Tech Tip: Review the two types of video inspection cameras

Details on the difference between a basic unit and full-featured video inspection camera.


There are many video inspection cameras on the market at almost every conceivable price point. This creates a considerable amount of confusion to the purchaser as it can be very hard to properly compare the features and benefits most beneficial to the purchaser when units can range upwards of $1,000 and as low as $100 in a rapidly evolving channel.

(Review a checklist of features to consider when purchasing a video inspection camera here.)

In the end there are two types: the lower cost that will do the inspection that you need and not much more. They work well and serve the purpose well in general. For a reasonable quality unit expect to pay in the low $100s to nearly $200.

On the other hand, for a more full featured unit, one that will take pictures of the image, record video, and play back on the unit, via SD card, or USB for example, expect to pay about $400 to $500, these units are ideal for the shop to store the data electronically on a PC for example, they can also email the image or can take the camera to the customer in the lobby and play it back to them, and if it has audio hear the notes spoken to the camera, options are becoming endless and still quite reasonably priced.

The overall basic unit is simple to use, includes a long camera cable (6’) and provides easy one-handed operation. It has removable batteries. Expect to pay around $160 for this tool.

The full-featured unit (available from ACDelco in April 2013) will record video with audio (a new feature), it will take pictures. This unit comes with a 4G SD card (removable) and a removable battery. One unit also comes with a 4.5mm camera. This unit will also include several other features. Expect to pay around $330 for the unit, the 4.5mm camera, and about $290 for the 8mm camera unit. Both will have the same bodies.

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