Subscriber Discussion

Panasonic PTZ Camera With Rain Wash Coating?

What does everyone think of this new camera from Panasonic with Rain Wash Coating.

Has anyone tried any of the after market coatings? This also might be a good subject for IPVM to test in the future.

Pretty interesting claims. Here's their marketing video:


I did notice it has a possible problem with wearing off. One of the videos state not to "wipe off" the outside dome if coated with this rain coating. This leads me to think it has a limited life and could be worn off in time.

This has resulted in major rebates/discounts of the SW396 this summer. Get them while they last.

Jeffrey, can you expand? The rain wash coating directly resulted in major rebates/discounts? Is that because it had problems or?

Yes, I work for Panasonic, the coating has a lifespan of about 7 years, you cannot touch it or wipe it, if you do then the area touched acts like a normal dome, I.e. the water won't just flatten where it has been touched.

we have only just launched it in Australia where I'm based, a lot of interest from stadiums, councils, government etc, as it does work very well. There are warnings around the dome saying not to touch and the installation manual says this too, along with a very large dome cover that is the last thing to remove at install.

hopefully people will read before attempting to clean it, but like I say, if not then the dome still works like a normal one.

Fraser, thanks for the explanation!

It seems kind of hard to prevent someone from eventually touching or wiping it, no?

Hi John, yes, I think you are right in that sometime someone will touch it, despite the warnings, what we are promoting here is that this is a good option if the camera is going to be high up and in hard to reach places. as it's self cleaning the rain should be enough to keep it from requiring cleaning, however, if no rain and it is dusty then the idea is for someone to just spray it with water.

even my demo cameras have been touched, I was demonstrating it at an event only 2 weeks ago, and despite me saying please don't touch the dome (we had it on a tripod) numerous times, of course one integrator just had to place his finger on it, he denied it but the video evidence and my eyesight said something very different

hopefully, once installed it shouldn't need to be touched.

i should add that the SW396 (720p) is available with or without rain wash, but the new SW598 (1080p) will only be with rain wash, but please push to test one of these, it really is a great camera.

If the 'coating' is delicate enough to be disturbed by contact, what type of warranty do these products come with?

It could be an installer's worst nightmare to flub up the coating of a few cameras and then eat the cost. By the same token, it could be a manufacturer's worst nightmare to RMA product due to nothing more than 'fingerprints'.

Brian, the warranty is the same as the rest, if the dome is damaged due an installer not reading the instructions then its not going to be covered. I certainly understand your concerns and here in Australia we are being cautious at the moment, but I believe the positives of the rain wash outweigh the negatives, just have to make sure you have good installers, which I'm sure you all are :-)

it can be replaced but here in Australia it is in return to base fix, it cannot be be done on sight.

For the sake of full disculosure, I also work for Panasonic. I'm a skeptic by nature, so I had to play with this dome. No-touching rules aside, this thing is pretty cool. My completely scientific test - splattering the dome with some of my triple venti hazlenut macciato to see what would happen - was completely successful. A little water and it ran right off. Fun stuff....

Thank Duncan for starting this. I was interested in Panasonic's rain wash coating the first time i saw it during ISC WEST this year. One of my customer actually has experienced this rain-sticky-on-bubble issue which prevented him from seeing clealy. And we have been seeking this type of material, either a nano-coated bubble or some material that can be spayed to the bubble to repel water and dirt. Panasonic's rain-wash coating is definetely a great solution, but as everybody can see its drawback - no touch.

So i was wondering besides this bubble coating technology, what other solutions may we have to achieve the same effect? like some kind of water-repeling spaying material or adding a shiled above PTZ dome to prevent rain drops...

CC. John, if this is not a good place to discuss other solutions, let me know if i should start a new topic.

Sure, if anyone has any alternative products or techniques for dealing with rain, feel free to share.

Btw, we have a similar discussion on this recently with some recommendations.

I would like to add to this that if the bubble is touched all it does is become non rain wash in that area, so just like a normal ptz, it doesn't smear.

WTI claims that their "hydrophilic" glass has inherent water repelling properties, which, if accurate, would mean it isn't subject to smearing or wearing off. Anyone know anything about this?

From the looks of it, even WTI's product is coated or entrained with a surfactant coating (Titanium Dioxide or Siloxane). I'm no chemist, but I do remember those are organic compounds, and when something is organic it will oxidise or reduce upon exposure.

Because of that, I'd say the effectiveness of hydrophillic glass also becomes less over time. How that correlates to Panasonic's coating remains unclear.

Is this something you can add to an existing camera? Or is this something that is applied at the factory? Or is the dome made differently?

because the domes are vulnerable to hit. wind sand or dusty rain deteriorate or not the dome?