why looking at welding is very dangerous for your eyes but a camera can film it just fine.

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Often on TV or YouTube when I watch videos where someone welds something the light produced by the welder, while bright, doesn’t even seem to overwhelm the camera. The point is bright, but the surrounding area is still visible by the viewer.

On the other hand it is very dangerous to look at welding as a bystander because it can very much blind you.

So, what’s up with the light sensors on camera’s? Is it not possible for them to burn out? Especially the large sensors of professional cameras should be quite sensitive to a bright light like that right? Or are there special thingamajigs that prevent that?

In: Technology

6 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

Welding produces UV light, that causes sunburns in your eyes. Most cameras have UV filters, so that it doesn’t even reach the sensor / film. You can test your camera, point a tv remote control at it and press a button. If you can see the end if the remote turn white, your camera doesn’t have UV filter.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Welding creates a bright ultraviolet (UV) light. The cells in our eyes are especially susceptible to damage from strong UV light because they are living cells. UV can damage the DNA in cells which means the cells can’t repair themselves or reproduce when they age.

Digital cameras use silicon chips. They aren’t sensitive to UV light or as susceptible to UV damage as our eyes are. They can still be damaged by bright sources of light, but it has to be a lot brighter.

A few years ago there were news stories about digital cameras being permanently damaged by close proximity to a new type of self-driving car LIDAR which uses a powerful laser beam. The LIDAR maker intentionally chose a laser wavelength which is invisible and harmless to our eyes, because that wavelength of light is blocked by water (which our eyes are filled with), but digital cameras don’t have water in front of the sensors so the sensors were getting burned by the laser.

Anonymous 0 Comments

The same reason a bullet fired at a camera won’t go through your monitor and shoot you while watching it. What causes the damage to your eyes isn’t going to hit your eyes if you aren’t there to see it.

Anonymous 0 Comments

I would like to add on top of what everyone else said, there were issues maybe a decade ago with powerful lights like welders and lasers indeed damaging cameras. The whole difference is that our eyes are sensitive and can be easily damaged by UV light (which welding lets a lot out) and the sensors in cameras aren’t super sensitive.

If you’re ever looking at old camera footage and there’s random small green splotches, that’s usually damage to the sensors lol, I used to watch a lot of laser video guys/electric engineers dealing with a LOT of power, and half of them always them. Nowadays it’s still possible but they are a bit more resistant.

If you’re talking about in the sense of why you can watch the video and be fine, it’s because the camera can only record so much brightness. You can look at footage of the sun just fine. The camera only can record up to a limit, and whatever you’re watching it on can only be as bright as the screen brightness.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Pyrostyro on youtube often burns out his camera lenses with his lasers even though it’s not aiming at the camera

Anonymous 0 Comments

The ELI5 version of this is that both eyes and cameras sense light and too much light can damage them, but eyes are much more delicate and their safe upper limit is much lower.

You can estimate how hot something is by sticking your finger in it, right? Or you could use a thermometer instead. If you stick your finger in boiling water, though, it’s gonna hurt even though the thermometer will be just fine. If you try to stick that thermometer in, say, molten metal, though, now it’s going to fail too.

There is *some* brightness level that in theory would fuck up your camera, but that limit is so high that it’s unlikely to come up without other things becoming a problem first.