New toys make for new inspiration. A few days ago I got a new camera, an Olympus TG1 and immediately took it into the bathtub to see how it would do underwater. As far as I can see it is a great camera and I’m not going to write a review about it. You can find those else where. Buying a new camera gave me the courage to take my previous DSC-F707 apart. The flash is broken and I wanted to fix that. In order to get to all the parts of the flash unit I would have to take the whole thing too far apart. That was not a good idea so no flash. So maybe an external flash would work. Are there schematics for that? And seaching over internet I found a page about IR photography and that the F707 is the perfect camera for that. With the only limitation that Sony had limmited the shutter speed in order to limit the IR photography modes to night time. Hey that is not fair.
So I was taking a look at the innerts of the camera anyway so why not find a way to get this mode working during the day. The IC in the schematic that does the shutter and IR filter control is LB1940. But the thing is so small that it would probably destroy the camera if I would solder on it. Also the tracks on the pcb are unreachable. So no bananas. Then just before giving up and closing the camera I thought, lets give the solenoid a try wit an external magnet. And that worked!!
So after closing the case it did not work with the small magnet I was using. So with a small stack of neodenuim magnets it worked.
The greenish hue of the picture during night mode is a software setting. When the night node switch is set and the mode is switched back to normal with a magnet, the greenish hue stays. So that suggests that this is only to make it more look like an old nightscope. Those where green because of the fluoricent screen athe the end of the photonmultiplyer.
If you place one magnet on the spot the solenoid does not have enough power to switch the filter. So you can play around with the night shot switch.
This is the placement of the magnet. One magnet is enough to ‘freeze’ the solenoid in one position.
This is a shot in IR mode with a magnet. You see the red coloring.
This is a shot in night mode in the normal way.
In a few days I will make some shots outside in IR mode. But first I have to buy an IR filter.
btw this is the article that inspired me to start lookin for ways to make IR photo’s