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Cheap Thermal Imaging Camera Reviews 2020- Expert’s Guide

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Thermal imaging cameras play a crucial role in working on heat loss delivering visual and technical representation. With this camera, you can view leaks and temperatures through the optical display. Once you get a camera with a unique thermal imaging capacity, you will understand your leaks’ origin. That is why you need to get a cheap thermal imaging camera if you want the best diagnosis. It is a worthwhile investment that will make you reap great benefits in the end.

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The prices of thermal imaging cameras have not always been low in the past decades. However, all these have changed mostly because of technological advancement that has led to price drops over the years. The market today offers an array of cost-friendly yet powerful thermal imaging cameras for electrical wiring as well as piping. This camera can be used during a home inspection to detect any heat sources.

Why Is Thermal Imaging Important?

Thermal imaging is important because it helps in skillfully visualizing what the naked eye cannot see. This process entails the use of infrared cameras to detect thermographic images. Through that, any areas that need to be worked on are identified hence preventing any future mess. Using thermal imaging cameras, you can be able to identify heat emission brought about by faulty equipment.

Cheap Thermal Imaging Camera

Incorporating thermal imaging ensures that you do not carry out unceasing maintenance measures. In the long run, this guarantees efficiency as well as eliminating emergencies. Thermal imaging is beneficial to companies mostly because it helps in identifying and solving any faults. Undertaking preventive measures through thermal imaging is the best choice rather than facing harsh consequences.

Table of Content:

Comparison Chart:

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EDITOR'S RATING

DETAILS

220 x 160 Thermal Imaging Camera, Pocket-Sized Infrared Camera

Seek Thermal Reveal – Ruggedized, All-Purpose Thermal Imaging Camera

FLIR TG165 - Spot Thermal Camera

Seek Thermal Compact-All-Purpose Thermal Imaging Camera

FLIR ONE Gen 3 - Android (USB-C) - Thermal Camera

5 Cheap thermal Imaging Camera Reviews 2020

For decades, thermal imaging cameras have not been available due to their high cost. However, as different companies emerged, affordable imaging cameras were developed, making it possible to find a cheap thermal imaging camera in the market. The entry of cost-friendly thermal imaging cameras has been a game-changer because now they can be purchased without cost limitation. This review will discuss the top five cheap thermal imaging cameras that can carry out building inspections conveniently in this review. You will get to understand the various features that make each device unique. Let us get started.

1. 220 x 160 Thermal Imaging Camera, Pocket-Sized Infrared Camera with Real-Time Thermal Image

220 x 160 Thermal Imaging Camera, Pocket-Sized Infrared Camera with Real-Time Thermal Image

The 220 x 160 Thermal Imaging Camera is perfect for builders and contractors who require a pocket-sized thermal camera. Its excellent 35,200-pixel infrared resolution produces the best images with high-resolution. It comes with powerful infrared thermography that speeds up troubleshooting.

The best part about this thermal imaging camera is intuitive icons that make it quick to operate. This real-time thermal image camera has automotive applications that enable you to inspect different electric components quickly. The infrared camera on this device detects areas with underlaying issues in a quick manner.

This thermal imagine camera only weighs 208g hence enabling you to carry around with ease. Besides, it produces five different color palettes that deliver better and easy details. Therefore, if you are looking for the best inexpensive thermal camera with high resolution, this is the one you should opt for.

220 x 160 Thermal Imaging Features:

  • This thermal imaging camera features a remarkable 35,200-pixel infrared resolution that produces quality images.
  • The powerful infrared thermography of this imaging camera is vital in speeding up troubleshooting.
  • An imaging camera with automotive applications that allows you to inspect electric components quickly.
  • The infrared camera featured on this imaging camera quickly works to checks on areas having underlaying issues.
  • A pocket-sized thermal camera that weighs only 208g, meaning you can move around with it at ease.

2. Seek Thermal Reveal – Ruggedized, All-Purpose Thermal Imaging Camera

Seek Thermal Reveal – Ruggedized, All-Purpose Thermal Imaging Camera

Seek Thermal Reveal is designed to be the best thermal imaging camera for electrical inspections. It can detect and fix any mechanical and electrical issues in no time. Its thermal camera with a 206 x 156 thermal sensor quickly translates thermal energy into a visible image.

This blue – RW-AAA is perfect for use in the field, coming with a 300-lumen rechargeable LED flashlight that can be used for 10 hours non-stop. It is the right tool for engineers and contractors fitted with durable rubberized casing. This advanced thermal imaging camera incorporates exceptional powerful thermal insight for top-notch performance.

This device can be used for outdoor purposes having a detectable range of -40F° to 626°F. With this all-Purpose Thermal Imaging Camera, you can pinpoint precise heat sources and losses up 500 feet through the button provided. You can capture photos and save the thermal images directly to the MicroSD card provided.

Seek Thermal Reveal Features:

  • This thermal imaging camera comes with a 300 lumen LED flashlight that can last for 10 hours thanks to its rechargeable battery.
  • A thermal camera with a 206 x 156 thermal sensor is meant to translate thermal energy into a visible image easily.
  • This advanced thermal imaging camera features remarkable, powerful thermal insight for outstanding performance.
  • A device that can be used for outdoor purposes because of its detectable range feature of -40F° to 626°F.
  • It comes with a MicroSD card to enable you to capture photos and save thermal images.

3. FLIR TG165 – Spot Thermal Camera – with 2-Meter Drop Durability for Your Toughest Jobs

FLIR TG165 – Spot Thermal Camera – with 2-Meter Drop Durability for Your Toughest Jobs

The FLIR TG165 Spot Thermal Camera is designed with FLIR’s exclusive Lepton micro thermal sensor, that allows you to detect the heat. This way, you are in a better position to know precisely measure the temperature without failing. The HVAC applications found in this device ensure that you troubleshoot HVAC problems efficiently.

Using the handle high temp applications of this thermal imaging camera, you can take measurements of hot spots up to 716° F safely at a distance. This is why it is the best handheld thermal imager that you can operate and use at a safe distance with a 24:1 spot size ratio. It also enables you to locate cold spots presenting the thermal image right on the screen.

For streamlined documentation, an 8GB removable micro-SD card and USB are availed to download and store images. This enables you to create detailed reports quickly and easily. You can use this imaging camera without any training because it is intuitive to operate. This imaging camera’s rugged nature makes it durable, and you can also mount it to the tripod from the tripod stand provided.

FLIR TG165 Features:

  • The FLIR Thermal Camera features FLIR’s Lepton micro thermal sensor that allows you to see the heat and measure it.
  • You can precisely measure hot spots up to 716° F safely from a distance through the handle high temp applications.
  • It comes with an 8GB micro-SD card and USB cable for store data and images captured hence achieving streamlined documentation.
  • This thermal imaging camera features automotive applications that allow you to compare brake rotor temperatures and troubleshooting.
  • An imaging camera with rugged construction makes it durable and compact, meaning a simple fall cannot damage it.

4. Seek Thermal Compact-All-Purpose Thermal Imaging Camera for Android USB-C

Seek Thermal Compact-All-Purpose Thermal Imaging Camera for Android USB-C

The Seek Thermal Compact imaging camera features a thermal sensor offering a high resolution of 206 x 156. This is the highest resolution offered, far better than any smartphone available. Through this exceptional sensor, you can identify problems that the naked eye can bypass.

This Thermal Imaging Camera for Android USB-C enables you to change your smartphone into an all-purpose thermal camera. It is the best thermal camera for Android. Using this device, you can detect temperatures from -40 degrees F- 626 degrees F thanks to the detection range feature provided. This imaging camera detects a 36° field of view, making it possible to translate thermal energy into a visible image.

A pocket-sized waterproof carrying case is included to keep your thermal sensor protected at all times. Surprisingly, you do not need to charge this device or use batteries; plug it in your phone, and it is ready for use. You can also capture photos & videos using this device through the thermal camera provided.

Seek Thermal Compact Features:

  • The Seek Thermal imaging camera is equipped with a thermal sensor with the highest resolution of 206 x 156.
  • A thermal imaging camera that does not come with a battery nor charger. It works by plugging it into your phone hence working automatically.
  • It comes with a waterproof case that is pocket-sized to keep the thermal sensor well protected.
  • This imaging camera allows you to enhance your smartphone to function as an all-purpose thermal camera.
  • The detection range feature incorporated in this device enables you to detect temperatures from -40 degrees F to 626 degrees F.

5. FLIR ONE Gen 3 – Android (USB-C) – Thermal Camera for Smart Phones – with MSX Image Enhancement Technology

FLIR ONE Gen 3 – Android (USB-C) – Thermal Camera for Smart Phones – with MSX Image Enhancement TechnologyThe FLIR ONE thermal camera is exceptional in that it enables you to have a better view of the world. Through the MSX Image Enhancement Technology, you can detect problems, whether in the daytime or dark. This is because the technology blends a visible spectrum and thermal to ensure improved resolution. Visualization is achieved using the lens of the FLIR ONE.

You can use the free enhanced FLIR ONE App to view how thermal imaging is evolving day by day continuously. This mobile app comes with unique content and real-time information. Besides that, this thermal imaging device has been constructed in a way that you can change your Android device into the best thermal infrared camera. All these features make this device the best budget thermal imaging camera worth your money.

The Onefit adjustable-height connector is another feature of the FLIR ONE camera that enables you to adjust this device’s length. The FLIR ONE also comes with a USB-C version for Android that allows you to take pictures as you flip the camera for your preference. Additionally, you can measure temperature variances of -4F to 752 F using the FLIR ONE.

FLIR ONE Gen 3 Features:

  • FLIR ONE Gen 3 incorporates MSX Technology, enabling you to detect any problem both day and night.
  • The improved FLIR ONE app featured enables you to access information regarding thermal imaging.
  • It features an adjustable height-connector that allows you to make length adjustments to ensure it attaches to phone cases.
  • This thermal imaging device comes with a USB-C version for Android to enable you to take pictures as you flip the camera conveniently in any direction.
  • Through this device, you can measure temperature variance accurately from ±3°C or ±5%.

Benefits of Thermal Imaging Cameras

Thermal imaging is a powerful technology meant to offer the human vision electromagnetic spectrum beyond what the naked eye can fathom. That is why thermal imaging cameras are a worthy investment in this century because of the vast benefits they offer. Thermal imaging cameras can be used to offer different solutions in various settings without compromise.

Some of the benefits of thermal imaging cameras include;

  • Accurate temperature measurements – Thermal imaging cameras are entirely precise in taking temperature measurements of machines. This can be done from a distance because each imaging camera comes with a temperature detection range. The application of this feature is what guarantees accuracy at all times. This device can capture all of the temperatures of areas you encounter in a precise manner.
  • Leak detection – A thermal imaging camera can detect several leaks, including insulation, air, and moisture leaks. By using a sensitive camera, you can point out air leaks in pressurized systems. This device detects moisture leak the moment there is a temperature difference. You can also use this device to check weaknesses in insulation to prevent further damage.

Saving cost – Having a thermal imaging camera means that you want to avoid incurring any costs in the near future. This is because this device detects a problem before it occurs hence saving you a lot of money. What this thermal imaging camera offers is predictive maintenance that ends up lower. A thermal imaging camera is compact and durable, meaning you will not keep spending money to buy a replacement.

  • Security and protection – Thermal imaging cameras offer the best solution on the market today regarding security and protection. They are ideal, especially for those businesses that require top-notch security. Therefore, if you need an outstanding security level, you have to invest in a thermal imaging camera. You will not get disappointed, and you will also receive great value for your money.
  • Ease to operate – Though technologically advanced, this is one of the easy to operate systems. You do not need any training to use a thermal imaging camera. You can operate it efficiently with one hand because it is compact and light. This device comes in handy in detecting a number of things; hence knowing that you can use it easily is a great advantage.

Frequently Asked Question

How much does a thermal imaging camera cost?

There is no specific price for a thermal imaging camera because they all have different prices. There are costly ones as well as those that are expensive. Hence, the cost will highly depend on your budget and the features you want in the device.

Can you hide from thermal imaging?

Yes, it is quite possible to hide from thermal imaging. This can be achieved by hiding behind something that prevents the detection of the signal.

Does aluminum foil block thermal imaging?

Aluminum foil can block thermal imaging by blocking its heat signature behind it.

Can I use my iPhone as a thermal camera?

An iPhone can be used as a thermal camera because it can detect both heat and energy without using fake filters.

Final Thought

Thermal energy is not visible to the naked eye, so we need to have thermal imaging cameras. These devices are designed in such a way that they can detect any technical error before it escalates further. They are used during home inspections to detect any air leaks or heat sources. Some decades ago, finding an affordable thermal imaging camera was not possible. However, this has changed because you can now grab yourself a cheap thermal imaging camera in the market today. This does not mean that the quality is compromised; on the contrary. They are designed with the latest technology to deliver the best and for optimum performance.

Having discussed the top five cheap thermal imaging cameras, I would choose the FLIR ONE Gen 3 – Android (USB-C) – Thermal Camera for Smart Phones. This stands out as the best cheap thermal imaging camera, mostly because of the MSX image enhancement technology. None of the other devices have this incredible feature. Besides that, this device features a free FLIR ONE app that allows you to access thermal imaging information. This ensures that you remain in toes as technology advances.

About the author

Richard Bevill

Hi, I am Richard Bevill, I am a businessman and tech-blogger. I have a shop where I sell different types of thermal image cameras and their related accessories. Because of my business, I have to face so many clients of thermal image camera users. During my business hours, I find that many of my clients face difficulties with uses, maintenance, not getting the exact amount of service, buying the wrong one. All those problems they face because of their lack of knowledge about thermal image cameras. 

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