Home Open Account Help 302 users online

Railfan Technology > Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather


Date: 11/02/12 22:13
Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: mojaveflyer

A question for the group: I just bought a second Canon body and I see the manuals for both camera list the usable temperatures at about 104 - 32 degrees (F). Does anyone have any experience shooting in really cold weather? I'm wondering if the camera body had any problems in really cold weather... Thanks!

P.S. I'm shooting with a Canon T3i and a 5D Mark II.



Date: 11/02/12 22:29
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: qnyla

No issues with various Canon DSLRs.






Date: 11/02/12 23:09
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: DoctorThunder

Even my lowly Olympus E Body works just fine at 10 below.



Date: 11/02/12 23:09
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: fbe

Just don't leave the camera outside on a tripod while you are warming inside the vehicle. Bring the camera and lenses into the motel room at night.

Just common sense stuff and all will be well.

Posted from Windows Phone OS 7



Date: 11/03/12 13:15
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: mojaveflyer

Thanks guys! I appreciate your input... Nice shot, by the way!



Date: 11/04/12 11:03
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: robj

You should at least be a little aware of the problem of condensation going from very cold to warm back to a cold environment. It is not a problem until it is and then you say you got this really neat photo by mistake when your lens was all frost or moisture coated. Probably no need to go through all the details of sealed bags etc but a thing I try to remember is to keep my camera under my coat but not next to my body where you will get lots of
moisture buildup. Probably not the best idea to crank up the car heat and then step out into -10 F . You just don't want to get a lot of moisture buildup and extreme temp changes. Also this can be a problem in lot less than extreme temps.

Bob



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/04/12 11:04 by robj.



Date: 11/04/12 13:17
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: wa4umr

Another thing to consider is the battery. You can probably get more life out of a charge if you keep the battery in your shirt pocket until you are ready to use it.

John



Date: 11/04/12 15:15
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: SR_Krause

Honestly, for cold weather photography, I prefer to get the camera chilled down and then keep it chilled. Thermal shock isn't good, neither is cycling between cold and warm. When you get in the car, stuff it in a padded camera bag so it sort of stays cool.

Biggest problem however is front lens element condensation. You get out of your warm car, pop the lens cap off.... And you've got a instant ice fog photo if conditions are right!

Steve Krause
Chillicothe, IL



Date: 11/04/12 19:07
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: CimaScrambler

I had my Canon 20D poop out on me one moonlit night at about -10F at Big Ten Curve. It didn't work until it was completely warmed up the next morning. I tried changing the battery to a warm one I kept in my pocket but it didn't revive it in the field.

Kit Courter
Torrance, CA
LunarLight Photography



Date: 11/04/12 20:00
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: mojaveflyer

Any permanent damage to the camera like the display?



Date: 11/05/12 05:41
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: 2ebright

I have shot many pictures on the North Slope of Alaska in winter with a point and shoot camera. Temps down to 50 below zero or lower. No problems, but I don't keep the camera out for too long at such temps. I keep the camera under my Arctic parka close to my body before use and otherwise keep it inside in a warm room when not in use. I think the plan is to minimize cold exposure time.

Dick
Roosevelt, Utah



Date: 11/05/12 06:09
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: ddavies

"In the old days..." Nikon had an extension cord that you could use to put the battery pack inside your pocket, rather than leave it attached to the camera in the cold.

Cold isn't the only enemy. If it is a hot humid day, and you have been driving around with your AC blasting ... the minute you step out of the car, your lens is fogged. Just try to not have extreme difference, whether summer or winter. I keep my car pretty cold in the winter, since I am already wearing heavy clothing.



Date: 11/05/12 08:46
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: march_hare

I routinely leave my Canon 50D in the car overnight here in upstate NY, and use it to shoot trains on the way to work the next morning. I've been doing this for years, dating way back into the long lost era of Kodachrome.

The main problem with this strategy is condensation in the optical path on clammy, high humidity mornings--generally days in the 25-45 degree range. On truly cold days, the humidity is lower and there's less water vapor available for condensation.

Battery charge life is significantly shortened during cold weather, but you can help this considerably by taking the battery out and putting it in your pants pocket for a few minutes to warm it up. Make sure there are no coins in your pocket when you do this!! A short circuit through a pocket full of dimes will make a very, very uncomfortable electric resistance heater, and I suspect you could damage the battery (and your upper thigh) if you left it there..



Date: 11/05/12 09:09
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: fbe

There was a dscussion here on TO some years ago about using those soft side insulated lunch boxes to surround the camera on a tripod. Insert a handwarmer packet if you like. A few strategic holes or slots cut into the bag will allow easy access or removal. The zippered closure could prevent snow from blowing in.



Date: 11/05/12 12:27
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: NDHolmes

I've been out on some dang cold mornings here in Colorado (I remember one that was around -30F as I was coming over La Veta headed for Alamosa, and warming up to about -15 across the SLV), and can wholeheartedly agree with what others have said about keeping the camera cooled down. The temperature shocks between warm and cold are not good on things, and cause condensation to appear in very odd and inconvenient places in the camera. I do always keep a spare battery in my coat pocket with a chemical handwarmer or two when I'm going to be out for extended periods, and will swap batteries periodically to keep them from getting too cold. Cold batteries are just about worthless for running IS lenses and high frame rate cameras.



Date: 11/05/12 14:26
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: SR_Krause

I'll guess that you had some moisture freeze the shutter in position. Thawing it out melted the ice.

Again, condensation plus cold = Oops!

CimaScrambler Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I had my Canon 20D poop out on me one moonlit
> night at about -10F at Big Ten Curve. It didn't
> work until it was completely warmed up the next
> morning. I tried changing the battery to a warm
> one I kept in my pocket but it didn't revive it in
> the field.

Steve Krause
Chillicothe, IL



Date: 11/21/12 13:01
Re: Shooting Digital Pictures In Cold Weather
Author: Bath_wildcat

I know I shot last year a CSX SD80MAC leading Q512 in Febuary. Dad was along for this chase of a rare locomotive, and IIRC the temp was I think around 25 degrees with a wind chill of about 5 degrees and snow flurries. My Nikon D3000 was literally flawless shoooting this monstor. Attached is the pic of CSX 4600. Yes it was cold, very cold.




[ Search ] [ Start a New Thread ] [ Back to Thread List ] [ <Newer ] [ Older> ] 
Page created in 0.1062 seconds