The smartphone camera or a digital camera are the most common ways to capture pictures. However, these cameras are not always competent to capture the picture you want or provide the information that you need. For instance, if you want to measure the temperature difference between different objects, then only a thermal camera can do it.
Thermal cameras enable you to see things that cannot be seen in the visible light spectrum. They are ideal for spotting objects in poorly lit areas. But, there are several factors that you need to keep in mind while choosing the thermal camera for you. We have listed some factors to consider to make the job easier.
- Shape: The thermal cameras are available in several shapes. The most common shapes of these cameras are the cordless drill stand with a camera attached to the top. The second shape is the smartphone design which has a larger screen for display and the third shape are the ones that can be attached to the input port of the tablet or smartphone.
- Measurements: Some of the thermal cameras are simple units that can only detect the current heat settings of the objects. The higher-end models can detect different temperature settings of different objects in the same time frame.
- Screen Resolution: Screen resolution is an important quality to look out for when you are looking at thermal cameras. The better screen resolution will enable you to view and detect the images better.
The “Buying Guide” mentioned later in the article gives more details on the factors to consider. In this article, we have listed the best products with their eminent features, advantages, and disadvantages. Read on to know all about them.
Best Thermal Imaging Camera Chart
Best Thermal Imaging Camera Reviews
This thermal imaging camera allows you to convert your tablet or smartphone into a 206 X 156 pixel thermal sensor for personal use at home or at work. It helps to detect and fix problems easily that are not visible to the naked eye, such as water damage, mechanical and electrical failures, energy loss and several other heat-related troubles.
The tool is an ideal partner for engineers, builders, contractors, and DIY homeowners. It saves energy and power as it does not require charging or batteries. It enables 360-degree field of view, less than 9 Hz of frame rate, detection range of -40F to 626F, focusable lens, spot temperature, capture videos and photos, low-high temperature, 9 colour palettes and threshold modes. On top of that, the manual focus dial offers precision and control over thermal imagery.
The product has a detection distance of 1000 feet and comes with an included waterproof case. It is very simple to use and does not have any difficult functions.
- Resolution: 206 X 156
- Detection Range: -40°F to 626°F
- Frame Rate: <9 Hz
- Compatible with all android devices.
- Does not require charging or batteries.
- 360-degree view.
- 9 colour palettes to choose from.
- Not compatible with models less than iOS 9.0.
HTI ensures high-resolution imagery with the 3.2” complete colour display screen that shows visible light imagery and thermal detection in 220 X 160 resolution which enables the user to see the full range of imagery.
This camera allows you to choose the perfect colour scale from 5 different palettes, that is, white and black, black and white, cold colour, red, iron and rainbow. You do not need to purchase any extra storing device as this comes with an in-built 3 GB SD card that helps to store the recordings and revisit them later on the laptop or smartphone. Further, it is great for electronic manufacturing fields, farming, traffic, archaeology, fire-fighting and home inspection.
It has a comfortable and lightweight grip that can be carried anywhere without hassle. The brand also offers a 60-day money-back warranty and a 24-month warranty with lifetime technical support.
- Resolution: 220 X 160
- Detection Range: -4°F to 572°F
- Frame Rate: 9 Hz
- High-resolution imagery.
- 5 different palettes.
- In-built 3 GB SD card.
- Comfortable and lightweight.
- Some people had issues with the battery life.
Noyafa has launched a new thermal camera that features several thermal imaging modes like the dual light fusion mode, infrared edge detection mode, and infrared mode.
This camera also enables intelligent temperature measurement that shows several colour responses according to distinct environmental measurements. The shooting function is made simpler as it does not require any particular setting interface. Also, the black centre point on the screen shows the temperature value of the point; the numerical value is shown in the lower-left corner of the screen of the device.
While the red dot in the screen shows the maximum temperature of the whole capture, while the numeric value is shown in the upper left corner of the screen. Next, the green dot shows the lowest temperature of the screen, and the numeric value is shown on the right colour board of the screen.
The accuracy and great detail of the whole picture are easy to read with a better 220 X 160 resolution. This professional quality IR thermal imagery is good for electronic manufacturing, farming, fire fighting, home inspections, and other businesses.
- Resolution: 32 X 32
- Detection Range: -10°C to 400°C
- Frame Rate: <9Hz
- 3 different imaging modes.
- Simple shooting function.
- Easy reading and accuracy.
- Professional quality camera.
- Some people received products with dead batteries.
This camera by URPRO features a 2.4” wide viewing angle colour screen that has a resolution of 60 X 60/ 3600 pixel of the infrared image. Moreover, it has a 0.3 MP visible image capturing quality.
The working efficiency of this thermal camera is improved by combining the function of real-time thermal image and the surface temperature measurement. Accuracy and precision is ensured with the reflection background compensation and adjustable radiation coefficient.
This also helps to improve the semi-reflective surface accuracy measurement. Further, the camera has a large display with 5 adjustable colour palettes like white and black, black and white, cold colour, iron oxide red, and rainbow.
It is a multi-usage product that can be used for electronic manufacture, smelting, energy, geology, agriculture, transport, archaeology, firefighting, medical treatment, etc.
- Resolution: 60 X 60
- Detection Range: -20°C to 300°C
- Frame Rate: 6Hz
- 60 X 60 pixels resolution.
- Enhanced working efficiency.
- Accurate and precise.
- Multi-purpose product.
- People had issues with no return policy.
Both in accuracy and usage, this thermal camera is second to no other. The high resolution of 256 X 192 ensures great-quality images with crystal-clear details.
This thermal camera also comes with an in-built digital camera that can be used to capture images. Thermal and visual imaging makes it easy to identify the object. Also, the camera allows 4 different display modes that provide epic visible blends and good speed. There are 7 colour palettes to choose from: black heat, lava, iron oxide red, rainbow, white heat, red heat, and high contrast rainbow.
The data can be saved in the in-built 16 GB SD card that can store up to 50,000 thermal images. The brand also offers an 18-month warranty.
- Resolution: 256 X 192
- Detection Range: -4°F to 1022°F
- Frame Rate: 25 Hz
- Crystal clear, great-quality images.
- In-built digital camera.
- 7 different colour palettes.
- In-built 16 GB SD card.
- People had trouble claiming the warranty.
Hikmicro has come up with a superior image quality thermal camera with the infrared resolution of 256 X 192. It features a thermal sensitivity sensor detecting less than 0.04-degree centigrade.
This camera offers HD image quality with full-screen temperature measurement. It also has a 5 colour palette option and 4 image viewing options that blend with B10, offering PIP, fusion, optical and thermal image modes that are enhanced by 2 MP visual light camera. Additionally, this device is perfect for mechanical and electrical inspections, HVAC troubleshooting, facility maintenance, water damage, air leak, missing insulation, home inspections, etc.
The thermal camera has a compact design with rich features and an in-built Li-ion battery that is rechargeable. The company offers a 3-year warranty.
- Resolution: 256 X 192
- Detection Range: -4°F to 1022°F
- Frame Rate: 25 Hz
- Thermal sensitivity sensor less than 0.04-degree centigrade.
- HD quality image.
- 5 colour palettes.
- 4 imaging options.
- The instructions with the device are not very clear.
Things To Consider When Buying The Best Thermal Imaging Camera
There are some distinct features of thermal cameras that are common for all the models. However, there are some features that vary to a great level and these are the factors that you need to consider when you are looking for the best thermal imaging cameras.
One of the most eminent factors when looking for a thermal camera is the shape that it is available. Some of them are not as visible as DSLR cameras or light cameras. There are some models of thermal cameras that are similar to the handle of the cordless drill with a camera unit attached at the top.
If you pull the trigger while holding the handle, these cameras start recording and display the image on the back screen of the camera. Other models are shaped similarly to a smartphone. They are usually larger in size and have a clearer and sharper display quality. The final option is when the thermal camera can be simply attached to the input port of the phone or tablet. This enables the user to directly view the recordings on the phone’s display.
Some thermal cameras have a simple design, and they are capable of only measuring the current heat signature of the focused objects. They are also incapable of storing any data. However, there are advanced models that can capture multiple measurements of the scene and store the data.
These models also allow you to adjust the temperature settings for different objects at low, medium, or high over a period of time in a particular scene. It can also help to detect whether any part of the device is overheated regularly. Some of the modern models also allow the user to set an alert when some part gets overheated regularly.
The thermal camera’s screen resolution can play an important role when it comes to the enjoyment factor or the fun part of the thermal camera. When the cameras feature a large screen with better resolution, the user gets a clearer picture of the capture. This helps to make it simpler to identify the shapes or detect the problem easily.
On the other hand, the cameras with smaller screens and lower resolution are the cheaper alternatives. They show a general view of the temperature differences within the scene, however, the images are not that sharp. If you are just using the thermal camera for a draft around a window and door, then the low-resolution cameras are enough.
You can look for a thermal imaging camera that can easily measure high temperatures effortlessly. The only drawback is that these thermal cameras cost way more than you can imagine. But, these cameras can capture temperatures that are more than even 500 F or even higher.
Thermal cameras are not something that you would like to invest in regularly. So, you need to look for those models that can tolerate harsh weather conditions and are durable against sudden shocks.
Frequently Asked Questions
Ans: The thermal profile means the temperature of a particular object in the scene in comparison to the surrounding elements. For the thermal profile, the warmest object in the capture will be white in colour while other objects will be grey in colour or colours in accordance.
Ans: These cameras are capable of measuring the heat from the objects in the scene in comparison to the surrounding objects. These cameras, however, cannot measure the temperature of the objects through any building or glass.
Ans: The law enforcement makes use of thermal cameras to track the accused hiding or running. The military also uses these cameras for the same reason. It can also be used for security purposes at night. On top of that, it can be used for fun artwork.
Ans: Night goggles enhance the visible light of the surroundings, which requires a different technology than the ones that the thermal cameras use.
Ans: The thermal cameras can work during the day as well as at night. They just capture the light that is not visible.
With this guide at your disposal, choosing the best thermal imaging camera will be like a walk in the park. We have listed all the criteria that you need to know to buy the best thermal imaging camera. Therefore, you must apply these considerations when buying the best cameras. If you still have doubts, you can write to us in the comments section below.
- If you are here for the recommendations, we have listed the top three favourites from the list. The first recommendation is Seek Thermal Imaging Camera. It is compatible with all Android devices and saves electricity and power.
- The second suggestion from the list is a Hti-Xintai Thermal Imaging Camera. It offers high-resolution imagery and 5 different palettes.
- The third and final suggestion from the list is NOYAFA Thermal Imaging Camera. It features 3 different imaging modes and has a simple shooting function