tightly threaded into the plastic lens housing back plate. Make sure that you use a #0 Phillips screwdriver and constant pressure while you are unscrewing them to prevent stripping out the head. The screw holding the flash unit (Green Arrow) can be removed if you are replacing the unit, otherwise the flash unit can remain attached to the main frame and removed along with the frame. Slide the main frame to the left to get the drive motor out from under the flash unit and then lift it out of the way.

Pry the ribbon cable retainer clamps up from the lens controller cable

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Red Arrow and the CCD controller cable Blue Arrow. Slide out the cables to remove the lens assembly. You can now proceed to loosen the ribbon cables from the back of the lens and take a look at the sensor. For a complete work on your lens, take a look at this video. These instructions are from An Illustrated Guide to Help You Repair Your PowerShot® A4000 James W. Pasek.

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If the camera is virtually new, you best bet is surely to get a warranty repair or replacement. It seems unlikely that any dust could have got onto the sensor.

If for any reason warranty is not available, then take an exposure of a white sheet of paper at maximum resolution, Fine compression and no digital zoom. Examine it on your computer at full size. Does the spot have any discernible shape indicating what it might be? Even at Fine compression its image may be affected by compression artefacts causing a halo effect. Using the Canon Hack Dev Kit (Google it) you can take a raw exposure with no compression. A dead pixel could be a possibility - it might appear light on an exposure in complete darkness.

If you go for removal of the sensor to clean it, be aware that making it worse is much easier than making it better.

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