Cameras and cold weather

Discussion in 'Photography' started by Treegeek, Nov 23, 2010.

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  1. The icy snap around the corner will no doubt provide some cracking opportunities for some top shots -but what precautions should I take when using my camera in freezing conditions?
    I have a canon 500D and use a sigma 150 - 500mm lens for wildlife photography. My main concern is taking it from a warm house out into freezing temperatures and vice versa. My glasses always steam up, so I'm guessing the camera and lenses will do the same? I don't feel comfortable with the insides of them getting condensation build up!

    Any advice, or am I worrying unduly??
  2. Try not making it a sudden change in temprature, for example if driving lower the temp in the car.
  3. I'd not worry i've never had any problems.
  4. Is that an adder ? nice photo ...... all I do is leave the camera in its bag in the outside hallway for an hr or so ..... its not realy heated so it gives the camera chance to cool down .... to be honest I've just picked up the camera and walked outside in freezing conditions with no problems .... I also have a cannon SLR but use a cannon lenses ... one thing I find is that below -15 or so battery life seems reduced .... at -30 in Canada a few years ago my little cannon Ixus was not at all happy... resorted to keeping it under my jacket ... found it to be a fantastic little camera for skiing and mountain pics though.
  5. As Jarrod said, I've never had many issues in this country, viewfinder/pentaprism mist up a bit, but no problems.

    Grimbo's advise is sound as well, a padded camera bag adjusts the step down in temp well, remove lens, as well.

    Batteries really don't like cold, they rapidly drop charge, top end stuff(camera's), have the ability to connect to an external power source by cable, so the battery pack can be kept warm or fitted with cold weather cells.

    Don't go mad with the special effects/filters, every ****** has done the sky tobacco grad on a snow scene.
  6. get your camera out in the open is fine. However never change your lens out in the cold. carry spare batteries and put them in a inside pocket of your jacket this will keep them warm. On older cameras the lcd display top right by the shutter can sometimes not work. This is due to the extreme cold.

    Another big tip is the self heating pads for sports/arthititis injuries with the self adhesive pad, stick one of them on the battery pack makes it last longer.

    In your camera bag, i put a couple of packets of dessicant in (the type you find in trainer boxes). The warm fug of your car can cause some condensation. This will help.

    A cotton wool bud with a tiny drop of toothpaste (and I mean tiny) coating the viewfinder will prevent it fogging up if you accidentally breathe into it. Cameras have come a long way especially the canon you shouldnt have too much trouble.

    Best time of day is dawn and dusk for shots, bit patronising let someone know where you are, also in your car for example in yorkshire dales if you leave it on the side of the road in deep snow you may end up with some do gooder trying to find you. Leave your mobile number on a card in the window. It happened to a friend of mine last year, the police thought he had broken down and gone on foot and started looking for him.

    Winter is awesome for photography, be safe and show us your pics when you get back.
  7. jim24

    jim24 Book Reviewer

    You do know toothpaste is abrasive, no way put it near any optic, only times I have ever had a problem is when its really cold and I mean -20 or so in the Himalayas,

    last year

    Attached Files:

  8. you done the Himlayas, awesome, for the toothpaste i meant really tiny, and on the viewfinder only. Never had any probs with that.

    Himlayas is one of my big five places,

    Las Vegas
    Iceland (the black beach)
    South Georgia
    Hong kong

    I am going to do them all,
  9. jim24

    jim24 Book Reviewer

    My only regret was I did not have a digital Camera at that time, because now the photographs I'm taking are on a different planet to the old days of 35mm,even my HTC Wildfire phone can do some pretty nifty things that my old Pentax, and Fuji could never do

    my dogs eye taken 2 minutes ago

    Attached Files:

  10. your dog looks quite scary, the kind of view your postman gets when looking through the letter box!, the colours look good and even at 72 dpi it looks sharp, though nearly all camera phones have a sharpening algorithmn in built,

    I actually miss shooting on film, I think the photographers that were brought up on film make better digital photographers. Because we have are not lazy and know how to shoot economically.
  11. jim24

    jim24 Book Reviewer

    He looks like a hippy really

    Attached Files:

  12. jim24

    jim24 Book Reviewer

    I only got this camera phone yesterday and have been playing with it all day, must admit I'm very impressed
  13. I am off to bed now, so to cheer you up, whats yellow and red and looks good on a hippy?


  14. I work mainly at night when taking photographs but on one occasion the batteries in my camera actually froze. I tend to leave the lenses in a bag and the camera for about 40 minutes before I use them. This way there will be little distortion on the image. I've never had a problem with damaging the camera or lenses other than just steaming up.
  15. Never had problems here in pomland (well, ok, Naarfolk) with condensation on my 400D. I'll be trying with my new 500D over the weekend. Batteries will last a little less time, and don't change lenses out in the open. Advice already given by others.