Scaredy Cat Films

Creating an Infrared Digicam from a Fuji FinePix 2650
December 22ND, 2007

First off, I wouldn't recommend doing this with a camera you care about, as digital cameras can be fragile, and not too easy to repair. This mod may damage you camera beyond repair if it doesn't work. I am surprised, but even "lousy" digital cameras of 1.0 megapixel or less will cost you over $20 on ebay, and easily into $30 or $40 when you include shipping. Which is really astounding considering new 6.0 megapixel digital cameras can cost only $99 new. Why would someone pay $45 for a camera from 2000?

The subject for this experiment is a Fuji Finepix 2650 I bought for $21.00 off ebay. This mod seemed to go so well I bought an additional Finepix for $23.99, however the second camera has a non functioning LCD. Actually the LCD itself still works, but something is wrong with the camera insides so nothing is being displayed on it. Anyway, on to the modifications. BTW, Suggested Retail Price in 10/2002 - $249.99.

Camera Front Camera Front Opened Camera Back
Camera Front Camera Front, Opened Camera Back
Camera Top Camera Bottom Necesary Materials
Camera Top Camera Bottom Necessary Materials

Step 1:

Open The Camera

My camera came without any external screws, so I am going to have to do some research to let you know if any of the externals are a different length. The camera back pops off pretty easily. Be sure to take out the batteries and open the battery cover to help the back come off.

Step 2:

Removed Back Of Camera

The first step in the mod is to unhook the lone ribbon cable, and begin to take off the LCD Display Screen so we can get down into the camera easier.


This picture shows the LCD screws removed and the Ribbon cable removed. You can see that there is one screw that is slightly longer than the others. Take note of this for when you are replacing the LCD screen.

I have also removed the ribbon cable to the right of the camera in anticipation of removing the rear circuit board.

3 LCD Screws

LCD Flip Top

There is actually a metal frame holding the LCD and ribbon cable in place. You can pop the LCD out and unhook it from the ribbon cable quite easily.

With the LCD screen removed, it is much easier going to get to the CCD.


Here you can see the camera with the LCD removed. At this point, you can carefully slide the whole back circuit board out of the camera. This is the point you should be careful not to touch the flash capacitor. You risk electric shock (which I experienced). Camera Electronics

 

Step 3:

This sequence of images shows the removal of the rear circuit board. It slides out pretty easily. The lens assembly is attached to the rear circuit board. On the other side you can look at the front of the camera and the lens. The back of the circuit board is what we care about. There are two silver screws that we need to remove so that we can get to the CCD.
Camera With Circuit Board Removed Lens Circuit Board Front Lens Circuit Board Back

Step 4:

Remove the screws, and turn the circuit board over. The lens assembly should come right off. The CCD and hot mirror / IR Blocking Filter in red (in this photo) should now be accessible. The filter actually changes color between red and blue depending on how the light strikes it.

The filter is held on with a little glue but is easy to pry off. I removed it, replaced it with a chunk of slide glass I cut down to a similar size.

Exposed CCD

Here you can see the replacement glass I added to the camera. I am not sure if this is necessary for cameras that have no zoom capability, but I try to replace glass where glass was taken from.

In the second photo I have added two pieces of exposed, developed film. Take care not to touch any of the glass or makeshift filter you add to the camera. Any dust that gets into the lens or onto the CCD will ruin any of your pictures. Be careful never to touch the CCD as you will probably never be able to remove all the grease you left behind.

Seal the lens back up, screw in all 5 screws you removed to do the mod, replace all external screws and try out your new IR camera!

New "Filter" Added

Exposed Developed Film Negative Added as Filter

 

Sample Images:

This is an example of what you can expect from the image quality prior to making the IR Modification. Its one of only 2 pictures I think I took before performing the modification. Victory Brewery is Located in Downingtown PA.

Golden Monkey Beer

 

Since it was dark out when I did this camera modification I was limited with my test subjects. This is actually an autographed Boston Bruins jersey we have hanging in our computer room. Its a neat picture because the jersey has white, black, and yellow stripes across it. All of which do not show up in the Visible IR spectrum. It is interesting because some of the stitching shows up black, obviously it has different IR properties than the rest of the fabric.

Boston Bruins Jersey
Bruins Jersey in IR

 

After the sun came out, I gave the IR camera another test, and found that I had misaligned the new visible light filter. You can see in the color IR image that the left side of the picture is brighter than the right side. It is less obvious in the grayscale image, but it will need to be fixed.

Houses with Misaligned Filter
Grayscale Houses in IR

 

I fixed up the filter and got it aligned properly. Looks like you only need 1 piece of exposed, developed, negative film. Enjoy this picture of our Christmas Tree in IR.

Christmas Tree
Christmas Tree Grayscale


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