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Author Topic: Camera and Lens coming from 20 degrees outside to 70 degrees inside  (Read 1777 times)

Northstar

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I live in the north where it's regularly 20 degrees (-7 celsius) this time of year, and I'm regularly moving my gear from outside to inside. 

I've seen many questions on how to avoid condensation / damage to your gear when doing this, so I did a little experiment last night.  My gear sat in my car all night(12 hours) at 20 degrees.  I brought it in this morning and left it in my camera bag, which was zipped up tight:  (bag - Kata bug) (interior temp about 70)

1. checked on it 5 minutes later - no visible condensation - gear still very cold when touched
2. 20 minutes later - no vis condensation - gear still very cold to the touch
3. hour later - no vis cond. - slightly less cold to the touch but still noticeably cold
4. two hours later - no vis cond. - slightly less cold, but still cold
5. three hours later - still no condensation - slightly less cold, but still cold

After three hours I took the gear out of the bag and I transferred my files to Aperture...all is good….gear is still slightly cool.   I was amazed that the gear was still so cool after being indoors for 3 hours, I had never noticed this before! 

I should add that it's fairly low humidity inside my house…and I keep two 5gram silica gel packs in my bag at all times to encourage a dry environment.  I put new packs in once a week - and usually leave a few of the old ones in the bag so there's usually 5-6 in the bag at all times.

I think this slow warm-up method is a good way to prevent damage.   Leave the gear in your zipped tight camera bag and just remove your memory card for transfer to your computer.

I've seen other good advice from other members on this topic, but this is just my contribution/experience.  I haven't had any problems from doing it this way.  I thought some of you other cold weather shooters would find this little experiment of interest.

Thanks, Northstar



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Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: Camera and Lens coming from 20 degrees outside to 70 degrees inside
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2013, 05:29:29 PM »
It definitely depends on the humidity in your house.  In any event, the issue to be of concern is taking a camera with warm moist air inside it into extreme cold, usually at 0 F or lower.  Condensation inside a camera can cause issues, but usually doesn't. 
 
If moisture condenses on the exterior of a cold camera after bringing it inside, just wipe it off.  Better yet, let it warm up slowly as you did, and use the silica gel packs.

Marsu42

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Re: Camera and Lens coming from 20 degrees outside to 70 degrees inside
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2013, 04:18:05 AM »
I live in the north where it's regularly 20 degrees (-7 celsius) this time of year, and I'm regularly moving my gear from outside to inside.

Is it really necessary to take special precautions with this temperature difference?

I'm living "semi-north" :-o but usually it's some months well below zero, even up to regular -10 celsius... and I admit that when going back into 20 celsius inside I just remove my sd card and then put my camera inside the bag, it's usually additionally wrapped with towels because I'm transporting it by bike. This lets the camera warm up slowly in the next hours... is this method careless?

The humidity inside my flat is "normal" I guess unless I happen to take a shower or cook :-) ... but much much lower than for example when going from outside to a tropical expo in the zoo, *that's* when I use a plastic bag.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2013, 04:23:06 AM by Marsu42 »

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Re: Camera and Lens coming from 20 degrees outside to 70 degrees inside
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2013, 04:18:05 AM »