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DJI Action 3 Overheating In Hot Weather
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drummer_codes
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Hello!

I live in Cyprus and I ride a motorcycle and record all my rides. I've had the camera for a couple weeks now and I am getting farly frustrated having to deal with overheating.

I've lowered the framerate, turned off stabilization, tried different SD cards and nothing changed. The camera overheats after about 40 minutes in sunlight. Even the wind while riding does not cool it off. Usually it overheats when you are stopped at the traffic light, but recently it overheated while riding!

To be fair, the weather right now is very hot, around 37 degrees celcius or 100+ degrees farenheit. I am thinking to engineer some sort of shading from the sun for the camera, but it's gonna be tough to make it elegant and not too janky while still being able to wear the camera on the helmet.

I am actively searching for a solution because I have this camera recoring my rides primarily for my own safety and I would hate to get into an accident and find out that camera did not record anything because of overheating on a traffic light.

Do you guys have any tips/ideas I could try?
2023-7-1
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johansenfoto
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Take off the rubber at the lens, will think it will help a little.
Maybe also try without the cage.
2023-7-1
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Fishycomics
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We understand that heat is one of the problems, this camera is sealed, have you tried  removing the battery and  using just external power or finding a 3d print for a dummy battery that may have a micro fan?   
2023-7-1
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osmonauta
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These isolated cases of overheating are interesting. Of course people who have cameras that overheat would say it is not isolated. They prolly sold thousands of cameras and maybe only a handful reported overheating issues. This reminds me of phones whose batteries exploded or the housing got bent due to battery swelling. Most people didn’t have issues with their phones but there were these isolated cases there as well.

Would be interesting to find out if these overheats happen because of
- internal circuitry
- SD card
- battery
- possibly a combination of one or the other

Have you tried reformatting the SD card inside the camera?
Not sure if this would make any difference but have you tried recycling the battery a few times (discharge it to 0 then charge to 100, repeat)
Have you tried with a different battery (in case you have more than one)?
Like Fish said, try removing the battery and use an external power bank see if that causes overheat as well?
How big is your memory card? Try a smaller sized one. 64 or 128.
I tried the overheat test a few times in the past with internal battery and with external power bank as well,  4k/30, I was never able to make it overheat. Granted, I have not biked in 37C in full sun yet, but I film mostly in 1080p. Rarely in 2.7k. But did all the overheat tests in 4k.

I also don’t use the rubber ring around the lens but not sure how much that actually contributes to heating.
Also, I assume you have both screens off during recording?
Have you tried H265 vs H264 compression? H265 requires more processing power so you may get away with using H264?

I’m afraid that’s all the ideas I can think of.
2023-7-1
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johansenfoto Posted at 7-1 15:31
Take off the rubber at the lens, will think it will help a little.
Maybe also try without the cage.

Will be experimenting with this today, will let you know the results.
2023-7-1
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Fishycomics Posted at 7-1 16:12
We understand that heat is one of the problems, this camera is sealed, have you tried  removing the battery and  using just external power or finding a 3d print for a dummy battery that may have a micro fan?

No, but having external wires sounds unsafe on a motorcycle, I'll see what I can come up with.
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osmonauta Posted at 7-1 20:33
These isolated cases of overheating are interesting. Of course people who have cameras that overheat would say it is not isolated. They prolly sold thousands of cameras and maybe only a handful reported overheating issues. This reminds me of phones whose batteries exploded or the housing got bent due to battery swelling. Most people didn’t have issues with their phones but there were these isolated cases there as well.

Would be interesting to find out if these overheats happen because of

I have heard a lot about those SD card issues. Pretty sure it's not the reason in my case. I have tried two of the recommended by DJI cards, the result is the same in both cases. Regarding formatting, I do reformat the SD card inside the camera each time before I start shooting for the day. The memory card is 128 gigs and I have been using H.264 from the beginning.

I only have a single battery though, it's a bit tough to get these batteries in Cyprus due to import laws, but I will see what I can do. Regarding the charging cycles, no, I have only done 1 full cycle just yesterday while testing different settings. I will do some more full cycles today and see how it goes.

My settings are H.264, 4K, 25 fps, RockSteady, Improved Picture Quality. I have tried turning off RockSteady and Improved Picture Quality, but they seem to make a negligible difference.

I have heard and read a lot about 'European versions' of the camera being thermally capped at 48C because of EU regulations. Meaning that the camera has to stop recording or shut off when reaching 48C internal temperature. This sounds bizarre and I am not sure this is true, but there is a 'hack' which is a small text config file you place on your SD card. It enabled the 'thermal testing mode' presumably used by QA and such people to test thermal performance. I am not sure it works, but I will do some testing today. Right now I can say for sure that I had the camera overheat on the same settings both with and without this config file. But I don't know the thermal difference.

Anyway, I will do some more testing today and try all the different combinations of factors and some advice from this thread, will report the results here as well.
2023-7-1
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DJI Paladin
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Hi there. Thank you for reaching out and we're sorry for the trouble. We highly recommend you use the unit within the recommended temperature to avoid issues (-20° to 45° C (-4° to 113° F)). Osmo Action 3 can shoot 4K/120fps videos at a bitrate of up to 130 Mbps, and the actual video file generated in one minute can be as large as 900 MB. With its compact and portable design, Action 3 inevitably dissipates heat when processing such a large amount of data in a short period of time, which is an irresistible physical law. The camera was designed with special attention to the heat dissipation issue. To ensure the normal performance of the camera, the internal heat is designed to be conducted to the lens cover, front and rear screens, and body itself through heat sinks and silicone grease. Additionally, strict tests have been made to ensure that the camera temperature is within a reasonable range during long-term recording.

Action 3 mainly focuses on sports scenarios such as skiing, diving, and cycling, where wind can assist the camera in heat dissipation when recording videos with a high resolution or frame rate, which, thereby, makes it possible to record longer videos. If you mainly use it to record your daily life or activities, we recommend you record at 1080p@30fps, as 1080p@30fps is currently the mainstream video format online, and it can also reduce your storage space and facilitate your editing afterwards.
2023-7-1
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DJI Paladin Posted at 7-1 22:43
Hi there. Thank you for reaching out and we're sorry for the trouble. We highly recommend you use the unit within the recommended temperature to avoid issues (-20° to 45° C (-4° to 113° F)). Osmo Action 3 can shoot 4K/120fps videos at a bitrate of up to 130 Mbps, and the actual video file generated in one minute can be as large as 900 MB. With its compact and portable design, Action 3 inevitably dissipates heat when processing such a large amount of data in a short period of time, which is an irresistible physical law. The camera was designed with special attention to the heat dissipation issue. To ensure the normal performance of the camera, the internal heat is designed to be conducted to the lens cover, front and rear screens, and body itself through heat sinks and silicone grease. Additionally, strict tests have been made to ensure that the camera temperature is within a reasonable range during long-term recording.

Action 3 mainly focuses on sports scenarios such as skiing, diving, and cycling, where wind can assist the camera in heat dissipation when recording videos with a high resolution or frame rate, which, thereby, makes it possible to record longer videos. If you mainly use it to record your daily life or activities, we recommend you record at 1080p@30fps, as 1080p@30fps is currently the mainstream video format online, and it can also reduce your storage space and facilitate your editing afterwards.

I get it, you are from DJI, you have to post this corporate talk nonsense, but have you even tried reading the discussion before posting this?

4K at 25fps with 8 bit color is a very not challenging bitrate to process and write. Suggesting using 1080p in 2023 is just ridiculous. iPhone 14 mini with a smaller body volume handles 4K 60 fps 8 bit just fine and does not shut off. Yes, the surface area may be larger, but it's a small phone and there's no reason for Action 3 to not handle 4K 25fps if it's not a design flaw or a software limitation.

Can you comment on the EU regulation and comfirm/deny that that is the case in EU?
2023-7-1
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osmonauta
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"I have heard and read a lot about 'European versions' of the camera being thermally capped at 48C because of EU regulations. Meaning that the camera has to stop recording or shut off when reaching 48C internal temperature. This sounds bizarre and I am not sure this is true..."

Actually it's not easy to track down regulations unless you are a scientific dude who knows where exactly to find it. But the temp limit is actually true. You can read about it here:
https://www.mectalent.com/news/b ... -and-mobile-devices

Here's a quote from the page:
"As  a rule, no lower limit is specified for equipment surface heat, but the  maximum value is often considered to be +48°C (IEC 62368-1:2020)."


At the very bottom of the page the last bullet says:
"Detailed information on the temperature limit values prescribed by the standards can be found in SFS-EN IEC 62368-1:2020 Audio/video, information and communication technology equipment - Part 1: Safety requirements"

I've tried to track down that document, but you gonna run into so many regulations that good luck wading through all that. I'm not going to invest half my time looking it up, however you are welcome to find the actual regulation and read it. I'd say now that you know the official regulation code, it will be easier to find it. Although I'm not sure why would you even bother.

2023-7-2
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osmonauta Posted at 7-2 00:00
"I have heard and read a lot about 'European versions' of the camera being thermally capped at 48C because of EU regulations. Meaning that the camera has to stop recording or shut off when reaching 48C internal temperature. This sounds bizarre and I am not sure this is true..."

Actually it's not easy to track down regulations unless you are a scientific dude who knows where exactly to find it. But the temp limit is actually true. You can read about it here:

True, it doesn't make much sense nor is gonna change anything.
2023-7-2
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drummer_codes Posted at 7-1 22:57
I get it, you are from DJI, you have to post this corporate talk nonsense, but have you even tried reading the discussion before posting this?

4K at 25fps with 8 bit color is a very not challenging bitrate to process and write. Suggesting using 1080p in 2023 is just ridiculous. iPhone 14 mini with a smaller body volume handles 4K 60 fps 8 bit just fine and does not shut off. Yes, the surface area may be larger, but it's a small phone and there's no reason for Action 3 to not handle 4K 25fps if it's not a design flaw or a software limitation.

"iPhone 14 mini with a smaller body volume handles 4K 60 fps 8 bit just fine and does not shut off. "
And what is the bit rate of the resulting video? Just curious since I don't have an iPhone 14 mini. But I bet it won't be 130Mbps.

My iPhone 7 records 4k 30fps at 23Mbps (H265) - which is laughable compared to the camera's 100-130 range.
2023-7-2
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An update regarding my experiments:

Basically changing settings and removing/adding batteries, lens rings, cages does not change almost anything. In fact, I just finished recoding at 2.7K and it recorded just 15 minutes, but a 4K about a hour prior to that, the camera managed to record about 45 minutes.

I guess, Cypriot summer and direct sunlight just overheat the camera regardless of the settings. I do not have a thermometer, but the camera was getting very hot and I can see why it would stop recording.

While riding in the evenings the camera never overheats. However, when riding during the day, the camera can overheat when being stationary on a traffic light.

I have one more idea to try but I'm very skeptical of it. I want to try adding some white/mirror heat deflectors on top of the camera body to prevent direct sunlight from hitting the camera, hopefully i will also be able to make some sort of air cushion to not affect the heat dissipation from the camera itself
2023-7-2
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drummer_codes Posted at 7-1 22:57
I get it, you are from DJI, you have to post this corporate talk nonsense, but have you even tried reading the discussion before posting this?

4K at 25fps with 8 bit color is a very not challenging bitrate to process and write. Suggesting using 1080p in 2023 is just ridiculous. iPhone 14 mini with a smaller body volume handles 4K 60 fps 8 bit just fine and does not shut off. Yes, the surface area may be larger, but it's a small phone and there's no reason for Action 3 to not handle 4K 25fps if it's not a design flaw or a software limitation.

Hi there, could you please provide us with the current firmware version and tell us the test parameter information? Including camera parameter settings(Frame ratios, Resolution, Frame rate), Stabilization(RS/HS/...) and whether has connected to other accessories.
2023-7-2
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osmonauta Posted at 7-2 00:06
"iPhone 14 mini with a smaller body volume handles 4K 60 fps 8 bit just fine and does not shut off. "
And what is the bit rate of the resulting video? Just curious since I don't have an iPhone 14 mini. But I bet it won't be 130Mbps.

4K at 60 fps bitrate on the iPhone 14 mini is around 55 megabits, which is yes, about half of the 4K at 25 fps in the Action 3 (95 mbps)

The interesting thing here is that I just had the DJI overheat while recording 1080p 25 fps, which for sure is almost the lowest bitrate you could do with Action 3.

I guess the weather in Cyprus is just too much for the camera.
UPDATE:
Just found out that 55 mbps bitrate is for H.265. Switched to H.264 and the bitrate for 4K 60 on the iPhone is about 105 mbps, which is basically the same as DJI. Very interesting how it can handle the heat so well.
2023-7-2
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DJI Mindy Posted at 7-2 00:08
Hi there, could you please provide us with the current firmware version and tell us the test parameter information? Including camera parameter settings(Frame ratios, Resolution, Frame rate), Stabilization(RS/HS/...) and whether has connected to other accessories.

Hello.

As I just posted, changing settings or altering the test conditions even dramatically (like changing from 4K 50 fps RS+ to 1080p 25fps no stab) does  almost nothing to prolong the recording time.

The camera is very hot when I check on it after the testing do it's understandable why it does stop recording.

Are there any other not obvious ways to improve thermal performance? Maybe some accessories or hacks?
2023-7-2
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johansenfoto
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Your phone is not waterproof, it will cool down faster than OA3
2023-7-2
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johansenfoto Posted at 7-2 00:55
Your phone is not waterproof, it will cool down faster than OA3

So you are saying difference between 15 minutes of 1080p 25 fps recording with DJI and virtually unlimited (a least 300 minutes as tested by me today) recording of 4K 60 fps with the phone is the water seal? LOL
2023-7-2
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drummer_codes Posted at 7-2 00:19
Hello.

As I just posted, changing settings or altering the test conditions even dramatically (like changing from 4K 50 fps RS+ to 1080p 25fps no stab) does  almost nothing to prolong the recording time.

Do you mean it will stop recording after 40 minutes whether you set it to 4K 50fps RS+ or 1080p 25fps no stab?
2023-7-2
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DJI Mindy Posted at 7-2 01:39
Do you mean it will stop recording after 40 minutes whether you set it to 4K 50fps RS+ or 1080p 25fps no stab?

I mean that in both cases it will stop recording after roughly the same time
Both for 1080 and 4K the camera stops recording after about the same amount of time
2023-7-2
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drummer_codes Posted at 7-2 00:58
So you are saying difference between 15 minutes of 1080p 25 fps recording with DJI and virtually unlimited (a least 300 minutes as tested by me today) recording of 4K 60 fps with the phone is the water seal? LOL

I'm not saying anything about that, just mentioned about the extra protection that will lead to more heat.

Do you use it for vlogging style, or more action related? Since it will create more heat when screen is on.

2023-7-2
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drummer_codes Posted at 7-2 01:41
I mean that in both cases it will stop recording after roughly the same time
Both for 1080 and 4K the camera stops recording after about the same amount of time

Would you mind providing us with the exact time so that we can forward it to our engineer for further checking? Please also tell us the current firmware version.
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johansenfoto Posted at 7-2 02:09
I'm not saying anything about that, just mentioned about the extra protection that will lead to more heat.

Do you use it for vlogging style, or more action related? Since it will create more heat when screen is on.

Yeah I understand that seals lead to higher temperatures, but certainly not at this scale.

Screens are always off, both of them. It's set to shut off 3s after the recording starts.

The videos are POV dashcam style / motovlog style
This is my channel, there's many videos here. Take a look at the 'Battling overheating' one as it was shot in daytime, and most of other long ones were shot in the evening time.

https://www.youtube.com/@drummer_rides
2023-7-2
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DJI Mindy Posted at 7-2 02:10
Would you mind providing us with the exact time so that we can forward it to our engineer for further checking? Please also tell us the current firmware version.

Sure

H.264 4K 25 fps RS 8bit (rubber ring off, cage off) - 16 minutes 08 seconds
H.264 1080p 25 fps No Stab 8bit (rubber ring on, cage on) - 18 minutes 40 seconds

Firmware Version - 01.03.10.30
Camera Firmware Version - 10.00.31.12
2023-7-2
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Fishycomics
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drummer_codes Posted at 7-1 22:26
No, but having external wires sounds unsafe on a motorcycle, I'll see what I can come up with.

okay,  best of luck with overheating,  try a dashcam if  all you are doing in using it for documentation, the wrong camera of chioice
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Fishycomics Posted at 7-2 02:55
okay,  best of luck with overheating,  try a dashcam if  all you are doing in using it for documentation, the wrong camera of chioice

you are correct, but I am also a video nerd and I care about the quality of the footage and audio
I'm entertaining the thought of starting a proper motovlog but still not sure if I am willing to commit time to that
anyways, thank you man, all the best to you as well!
2023-7-2
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drummer_codes Posted at 7-2 02:13
Yeah I understand that seals lead to higher temperatures, but certainly not at this scale.

Screens are always off, both of them. It's set to shut off 3s after the recording starts.

I think it's strange that it is overheating since you are driving and that should give it enough cooling. I think you should try with another card again, just buy a 64GB (for trying) that is not expensive and with U3 v30 speed. There could be if you bought it from Amazon/ebay that it will be fake.

I commented the same on your video.

Btw you need to angle the camera a bit more up so we not only watching your gastank in some scenes lol

I shoot in 4:3 Ultra Wide and crop in post to get better angle for each time.
2023-7-2
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johansenfoto Posted at 7-2 04:40
I think it's strange that it is overheating since you are driving and that should give it enough cooling. I think you should try with another card again, just buy a 64GB (for trying) that is not expensive and with U3 v30 speed. There could be if you bought it from Amazon/ebay that it will be fake.

I commented the same on your video.

Thank you, will try another SD card once again, sure, doesn't hurt to try.

I got it from a large electronics store in Cyprus, but there's always a chance I guess

As for the camera angle, yeah, I agree it needs to be a bit more tilted up, but I'm trying to avoid any editing at all costs, I even wrote a small program that uses ffmpeg to join fragments into which DJI splits longer videos without re-encoding to save time. I just run this program and upload to YouTube. The thing was the mount was maxed out on the angle adjustments, but I kinda manhandled it a bit more up in the latest video, I think it looks better
2023-7-2
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drummer_codes Posted at 7-2 02:57
you are correct, but I am also a video nerd and I care about the quality of the footage and audio
I'm entertaining the thought of starting a proper motovlog but still not sure if I am willing to commit time to that
anyways, thank you man, all the best to you as well!

US version    shuts off the screen when the first stage of overheat, if then you push it too far, it may then shut down  maybe make sonee fins   to cool down start checking out rc  items
2023-7-2
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drummer_codes Posted at 7-2 06:41
Thank you, will try another SD card once again, sure, doesn't hurt to try.

I got it from a large electronics store in Cyprus, but there's always a chance I guess

I think your cards will be legit then, but only be sure they have the right speed and not only class 10 written on them.

Editing videos is often what I find most fun while making videos

2023-7-2
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drummer_codes Posted at 7-2 06:41
Thank you, will try another SD card once again, sure, doesn't hurt to try.

I got it from a large electronics store in Cyprus, but there's always a chance I guess

“I even wrote a small program that uses ffmpeg to join fragments into which DJI splits longer videos without re-encoding to save time”

There’s already an app for that with quite a few features, called LosslessCut.

https://github.com/mifi/lossless-cut#readme
2023-7-2
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osmonauta Posted at 7-2 10:16
“I even wrote a small program that uses ffmpeg to join fragments into which DJI splits longer videos without re-encoding to save time”

There’s already an app for that, called LosslessCut.

yes, but my app is one click and works much faster because it's lower level code
2023-7-2
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drummer_codes Posted at 7-2 02:34
Sure

H.264 4K 25 fps RS 8bit (rubber ring off, cage off) - 16 minutes 08 seconds

Thanks for the detailed information. We will forward it to our engineer to check it further. May I double confirm if these data are obtained from the test at an environment of about 37 degrees Celsius?
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DJI Mindy Posted at 7-3 01:35
Thanks for the detailed information. We will forward it to our engineer to check it further. May I double confirm if these data are obtained from the test at an environment of about 37 degrees Celsius?

Yes. I do not own a thermometer to be exact, but the weather showed 37 C and the camera was stationary on a tripod in direct sunlight
2023-7-3
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You need to move to the north where it is cold
2023-7-3
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I wonder whether a white camera would do better in sunny, hot climates? If you want to stick with it, dare I suggest ……. A paint job?

I know this sounds odd, but you might be able to wrap it in white paper to see if enough heat gets reflected away?


I was thinking along the lines of a white one of these .... https://www.amazon.co.uk/Silicone-Case-Action-Protective-Accessories/dp/B0BHY3BQ15/ref=sr_1_11?crid=C5QTXX3ZW5S5&keywords=white+silicone+case+for+dji+action+3&qid=1688398362&sprefix=white+silicon+case+for+dji+action+3%2Caps%2C63&sr=8-11

I had a GoPro 5 for a long time with no overheating, until I took it to Menorca, and then it did but only when it was out under the direct sun on a beach. Being a dark colour, I think it just absorbed  heat and cooked quicker inside as a result.
2023-7-3
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osmonauta Posted at 7-2 00:00
"I have heard and read a lot about 'European versions' of the camera being thermally capped at 48C because of EU regulations. Meaning that the camera has to stop recording or shut off when reaching 48C internal temperature. This sounds bizarre and I am not sure this is true..."

Actually it's not easy to track down regulations unless you are a scientific dude who knows where exactly to find it. But the temp limit is actually true. You can read about it here:

The device must comply with that European safety standard noted.  There are places that one can read a summary of the standard, but the issue is that standard (and many others) are copyrighted.  

Some summary details are here: https://www.mectalent.com/news/blog-thermal-design-of-wearable-and-mobile-devices

An engineering-level summary is here: https://slpower.com/data/collateral/AN_Maximum_Allowable_Temperature.pdf
2023-7-3
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silver is allso a good color for temp control

[img][/img]
2023-7-3
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We need more people to test it out while driving in really warm weather (in Europe).

When I made the Kelly Kettle video, it was probably 25c and it got incredibly hot so I could hardly touch it. But it never turned off.
2023-7-4
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Iancraig10 Posted at 7-3 07:26
I wonder whether a white camera would do better in sunny, hot climates? If you want to stick with it, dare I suggest ……. A paint job?

I know this sounds odd, but you might be able to wrap it in white paper to see if enough heat gets reflected away?

I am actually considering this, either white or reflective like tinfoil. I will so the tests in the upcoming days/weeks
2023-7-4
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