Author Topic: Suggestions for thermal imaging camera (Electronic PCB usage)  (Read 7508 times)

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Offline youngbbb

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Hi All, newbie here....
I'm working in a small electronics company....
Please help suggest an economical (<US$ 2500, but <US$ 2000 preferred) thermal imaging camera for my daily R&D work for electronic PCB.
Preferably can focus at a closer distance.  The flir E4/E5 being 0.5m is a bit too far away.
I dare not 'hack' it.  I also don't know where/how to buy a macro lens...
Fluke Ti9/Ti10 is a bit out of my budget...

Please help.
 :) :)
« Last Edit: March 21, 2015, 04:25:57 am by youngbbb »
 

Offline jayk

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Re: Suggestions for thermal imaging camera (Electronic PCB usage)
« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2015, 05:17:28 am »
Not exactly a stand-alone product, but definitely cheap.  Only 60x80pixel resolution, but claims to focus down to 10cm:

https://www.sparkfun.com/products/13233
https://cdn.sparkfun.com/datasheets/Sensors/Infrared/FLIR_Lepton_Data_Brief.pdf
 

Offline youngbbb

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Re: Suggestions for thermal imaging camera (Electronic PCB usage)
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2015, 02:43:15 am »
Thanks but I'll need some real products instead of a module.

What about Flir C2 ?  It's look like cheap.  With a minimum focus distance at 0.15m and IFOV at 11mrad, does that really mean I can tell difference in temperatures at 0.15*11=1.65mm ??

Thanks.
 

Offline coflynn

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Re: Suggestions for thermal imaging camera (Electronic PCB usage)
« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2015, 09:38:49 pm »
If you want cheap... consider a phone-based IR sensor + aftermarket Macro lens. Total cost would be < $500 including an android phone, IR sensor, and macro lens.

For example Seek Thermal + http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-Macro-Lens-FOR-SEEK-THERMAL-CAMERA-IMAGING-ANDROID-FLIR-LWIR-NIGHT-VISION-/191527056303?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2c97e6f3af .

I haven't yet used the macro lens myself... basically it's a 20mm Zinc Selenide lens I believe, you can see another holder at http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:525605 which has some photos of what the results look like.

It's far from great, but the cost is low, and it might be sufficient for what you want.
 

Offline zapta

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Re: Suggestions for thermal imaging camera (Electronic PCB usage)
« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2015, 10:21:47 pm »
Hi All, newbie here....
I'm working in a small electronics company....
Please help suggest an economical (<US$ 2500, but <US$ 2000 preferred) thermal imaging camera for my daily R&D work for electronic PCB.
Preferably can focus at a closer distance.  The flir E4/E5 being 0.5m is a bit too far away.
I dare not 'hack' it.  I also don't know where/how to buy a macro lens...
Fluke Ti9/Ti10 is a bit out of my budget...

Please help.
 :) :)

Adding a macro lens to the E4/E5 is trivial. $20 lens from eBay and two small 3d printed holder that snaps in. You end up with a good quality camera at a reasonable price.
Drain the swamp.
 

Offline mikeselectricstuff

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Re: Suggestions for thermal imaging camera (Electronic PCB usage)
« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2015, 10:37:15 pm »
(<US$ 2500, but <US$ 2000 preferred) thermal imaging camera for my daily R&D work for electronic PCB.
Quote
I dare not 'hack' it.
Why not?
If you're really worried, that budget will get you a spare E4.
Just add a ZnSe laser-cutter lens, or unscrew the E4 lens about 3/4 of a turn.
You'll struggle to get a 'proper' thermal macro lens for that money. Hacked e4+external lens is by far the best value for money.
A possible alternative is the Opgal therm-app, which is true 320x240 for $1600  and a lens that looks like it's adjustable for close focus.
therm-app.com
Youtube channel:Taking wierd stuff apart. Very apart.
Mike's Electric Stuff: High voltage, vintage electronics etc.
Day Job: Mostly LEDs
 

Offline Galaxyrise

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Re: Suggestions for thermal imaging camera (Electronic PCB usage)
« Reply #6 on: March 22, 2015, 11:06:56 pm »
Pics I took with an E4 and a couple macro lenses, along with the links I used for the holder & lenses:
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/testgear/flir-e4-thermal-imaging-camera-teardown/msg571084/#msg571084
(that's a 3x3 grid of pictures)

It is indeed quite blurry for PCB work without a macro lens, but the 4" lens has been great.

If you opt to use an E4 without the hack, the lower resolution would probably be ok using the 2" lens.  There's also a lot of noise on the stock E4, so small temperature variation would be hard to see.  You could also try the E5; it might be good enough without the hack, and it's still in your price range.
I am but an egg
 

Offline youngbbb

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Re: Suggestions for thermal imaging camera (Electronic PCB usage)
« Reply #7 on: March 25, 2015, 06:22:42 am »
Thank you everybody.  Let me take some time to digest what you suggested.  Thanks a lot!
 

Offline mzzj

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Re: Suggestions for thermal imaging camera (Electronic PCB usage)
« Reply #8 on: March 25, 2015, 08:14:15 am »

Just add a ZnSe laser-cutter lens, or unscrew the E4 lens about 3/4 of a turn.
You'll struggle to get a 'proper' thermal macro lens for that money. Hacked e4+external lens is by far the best value for money.
A possible alternative is the Opgal therm-app, which is true 320x240 for $1600  and a lens that looks like it's adjustable for close focus.
therm-app.com
Is there a reason to use extra lens?
E4 lens is adjusted to close focus in a 2 seconds using a big screw driver, pliers or whatever you happen to have in your pockets. Same 2 second procedure back to normal.
 

Offline mikeselectricstuff

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Re: Suggestions for thermal imaging camera (Electronic PCB usage)
« Reply #9 on: March 25, 2015, 09:19:45 am »

Just add a ZnSe laser-cutter lens, or unscrew the E4 lens about 3/4 of a turn.
You'll struggle to get a 'proper' thermal macro lens for that money. Hacked e4+external lens is by far the best value for money.
A possible alternative is the Opgal therm-app, which is true 320x240 for $1600  and a lens that looks like it's adjustable for close focus.
therm-app.com
Is there a reason to use extra lens?
E4 lens is adjusted to close focus in a 2 seconds using a big screw driver, pliers or whatever you happen to have in your pockets. Same 2 second procedure back to normal.
If you're likely to change focus a lot then you will wear the thread as it's just a plastic thread in a cast metal housing. However for the occasional use typical for electronics I doubt it would be an issue.
Youtube channel:Taking wierd stuff apart. Very apart.
Mike's Electric Stuff: High voltage, vintage electronics etc.
Day Job: Mostly LEDs
 

Offline cdev

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Re: Suggestions for thermal imaging camera (Electronic PCB usage)
« Reply #10 on: March 25, 2015, 03:56:55 pm »
You could also use a few sheets of LCD material which register heat convection above a PCB. MUCH cheaper! I use that for finding leaks in walls. It also works well with PCBs - especially when its cooler indoors. But if you have a bunch of different temperature ranges you can use it in any ambient temperature.

Its like a mood ring, it changes color based on the temperature. It will show a hot component very clearly. just as accurate as FLIR. Cost would be very low.
"What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away."
 

Offline gmit77

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Re: Suggestions for thermal imaging camera (Electronic PCB usage)
« Reply #11 on: March 25, 2015, 09:01:05 pm »
hello, here are some considerations:
FLIR E4 E5 E6 AND E8 they are 45° focus free which make the good for any general use but not always for specific PCB thermal investigation.
say we stay at 50cm from the PCB the field of view will be approx 41 x 31 cm for all models and the IFOV (pretty much the pixel size) will be:
E4 5.15mm
E5 3.43mm
E6 2.58mm
E8 1.29mm

if you move to the next category, say the E50 which is 25° manual focus the field of view will be approx 22 x 17 cm for all models and the IFOV 0.93mm

- - -
the new FLIR C2 is really cool, I can tell by experience since we got many of them on the first batch delivered from FLIR, I also posted some images in a different thread.

pls feel free to ask any question
hope it helps, cheers

Batter Fly
never stop innovating
 


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