How to Convert Your Digital Camera for Shooting Infrared

Although the infrared spectrum is not visible to the naked eye it can be captured on a digital camera. This is how to convert your digital camera to infrared light. A screwdriver, a low-cost camera, your smartphone camera, a container for screws, gloves made of latex, and some blue plastic filter will be needed.

Select a Camera

You should not spend too much on a digital camera that you intend to convert. You can either buy a used camera you don’t use often or a second-hand, dirt-cheap model from eBay. Many cheap digital cameras absorb IR very well. Manufacturers install filters to prevent this. This guide will show you how to modify your camera by removing the IR filter. It will need to be replaced with a blue filter. It should not be difficult to locate electronic parts to replace any damage inadvertently.

Get it open

Remove the camera’s case completely. For reference, take photos of the original screws and clips.

Take the Boards Away

Next, remove the PCB boards to access the CCD assembly. Each camera has a unique PCB arrangement. You will need to consult circuit diagrams for each model to ensure you understand what you are doing. During the removal of boards, keep taking photos.

Take out the CCD Assembly

After the PCB boards have been removed, it’s time to take out the CCD assembly. CCD stands to Charge-Coupled device. This is the sensor that converts light into digital pixels. To access the CCD, you might need to remove the LCD display carefully. You must be careful not to damage the ribbon wire connecting the LCD display to the camera.

Locate and Remove the IR Filter

Although the IR spectrum blocking filter is located at a different location in each camera, it is easy to find. The IR spectrum blocking filter is a thin glass pane which emits a blue reflection in the light. The filter is removed and your camera will never go back to its normal state.

Install a New Filter

Now you will need to install a filter to block out visible light and allow the IR spectrum light through to your CCD. If you layer multiple blue congo light filters, they will work together. Although this is a tedious task, it is very easy to do. To avoid fingerprints on your new filters, wear a pair latex gloves. Use the photos taken during disassembly to guide you in assembling your camera. You can start taking amazing infrared photographs immediately if everything went according to plan.

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