viewed at 1024 x 768 or greater screen resolution,
16 bit color or better. All content &
photographs copyrighted, all rights reserved.
Best viewed at 1024 x 768 or greater screen resolution, 16 bit color or better. All content & photographs copyrighted, all rights reserved.
LCD solutions for bright & sunny conditions
HoodMan's Flip-Up LCD
Cap for Digital SLR Cameras
I've never liked using the factory supplied clear plastic LCD covers on my digital cameras. It's hard enough to see an LCD screen in bright daylight by itself, and with an extra layer of plastic to look through the view just gets worse. Worse turns to pure bad when the clear plastic cover gets scratched up & scuffed a bit. Plus, the scratches & scuffs make the whole camera look tired & old.
I've also had trouble with the LCD screen & clear plastic cover combinations fogging up while shooting, especially when it's cold. (The fogging is caused by the air from my nose when the camera is held up to my eye - the breath moisture blows right through the gaps between the LCD screen and the clear plastic cover.)
But the camera's LCD screen definitely does need some kind of protection. Without protection, the screen gets scratched & scuffed, little by little, day by day, not to mention the fingerprints & smear marks. I was surprised when I discovered that the inside of my camera bag was probably my worst scratch & scuff offender. The hooked sides of the velcro strips, zippers, and other hard objects in the bag often rubbed against the clear plastic cover and made scratches & scuffs even when the camera was safely tucked away. When I figured that out, I started wrapping the camera in a soft piece of t-shirt material to protect the clear plastic cover before I put the camera back in the bag. That fixed the scratching problem, but I still had the looking-through-two-pieces-of-plastic-in bright-daylight problem.
Reluctantly, I chose to live with the clear plastic covers because there were no better options. And I found myself taking my cameras to dark corners or under cover to review the pictures I'd taken.
The new HoodMan Flip-Up Cap looked like a good idea when I first read about it. It has a solid (opaque) protective LCD cover that flips open into a three-sided anti-glare hood. It also has an inner clear plastic LCD cover. It seemed like the solid fold-down cover cap would solve the scratching problem, and the three-sided fold-out shield likely solve most of the bright daylight glare problem. But I didn't like the idea of it having an additional clear plastic cover inside the opaque flip-up cover. I wanted a bare LCD screen. I'd read a comment in one of the discussion forums that the clear plastic piece could probably be easily removed, so I went ahead and decided to buy one & give it a try.
Removing the Flip-Up's inner clear plastic shield was a cinch. It's simply fastened to the cap frame with a thin layer of sticky stuff (not hard glue) and easily peels out with a fingernail tip, butter knife, or small flat screwdriver blade. (I lifted an edge on mine with my fingernail and it peeled right out.) This little modification made the FlipUp the perfect solution for my needs.
So now, when I flip the cap open, I'm looking at a bare, clean LCD screen. It's crystal clear, bright, and sharp. The three-sided hood makes outdoor viewing much, much better. And when the cap is snapped shut, the LCD screen is completely protected.
The bottom line: HoodMan's Flip-Up Cap is well designed, solidly constructed with quality materials, fits perfectly, looks good, and works great.
Check it out at HoodMan USA's website. Currently available for Nikon D70, D100, D2H & D2X, Canon Digital Rebel, Rebel XT, 10D, 20D, and the Fuji S2 Pro.
For point & shoot cameras, check this out ...
Inexpensive, practical, easy to install and remove, folds up flat & fits in your pocket when not in use.
The HoodMan USA Model H180 (shown) is made for 1.5" to 1.8" LCD screens. This is the size for most point & shoot digitals, which are commonly equipped with 1.8" LCD screens.
The hood comes with an elastic strap that fits over the camera body to hold it snugly in place, or can be attached with velcro strips (included with the hood). I especially like the elastic strap feature instead of the velcro setup, because the Hoodman uses the "hooked" side of the velcro on the camera, which snags in a typical camera soft case. The elastic does a great job, and is easy to put on / take off. (Plus, it doesn't cause any problems with snagging.) The flexible, durable woven nylon construction, plus the elastic attaching strap give the Hoodman a strong edge over the competition.
Remember that hooded shields are a big help (and the "Hoodman" is the best hood I've seen), but don't expect "complete" relief from the bright sun. A hood will only help to a certain degree, and you'll still struggle to see the screen at times.
Here's a do-it-yourself way to turn your LCD screen into a "camcorder like" view and completely eliminate the glare.
I used a "Peak No. 2038 4x Lupe", designed for medium format camera slide viewing. You can see exactly what you're shooting! The view is clear and bright, much like looking through a good quality video camcorder viewfinder. You can see your menu screens & change your settings in bright daylight. And you can precisely monitor the zoom, digital zoom, and macro fields of view.
Works for most point & shoot cameras. This or similar products are available in larger, well stocked, full line camera stores.
Here are 4 pictures, showing
how it mounts, the velcro strips, the detachable base,