Wait! Wait! Don't Throw That Out!
21 Jul 2009
I have had quite a few digital cameras over the last 10 years and have had battery failures, glitches and other issues, but nothing like this.
Sunday evening after a day of shooting with my favorite camera, I decided to pull out one of my cameras for some early evening photography; my Samsung Pro815. I have used this camera for many years and in fact one published image on JPG's Theme: 'Human Impact'. Well, I fire it up, she comes on just like every other time, the displays function; there is a 3.5" rear, viewfinder, and 1.5" waist level display. I switch the setting to Auto and head out the door to my garden and pop off a couple of shots...
I have the setting to display the image on the main screen so I can see what is happening instantly, but something is wrong. The images are all white and lines completely cross the screen and the images are impossible to make out.
I begin to fiddle around with the settings, wondering if I had something wrong...every setting is the same: no matter the exposure time, fNumber, Focal length, Color Space or any other setting; the images all come out the same, except when I come back in the house and snap a shot of a vase in the mirror with very low light. Suddenly the image comes up on the screen and it is visible but very distorted with bleeding colors and shadows where there are none.
My panic sets in, fearing that my camera is toast. I pop off shots all around the house in the low light and suddenly the images begin to really display some very artistic effects; negative-like, ghostly, bleeding color, shadow play, light where it is dark and vice-versa.
I post the first image on JPG to see if others have had this issue and several people comment that the sensor is kaput! I was so upset at first, but after really figuring out what lighting the camera likes to shoot in, it all starts to come together. Low-Light and darkness are what it prefers.
You can see from the results the effects of a damaged sensor, but I would say the sensor is working perfectly, the way I would like to capture the world. I have many other cameras and this one is definitely my NEW 'OLD' PRECIOUS!!
So, if you have a digital camera and the sensor is failing, do not throw it out or have it fixed just yet. Play with it and try different settings and light situations; you may be surprised at what comes out of it. I think it has a mind all its own and I'll keep it and shoot with it as long as it allows me.
JHB - See more images: http://nekophoto.com/gallery/Sensoria.Series