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Top 10 Best Thermal Infrared Cameras In 2020 Reviews

Top 10 Best Thermal Infrared Cameras In 2020 Reviews
Top 10 Best Thermal Infrared Cameras In 2020 Reviews

Today we gather information about the top 10 best thermal infrared cameras in 2020. There are a lot of different terms thrown around when talking about thermal infrared cameras technology. You may have heard people refer to thermal infrared cameras, infrared imagers, IR sensors, thermographic cameras, infrared thermometers, heat cameras, or temperature guns. So, what’s the difference?

For the most part, all those terms describe the same technology.

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What Are Thermal Infrared Cameras?

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Thermal infrared cameras contain a sensor that translates infrared (IR) radiation generated by heat into a visual image showing the temperature variation of a surface. The resulting heat map can be extremely accurate and record the surface temperature of an object on a pixel-by-pixel basis without the need to make contact.

What Are Thermal Infrared Cameras Used For?

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  • Detecting pipe blockages
  • Identifying hot water and cold water pipes
  • Finding leaks in walls, ceilings, and concrete
  • Finding hidden pipes and drains


  • Identifying over-loaded circuits, wiring, and transformers
  • Finding hot or loose connections
  • Detecting multi-phase imbalances
  • Finding electrical insulation defects
  • Visualizing load distribution

Home & Building

  • Conducting energy efficiency testing
  • Detecting missing or defective in-wall insulation
  • Locating thermal bridges
  • Monitoring the drying of building materials
  • Detecting supply line faults
  • Finding sources of air leaks
  • Conducting moisture intrusion scans

Search & Rescue

  • Finding victims in smoke, fog, and haze
  • Identifying heat signatures in darkness
  • Detecting victims in the water
  • Searching large areas from a drone or aircraft

Automotive Safety

  • Detecting pedestrians in low-light conditions
  • Augmenting autonomous driving systems
  • Improving driving visibility

Important Features Of Thermal Infrared Cameras

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Thermal infrared cameras come in many different designs and offer a wide range of optional features. Listed below are other features that may matter to you.  No thermal infrared camera shave all of the following, so make sure you note the features that are important to your particular job or application.

Bluetooth and wireless connectivity in thermal infrared cameras let you send images to other devices such as computers, tablets, and smartphones, and they allow for real-time streaming – all without the need for Wi-Fi or cellular coverage. Thermal infrared cameras can be really helpful in situations where multiple people need to see the images at one time. If you work in a large team environment or use thermal imaging remotely, you will definitely want Wi-Fi connectivity.
File types used to store your images matter, too. The best thermal infrared cameras store images in common picture formats such as JPEG and MPEG4 video.
many higher-end thermal infrared cameras offer a wide-angle view, manually adjustable focus, or autofocus lenses.
Reflective Temperature, Emissivity, Temperature Range, etc.
Measurement Modes
Many options here. More expensive thermal infrared cameras can detect hot spots, let you create area boxes, display isotherm lines, identify hot/cold spots, display Delta temps, display mechanical or electrical data on the screen, find the center of a hot spot, and more.
Thermal Palettes
most professional thermal infrared cameras let you select different color palettes to work within the standards of your team
Image & Video Storage
there are several storage options, and very few thermal infrared cameras support them all. Make sure you select the right kind for your application. The most popular storage options include:
  • No Storage (live imaging only)
  • Device Storage (smartphone or other)
  • Micro SD
  • Cloud Storage: streamed to and stored on remote servers
  • Image Format(s): JPEG, PNG, Radiometric JPG, GIF, RAW are the most popular.

Video Camera w/Lamp & Laser:

to assist with pointing your thermal infrared camera sin dark environments.

Video Camera w/Lamp & Laser:

to assist with pointing your thermal infrared camera sin dark environments.

Digital Zoom:

some thermal infrared cameras offer digital zoom of 2X to 4X

Movable Spot:

the ability to identify hot spot(s) and track them automatically, as the camera moves.

Image Blending:

the ability to merge visible and thermal images together, to create a composite image.

Battery Life:

the most thermal infrared camera scans run on their batteries from as little as 2 hours up to several days.


smartphone IR cameras are typically warrantied for one year; industrial/professional thermal infrared cameras typically carry a 2-year or 2-5-10 limited warranty.

Buyers Guide: Points Need To Consider

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It can be overwhelming to buy infrared thermal cameras, today. This is because the specifications and capabilities of infrared thermal cameras vary greatly, and there are a lot of models to choose from.Once you understand what these key features actually mean to you, it’ll be easy to find the right one for your needs.

Camera or Imager

The first thing to consider is whether you need real infrared thermal cameras or just a real-time thermal imager. If all you need to do is view the temperature of something in real-time – and you don’t need to store the image for later – then you will be happy with an infrared thermal camera.
Infrared thermal cameras provide live temperature readings of the object you are viewing through the unit, but it does not store images. Infrared thermal cameras are perfect for checking for hot spots on equipment & construction sites, during routine maintenance visits.

Image Resolution

Just like a regular camera, the whole point of an infrared thermal camera is to capture a thermal image of the area or subject you are viewing, so make sure the camera resolution is precise enough for your particular need.
Some cheaper infrared thermal camera shaves very low resolution that makes it difficult to discern temperature differences in detail, leading to somewhat blurred images.

Screen Size

The larger the screen, the more detail you can see in real-time.
Infrared thermal cameras with larger screens often have touchscreen capabilities, as well.

Size and Weight

The size and weight of an IR camera can be an important factor if you use it frequently or have to carry it for long periods of time. Size also matters if you prefer to carry your thermal infrared cameras in a toolbox or on a tool belt.
The latest smartphone thermal infrared cameras like the  Seek Compact XR are incredibly popular right now, for this very reason. Both are small, lightweight, and snap onto your smartphone – which makes it easy to text/transfer/store images using a device you already use, all day long.


Temperature Range & Sensitivity

A thermal infrared camera temperature range and sensitivity are also critical for many applications.

Image Overlay

Features such as picture-in-picture and image fusion let you overlay a visible light image onto a thermal infrared camera image.
This creates a clearer and more meaningful image which is helpful in detecting heat issues in a complex space like a wiring box.
Image overlays also help to convey important information when showing thermal infrared cameras images to clients.

Best Thermal Infrared Cameras For Your Smartphone

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Thermal infrared cameras are no longer limited to expensive, dedicated handheld models. Thermal infrared cameras are now available as attachments for your smartphone.

The two best-selling and highest-rated smartphone thermal infrared camera son the market are the FLIR One for iOS and Android smartphones, and the Seek Compact for Android smartphones.

While the FLIR One lacks the temperature range and sensitivity of a conventional handheld IR unit, it’s still a highly-capable and super-convenient thermal infrared camera imager that can be used for a wide variety of tasks around the home and at work.

The High-Sensitivity Infrared Camera With An Integrated Stand

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If you need a high-sensitivity infrared camera with an integrated stand that can detect extremely subtle temperature differences, the high-sensitivity infrared camera with an integrated stand’s the camera for you. This camera is a high sensitivity, low noise, cooled thermal camera that excels at detecting faint heat signatures. the high-sensitivity infrared camera with an integrated stand is well suited to a wide range of applications, including use on test ranges, non-destructive testing, research, and science applications.

Handheld Thermal Camera

Get clear, accurate focus on objects near and far with a handheld thermal camera, or focus with laser speed and accuracy on your designated target with handheld thermal camera® Auto Focus. Easily navigate the menu and view images on a 3.5 inch or 5.7 inches, 640 x 480 LCD touchscreen. Get more from your handheld thermal camera with an optional 2x or 4x telephoto or wide-angle smart lens– no calibration required.
See incredible detail in your target with Super Resolution handheld thermal camera and up to 3.1 million pixels. Handheld thermal camera Navigate over, under, and around hard-to-reach objects with an articulating lens that rotates a full 240°. Easily view, annotate, edit, and analyze images on the large tablet-like screen. Through handheld thermal camera get advanced analytics such as streaming IR data and trend analysis.

Thermal Imager PCB Tester Machine For Smartphone Main Board Repair

Thermal imager PCB tester machine for smartphone main board repair is a new generation of maintenance equipment, which is the world’s first to use dual-spectral interleaved positioning technology. Through powerful PC-side intelligent analysis thermal imager PCB tester machine for smartphone main board repair, the use of intelligent algorithms, it can detect the motherboard chip operating temperature by the use of intelligent technology. By the normal/abnormal motherboard comparison analysis, the thermal imager PCB tester machine for smartphone main board repair can quickly and accurately identify problem chips, which can assist maintenance personnel in overhauling the problem board, greatly improve the efficiency and maintenance accuracy.

Frequently Asked Question

What should I look for when buying thermal infrared cameras?

10 things you need to know about infrared thermal cameras
Detector resolution indicates the number of detector pixels on the camera.
Temperature range. …
Lens options. …
Saving images and additional data. …
Color palettes. …
Color alarms. …
Emissivity and reflected temperatures.

How accurate are a infrared thermal camera?

Experts are now concluding that thermal imaging from a distance—including that in infrared thermal cameras that claim to detect fevers—may not be effective. The infrared thermal cameras typically only have an accuracy of +/- 2 degrees Celsius (approximately +/- 4 degrees Fahrenheit) at best.

Can an iPhone be used as infrared thermal cameras?

The FLIR ONE for iOS infrared thermal cameras, in combination with its free app, transforms your iPhone or iPad into a powerful thermal imager. … FLIR ONE works by showing you differences in heat energy, so you can detect and measure tiny changes in heat.

Can my phone camera see infrared?

And while our naked eyes can’t pick up on infrared light, the sensors in your phones and digital cameras can — essentially making the invisible visible. … The cell phone camera is more sensitive to light than human eyes are, so it “sees” the infrared light that is invisible to us.

Can a cell phone detect a hidden camera?

Hidden camera detector apps are available on your Android or iPhone or at a neighborhood security store. “A hidden camera detector can find a camera anywhere no matter how well it’s hidden. You just press the button, it shoots a little IR beam and you can see the reflection of any camera lens.

How far can thermal infrared cameras see?

A: All thermal infrared cameras are able to see the sun which is more than 146 million kilometers away from Earth.


Depending on the application, certain regulatory issues may drive the selection of thermal infrared cameras used in specific environments. Other purchasing considerations while choosing thermal infrared cameras include vendor reputation, availability of accessories, training, rapid service, and customer support.

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