Poll

Has the hackabiliy of the E4 made you buy one :  

Yes, I was already looking at the competition at a similar price, but the hack swung it to E4
121 (23.4%)
Yes, I'd not considered buying a TIC before, but 320x240 resolution at this price justifies it (as either tool or toy!)
249 (48.3%)
Yes, I was going to buy an E5/6/8 class of unit but will now get the E4
24 (4.7%)
No, but am looking out for a cheap i3 to hack
22 (4.3%)
Not yet, but probably will if now that a closed-box hack becomes is possible
100 (19.4%)

Total Members Voted: 475

Author Topic: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown  (Read 423061 times)

Tom9999, Wanted313 and 8 Guests are viewing this topic.

Offline max-bit

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1605 on: November 20, 2013, 06:43:46 PM »
regular user will not buy anything after for E4 (price)
A company can afford to buy more expensive models and will not deal with the hack models E4.
And so, mainly infrared cameras are buy practical only a company, the retail market is known to be more smaller.

Offline aargee

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1606 on: November 20, 2013, 07:28:05 PM »
Yes, let's see, to hack the E4, you come to this thread. Maybe half the visitors then click on the survey at the top of the page, what does that make it - maybe 300. I wonder what the world market is for the E series? ... And only four in the survey are buying an E4 over its stable mates due to the hack.

Looks like a lowish percentage to me.

Online mikeselectricstuff

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1607 on: November 20, 2013, 07:49:20 PM »
I've been keeping a  casual eye on Tequipment's stock levels, and they are shifting quite a few E6's and the odd E5.
E8's seem to be sitting there but I think it's way overpriced, as you can get an  E50 for the same price, with  only slightly less resolution but a  big, focussable lens and 60fps
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Online mikeselectricstuff

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1608 on: November 20, 2013, 07:51:25 PM »
Also, do you simply screw the lens back all the way in to it's tight and that's the "factory" position, or does it seem to have a factory tweaked position one should mark off before adjusting?
Factory position on mine is about half a turn from fully in so useful to mark it - not very hard to re-focus but nice not to have to.   
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Offline Pinkus

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1609 on: November 20, 2013, 08:06:52 PM »
Feel free to upload my 3D models of the lens adjuster and the ZnSe lens adapter to wherever you think it'll do most good.


Thanks, done:
http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:187162
http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:187166
I had to chose a license so chose creative commons public domain?

At least the lens tool for turning the lens does need some improvement. I am not a CAD specialist so I better not work on that, but you can easily see that the STL file and the printed tool are not perfect. I recognized that by uploading the file to a 3D printing company - it was rejected with the error message that the survace is not OK and contains errors and thus cannot be printed.
Maybe some more work on the CAD file is needed here?
I thought I mention this before too much people invest money into ordering a 3D printed model which is not 100% finished yet.
See attached picture.
Btw: I am also wondering why the top is not as shiny and smooth as the cone below. Is there any technical reason or is this due to the not-yet-perfect STL file?

« Last Edit: November 20, 2013, 08:08:26 PM by PeterK13 »

Offline SPRX

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1610 on: November 20, 2013, 08:39:46 PM »

If you consider the manufacturing cost (of hardware and software development cost etc), have they under-priced E4 and over priced E8 ? 
They are pretty much seems manufactured in the similar production line, and I think they have priced the E4 correctly.

Online mikeselectricstuff

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1611 on: November 21, 2013, 01:23:12 AM »

If you consider the manufacturing cost (of hardware and software development cost etc), have they under-priced E4 and over priced E8 ? 
They are pretty much seems manufactured in the similar production line, and I think they have priced the E4 correctly.
Obviously they're making a lot more per E8, but there is no way they are selling the E4 without some profit as they'd always sell many more E4's than higher end units even without a hack. - we've heard that dealer margins are tighter on the E4, not surprisingly.
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Offline Pinkus

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1612 on: November 21, 2013, 03:01:38 AM »
If you think Flir might be fine that E4 sales are going up, you are wrong.
Of course they will have an effect on the sales of E5/6/8.
I did quick guess on costs - see attached screen shot.

I did two calculations, the second table boosts the E4 sales from 1000 to 5000 units, while the E5/6/8 sales are dropping by 75% (which they would, as the word of hackability would spread quickly).
Result: Flir is selling now >5000 cameras instead of 2000 cameras, but is still making less money....
Do you think they will tolerate this? I don't.

It is a similar calculation as any reseller should do.
Example: Assume you are selling some electronics with a 15% margin. You want to give a christmas discount of 5% on everything because this will to boost you sales by 30%. Sounds like a good idea? Wrong: you need to sell at least >50% more than before. Any sales boost below 50% will cost you real money at the end.
« Last Edit: November 21, 2013, 03:03:10 AM by PeterK13 »

Online mikeselectricstuff

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1613 on: November 21, 2013, 03:05:42 AM »
The consensus at least amongst this thread seems to be that the E4 hack has resulted in new sales that otherwise wouldn't have happenned at all, rather than lost/down-converted sales of higher models.
The E8 is so overpriced for its feature set that I don't think it merits incusion in any serious comparison. 
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Offline Clint

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1614 on: November 21, 2013, 03:14:07 AM »
I don't think you can consider profit made on the cost of a hardware unit, FLIR are a very well run company who have been in the game from the beginning and have been ruining complex government based contracts worldwide; from that you can summarise that when designing a product they will be extremely good at working out how they can sell the product to cover their development costs in the quickest time possible, including the hardware crippling of a product for it to appeal to a wider audience. We see this everywhere in manufacturing. In all reality its probably not the E8 owners getting ripped off, from what's on offer on the release date they probably got a well priced piece of equipment that covered all the capabilities they needed. Indeed the E4 is very well priced but without the hack, probably is price marked right and although the dealer margin may not be as big the volume probably makes up from that especially with accessories and future trade ups.

Mike's hack shifts the field of play slightly, how much and for how long is only known to FLIR and to a degree is in their control.

One thing is for sure, its done their business no damage, with the product thrown under the spotlight by a lot of very clever guys; not once have I seen a criticism of the company or its product. I for one would not hesitate to recommend the procurement of products from them in the future.
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Offline Clint

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1615 on: November 21, 2013, 03:17:15 AM »
The consensus at least amongst this thread seems to be that the E4 hack has resulted in new sales that otherwise wouldn't have happenned at all

Agreed here, I am in conversation with six new camera owners and only one of them previously have a TIC and it was a very old s/h unit.

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Online nowlan

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1616 on: November 21, 2013, 01:59:05 PM »
One thing is for sure, its done their business no damage, with the product thrown under the spotlight by a lot of very clever guys; not once have I seen a criticism of the company or its product. I for one would not hesitate to recommend the procurement of products from them in the future.

Fragile usb charging socket and tripod mount have been raised. Also the bloated/slow menu was mentioned by Mike in original video.

Offline aargee

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1617 on: November 21, 2013, 02:36:04 PM »
So did Flir try and shutdown the forum?  :-DD

Online Rasz

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1618 on: November 21, 2013, 03:01:57 PM »
One thing is for sure, its done their business no damage, with the product thrown under the spotlight by a lot of very clever guys; not once have I seen a criticism of the company or its product.

well, the UI is all kinds of SHIT. Its not critical to the working of the unit, but makes using it somewhat painful. They got all the technology right, but didnt bother to hire any usability experts.
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Offline Corporate666

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Re: Flir E4 Thermal imaging camera teardown
« Reply #1619 on: November 21, 2013, 03:08:05 PM »
If you think Flir might be fine that E4 sales are going up, you are wrong.
Of course they will have an effect on the sales of E5/6/8.
I did quick guess on costs - see attached screen shot.

I did two calculations, the second table boosts the E4 sales from 1000 to 5000 units, while the E5/6/8 sales are dropping by 75% (which they would, as the word of hackability would spread quickly).
Result: Flir is selling now >5000 cameras instead of 2000 cameras, but is still making less money....
Do you think they will tolerate this? I don't.

It is a similar calculation as any reseller should do.
Example: Assume you are selling some electronics with a 15% margin. You want to give a christmas discount of 5% on everything because this will to boost you sales by 30%. Sounds like a good idea? Wrong: you need to sell at least >50% more than before. Any sales boost below 50% will cost you real money at the end.

There are way too many assumptions in the chart to make the conclusions relevant, I think.

I seriously doubt 75% of E8 buyers elect for an E4 instead.  FLIR obviously knows their customers and what they are willing to pay.  I would say that anyone willing to pay the E8 price has a reason to pay that much... and it's not simply the resolution increase.  And those people willing to pay the E8 price (or E5/E6) are not likely to buy an E4 and hack it... partly for calibration/gurantee reasons, also warranty, accountability and more.  I doubt many companies would sanction use of a hacked E4 for important measurements - especially not where a chain of accountability is necessary.  And how many hobbyists are buying E8's?  I'd venture to guess almost none.

Not to mention I would think a majority of people who would buy an E8 likely don't know about the hack. 

I think the hack leads to many more E4 sales from people who would not otherwise buy - not cannibalization of E5-E8 sales.
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