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4 Types of Night Vision Security Cameras Technology

In the rapidly evolving field of security camera technology, one critical feature that has seen significant advancements is night vision. This blog will explore the different types of night vision technologies currently used in mainstream security cameras, explaining their principles and differences in a quick and understandable way.

Why Night Vision Is a Critical Feature in Security Cameras

In recent years, security cameras have evolved from analog to digital and from low-resolution to high-resolution systems. However, despite these advancements, capturing clear images in low-light conditions remains a challenge. At night or in dimly lit scenes, cameras often struggle with noise and blurriness due to insufficient light. Night vision technology is essential for overcoming these challenges, ensuring that security cameras can provide clear and reliable footage regardless of the lighting conditions.

Night Vision Security Cameras Technologies

The following 4 types of night vision technologies represent the main options available in the video security industry. They not only offer different methods to achieve night vision but also illustrate the technological evolution of security cameras.

No Color Night Vision Security Cameras

1. IR Night Vision

Infrared (IR) night vision is one of the most common technologies used in security cameras. When the camera detects low light conditions (usually below 0.2 Lux, depend on different security camera manufacturer), the built-in infrared fill light automatically turns on. The camera captures the infrared rays reflected by objects and the environment, producing black-and-white images.

Concerns of IR Night Vision

While IR night vision security camera is effective, it has some drawbacks. The images are devoid of color, and excessive infrared light can cause partial whitening or overexposure, particularly in indoor environments where walls reflect the infrared light, leading to overexposure near the center of the image.

IR_NIGHT_VISION

All Color Night Vision Security Cameras

2. Starlight Night Vision

Starlight night vision cameras can capture color images in very low light conditions (as low as 0.001 Lux). This is achieved using high-level image sensors and larger aperture lenses that allow more light to enter the camera, enabling it to produce color images without the need for additional lighting.

Concerns of Starlight Night Vision

The main drawback of starlight night vision is the cost, as it relies on high-quality hardware. Additionally, it requires some ambient light, such as starlight, to function, meaning it cannot provide night vision in completely dark environments.

dual lens wifi cameras p221A-white-background5

3. Black Light Night Vision

Black light night vision technology provides highly detailed, full-color images in extremely low-light environments (less than 0.0005 Lux). This technology uses AI within the image signal processing (ISP) pipeline, known as AI-ISP, to enhance contrast and color range, accurately extracting color information even in very dark conditions. This results in clearer and more detailed images, significantly improving surveillance performance and accuracy.

ISP pipeline
Concerns of Black Light Night Vision

Black light night vision is currently the most advanced technology in the industry, but it is also the most expensive due to its reliance on sophisticated AI and high-quality sensors.

4. Fusion of Visible and Infrared Light

Another advanced method for achieving night vision is the fusion of visible and infrared light. This approach uses a dual image sensor architecture: one sensor captures visible light to obtain color information, while the other sensor captures infrared light to obtain brightness information. Specially designed image processing algorithms then fuse the two sets of data to produce images with realistic color reproduction and higher signal-to-noise ratios.

Fusion of visible and infrared light

Conclusion

Understanding the different types of night vision technologies is crucial for selecting the right security camera for your needs. Each technology has its strengths and weaknesses, and the best choice depends on your specific requirements and budget. Whether you need basic black-and-white night vision or advanced full-color night vision, there is a security camera technology that can meet your needs.

FAQs

Are all night vision security cameras infrared?

No, not all night vision security cameras rely on infrared technology. While infrared is a common method for achieving night vision, it only produces black-and-white images. Other technologies, such as starlight and black light night vision, use advanced sensors and AI to capture full-color images in low-light conditions