Monday, 28 June 2010

Vidicon Tube Sun Burn In

Older TV/video cameras used tubes to convert light in to an electrical signal instead of the now ubiquitous CCD, these tubes were quite limited and had many operational problems but they still have a cult following today due to there unique characteristics. The feedback produced for the original Doctor Who series was done by pointing a camera with a video tube at its own monitor. Similar effects can be produced with other technologies such as CCD but they are not as fluid and have a different esthetic. Another problem with Vidicon camera tubes is that very bright sources can damage their surface resulting in areas where the tube "goes blind"

I think that this is actually kind of cool almost like drawing with light as seen in David Hall's 1973 Vidicon Inscriptions here

here is a video from
videolabguy on youtube demonstrating this problem his other videos and website are an amazing collection of useful info on vintage video gear 


  1. G'day. I was the guy who pointed the Sony AVC-3200CE vidicon camera to the sun, I did this back in 2002 and recorded it on videotape and soon after sent Videolabguy a poor quality wmv file of the clip. I have since uploaded to my channel a more superior quality version of the clip and it can be viewed here . I was totally kickin myself for doin that because the tube was making brilliant crisp pictures and I ruined it with my own stupidity lol. I have since replaced the tube and am still using the camera, whilst the new tube is a bit inferior it makes decent pictures, I have made several videos from this camera on my channel and here is one of them .

  2. Thanks for the Links man been meaning to post a few when I get time

    keep using those lovely cameras!