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The Yeti

Cold weather and cameras

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Do you need any special lens or anything when taking pics in cold weather? Any tips or tricks for cold weather photography? Thanks for any replies

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No special lenses or equipment are needed for cold weather. There are three issues: Battery life, lens fogging, sensor fogging.

Of the three, sensor fogging is the worst. If there are specks of dust on the sensor, bringing a cold camera into a warm house/vehicle without allowing it to cool down slowly will cause condensation to form on the sensor, and the dust can become embedded. If that happens, it's VERY difficult to clean off, and you may be stuck cloning out little round circles in pp forever after.

Lens fogging happens the same way, but just means your lens is useless until it defogs.

Neither problem happens when you take a warm camera into the cold, only vice versa.

Solution to both problems: Allow your camera to warm slowly when you bring it inside, and when driving and shooting in the winter, keep your vehicle cold so you don't get fogging. When bringing a cold camera indoors or into a heated vehicle when you're done shooting for the day, pull the memory card and put it in its case and into your pocket. Then put the camera back into your camera bag and zip it up, bringing in the whole camera bag and leaving it alone for an hour or two. I have a camera backpack that's padded, which serves as insulation and slows down the warming process. By pulling the memory cards BEFORE entering the warm place, you can allow your camera to warm slowly but begin downloading images immediately, without waiting, by using a $15 card reader.

On batteries, I have the optional battery grip for both my digital bodies, so I'm shooting two batteries at once in each body, and I have a total of four sets of two each for spares. When my batteries in the camera read half gone, I pull them, stick them in a pocket close to my body, and pull fresh batteries from a different pocket close to my body. I rarely have to switch batteries more than once on a cold day. I help keep the batteries in the camera a bit warmer by leaving my coat unzipped and keeping the camera close to my chest and slightly inside the coat, so the lens sticks out but the body does not. The keeps the body cool but not really cold, and helps keep the batteries warmer.

I've shot to -30 in winter using these methods, and they work.

Hope this helps. grin.gif

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In addition to the good advice above, I use the chemical hand warmers we all use deer hunting, etc. I put one in each glove and when gripping the camera it does a great job keeping batteries warm.

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