And this is why you don’t film concerts with your camera phone…

Think about this for a second and a half. You’ve got your very expensive digital camcorder smuggled into the concert. You’re going to videotape your favorite performer on stage, and then after the show you’re going to upload it on YouTube or burn some DVD’s and sell them. Yeah, copyright infringement means nothing to you.

Until you look at the footage and wonder… what are all those horizontal and vertical lines doing in the finished product?

Congratulations, bonkbrain. You just toasted your camera sensor.

Watch this concert footage and see what I’m talking about.

Right off the bat, if these high-powered laser lights are going straight into your camera lens, they’re not going to stop until they hit your sensor.  And they’re going to burn out the pixels and cause your pictures to develop a grid-like pattern.  Which, unless you’re trying to reconfigure your camera to look like a submarine periscope, is gonna be a bad thing.

Here’s some more examples.

This does seem to be happening at a lot of techno concerts, eh?

I’m going to stay out of the discussion about the legalities or logistics of filming a concert from the audience.  Is it legal to do so?  Not really.  But people do it anyway, they hold up their cell phone cameras and they smuggle in Flip camcorders and the like, and then when they see that the CCD in their camera has been wrecked, they gnash their teeth.  Too late.  Oopsie.

And now what do you do? You gotta replace that CCD. If you’re filming a concert with a DSLR, replacing that CCD is expensive and time-consuming.  This isn’t a simple swap-out procedure.  It would be cheaper to replace the camera.

You could sue the concert promoter if you really felt like it, stating that the concert’s lasers wrecked your camera – which would have the same chutzpah as the person who killed his parents and then pled leniency on the court because he was recently orphaned.

I look at it this way.  If you weren’t HIRED to film the concert, then put the camera back in its back, put the cell phone back in your pocket, and just ENJOY the concert!  That way, you can have a great time at the show, and you don’t have to worry about taking home some herky-jerky, over-amplified junk video footage.

Or worse… trying to go back to your electronics store and hoping to get a refund on your product, claiming that it couldn’t handle a stray laser blast into the lens.

Yeah… like that would work.