svish

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 25, 2017
639
972
Recently I kept a camera in front of iPhone X and I noticed that the infrared from flood illuminator/dot projector was visible. However I noticed that infrared beam was constantly emitted (was visible through camera) even after the iPhone is unlocked. The beam was visible when the screen is on at all times. I tried with turning off Face Id and attention aware features, but the IR light is visible even then through the camera.

Is this the way the flood illuminator/dot projector should work or is it some malfunction?

If the infrared is emitted whenever the display is on and not just during unlocking using Face ID, then will there be any health concerns?
 

C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
51,388
19,447
Recently I kept a camera in front of iPhone X and I noticed that the infrared from flood illuminator/dot projector was visible. However I noticed that infrared beam was constantly emitted (was visible through camera) even after the iPhone is unlocked. The beam was visible when the screen is on at all times. I tried with turning off Face Id and attention aware features, but the IR light is visible even then through the camera.

Is this the way the flood illuminator/dot projector should work or is it some malfunction?

If the infrared is emitted whenever the display is on and not just during unlocking using Face ID, then will there be any health concerns?
Perhaps you might be referring to the proximity sensor?
 
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svish

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 25, 2017
639
972
Perhaps you might be referring to the proximity sensor?

The beam is looking exactly similar to when iPhone is unlocked using Face ID. So I think it is the flood illuminator. Can anyone check whether the same thing is happening.
 
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C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
51,388
19,447
Last edited:
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ideal.dreams

macrumors 68020
Jul 19, 2010
2,328
936
Ohio
I recall recently reading a post on Reddit showing the iPhone X checks for your attention every 2.5 seconds or so. I am unsure why the topic of health concerns comes up so much, you're exposed to much more IR radiation from a second in the sun or lighting a match.
 
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svish

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 25, 2017
639
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Some discussion of it came up at https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/face-id-visible-ir-light.2085848/ as I recall, in case there might be something of use there.

I had seen that thread. But the light is white in colour and not red as specified in the page mentioned. The light is visible in a brightly lit room also and not just in dark environment. One member in that thread has also mentioned the same issue.
[doublepost=1511678539][/doublepost]
I recall recently reading a post on Reddit showing the iPhone X checks for your attention every 2.5 seconds or so. I am unsure why the topic of health concerns comes up so much, you're exposed to much more IR radiation from a second in the sun or lighting a match.

Attention aware features are turned off but still the IR is visible through the camera.
 
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Superrjamz54

macrumors 6502
Dec 4, 2015
499
314
I had seen that thread. But the light is white in colour and not red as specified in the page mentioned. The light is visible in a brightly lit room also and not just in dark environment. One member in that thread has also mentioned the same issue.
[doublepost=1511678539][/doublepost]

Attention aware features are turned off but still the IR is visible through the camera.
Do you turn the sun off when you go outside?
 
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svish

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 25, 2017
639
972
I want to know whether this is a malfunction of the flood illuminator/ dot projector. Is anyone experiencing this (white light and not red as specified in other threads).
 
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GubbyMan

macrumors 6502
Apr 3, 2011
357
1,302
Settings -> Display & Brightness -> Auto-Lock -> Never

Go back to Home Screen and check again with your camera.
[doublepost=1511701226][/doublepost]BTW... Never set the Auto-Lock to Never. Will burn the OLED screen if you forget to turn the screen off and leave the phone for a few hours. The iPhone will stop constantly emitting IR if you change the time to more than 30 seconds.

Also, don't worry about your health. IR has lower wavelength than visible light and you're constantly being exposed to light that are several orders of magnitude higher than that IR emitter can produce. Your iPhone's display probably emits more light than the flood illuminator.
 
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SBruv

macrumors 6502a
Sep 25, 2008
630
287
Go back to Home Screen and check again with your camera.
[doublepost=1511701226][/doublepost]. The iPhone will stop constantly emitting IR if you change the time to more than 30 seconds.

Also, don't worry about your health. IR has lower wavelength than visible light and you're constantly being exposed to light that are several orders of magnitude higher than that IR emitter can produce. Your iPhone's display probably emits more light than the flood illuminator.

Disregarding the totally incorrect stuff about the IR output, where do you get your info on it stopping when auto is set to more than 30 secs?
 
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svish

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 25, 2017
639
972
Settings -> Display & Brightness -> Auto-Lock -> Never

Go back to Home Screen and check again with your camera.
[doublepost=1511701226][/doublepost]BTW... Never set the Auto-Lock to Never. Will burn the OLED screen if you forget to turn the screen off and leave the phone for a few hours. The iPhone will stop constantly emitting IR if you change the time to more than 30 seconds.

Also, don't worry about your health. IR has lower wavelength than visible light and you're constantly being exposed to light that are several orders of magnitude higher than that IR emitter can produce. Your iPhone's display probably emits more light than the flood illuminator.


Tried changing auto lock but it does not have any impact on the flood illuminator.
 
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GubbyMan

macrumors 6502
Apr 3, 2011
357
1,302
Disregarding the totally incorrect stuff about the IR output, where do you get your info on it stopping when auto is set to more than 30 secs?

Tried changing auto lock but it does not have any impact on the flood illuminator.

Don't have a source for IR output so don't trust my word on that. But I recorded a video using the FaceTime camera on my iPhone 5.
 
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SBruv

macrumors 6502a
Sep 25, 2008
630
287
Don't have a source for IR output so don't trust my word on that. But I recorded a video using the FaceTime camera on my iPhone 5.

Okay, so is that the VCSEL or the camera? If it was IR, wouldn’t it be, like, red..?
[doublepost=1511713258][/doublepost]
Okay, so is that the VCSEL or the camera? If it was IR, wouldn’t it be, like, red..?

And is that with Attention Awareness on or off?
 
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svish

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 25, 2017
639
972
Don't have a source for IR output so don't trust my word on that. But I recorded a video using the FaceTime camera on my iPhone 5.

Tried doing that but the situation is same.However I notice that the beam is not visible when I tried to see it using iPhone 6s. It is visible when I use my Samsung Galaxy S6 edge.
[doublepost=1511723436][/doublepost]
Okay, so is that the VCSEL or the camera? If it was IR, wouldn’t it be, like, red..?
[doublepost=1511713258][/doublepost]

And is that with Attention Awareness on or off?

I think VCSEL is used for Face ID. Anyway the light that was visible was white rays. If it is the front facing camera, then is there any reason why it should emit the beams when the iPhone is unlocked and is on home screen.

I had attention aware features turned off.
 
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GubbyMan

macrumors 6502
Apr 3, 2011
357
1,302
Okay, so is that the VCSEL or the camera? If it was IR, wouldn’t it be, like, red..?
[doublepost=1511713258][/doublepost]

And is that with Attention Awareness on or off?

Saying IR is red is like saying Green is Yellow, kinda. :)

Attention awereness was on but that shouldn’t matter since awareness is when you use Face ID. This is attention detection which is used to not auto lock when you are looking at it.

Tried doing that but the situation is same.However I notice that the beam is not visible when I tried to see it using iPhone 6s. It is visible when I use my Samsung Galaxy S6 edge.
[doublepost=1511723436][/doublepost]

I think VCSEL is used for Face ID. Anyway the light that was visible was white rays. If it is the front facing camera, then is there any reason why it should emit the beams when the iPhone is unlocked and is on home screen.

I had attention aware features turned off.

You can’t see IR on every camera. Some cameras have IR filters and some sensors can not register wavelength range less than visible red. In my case, I couldn’t use the iPhone 5 main camera so I switched to the front camera instead.

As I said before. The reason it emitts IR from the flood illuminator is because it always looks for your face so that it can tell when to lock the phone. Your iPhone will not lock if you just look at it even if you do not touch the screen. That’s why the IR is needed.
 
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Travelmate2300

macrumors newbie
Sep 25, 2018
5
4
The beam is looking exactly similar to when iPhone is unlocked using Face ID. So I think it is the flood illuminator. Can anyone check whether the same thing is happening.
yeah same thing on my iPhone Xs, the sensor light ( flood illuminator I believe) still projects as soon as the phone is active..this means the whole time you're looking at your iphone x even with face ID turned off.
 
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