What you should know before buying a thermal camera

When it comes to the purchasing of any product, we often tend to focus on three major aspects; quality, cost and usability.

However, when it comes to purchasing a thermal camera, there are a few more things we need to take into account before we make our decision.  

Factors to consider when choosing your next thermal camera

To do this, we have put together a list of 6 factors to consider when purchasing your next thermal camera.

Factor 1: A thermal camera that fits your needs.

As the first factor, we thought we would start with the most important one. Purchasing one that fits your needs. Having a thermal camera is an important tool for a wide variety of tasks such as machine condition monitoring and plant safety and monitoring. 
This is why it is important to fully understand your needs for the thermal imaging camera.

Here are some questions to ask when picking your next thermal camera

1. What areas am I trying to monitor? 

2. Does it need to be fixed or portable? 

3. Do I need easy access to the images on hand?

Once the questions have been asked, it is easier to identify the thermal imaging camera that best suits your needs. 

Factor 2: A Thermal Camera with Easy Access to Data

There is nothing worse than collecting data and not being able to access it easily and painlessly. That is why we recommend choosing a camera that not only allows you to access your images easily but also saves them easily as well.

We even suggest looking at one with Wifi capabilities with access to software that all images are directly uploaded to. Looking for more information. The Yellotec team would be more than happy to help answer your questions and give you the best advice. 

Factor 3: The Battery Life & Type of Recharging

Once you have an understanding of your thermal image needs, it would give you an idea of the type of battery that you would need. This will determine the type of camera to look for.

When considering a camera based on battery type & life, these are some of the qualities to look at.

  • Time: How long does the battery last and how long does it take to charge?

  • How easy is it to charge? Is it a removable battery or a charging cable that goes straight into the camera? Which would be a good option when looking at a camera that will need to be fixed.

  • Is battery replacement easy? If needed. Could the battery be replaced easily and accessible or would it have to be taken to a specialist and have to be opened to replace the battery?

  • Does a battery icon show? There is nothing more frustrating than going to work and having to stop because the camera turned off due to a flat battery because there was no way to identify if the battery was fully charged.

Factor 4: The Specs of the Thermal Camera.

When deciding on a Thermal Imaging Camera, it is important to look at the capabilities of the camera. But sometimes this can be a bit overwhelming when we aren’t quite sure what to look for. This is why we have given a little breakdown of some of the capabilities that can be focused on when choosing your right camera. 

Range: When selecting a camera, we suggest looking at one with a controllable temperature range, perhaps one that automatically selects the range based on your scene. Being able to control the temperature range is a great way to monitor when something is not quite right.

Resolution: Having a camera with the best detail and image quality that suits your needs is important. And having a camera with a strong resolution is beneficial to this. This Resolution is made of pixels which are little blocks that are used to make an image. The higher the pixels, the higher the quality of the image.

Focus: This is a specification that will vary on your needs. When looking at the focus, you have three options.
Fixed: This means that we won’t have to make adjustments to obtain the focus.
Manual: Where the user adjust the focus of the camera
Auto-focus: Which focuses automatically based on what it can see for contrast on the scene.

Colour Palette: Having a Thermal Image Camera with multiple Palettes is highly beneficial for monitoring and finding obvious anomalies. This is why it should be easy to change the palettes either on the camera or on the software.

Field of View: Field of View determines the extent of a scene seen by the camera at any given moment. For work being done close-up, you need a lens with a wide-angle FOV (45° or higher). For long-distance work, you need a telephoto lens (12° or 6°). Some cameras may be available with multiple lenses for different applications. 

Factor 5: Technical Support & Training

And lastly, when choosing a Thermal Imaging Camera, it is so important to purchase from a reputable manufacturer or supplier who has a post-sale customer support service as well as training for when those moments occur where you just cannot get it to monitor exactly how you want.

Or when a production error occurs, which does happen, and you can contact the manufacturer and the problem can be rectified.

Wrapping it up.

We hope that you found this article about what you need to consider when choosing a thermal imaging camera helpful and informative. If you need to know any more information about thermal cameras, or you are still unsure which one to choose from. Why not give the yellotec team a shout and we will assist you in any way we can.

Yellotec strives to offer the most effective and efficient technology in all machine health and reliability monitoring equipment. As well as providing services and training that help plant and equipment managers to predict all failures as well as prevent major failures in the future.

Are you looking for more information, want to purchase a product or require our service? You can either visit us, call us, email us or save yourself the hassle and send us an enquiry and we will contact you instead. Visit our Contact Us page here.

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