Nitecore has developed the world's first electronic rechargeable photography blower, in a modern and updated format to conventional air blowers, that has been designed and optimized solely for use with photography equipment.
The BlowerBaby is a strange looking tool that in some ways resembles a miniature hair dryer, but actually does a fantastic job at removing unwanted dust from lenses and camera bodies, in a safe and easy to use approach.
• How do I clean a camera lens? Tips for removing dust and fingerprints (opens in new tab)
The BlowerBaby (opens in new tab) from Nitecore works just as you would expect, by holding the power button down to release a powerful gust of air, but it's clever design features make it perfectly optimized for cleaning those forgotten pieces of equipment and camera lenses that collect dust.
You can even use the electronic blower on a camera's sensor if you're brave enough, though many photographers understandably tend to prefer the safer option of having their camera sensors cleaned by an expert.(opens in new tab)
My first impressions when unpacking the Nitecore BlowerBaby was how cohesively branded the packaging was in the aesthetically pleasing choice of yellow and black. The BlowerBaby itself sports these bumblebee colors too with a black body and yellow nozzle. The device was relatively lightweight, much smaller than I expected, and felt comfortable to hold in the palm of my hand.
The filter of the electronic blower can be changed and swapped out for the CMOS sensor cleaning filter (sold separately) that filters the air and removes particles to keep your camera equipment clean and functional. The CMOS filter reduces the air flow speed slightly making the blower suitable for cleaning the more sensitive elements of your camera.(opens in new tab)
The main unit is controlled by a single power button that indicates power levels by a flashing multicolor LED. The electronic blower charges via a usb type-c port on the bottom of the blower and is said to be able to last for up to 90 cleans before needing a recharge.(opens in new tab)
Admittedly, I was a little skeptical when first deciding to use the air blower, as often dust can become trapped even further into smaller spaces when taking the risk of using air as a cleaning tool.
Though, the BlowerBaby from Nitecore boasts wind speeds of up to 70km/h (43.5 mph) and has a unidirectional air intake to prevent dust blowing inwards and prevents secondary damage to the surface of the object or lenses.
The first step was to clean my Sony A7III before putting on a new lens. See the video below to find out how the world's first electronic photography blower from Nitecore dealt with the first attempt at cleaning my Sony Sensor.
I purchased a second-hand lens for my Sony A7 III (opens in new tab) mirrorless camera, specifically the Sony FE 90mm f/2.8 Macro G OSS (opens in new tab), and while it works great - it didn't arrive in the cleanest condition (sorry CeX). We reviewed this lens back in March and gave it a glowing recommendation, so I was keen to get it cleaned up so I could use it for a shoot over the weekend.(opens in new tab)
I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to really put the Nitecore electronic blower to the test and see if it could remove as much dust, dirt and grime as possible just on it's own.(opens in new tab)
The blower also came with what Nitecore calls its Camera Cleaning Pen (opens in new tab), designed with carbon powder and a non-liquid carbon cleaning formula to help remove dust and fingerprints from camera lenses. The cleaning pen also houses a hidden compartment where it stores two little extension brushes for the camera body (purple brush) and lenses (yellow brush), that can be inserted onto the end nozzle of the BlowerBaby device, for a 'brush and blow' method of cleaning.(opens in new tab)
I had a struggle when first using this pen as I hadn't read the packaging or description in the leaflet (who reads things these days) and ended up very confused with what looked like black ink on my hands.
I later realized this was the carbon formula element of the pen, and it did a pretty good job at removing fingerprints from the lens, although it was concerning whether my lens would be stained with the same black carbon that made its way to my hand.
The video below demonstrates the process I used to clean my lens. It was tricky trying to record with my phone and clean one-handed, so what the video does not show is that the process overall took a fair few attempts using the blower and cleaning pen in rotation to fully clean the lens and restore it to a perfect state.
The final step of my process was to use the Nitecore Lens Cleaning Kit complete with NItecore's Microfibre Lens Cleaning Cloths (opens in new tab) and the camera body cleaning brush extension to wipe over the lens and tidy up any dust remaining around the outside of the lens and my Sony camera itself.
• Check out our buying guide to the best camera lens cleaners (opens in new tab) to discover the best ways to clean your expensive gear and dusty lenses.
My Sony FE 90mm f/2.8 Macro G OSS lens was by the end gleaming in comparison to its original state. The process of cleaning this lens using the tools from Nitecore took around 10 minutes give or take, and did require some repetition and tool rotation to achieve the best results.
The BlowerBaby from Nitecore is honestly very expensive for what it is, and there are definitely more affordable ways to clean your gear. Though if you're a professional or expert in cleaning regular gear for photographers then this might be something worth investing in and could save you a lot of time.(opens in new tab)
Overall the electronic blower from Nitecore paired with the cleaning pen, brush extensions, and cleaning fluid all performed well together and made quick work of cleaning my lens, though I would not use these tools as regularly as I'd like to think, so it can be a costly purchase for a once-a-month equipment clean.
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