View Full Version : digital cameras ruined by the cold

07-29-2007, 05:01 PM
So, I'm don't have much technical knowledge when it comes to cameras especially of the digital variety, so any help you guys can offer would be greatly apprecaited.

I have (had?) a 3.2 mp Canon Power Shot A70 circa 2003. It's journeyed out for some ice climbing photo shoots the last two ice seasons. I never had any problems with it until then. After the first season of 2-3 days out in the cold, I noticed that when I would use it there would be horizontal line blurring the picture across the LCD and the picture would subsequently show up like that in replay. My fiance claims that through some random button pushing he was able to make the problem go away. Then it spent another couple of days out in the cold during ice season this year. I went to use it recently and the LCD display was completely messed up with bands of horizontal lines but this time nothing seemed to fix it. We have sort of resigned ourselves to this camera being dead. I know it's probably time for it anyway, but for future reference, if we were to get a new camera, is there anything I should know about digital cameras in the cold? Which batteries are best? Can the cold damage the circuitry and whatnot? If so, is there anything that can be done to prevent that?

Thanks for your help in advance!

07-29-2007, 06:23 PM
Does the line show up when you print or download the photo's???
I had a photocromatic car mirror that the same line thing happened to and it's shot. My point.....if you can view the pics in their normal state.....then that would only be a "cosmetic" hardware problem.....a blem if you will.

08-02-2007, 04:47 AM
Hi climbingbetty,

I think that the problem is just the LCD (the display). I do not think that the CCD array is damaged. The CCD is the key component in the camera as it contains the sensors array that actually take the picture. I know that LCDs are more susceptible to damage by exposure to extreme temperatures; that's why some of them go bad (black) when exposed to direct sun light/high temperature (example, leaving them on the car's dash). CCDs are tougher and they are supposed to handle temperature changes better.

Do the test suggested: if the downloaded photos are fine, the CCD is OK and only the LCD is damaged. That means that the camera still works OK, only the display is bad.

Hope this helps.

08-02-2007, 05:09 AM
If antonio is correct...

An LCD costs about $100 to be fixed, however based on the age of your camera and it's features you would be better off finding a new camera for the $100...

08-02-2007, 06:20 AM
Antonio is right. Cameras can handle the cold pretty well - lcds cannot - ever have a cell phone that had the screen seem a little slow after a day of leaving it in your car while you're out climbing/skiing?

The only thing not good for your camera is moisture. So if you're doing heavy winter activities don't keep it next to your body and you'll fill it with your sweat and at the least will fog up your lens. Find the happy medium in your layers between not too cold (for your batteries sake) and not too warm (to not fog up your lens).

Batteries on the other hand don't like the cold.
Lithium Ion are the best in the cold - non-rechargeable
NiMH are the best rechargeables in the cold.