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Can the laser show my local bar band uses damage my Canon 5d3 sensor? Any new data?

FrankR
Contributor

Can the laser show used by my local bar band really destroy the sensor in my Canon 5D3?  I did a web search and found lots of references to a case about a 5D2 a few years ago, but there's been nothing since.  Was that a fluke or do I really risk my cameras shooting a bar band for free?  And if so. . .what does a new sensor cost?

 

For anyone in the forum who shoots bands with laser shows. . .what I've read says you can be safe if you work it out with the guy who programs the show, and stand in some designated safe zone where the laser will not go.  Sounds scary to me.

 

Here's a pic; they're  a Judas Priest tribute band in San Diego, Hellbent.  Great music, great show.  Camera settings were f/2.8, 1/160th, 6400 ISO with a 24-70 or 70-200 (I used both and forget which this was).  You can see the lasers were coming dangerously close to me.

 

 

MSBenefit-1215.jpg

16 REPLIES 16

Skirball
Authority

Nice photo.

 

Safe, legal answer: yes, it could hurt the sensor.

 

Realistic answer: anywhere they let you stand presumably doesn't have enough laser exposure to hurt your eyes, chances are your camera will be fine.

Stephen
Moderator
Moderator

Hi everyone!

While lasers are regulated in the US, we recommend using caution as there could be a possibility of them causing damage to your camera's sensor.

Thanks--any idea what the cost would be, to replace the sensor?

"Thanks--any idea what the cost would be, to replace the sensor?"


I don't think you really want to know! FF sensors are very expensive. But to further answer your original question, I worked with industrial lasers for many years. There is not only danger from direct contact by the beam but all lasers emit radiation. In fact laser safety glasses have side shields to protect from this radiation being bounced off walls or some other surface.

Maybe it is not sufficient to damage your 5D Mk III but it can damage your eyes and than you won't need your 5D Mk III.

Lasers are not toys and probably should not be treated as such. I know the laser shows are way cool but caution is in order.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!


@ebiggs1 wrote:
But to further answer your original question, I worked with industrial lasers for many years. There is not only danger from direct contact by the beam but all lasers emit radiation. In fact laser safety glasses have side shields to protect from this radiation being bounced off walls or some other surface.

Maybe it is not sufficient to damage your 5D Mk III but it can damage your eyes and than you won't need your 5D Mk III.

Lasers are not toys and probably should not be treated as such. I know the laser shows are way cool but caution is in order.


Are you talking about scatter?  You realize that laser light, inherently, is radiation, right?  It's what the "R" stands for in LASER.  You realize that visible light is radiation?

No, I actually mean "radiation".  Industrial lasers can be so powerful that even the defused radition from a reflective surface can be hazardous to the eye. It is not something to mess with as it can happen very quickly and the individual not even realize it until too late. There is no such thing as a perfect laser beam. Now you may want to not believe me, you can go with what you belive to be so.  You are certainly free to take the chance. The choice is yours.

A little studying up on lasers may change your mind.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!

Thanks, guys--I sure appreciate the input.  I will confess I only wanted the price to scare the band--as in, I'll do this if you'll indemnify my loss which could be up to $XXXX. 

 

I think I'll leave the question open a while, hoping for news of anyone who's actually incurred damage in the last year or so.  I did a google search, of course, and mostly found a single incident of a Mk II being damaged in about '08.  There was also an older story of an expensive pro videocam being ruined.  You know how those things get passed on and on; everyone loves a scare story and hey, it IS **bleep** scary so it's worth repeating.  But I've been wondering why there's nothing more recent.  Has something changed?  Where those flukes? 

I am going to repeat this just because I know the potential for irreversible eye damage.

"It is not something to mess with as it can happen very quickly and the individual not even realize it until too late."

When you are getting defused laser light, it is not readily apparent.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!

The thing is nobody stupid enough to try it after 08. Maybe someday the guys from DigitalRev will test it but I don't want to test on mine for sure.

I don't know the cost, but the 5DMII sensor (party only) is selling around $1000. I think the 5DM3 will cost more and labor + Canon mark up, it will cost around the price of Refurbished 5DM3 roughly $2500. Just my guess, but I think it will be around that price.

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