Fluke TIR-1 and Flir Bcam2

I am planning on getting started with thermal imaging. I have been looking at several cameras, but two jump to the top of my list as “starter” cameras. I am looking at the Fluke TIR-1 and the older Flir Bcam2. Does anyone have any experience with these cameras and has any one seen them in a side by side live comparison? I hope to get started with a lesser priced, but descent camera and then move onto a more robust camera. I really like the Mikron line but they are too pricey for an as yet unproven business for me.

I like the Bcam SD, but want to start with more than a 120x120 detector.

I am also planning on taking the ITC Level 1 Thermographer and Building Science courses. Later I will take some more specialized courses from ITC and Snell (i.e. flat roof and electrical inspections).

Any feed back and experiences would be greatly appreciated.

The BCAM SD has a resolution of 120x120. (corrected to read 120x120)

John,

Are you sure about the SD. Here is a copy from the official Flir website; I copied ad pasted it below:

InfraCAM™ SD Low Cost, High Quality!

http://www.flirthermography.com/images/camera_images/infracam-sd.jpg

[LIST]**

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I have the Fluke TiR and am happy with it. For home and commercial inspections it is adequate. TiR is 160x120, I opted for the Fluke because of the IR-Fusion. It’s nice to be able to see both the IR image and visible image “fused” on the camera itself. It makes things much easier when working.

Brian,

Thank you for the feedback. The IR Fusion option is one of the appealing features for me too. I noted from the specs that both the TIR and TIR 1 only have a 9 mHz screen refresh rate. Typically 50-60 mHz is desirable to reduce screen flicker and “streaks” or “ghosting” when the camera is moved. For example if you were to pan across a wall and say a wall sconce is on the wall, you may see “streaks” going a across the picture as the refresh rate does not refresh the image fast enough to keep up with the movement.

Have you experienced this?

I’ve never experienced that. To my eye, when I’m scanning a wall with objects on it, it’s like I was looking through a viewfinder on my digital camera. There isn’t any ghosting or streaking.

Thank Brian. I’m going to arrange for a demo. I thought it was odd that the refresh rate was so low compared to comparable cameras. I’m glad you haven’t experineced any issues.

I love my Fluke. The PiP is the best feature for me when reporting of clarifying issues to the client. I have not noticed any streaking on my screen.

Good Luck!!

I have extensive experience with both systems. The 9Hz refresh is NOT a problem. It does require a bit of practice during focusing since the refresh lags slightly behind the movement of the lens mechanism, but it is not an issue. Blurring is definitely not an issue.

IR Image Fusion is a very powerful feature. the Fluke also gets a nod from my point of view for having better thermal sensitivity, but both systems can do the job.

Thermally yours,

John Snell
ASNT NDT Thermal/Infrared Level III #48166
Snell Infrared
800-636-9820
802-229-9820


http://www.IRTalk.com

Thomas,
Before I purchased my IR camera, I spoke with John Snell and a few of his associates at the Snell Group. They gave me very solid advice regarding the pro’s and con’s of the two camera’s that I had it narrowed down to. John has always been willing to answer any question that I had and has been a wealth of knowledge on this board as well. I take what he has to say as “experience I only wish I had” and has always been Vendor Neutral. Hope this helps.
FWIW: I went with the Fluke.
Brian can back me up on this one as well.

I corrected my post above to read 120x120.

The jpg is the Infracam, not BCam Sd

jpg with both. Just a format.

I have the SD, but wich I had the fluke. I have to take 2 pictures, rather than one.

Call me (below) if I can be of help. I have been doing this for a number of years and have made all the mistakes (which makes me an expert :mrgreen: ).

Hope this helps;

William, Andrew, John, Michael, and Brian;

Thank you for your help and insight. I will likely go with the Fluke TIR-1. There are one or two others that caught my eye (i.e. EZTherm 880), but they are out of my price range Once I get started and hopefully develop a good income stream I hope to expand my knowledge with experience and course work, move into other areas of thermal imaging, and upgrade my equipment accordingly. Though there are other Thermographers out there I think this field is still evolving and has many opportunities for those that can effectively market, take advantage of new opportunities, and perhaps even develop as yet unthought of niches.

I have to agree with all the comments about John Snell. I have read his posts here and on several message boards. He has alway been professional, unbiased, and very informative. Thank you John. I am hoping to take his Level 1 course in Philadelphia this September.

Will, thanks for the offer to call. I’ll give you a call this week. What is usually a good time of day to call?

Azny evening, after 7:00, Central time.

Glad to be of help;

Free Fluke initial training / sales seminar online FWIW

http://us.fluke.com/usen/promotions/Ti20OnlineTraining.htm#6

I’ll be purchasing an IR cam in the next 3-6 months.