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Cold weather photo

 
 
like sci fi
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      12-24-2003
How sensitive to cold are LCD screens. Can they be harmed by cold
and how cold will most digital cameras still funciton. Thanks.
 
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Jim Townsend
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      12-24-2003
like sci fi wrote:

> How sensitive to cold are LCD screens. Can they be harmed by cold
> and how cold will most digital cameras still funciton. Thanks.


I once dropped an LCD watch on my home sidewalk just outside my door. It stayed
out overnight at thirty below zero F. I found it the next day. The display
was faint, but I thawed it out and it worked fine from there after.

I've *heard* of instances where an LCD display has fractured from the cold.
But I've only heard this. I can't quote any real instances.

I had an old Pro90 out on a tripod for 10 minutes at 20 below F in a very
strong wind. The display started having a lot of trouble keeping up with what
the camera was seeing. It got very jerky. Despite that, all the shots I took
came out OK.

I think the major thing you will see when shooting in very cold weather is the
battery going dead prematurely. Cold has a big impact on batteries.

Out of interest, I had my 10D out tonight for about 5 minutes on a tripod at 14
degrees F.. No wind.

It worked just fine.


 
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Kevin McMurtrie
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      12-24-2003
In article <(E-Mail Removed)>,
like sci fi <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> How sensitive to cold are LCD screens. Can they be harmed by cold
> and how cold will most digital cameras still funciton. Thanks.


There's no harm but the liquid gets very thick. It might take several
seconds for the image to change.

As another mentioned, low battery voltage is usually the problem. Bring
two sets and store one in an inside pocket so you always have a warm set
ready.

A bonus is that pixels leak much less. You can take excellent long
exposures at night.
 
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David Barnes
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      12-24-2003
I've used my Fuji MX-2900 down to -26 Celsius with no ill effects other than
reduced battery time. LCD was fine although didn't use it much in those
temps as it drains the battery even more.

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"like sci fi" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> How sensitive to cold are LCD screens. Can they be harmed by cold
> and how cold will most digital cameras still funciton. Thanks.



 
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Shaun Lowe
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      12-24-2003
I think it varies from camera to camera. I've used a Kodak DX3900
at -20C for around four hours. While the lcd & the camera did slow
down, it wasn't as significant as what some have said of their lcd's, ie
several seconds for the image to change or to navigate menus.

Regards,

Shaun Lowe
http://www.pbase.com/shaun

> How sensitive to cold are LCD screens. Can they be harmed by cold
> and how cold will most digital cameras still funciton. Thanks.



 
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like sci fi
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      12-24-2003
Thanks for the replies. I won't throw out my OM-1 yet but I'll give
it a try. Have an extra battery since that is always a problem.
Thanks again.

On Tue, 23 Dec 2003 22:09:22 -0700, like sci fi <(E-Mail Removed)>
wrote:

>How sensitive to cold are LCD screens. Can they be harmed by cold
>and how cold will most digital cameras still funciton. Thanks.


 
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Antti Heiskanen
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      12-25-2003
like sci fi <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message news:<(E-Mail Removed)>. ..
> How sensitive to cold are LCD screens. Can they be harmed by cold
> and how cold will most digital cameras still funciton. Thanks.


Here's my list of top-3 problems with digicams in cold weather:

1) Batteries
- As others have already described, keep a spare battery in warm
inside pocket. When the one in camera dies, swap in a warm one and
place the cold battery in pocket. When the new battery dies in turn,
swap it again and surprise as the old battery has regained most of its
power (naturally this applies only to batteries that die because of
the cold temperature).
If you shoot in freezing temperatures often, you could also buy an
external battery that connects to the camera with a cord (you keep the
battery in inside pocket and the other end of the cord has an
ac-adapter like dummy-battery that goes to the camera).
There are also differences in battery types: rechargeable li-ion
batteries lose their power quickly, non-rechargeable li-ion batteries
withstand cold extremely well. Ni-Cd batteries are the better the
colder it gets, whereas Ni-MH starts to lose power fast.

2) Condensation
- Electronics and water do not mix well. However, that is what happens
when you take a cold camera inside to a warm room: condensation builds
astonishing amounts of moisture inside and outside the camera. You can
avoid this by storing also your camera in the inside pocket and only
take it out for occasional photographs, but if you shoot with DSLR
and/or for prolonged periods, this may not be possible. In that case
the best solution is to wrap the camera in a plastic bag, compress all
air out of the bag, seal it tightly and only then bring the camera
inside. Do not open your camera bag, let alone the plastic bag
containing the camera, until the temperature has normalized (i.e. the
temperature of the camera is near room temperature - the change may
take hours).

3) LCD Screen
- Sluggish LCD screen is annoying, but you can take photos without the
lcd so that is not a great problem. I have heard of some lcd's
cracking in extreme cold, but that is probably very rare as I have
never seen a cracked lcd.

Yesterday we had -20C (-4F) and sometimes the temperature is as low as
-30C (-22F), so taking photos in cold weather is quite usual here. In
addition to the problems mentioned above, there are also others but
those are quite minor (such as the badly placed on/off -switch in
Canon D/SLR bodies: when you breath, warm air starts to build ice on
the switch).

-Antti
 
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Kerry Sanders
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      12-26-2003
>How sensitive to cold are LCD screens. Can they be harmed by cold
>and how cold will most digital cameras still funciton. Thanks.



My wife and I took my 5 year old son to the zoo here in Birmingham last Sunday
night for their Zoolight Safari and laser light show. We were there for about 3
hours. I made several shots during that time with no problems.

It was about 35 degrees F that night.


-----
Kerry Sanders
http://photos.pshack.com/
 
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Roger Halstead
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      12-26-2003
On Fri, 26 Dec 2003 16:15:30 -0600, Kerry Sanders
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>>How sensitive to cold are LCD screens. Can they be harmed by cold
>>and how cold will most digital cameras still funciton. Thanks.

>
>
>My wife and I took my 5 year old son to the zoo here in Birmingham last Sunday
>night for their Zoolight Safari and laser light show. We were there for about 3
>hours. I made several shots during that time with no problems.
>
>It was about 35 degrees F that night.


Night? 35F.... Maybe we'll see it get that nice in another 3 months.
<)

OTOH, I can look at it this way. In around 3 months the weather will
be this good again.

I carry my E20 N around outside in single digit temps. The only
concession I've had to make is carry a spare set of batteries around
in an inside jacket pocket. I usually keep them in the little plastic
snap carriers, or warp a rubber band around them. Li-Ion tend to
discharge rapidly when the temps are in single digits, even faster
when there is a minus sign in front of the digit, but they seem to
revive in my pocket.

I've never had any problem with the LCD screen in cold, although I
rarely use it. OTOH they can be easily damaged on a hot summer day if
left in a closed car. I've seen them turn completely black.
Sometimes they recover and some times they don't. I think it's a case
of just how high a temperature they reached.


Roger Halstead (K8RI & ARRL life member)
(N833R, S# CD-2 Worlds oldest Debonair?)
www.rogerhalstead.com

>
>
>-----
>Kerry Sanders
>http://photos.pshack.com/


 
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Stewy
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      12-27-2003

"Kerry Sanders" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> >How sensitive to cold are LCD screens. Can they be harmed by cold
> >and how cold will most digital cameras still funciton. Thanks.

>
>
> My wife and I took my 5 year old son to the zoo here in Birmingham last

Sunday
> night for their Zoolight Safari and laser light show. We were there for

about 3
> hours. I made several shots during that time with no problems.
>
> It was about 35 degrees F that night.
>


Most electrical equipment is designed to operate between about 0C and 40C.
(32F-110F) with a 5 or 10% leeway. Anything below about -10C and you should
start to worry about battery activity more than screens, also to lubricating
oil will begin to congeal.

 
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