Best materials make softbox to diffuse 850nm IR

Discussion in 'Lighting and Hardware' started by -Photographer-, Sep 27, 2015.

  1. -Photographer-

    -Photographer- TPF Noob!

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    I want to make an 850nm ir softbox diffuser, what would be the best materials to use? Since ir goes through materials more than visible light.

    It will be stationary so I don't mind of the materials are heavier than those used in standard softboxes.


     
  2. JustJazzie

    JustJazzie Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Rip stop nylon is what I usually see suggested....

    My "softbox" is diffused through a plastic-y shower curtain I had laying around. I'm pretty fond of the light it puts out!
     
  3. petrochemist

    petrochemist TPF junkie!

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    Materials are generally not as transparent to NIR as some of the news reports would have you believe. I've taken loads of crowd scenes in IR & have rarely if ever seen any conclusive transparency issues. I have frequently seen visually black fabrics becoming quite reflective in IR which can easily be confused with IR skin tones...
    I know some man-made fabrics are translucent/transparent, so it might be best to just choose a light cotton fabric, or try a standard soft box & add a layer of cotton if more diffusion is needed.
     
  4. KmH

    KmH In memoriam Supporting Member

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    Humans can't see 850 nm IR light.
    The OP's need is pretty specialized and I have no idea what material(s) would work.
     
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  5. JustJazzie

    JustJazzie Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I can see by your response I must have misunderstood the original question!
     
  6. petrochemist

    petrochemist TPF junkie!

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    Not anywhere near as specialized as you might think. IR photography is becoming relatively commonplace. At least 10% of the members of our local photo workshop have tried IR photography before joining. Two of us regularly use converted cameras, and several others are considering getting a conversion done.
    Although I don't have a softbox I believe they are also relatively well known among photography enthusiasts. :)
     
  7. -Photographer-

    -Photographer- TPF Noob!

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    Thanks, I just wanted to know what material would be best to diffuse the ir as much as possible.

    So I would have lots of 5mm ir leds behind and I would like it to turn a series of spot sources into a fairly even large rectangle emitter that glows in nir.

    Has anyone tested common materials viewing in the nir range?
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2015
  8. petrochemist

    petrochemist TPF junkie!

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    I've just had a reply from someone who regularly shoots IR with modifiers. He's never had any issues with just the standard kit. See here
     
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  9. -Photographer-

    -Photographer- TPF Noob!

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    Ok sounds good, do you know if it was still a bit spotty or even?
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2015
  10. f2bthere

    f2bthere TPF Noob!

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    There is a simple way to test this. Put your light behind the material in question, pointed straight at your lens on your IR sensitive camera. Take a picture. Adjust till you get a middle gray exposure of the material and it should be pretty obvious if you are getting relatively even diffusion of your light source or not.

    If you take your light source with you to a fabric store, you could even test before you buy.
     
  11. -Photographer-

    -Photographer- TPF Noob!

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    Thanks, that's what I've been doing, but before I buy materials to test I was just wondering what other people found best.
     

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