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Can an eclipse damage a camera?
Absolutely yes, but you have to know why, and how you can photograph it safely without ruining your camera. Here’s how…
When you take a photo with a DSLR camera you are seeing a reflected image produced by the light travelling down the lens, on to the mirror and then through the pentaprism and then on to your eye.
In the case of a mirrorless type camera, there is no pentaprism present so the image is being taken directly from the sensor and being displayed on the LCD mounted on the inside of the viewfinder (Hence the name EVF – Electronic Viewfinder)
Now that we know the difference, it’s important to understand when the actual damage can take place. The irreparable damage occurs when the light hits the sensor for long enough for it to smoulder and melt it.
Depending on the focal length of the lens, and it’s aperture, this time will vary. If it is only a short time (thousandths of a second) then the damage would be minimal to none. However, if you decided to use the video feature of your camera with an unfiltered lens pointed directly at the sun, then you would expect to do some damage very quickly.
Damage can be done to both a DSLR and a Mirrorless type camera if care is not taken to significantly reduce the amount of light being pulled through the lens.– Brad (dslrad.com)
OK, so now you know that if you don’t take the right precautions, you can do some serious damage to your camera gear, and if you’re using a DSLR camera, your eyes are in serious danger too.
What you need is a quality filter to significantly cut down the amount of light entering your camera and thereby remove the danger. Check out our favorite product below, and make sure you’re prepared!