How a Night Vision Camera Works

How a Night Vision Camera Works

Night vision cameras are a popular device that used for security and filming. In fact, because of night vision cameras, some lawbreakers who are sneaking in business offices and houses are captured by the authorities.

The unique capabilities of night vision cameras are very useful from the day of its existence until the present time.

The night vision feature can also be found in digital cameras. As a matter of fact, several shows and movies utilize this useful feature. For instance, the National Geographic Channel has shows that use night vision camera to film nocturnal animals. Other movies with scenes in dark places use night vision cameras as well.

Night vision has also been an essential feature not only to cameras but also to binoculars and goggles. These tools are usually used by those who are always keeping watch or patrols such as guards, the army, or undercover spies.

How a night vision camera works is an interesting question. Understanding how it works will widen our knowledge about devices with such feature and will even help us use the night vision feature in more efficient ways.

Mechanisms of a Night Vision Camera

Night vision works with the help of infrared. Therefore, to understand how night vision functions, we must first understand infrared.

Infrared is kind of light that has greater wavelengths than the visible lights. For this reason, it is invisible. If you notice, night vision cameras (such as CCTV cameras) have tiny translucent bulbs surrounding the camera. These bulbs are known as infrared lights. The infrared lights cast too much bright light, we just don’t see it.

On the other hand, the camera has a monochrome filter to convert the infrared light to colors that our eyes can define such as black and white.

Aside from infrared lights, night vision could also work through the use of intensifier tubes. Intensifier tubes are typically used in binoculars and digital cameras.

Intensifier tubes, in layman’s term, work by using the available light and amplifying it to give you a brighter, and lighter image despite low-light conditions. The intensifier tube is also being employed in scopes. They are also known as an image intensifier.

The image intensifier is usually built inside the scope or lens. It means you will not find any infrared light bulbs in areas surrounding the lens. Image intensifier offers several benefits. It improves the low-light sensitivity level of the camera, it creates a high-resolution image, and enhances the capability of the camera to identify people even in low-light areas.

However, image intensifiers depend only on available light to work correctly. Other cameras use an internal infrared filter.

Digital Cameras with Night Vision Feature

Digital cameras have improved from basic photo-capturing devices into a multipurpose multifunctioning camera. Some have added features to give you more access and control to your film.

These extra pack of features can even contribute to the success and beauty of your recording.

Here are some of the best cameras on the market that brags night vision feature:

Bell and Howell DNV16HDZ-BK

This camcorder is one of the finest in the market that has a night vision function. The camera is capable of filming 1080p HD video and can zoom optically 10x.

You can also capture images with its 16-megapixel camera. It also has a three-inch TFT LCD for convenience in reviewing photos and videos. The camcorder has an infrared night vision feature that will allow you to film continuously even in dark places or in low-light conditions. The LED light can also be useful for brightness and visibility.

Cleveland Paranormal Supply Co. Infrared Night Vision/Full Spectrum Camcorder

Cleveland Paranormal Supply Co.’s camcorder is a camera that can record videos in 1080p HD resolution and can switch from infrared to full spectrum mode with just a flick of a switch. This camcorder is one of the budget-friendly cameras that has a night vision function.

It can also accommodate a 64GB SD card for storage. The camera has a built-in Wi-Fi connectivity that will allow you to connect your smartphone to the device so you can have a wider, more intuitive and more convenience in controlling the camera.

Convert your Digital Camera to a Night Vision Camera

You read it right—you can turn your digital camera into a night vision camera. And we advise doing so with crappy, old model cameras, so you will not regret it in case you fail to do it. The method sounds easy, but we warn you to get professional help from the experts.

But if you think you can do it, then here’s how. First, open the casing and carefully remove the boards. Then, remove the CCD assembly while making sure you don’t damage the ribbon cable. Next, look for the IR-blocking filter.

There is no particular location to where you can find the IR-blocking filter, but you will know it when you see a tiny piece of glass that shows a blue reflection when viewed from a different angle.

As an alternative, an external LED flashlight can be helpful for adding brightness or light in dark conditions. Newer models of camcorders are equipped with LED flash. Smartphones and DSLR also have flash to provide quick lighting when necessary.


Cameras with the night vision feature indeed became a rockstar for filming as well as for security purposes. Most of us have trouble with our vision in dark places, and cameras with the night vision feature are the perfect devices that can give us eyes or sight in areas difficult to see.

So, if you’re planning to buy a camera for your next photography project, make sure to purchase one with excellent product performance both at night time and in the day. You do not have to worry about expensive cameras as there are some budget-friendly camcorders out there.

And if you do not have the money, then you can use your mom or dad’s old camera and upgrade it into an IR-camera. Just make sure you’d do it right!