Choosing a camera
When you are choosing a camera for digital infrared photography, there are a number of important factors – including IR sensitivity – to consider. This chapter section should help you understand more of what you should consider when purchasing a digital camera for IR photography.
Depending on a number of factors, some cameras are more sensitive to infrared than others – this is mostly due to the internal hot mirror filter that blocks IR light from reaching the sensor. Obviously, for infrared photography, it is important to have a camera that is sensitive to infrared.
For maximum sensitivity, the camera should have no hot mirror filter. For this reason we highly recommend that you have your camera modified to infrared, more on this later.
How to test
A simple, old school way to test if your camera is capable of capturing light in the infrared range of the electromagnetic spectrum is by using a TV remote or another infrared source. Point the infrared light source at your camera and take a picture, or look at the preview LCD (if your camera has live view).
If you can see the beam of infrared light, your camera’s hot mirror filter doesn’t fully block IR light and some makes it through to the sensor. This means your stock digital camera is capable of capturing near infrared light, unmodified but the exposures may be quite long.