The 10 Best Thermal Imaging Cameras

Sara Mandeed
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Looking for a thermal imager? Stop right there!

You have landed on the right page where you will learn what is the best thermal camera for you and your business.

The below list has been created after scouring the internet and doing our research.

The units below are the only ones worth your hard-earned money, as they have proven themselves against its competitors and they are the most reliable, best-rated, most reviewed and most commercially available.

The reviews come from actual users who purchased the thermal cameras and gave their honest opinion.

Each of the thermal camera reviews below has been hand picked by our team and we've made sure to include all the information you need to decide how powerful each of them are.

The most important information is how well do the thermoscopes detect a person's body temperature.

Keep in mind that the best infrared cameras in 2019 will detect a person's body temperature more accurately than their closest competitors, even though the pictures and video will be similar.

The differentiating factors between models are typically the ease of use, recording duration, picture and video quality (both IR and LCD), reticles (magnification), battery life, durability as well as the warranty and overall customer service experience.

NameCategoryProduct
FLIR TG165Best OverallFLIR TG165
FLIR TG56 Spot Thermal CameraBudget PickFLIR TG56 Spot Thermal Camera
FLIR E4 Compact Thermal Imaging CameraUpgrade PickFLIR E4 Compact Thermal Imaging Camera

1. FLIR TG165

Our rating: 9 / 10

FLIR TG165

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Easily captures photos or videos
  • Up to 112-degree detection with high-viewing angle
  • – Comes with 1 year warranty

Cons:

  • No auto-uploading capability
  • – Not water resistant
  • -Image freezes while battery is charging

2. FLIR ONE Pro

Our rating: 8 / 10

FLIR ONE Pro

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Pros:

  • Ideal for security purposes
  • Records video and takes pictures
  • Free app available on the App Store
  • Easy to use and intuitive controls
  • Reasonably priced, although not cheap

The FLIR ONE Pro is one of our recommended thermal imaging cameras and a strong contender for the best thermal cameras for home. FLIR’s thermal camera attachment is compatible with iOS and Android devices, so you can just attach the FLIR ONE to your phone and you’re ready to take the first heat signature.

The FLIR ONE also includes free thermal imaging apps that you can use to instantly upload thermal imaging videos, pictures, and any other heat signature you find straight to your device. The camera is easy to use, and it has a one-button auto on/off so you won’t be exposed to potentially dangerous situations.

3. Seek Thermal Reveal

Our rating: 8 / 10

Seek Thermal Reveal

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Pros:

  • Multiple temperature displays
  • Build quality
  • Support for Windows, Mac, and Android operating systems
  • Live device streaming via WiFi or Ethernet
  • Decently priced when compared to similar models
  • Backed by a one-year warranty
  • Compact & portable design with a wide array of supported accessories
  • Wide range of supported applications

Cons:

  • No SD card included in the package
  • Process images a little slowly
  • 16-bit color reproduction capability
  • No built-in GPS functionality

Seek Thermal Reveal is billed as a ruggedized, all-purpose thermal imaging camera with native support for Android. It is the only thermal camera that claims to be able to stream its video feed on your Android device simultaneously. That said, the Seek Thermal Reveal can be used with Microsoft’s Windows, Mac OS and other Linux distributions.

This outstanding thermal imaging camera uses an IR spectrum to detect thermal heat radiations which is invisible to the naked eye. By making these radiations visible, Seek Thermal Reveal makes it possible for you to take thermal images from easily accessible places that normally can’t be viewed without going to those places.

4. 220 x 160 IR Resolution Infrared Thermal Imager

Our rating: 8 / 10

220 x 160 IR Resolution Infrared Thermal Imager

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Pros:

  • This brand new infrared thermometer camera is a must have for construction site and electrician use! You will be able to save money by making your own electrical repairs and using this beneficial tool to find and fix the wiring in your home.

24-IR-Pixels, 2.8

The IR temperature camera is pocket size which makes it extremely convenient and easy to carry around. It's a complete portable thermal camera system which comes with protective case, adjustable cuffs and a mini tripod.

This digital camera can reach a distance of up to 16 yards and can be used in night vision mode to detect human's body temperature when his or her pulse is slow.

5. Flir C3

Our rating: 8 / 10

Flir C3

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Pros:

  • Compact design
  • AA batteries, so no recharging
  • Can point and shoot instead of looking at the screen
  • Lifetime FlirCare warranty

Cons:

  • Not the best in low-light settings
  • Unclear images directly after taking them

The FLIR C3 is one of the best thermal imaging cameras you can get. This is primarily because it’s extremely compact, which makes it ideal for travelers, adventurers, and first responders.

Thanks to the AA batteries, the battery life is pretty decent, and at night you can use this to navigate your campsite and keep watch. It’s small, but it still provides reasonably clear images, even in the dark.

6. Flir C2

Our rating: 8 / 10

Flir C2

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Pros:

  • Compact size
  • Professional-grade camera
  • Great image quality in various lighting conditions
  • Included FLIR Tools app
  • Great battery life
  • Low glow technology

Cons:

  • Short cord
  • No tripod mount
  • Low-end thermal camera

The Flir C2 camera has a small, compact build with a long list of interesting features. At a total weight of 13.56oz – including the rechargeable battery – this camera is light enough to carry around and use in various situations. The camera itself measures 4.8in x 2.5in x 1.1in and looks more like a thick pen than a traditional camera.

The lens is accompanied by a limited viewing angle of just 7°, so there’s an added benefit of carrying a tripod or monopod with you if you’re planning on shooting a subject that’s more than 45 feet away. The FLIR Tools app comes with some unique features as well. More on that later.

While the camera can’t be used to shoot videos, it offers 12MP resolution that allows you to take still shots at a magnification of up to 5:1. This feature is ideal for inspecting electronic devices like TV sets, computers, and other gadgets.

7. Seek Thermal CompactXR

Our rating: 7 / 10

Seek Thermal CompactXR

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Pros:

  • Lightweight and compact
  • Easy to set up and use
  • Affordable
  • Built-in FLIR Tools software

Cons:

  • A bit slow when taking pictures
  • Screen not very bright
  • Can’t take video

The Seek CompactXR is our top choice for the best thermal imaging camera for an iPhone. This device achieves what is considered a perfect balance between portability and performance. The camera has a long battery life and a durable construction that makes it ideal for outdoor use.

The Seek CompactXR is the go-to device for anyone who wants to measure temperature within their environment. If you’re looking to measure the temperature of various objects within a room or area, you’ll want to look for an infrared-based thermometer.

This thermometer can easily detect the temperature of a parked car in the sun or the temperature of a boulder in the shade. Based on your needs, this infrared thermometer compares favorably to larger, more cumbersome infrared thermometers on the market. The measurement is accurate enough to detect even the smallest changes in temperature.

8. FLIR E4 Compact Thermal Imaging Camera

Our rating: 7 / 10

FLIR E4 Compact Thermal Imaging Camera

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Easy-to-use controls
  • Compact and foldable
  • Inexpensive price
  • Most of the accessories included for free

Cons:

  • Battery life isn’t the best
  • Not super durable
  • Not suited for professional use

We’re very excited about our top pick as it’s a versatile tool that’s perfect for both hobbyists and professionals alike and you can use it for a wide variety of applications. The FLIR E4 compact thermal imaging camera consists of a high-resolution sensor that detects thermal emissions to reveal heat sources inside a home, or outdoors in the case of this product.

You can also use this camera to detect heat leaks in an electrical system or track hot spots and cold snaps throughout the day or in the night, or during various weather conditions. The LED display at the bottom of the FLIR camera lights up when it’s powered on and you can use it to select various modes and monitor the battery life.

9. FLIR TG56 Spot Thermal Camera

Our rating: 7 / 10

FLIR TG56 Spot Thermal Camera

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Excellent resolution (at 77K/RGB)
  • Fairly lightweight
  • Durable
  • Compact and ergonomic design
  • Easy to use and install
  • Small and portable
  • Comes with 24/7 support
  • Works well in various weather conditions

Cons:

  • Pricey
  • Requires an image-enhancing program such as FLIR Tools
  • Doesn’t work very well in low temperatures

Nothing is quite as appealing as the chance to discover things you haven’t before, especially at night. The FLIR TG56 Spot Thermal Camera gives you the ability to go beyond the natural way a human would use the night vision. It’s a thermal imaging camera which lets you see heat sources clearly even in complete darkness. This is also a fantastic tool to use in hunting and other related sports.

The FLIR TG56 is conveniently portable and can easily fit into a backpack. It’s ergonomic design is quite compact and weighs 2.65 pounds, which makes it lightweight to carry around. It’s perfect for use by sports enthusiasts or hunters who want to catch their prey at night. It has an excellent resolution and gives you crystal-clear images.

10. PerfectPrime IR0002

Our rating: 6 / 10

PerfectPrime IR0002

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Pros:

  • Sturdy and durable design
  • Exceptional build quality
  • Wide temperature range
  • Has a built-in night vision mode
  • Customizable color settings and visualization
  • Can support MicroSD cards up to 32 GB
  • USB and Battery chargeable

Cons:

  • Sketchy customer service
  • Has a weird smell
  • Have some problem with focusing

Resolution 320 X 240, IR Range from 8 ~ 14m, USB Interface, Storage MicroSD Card.

A family-owned company in China, PefectPrime is one of the leading infrared camera manufacturers. Their product listing contains six models which are manufactured by PefectPrime, and two models are branded under Etekcity.

Another notable feature of this thermal camera is that it is made from a zinc-aluminum alloy which is a step above most infrared cameras which are manufactured from plastic.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Which thermal imaging camera is the best?

Many of us are hoping to catch a purchasing opportunity as holiday prices begin to drop.

Thermal Imaging cameras have been preferred for its ability to detect invisible physical elements like hot spots during fires and overheated electrical systems. Now we are privy of a comparable technology that offers us the opportunity to see “heat” at a molecular level.

There are many thermal imaging cameras on the market, but even some of the best thermal cameras are cost prohibitive for most except those working in the field of security, military, or law enforcement.

Whether conducting research in science, inspecting a home for wood damage, inspecting your car or truck used for transport, or just looking for a great time, the following is our list of ten best thermal imaging cameras for 2018.

What should I look for when buying a thermal imaging camera?

There's a lot to consider when looking to purchase a thermal imaging camera. It's important to know; the temperature range it can detect, its resolution, and whether it requires a power source as well as its size.

All of these factors really affect your decision and the price of the camera. Here’s a quick look at what to consider when buying a thermal imaging camera.

How much should I spend?

What resolution is required?

How big is it?

How does it detect thermal energy?

Does it require a power source?

Does it have a display?

Do I buy on Amazon or from a wholesaler?

What thermographic camera brand is best?

Let's take a look at the key thermal imaging camera questions for the average person.

How much should I spend?

How much is a thermal imaging camera?

How accurate are thermal imaging cameras?

First of all, you should know that thermal imaging cameras are great for detecting when problems exist, as opposed to providing pinpoint accuracy of the problem.

The main flaw with most thermal imaging cameras today is that they aren't able to tell the exact source of a problem. The reason for this is that infrared radiation doesn't travel straight.

Due to convection currents and other variables, the heat isn't distributed evenly across each spot, hence the difficulty in pinpointing exact sources. Nevertheless, thermal imaging cameras can certainly point you in the right direction, which often is good enough when it comes to working with exposed pipes or areas beneath your house.

If a small crack is leaking a steady stream of water into the wall and it's difficult to locate, the thermal cameras are able to detect the exact location of the leak fairly accurately.

Conclusion

 Infrared thermal imaging cameras are very common nowadays, and they can be extremely helpful for contractors, electricians, or homeowners.

 When choosing a thermal imaging camera for your needs, there are quite a few things to keep in mind, such as infrared resolution, battery life, and the heat mapping software and/or manual options.

 In this article, we’ve compared and evaluated 10 of the best infrared cameras in the market right now, and have also included helpful buying tips for infrared cameras that may be helpful for you.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
FLIR TG165Best OverallFLIR TG165
FLIR TG56 Spot Thermal CameraBudget PickFLIR TG56 Spot Thermal Camera
FLIR E4 Compact Thermal Imaging CameraUpgrade PickFLIR E4 Compact Thermal Imaging Camera