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Sony A7II asks me to set time/zone every time it's off for more than a few hours

Discussion in 'Sony Alpha E-Mount Lenses' started by Hamsong, Feb 17, 2018.

  1. Hamsong

    Hamsong TalkEmount Regular

    44
    Sep 20, 2017
    Minneapolis, MN
    I've done some Google searching and searches of this forum for answers. Many claim that the internal battery needs replacing (my first thought) and others say that removing the battery and keeping camera off will recharge this internal battery. Others claim *neither* of those things work. I have three A7II bodies and only the oldest one is doing this, lending validity to the first theory. Has anyone else had this as an ongoing problem? My camera is no longer under warranty. It's not the end of the world, but it is annoying.

    Thanks in advance for any suggestions.
     
  2. newst

    newst TalkEmount Veteran

    316
    Aug 20, 2014
    Troy, MI
    Steve New
    I have the same problem with my A7II, but in mine it is an intermittent issue, low frequency but annoying when it happens. I remember writing it up when I first noticed it, and getting a few replies from people experiencing the same issue. Nobody had a definitive answer then either.

    I suspect it is a firmware glitch but what do I know? At least it has been no worse than annoying, like the issue where, occasionally, the IBIS will reset itself to 8mm when the camera is off. Neither glitch happens often on my camera and I have never lost any images or data because of them.

    One question, does it ever happen when the main battery has been removed? I can't test that on mine since it occurs so rarely.
     
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  3. Hamsong

    Hamsong TalkEmount Regular

    44
    Sep 20, 2017
    Minneapolis, MN
    Hi- Yes. Sometimes it happens when I come home late from a job and I take the batteries out of all 3 bodies to charge them, but again, it ONLY happens to the same body, the oldest one based on serial number (337XXXX), whereas the two bodies that start with 340XXXX are both fine. I wish Sony would stick with firmware support a little longer like Olympus and Fujifilm...
     
  4. newst

    newst TalkEmount Veteran

    316
    Aug 20, 2014
    Troy, MI
    Steve New
    My camera is a 337XXXX also. Guess Sony fixed the problem for later production but didn't bother to retrofit. It might be a hardware issue then, a loose contact maybe?
     
  5. AlwaysOnAuto

    AlwaysOnAuto TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Feb 17, 2015
    My 338XXXX hasn't done this.
     
  6. WNG

    WNG TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 12, 2014
    Arrid Zone-A, USA
    Will
    One possible work-around to try: Keep the affected body connected to the factory USB charger when the battery is out or when stored in between shoots.
    The body can be powered via USB and the continuous power source should prevent the internal capacitor from discharging. This way the date/time won't be lost.
     
  7. JonathanF2

    JonathanF2 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    859
    Aug 16, 2014
    Los Angeles, USA
    I left the battery out of my A7 II for several weeks and was having the same issue when I used it again. What I did was remove the battery while it was still on, waited 10 seconds and put it back in and turned it off. Now leave the battery in the camera for 24 hours in order to charge the internal battery. That seemed to fix the problem for me at least. Also this is the same method Sony recommends.
     
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  8. firemist

    firemist TalkEmount Veteran

    328
    Dec 4, 2015
    I just ordered a used A7ii so this is valuable information, I'd never heard of this issue before. Thanks!
     
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  9. bdbits

    bdbits TalkEmount All-Pro

    Sep 10, 2015
    Bob
    I had not heard of it before either. By the sound of it maybe it only happens with older models. My serial starts with 340 bought new in early 2017, and I've not experienced it to date.
     
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  10. JonathanF2

    JonathanF2 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    859
    Aug 16, 2014
    Los Angeles, USA
    Nope, it'll affect newer model A7 II bodies. Mine is also a 340xxx model and it suffered from a dead internal battery. Luckily the battery can be charged by leaving the regular battery in the camera for 24 hours.
     
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  11. Hamsong

    Hamsong TalkEmount Regular

    44
    Sep 20, 2017
    Minneapolis, MN
    I've been lucky. It's never happened to my two 340XXXX bodies. Since my original post, it's not happened to my 337XXXX body, so maybe it's going to behave now that I've publicly shamed it! ;-)
     
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  12. firemist

    firemist TalkEmount Veteran

    328
    Dec 4, 2015
    Mine is 339XXXX and not having this issue so far, but...I cannot update the f/w from 3.1 to 4.0. I even went out and purchased a new USB cable made for Sony (the one I received in the box from B&H was obviously not the proper one - it was "Apple white") - but still no luck. Yes I am following Brian Smith's method, and yes I have updated several Sony cameras previously.
     
  13. Hamsong

    Hamsong TalkEmount Regular

    44
    Sep 20, 2017
    Minneapolis, MN
    That's weird and unfortunate. I would recommend calling Sony support or better yet, bring it in to a local camera shop that is a Sony dealer. One of the many reasons I buy locally rather than online is to support my local economy and build a relationship with a local shop. They give me great service and a 6 month warranty on used gear. 80% of my Sony stuff is used, so that helps a lot. Usually a camera shop that sells Sony has one or more people there who know enough that they can find a solution to being stuck at 3.1. All of mine bodies are at 4.0, so I don't know what is missing from the previous firmware.
     
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  14. firemist

    firemist TalkEmount Veteran

    328
    Dec 4, 2015
    Bradley, thanks. TBH it's not a big deal - I'm planning on using the camera 99% with my manual focus CV lenses; f/w 3.10 does permit uncompressed raw files, and I can set the steady shot manually to match each lens' focal length. Not really concerned about improved AF, or compatibility with newer lenses, etc. unless and until I decide to sell the body lol. Then I think I will take it into a local store (there are still 2 left in Dallas Fort Worth area).
     
  15. WNG

    WNG TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 12, 2014
    Arrid Zone-A, USA
    Will
    My new A7ii has fw v3.10 shipped from the factory, and not really rushing to update it either for the same reasons. It will be seeing mostly manual-focus lenses.
    BTW, one of the possible reasons it's not updating could be the battery in the camera. Are you using the factory battery? It's been recommended that a fully charged Sony FW50 should be installed before flashing the firmware. Some aftermarket batteries don't always return the proper reading from its BMI circuitry to the body.
     
  16. firemist

    firemist TalkEmount Veteran

    328
    Dec 4, 2015
    <<Are you using the factory battery? It's been recommended that a fully charged Sony FW50 should be installed before flashing the firmware. Some aftermarket batteries don't always return the proper reading from its BMI circuitry to the body.>>

    Ah Ha! Using a Wasabi battery. I'l try again later today! Thanks!
     
  17. bdbits

    bdbits TalkEmount All-Pro

    Sep 10, 2015
    Bob
    Just throwing this out there... Another thing with the USB cables is that some do not fully implement USB specs, in that they do not have all the connectors wired. You'll especially see this when the cable is sold as a "charging" cable, or a "data" cable. Not sure what Sony actually needs, but I have used my 3rd-party cables to update Sony cameras many times without problems. I believe that is where most people get tripped up into thinking they need the original Sony cable.

    But you said you bought one "for Sony", so probably not relevant.

    Also Sony firmware updates seem to have more problems with this on Mac than Windows boxes. If you are on Mac, maybe you can get someone with Windows to let you try it there.
     
  18. firemist

    firemist TalkEmount Veteran

    328
    Dec 4, 2015
  19. Hamsong

    Hamsong TalkEmount Regular

    44
    Sep 20, 2017
    Minneapolis, MN
    Using the method Jonathan described to "reset" the internal battery, the A7II that was asking for time zone data on turn on has fixed itself!
     
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  20. JonathanF2

    JonathanF2 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    859
    Aug 16, 2014
    Los Angeles, USA
    Glad to hear it worked out, now time to pick up an A7 III! :D 
     
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