Trying to figure out what the best thermal cameras are for ghost hunting? Well, you have come to the right place. In this article, I will be discussing what thermal imaging are, how they work, and the best ones for ghost hunting. All experienced paranormal investigators know the importance of having a good quality thermal camera. This device can easily help kick start and carry out an investigation.
Ghost hunting is all about seeing the unseen and investigating the unknown. Having the right tool to do so is a crucial part of the process. Unlike in some other fields, the naked human eye will almost never be sufficient enough to find a ghost. Thermal cameras work as a bridge between the world of the living and that of the dead. They allow the investigator to see things that they would otherwise completely miss.
Thermal Imaging Cameras
Otherwise known as infrared cameras, a thermal imaging camera is a device that transforms infrared radiation into a video or image. In doing so it will be able to show differences in temperature that are not detectable by the bare eye. A regular camera will use a 400-700 nanometer range. On the other hand, thermal imaging will use wavelengths all the way up to 14,000 nanometers.
Thermal cameras are also known as being non-contact temperature sensors. In other words, they can detect the variations in temperature in an area without ever having to come into contact with any particular object. That information is then transformed into electrical signals and displayed on a screen through different colors. Therefore, by simply looking at the different colors, it can be determined whether there is a cold or hot spot.
Thermal Camera Color Meaning
Thermal cameras use a common color palette to represent the different temperature variations. Colors such as black, purple, and blue through green represent colder temperatures. On the other hand, colors like red, pink, and orange through yellow indicate warmer temperatures. It is always important to check each cameras specific color changes, since some may slightly vary.
Different Types of Thermal Cameras
Essentially there are two main types of Thermal cameras. In the electromagnetic field, there are various strands of infrared wavelengths. Each of those wavelengths has their own unique frequencies and characteristics. For this reason, several different camera types have been created throughout the years. Each one specifically designed to measure a different spectrum for a different reason.
Cooled Infrared Detectors
These cameras contain a cryogenic or extremely cold, cooling mechanism. This significantly restricts the thermal noise in the image, which makes for a cleaner result. Without it, the cameras own radiation would saturate the image and deteriorate the images’ quality and visibility. These camera types are generally more expensive and require a longer cooling period for every use. However, they are more sensitive and can use a wider variety of lenses speeds.
Uncooled Infrared Detectors
These cameras do not require such a cold cooling mechanism. Instead, they use a sensor that works at the regular air temperature. Without the need for a pricy and large cooling set up, they are significantly smaller and more affordable. Many people will choose this type of thermal camera because of its user-friendliness and upkeep. However, even though they are progressively getting better, their image quality and clarity are not as high.
How To Use IR Cameras For Ghost Hunting
Ghosts are knowns for using the heat around them as energy, which ends up causing a fluctuation in the areas’ temperature. Since thermal cameras are able to detect and show changes in temperature, an unexplainable cold or hot spot could mean there is a ghost present. By using these devices, ghost hunters are able to take a better glimpse into the realm of the paranormal.
It is usually assumed that ghosts dwell within the colder levels of the spectrum, however, that is not always the case. This is why it is so important to investigate all abnormalities in the area and not just cold spots. Paranormal activity will usually not be seen by the human eye, and display on the screen as either a dark or bright spot. Warm spots will usually be brighter, and cold ones darker.
An investigator should always become familiar with his/her camera and make sure to set the sensitivity to the highest level possible. Doing so will maximize the chances of capturing any paranormal evidence in the area.
Best IR Cameras
Although there are several infrared cameras out in the market there are a few factors that a ghost hunter should keep in mind when making a purchase. Not all cameras are the same and some might be more interested in a specific feature, rather than others.
With that in mind, I have chosen my top 10 favorite thermal cameras for ghost hunting. I have taken into consideration numerous characteristics such as battery life, user friendliness, durability, image quality, affordability, etc. The following cameras should provide several valuable options when trying to pick one.
FLIR i3: Compact Thermal Imaging Camera
The Flir i3 is considered to be one of the best thermal cameras out in the market. It is hardy enough to be used in rough environments, which is certainly beneficial when ghost hunting out in the open. It’s not always easy to predict the weather and having a camera that can withstand harsh conditions will be extremely helpful.
The FLIR i3 is also lightweight and small in size, making it easy to carry around without it getting in the way. It is incredibly easy to use and does not really require much experience. This might be the perfect pick for someone who is just getting started and buying their first thermal camera.
- Fully automatic
- Measures temperatures up to +250°C and detects temperature differences as small as 0.10°C
- SD card storage (up to 5000 JPEG images)
- Focus free
- Rechargeable battery
- 60 x 60 IR Resolution
- software for analysis
- case and hand-strap.
FLIR E60: Compact Thermal Imaging Camera with 320 x 240 IR Resolution and MSX
Although this camera has been unfortunately discontinued by the manufacturer, it is still being sold by several online stores like Amazon. The Flir E60 is one of the higher end models, which can spot even the smallest changes in temperature. It’s 320 x 240 thermal sensor can accurately detect these changes with very high accuracy.
The level of sensitivity this camera provides will be perfect for advanced paranormal investigators. Some ghosts are known for being subtler and harder to detect. Without the right equipment, it is very easy to overlook altogether. This camera will help ensure that as much activity is detected and able to be investigated.
- Quick report software
- 512 MB mini SD card
- Charger and adaptor
- Rechargeable battery
- USB cable
- Bluetooth to a smart device
- Auto cold/hot spot detection
- High Resolution (320 x 240)
- Additional Light and Laser Pointer
Fluke TIS10 9HZ Thermal Infrared Camera, Fixed Focus, 80×60 Resolution
The Fluke TIS10 is a high-performance camera with just the right mix of quality and affordability. It comes with a rather large display screen, which will come in very handy when out in the field. Cold or hot spots can be very easily missed if the screen is too small.
One of the best features this camera offers is the free Fluke Connect mobile app, that can be downloaded on a smartphone. Through this app, images can be directly uploaded to its Connect system. This will allow any paranormal investigator to email images straight from the field and even generate reports on the go. This tool will be extremely useful for those who are working in a larger group.
- Fluke connects
- 4 GB Internal Memory
- IR-Fusion Technology
- Fluke Cloud Storage
- Optional 4 GB Micro SD Card
- 80 x 60 infrared sensor
- A 3.5-inch LCD display and button navigation
- Fixed Focus Lens
FLIR E8: NIST Compact Thermal Imaging Camera
The Flir E8 is also a very high-performance camera. Although it is not one of the more affordable ones, its quality and durability definitely make up for it. Despite its high image quality, it is still very user-friendly and small in size. Ghost hunters should be able to carry it around easily without it taking much space or getting damaged.
Among its many amazing qualities, the Flir E8 also comes with a Li-ion battery. This battery has an estimated 4-hour life and can be changed once it runs out. Any experienced paranormal investigator will testify to just how important long battery life is. Ghost hunting is not a quick job; it can take many long hours to get the right data. A thermal camera that is not continuously dying can be a real lifesaver.
- High Resolution (320 X 240)
- Durable 2-Meter Drop Tested
- Thumbnail Gallery
- Rechargeable Battery 4-Hour Lifespan
- Wi-Fi Capabilities
- Focus free
- Image Storage
- USB cable
- Temperature range up to 250 degrees
- Detailed report generator
Therm-App TA19A17Q-1000 Thermal Imaging Device
Unlike all of the above thermal cameras, the Therm-App is an intuitive thermal camera app that turns a smartphone into a thermal imaging device. This is an extremely convenient device for on the go investigations. It is very small and can be stored pretty much anywhere.
The Therm-App could be particularly fitting for new paranormal investigators that are not looking to spend too much money. It is very user-friendly, which makes it perfect for those who are just getting started. Despite its compact frame it still produced high-resolution images that are highly reliable.
- High Resolution (384 x 288 pixels)
- No External Power Source Needed
- Interchangeable Lenses
- Compatible with Android 4.1 and higher
Seek Reveal – All In One Handheld Thermal Imager with Flashlight
The Seek Reveal is an extremely convenient handheld thermal camera. It fits very comfortably in your hand and feels like holding a phone. This quality can make it quite comfortable to carry around and have it close by at all times.
The Seek Reveals’ most impressive quality is its incredibly long battery life. It surpasses most other thermal cameras, lasting up to 10-hours. This makes it perfectly suitable for those extra-long paranormal investigations in remote areas. In certain locations, it can be hard to find power outlets. However, with this camera that won’t be an issue.
- Micro SD Card Included
- Long Battery Life
- Handheld Design
- 900 Ft. Detection Distance
- Temperature range between -40°C to 330 °C
- 206 x 156 sensor
- Fixed focus lens
FLIR C3 Pocket Thermal Camera with WiFi
The Flir C3 is a great pocket size thermal camera for paranormal investigations. Despite its small frame, it is also very durable and hardy. There won’t need to be any worry if the camera gets dropped around a few times.
One of its best features is this devices’ ability to store up to hundreds of image evidence. Paranormal investigators won’t have to worry about having to erase any pictures in order to make room for others. A good ghost hunter knows that the more evidence that is collected, the better.
- Additional Image Modes – MSX And Picture and Picture
- Rechargeable Battery with A 2-Hour Lifespan
- Wi-Fi capabilities
- Builds reports
- Store up to 4,800 individual thermal measurement
FLIR TG165 Spot Thermal Camera with Image Storage
The Flir TG165 is a great camera for beginner ghost hunters. It is extremely easy to use and very durable. An investigator’s first few hunts can seem quite chaotic. Having equipment that simplifies their work, but is also reliable is crucial.
- Focus Free
- An 8GB micro SD card
- USB cable
- International Charger
- Microthermal sensor
- 80×60 resolution
- 150mK sensitivity
- 9hz refresh rate
- Object temperature range between 25 to +380°C
- 24 to 1 spot size ratio
Fluke FLK-TIS45 30HZ Thermal Infrared Camera with IR-Fusion
Just like the Fluke Tis10, this thermal camera offers the Fluke Connect mobile app. This app can be downloaded on a smartphone and used to directly upload pictures to its Connect system. The connect system will be especially beneficial for a paranormal investigator that are working long distance areas. One of the group members can stay back home and immediately begin analyzing all data that is sent over.
The Fluke FLK also comes with a very helpful software system. This system allows investigators to view different measurements from the same device at the same time.
- Thermal sensitivity between 0.09°C and 30°C
- Fast in-focus image with manual focus
- Securely store and manage your images from anywhere
- WiFi upload to
- Free storage
- Share images in real-time
- A removable 4GB micro SD card
- Voice annotation
FLIR E4: Compact Thermal Imaging Camera with 80 x 60 IR Resolution, MSX and Wi-Fi
The Flir E4 Thermal camera is one of the most powerful devices for paranormal investigations. Its catchphrase is “the world’s sixth sense”, which fits right in with the paranormal world. This camera gives its users the ability to detect crucial data, for their investigations, that they would never be able to see with the naked eye.
This device’s adaptability allows for every paranormal investigation to be simple and well organized. It is extremely user-friendly and will not require tons of experience to figure out. In fact, a few times out in the field is all an amateur ghost hunter will need to become familiarized with almost every feature it offers.
- Wi-Fi And App Connectivity
- Durable 2-Meter Drop Tested
- Fast Download Speed
- 80 x 60 infrared sensor
- 45° x 34° field of view
- Large 3.0 Inch Color LCD Screen
- Focus Free
- Temperature range between –20°C to 250°C
- Internal memory stores at least 500 images
It’s important to do your research when it comes to buying thermal cameras. Although they are immensely beneficial, they can also be a rather large investment. The trick to finding a camera that best fits your needs and preferences is reading up before committing to any of them.
Once the options have been narrowed down, you should consider focusing on the one feature you find most important. This post should serve as a strong guide to aid new or experienced paranormal investigators. Did you see any thermal cameras that you liked? Which one was your favorite? What do you think is a must-have feature when making a purchase?