Making Ipod screen darkroom safe

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by f/stopblues, Aug 29, 2009.

  1. f/stopblues

    f/stopblues Member

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    Hello! I searched for a relevant thread but didn't come across anything, so my apologies if this has been discussed.

    I'm going to be working in a public darkroom and I'd really like to play music in there since I recently picked up some really nice headphones (Ultimate Ears Triple.fi 10Pro IEM's to be specific :D)

    The Ipod screen is rather bright with light that's not-so-safe. I'd rather not run outside or hide in a corner every time i want to pick a song.

    As you can see in the picture (sorry about the quality! It's from a camera phone,) the case I have has a piece of plastic that protects the screen. My first thought was to just slide a piece of colored translucent plastic under that part, but I'm not sure exactly what color I need (just any ol' red or amber?) I thought of using a safelight filter, but all the ones I've seen are too thick.

    Any ideas? How about other novel approaches? Thanks!

    Chris
     

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  2. Anon Ymous

    Anon Ymous Member

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    Sorry for not being very helpful, but the best advice I can give is buy your own enlarger and print at your place. I always hated public darkrooms, they're just a compromise! For the record, my sound system has an orange display that is perfectly safe for any paper :smile:
     
  3. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Eugene Smith put a red filter over a B&W TV in his darkroom. I'd try a few layers of red lighting gel equivalent to a 25A filter, and be sure to test (especially with multigrade papers, which are more safelight sensitive than graded papers in general) before taking it into a public darkroom where others are working.
     
  4. f/stopblues

    f/stopblues Member

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    I actually have a whole darkroom, Anon Ymous, except it's packed in boxes and in storage. There isn't any space for it right now! Oh I wish..

    I'll be sure to test it, David. Is it adequate to just eyeball a gel that looks close to a 25A? I'm not sure how exact the color needs to be, or how exact safelight color is in the first place.
     
  5. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

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    Might consider getting an old iPod Mini....it has a monochrome LCD. That is what I use. Otherwise, the red filter (e.g. rubylith) idea should work well. Red Saran wrap would probably work if you put enough on.
     
  6. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    My thought is that a good deep red filter will cut enough transmission, besides color spectrum, to eliminate most any problems so long as you keep it oriented away and 4-6 feet distance. Test of course.
     
  7. archphoto

    archphoto Member

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    How about the little iPod Shuffle ? Small, no screen to worry about and cheap !

    Probable even cheaper than a couple of red gels that you have to tape over your more expensive one ?!

    Peter
     
  8. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Rosco conveniently uses the standard numbers for their gels that match Wratten filter colors, so look up "Rosco #25 gel" on the B&H website, or your favorite supplier, and you'll find the right color.
     
  9. f/stopblues

    f/stopblues Member

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    Thanks for all the replies! I'll probably try out the red filter method and see how that works. A local photo shop has a large amount of new old stock screw mount filters. I may try removing the glass from the mount on a 25A filter and using that. They're selling them for $2 each. Step down/up rings are $1 :D

    As for the secondary Ipods, I have about 65gigs of music on mine, so I'd rather stick with it :smile:

    Chris
     
  10. BetterSense

    BetterSense Member

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    see if you can get any free 3D glasses, and steal the red side out of them.
     
  11. Eric Mac

    Eric Mac Member

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    I have my cd player and receiver covered with rubylith tape and also covered with a piece of light tight cloth. Can't figure out how to use my Dynaco 70 tube amp in there though. I could use the heat in the winter too.
     
  12. formPhotography

    formPhotography Member

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    I use a sheet of 027 Medium Red lighting filter from Lee Filters over a laptop screen - I've not seen an Ipod screen, but if it's any brighter than a laptop, try a couple of pieces.

    Steve
     
  13. david b

    david b Member

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    Go in the iPod settings and set the backlight timer to 2 seconds. When messing with it, just point it away from the other people.
     
  14. Colin Corneau

    Colin Corneau Subscriber

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    Worth mentioning that the iPod Touch will run the Massive Development Chart as an app.

    I use it now and it's great..
     
  15. mrdarklight

    mrdarklight Member

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    That red saran wrap idea is genius if it works. Simple and cheap.

    I tried to find a darkroom-safe timer app for the iPhone but didn't. I did find an app that let you make sort of a safelight flashlight out of your phone (just makes the screen red or whatever color you want), but that doesn't help.
     
  16. archphoto

    archphoto Member

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    Why don't you make a pouch for it from black felt and a Velcro strip?
    You can leave it in it when you need to be in dark.

    Peter
     
  17. ann

    ann Subscriber

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    find some rubylith at an art store.
     
  18. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    I think a little patch of rubylith, perhaps in multiple layers, would probably do the trick. Cheap as dirt, sticks, and is designed for the purpose.
     
  19. mrdarklight

    mrdarklight Member

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    Incidentally, I did some tests with the iPhone and the flashlight app I mentioned (called Flashlight actually). I tested red and an orange hue I came up with myself.

    Results: Both colors are approximately as light safe as the sun at high noon.
     
  20. erikg

    erikg Member

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    As suggested, get rubylith at an art supply store, that is exactly what I did with my ipod (and an old tv too, retired now due to DTV conversion) one layer is enough, very easy to read and works well outside the darkroom too. I remember an old process darkroom (just lith film) that had a window covered with rubylith film, that window was the safelight most of the time. Kind of neat.
     
  21. Markok765

    Markok765 Member

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    You can actually turn off the light totally this way. Or, I just turn off my macs screen backlight and use it to play music.
     
  22. NormanV

    NormanV Member

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    I've never understood the need to have music playing all the time. What is wrong with silence? Silence gives space for your brain to work!
     
  23. clayne

    clayne Member

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    :D Too funny.

    Here's what I recommend:

    [​IMG]

    If you decide to bring that thing into a public darkroom please don't even think of screwing around with it outside of your pocket.
     
  24. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

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    What Ann said.
     
  25. mrdarklight

    mrdarklight Member

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    After I did this, I thought about why it didn't work. I wasn't exagerrating (well, ok, maybe a little), but after 30 seconds of holding the iPhone over the paper at about 4 inches, it developed black.

    I think I know why, though. TV and other screens don't actually project the color you see, they project three different colors (red, green and blue) from little dots. At a sufficient distance your mind just interprets it as the color you have set (like red for example), but what's coming out of the screen is not red, it's a combination of red, green and blue lights at different levels. Photo paper doesn't "reinterpret" these colors, it just exposes because of the other lights involved.