Introduction: Infrared Camera Mod (Canon A810)

Picture of Infrared Camera Mod (Canon A810)

The camera used here is the Canon Powershot A810. Many similar point-and-shoot cameras will use the same basic process as described in this tutorial.

An "infrablue" filter can be purchased from the Public Lab website for infrared photography.

This particular instance of the mod was used for a project by students of Georgia Tech's Master's in Digital Media Program.

Step 1:

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These screws are very tiny, and you will most likely lose one. As you remove screws, put them in a row on a roll of tape to both keep them from escaping and help you remember their order during reassembly.

Step 2:

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With all screws in this project, take care not to strip them. Press firmly directly down on the screw with the screwdriver.

Step 3:

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If the casing halves are difficult to separate, slide a small blade screwdriver between the edges and run it along the periphery of the camera. The casing material is not very sturdy, so take care not to damage the edges.

Step 6:

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Use a blade screwdriver to lift the membrane off the posts a little bit at a time. Tearing the membrane or its connection will render camera buttons useless. Some cameras will require you to detach the membrane cable in order to move it. If this is the case, gently pull the cable directly from the port. It can be inserted again in reassembly.

Unscrew and lift off the small plate beneath,

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The screen should lift off the large plate and flip to the side. Make sure it is not putting too much strain on the connecting flex cable.

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Work the plate back and forth until it comes free.

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Manufacturers will sometimes put glue over the screws holding the sensor down. You can scrape this away by pushing at it with the edge of a blade screwdriver.

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Work the blade screwdriver around the edge of the sensor plate until it can be lifted away and flipped to the right.

Do NOT touch the sensor. Touching the sensor will result in decreased image quality.

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Step 12:

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Turn the camera over and shake or gently tap on it until the IR blocker falls out. The IR blocker will most likely not be usable after removal.

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You now have an IR blocker-free camera. You can place an "infrablue" filter over the outside of the lens for infrared photography.

Is using for infrared photography, make sure to white balance using the camera's settings.


Mjtrinihobby (author)2015-05-19

interesting article but you cannot modify a visible spectrum camera to "see" infrared. Its simply not possible. You cannot make a microbolometer from any visual camera.

jim.valenza.39 (author)2014-10-26

Great tutorial! One question, My kit came with 2 different blue filters. I do not see any blue filter installation in your directions. Am I missing something???

camera dude (author)2014-05-28

Hey tisBeth,
great tutorial, but you really should mention the following: By removing the hot-mirror without replacing it with a glass of the same thickness, you won't be able to focus to infinity any longer.

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