thermal camera

10 Key Factors to Assess When Buying a Thermal Camera

Dmytro Havrylov
Written by Dmytro Havrylov on June 25, 2024

By now, thermal cameras have emerged as indispensable tools across various industries; they have revolutionized how we perceive and analyze temperature variations. Selecting the right thermal camera for industrial applications requires understanding key characteristics. From resolution and accuracy to durability and integration capabilities, each aspect is crucial for optimal performance and reliability.

In this blog, we delve into the essential features that define the quality and performance of thermal cameras. From resolution and accuracy to durability and integration capabilities, we'll explore how each aspect contributes to unlocking the full potential of thermal imaging technology for welding and AM industries and research.


Figure 1 Thermal Image of a TIG Weld Figure 2 Thermal Image of a MIG Weld
Fig. 1: Thermal Image of a TIG Weld Fig. 2: Thermal Image of a MIG Weld


1. Image Resolution

The resolution of a thermal camera determines the level of detail in the captured images. Higher resolution cameras can provide clearer and more detailed thermal images, enabling better analysis and interpretation of temperature variations. Xiris XIR-1800 thermal camera boasts an impressive resolution of 640x512, setting it apart as a high-resolution thermal camera. With this level of detail, users can capture clear and precise thermal images, allowing for accurate temperature analysis and interpretation.


Figure 3 Thermal Weld Image of a MIG Process at 640x512 Pixels ResolutionFig. 3: Thermal Weld Image of a MIG Process at 640 x 512 Pixels Resolution


2. Temperature Range

The temperature range of a thermal camera defines the minimum and maximum temperatures it can accurately measure. A wider temperature range allows the camera to capture a broader range of thermal conditions, making it suitable for a variety of applications. One of the standout features of the XIR-1800 is its ultra-wide temperature range. From 250 to 1800 degrees Celsius, this thermal camera can capture a broad spectrum of temperatures in a single image. What's more, for applications requiring even higher temperatures, the range can be extended up to a staggering 3000 degrees Celsius.

Figure 4  A Thermal Image Using a Color Thermal Map to Indicate Region of Temperature

Fig. 4: A Thermal Image using a Color Thermal Map to indicate regions of temperature.


3. Accuracy

Accuracy refers to how closely the temperature measurements provided by the thermal camera match the actual temperatures of the objects or surfaces being observed. High accuracy is crucial for applications where precise temperature measurements are essential. With a measurement error of no more than 2%, the XIR-1800 delivers accurate temperature measurements, ensuring confidence in critical applications where precise monitoring is essential.

4. Repeatability

Repeatability relates to how precisely the thermal camera can measure the same temperature when the experiment is repeated multiple times under the same conditions. It is crucial for maintaining consistent accuracy, and it ensures that temperature measurements remain reliable over time. It is repeatability that allows for meaningful comparisons between measurements taken at different times or places and serves as an indicator of thermal camera calibration quality. Consistently repeatable measurements validate calibration and uphold temperature reading accuracy. The XIR-1800, calibrated meticulously at Xiris using a top-end high-temperature black body model, guarantees precise temperature measurements, instilling confidence in its performance. Our proprietary mathematical techniques further stabilize measurement variations, ensuring temperature stability despite of the sensor temperature variations and other factors that could influence the measurements.

5. Optics

Having the ability to use various lenses on a thermal camera enhances versatility, enabling inspection across a broader range of scenarios. Xiris XIR-1800 offers multiple optics solutions for calibration, allowing users to tailor the camera to their specific needs. For those requiring fully customized optics systems, Xiris is equipped to ensure optimal performance for every application.

Join the WVOM Club!

6. Speed

The speed of a thermal camera refers to how quickly it can capture and process thermal images. Faster cameras are advantageous for applications where real-time monitoring or rapid data acquisition is required, such as security surveillance or dynamic thermal analysis. The XIR-1800 can achieve speeds of up to 150 frames per second with post-imaging temperature calculations, enabling rapid analysis and decision-making.

7. Durability and Reliability

Thermal cameras should be ruggedly built to withstand harsh environmental conditions and frequent use. Durability ensures that the camera remains operational in challenging environments, while reliability ensures consistent performance over time. Built upon the ruggedized solutions of Xiris weld cameras, the XIR-1800 is engineered to withstand harsh industrial environments with ease. With a proven track record of over a decade of Xiris weld cameras in various industries, users can rely on the durability and reliability of the XIR-1800 to deliver consistent performance day in and day out.

8. User Interface and Software

An intuitive user interface and feature-rich software can enhance the usability and functionality of thermal cameras. User-friendly interfaces make it easier to operate the camera and analyze thermal images, while advanced software capabilities enable more in-depth analysis and customization. The XIR-1800 is complemented by the powerful Xiris WeldStudio Pro software package, optimized for the weld and additive manufacturing industries. Featuring multiple measurement tools and post-processing capabilities, including the innovative MeltPool AI smart melt pool segmentation, the software enables real-time monitoring and analysis, empowering users with invaluable insights.


Figure 5 Multiple Temperature Points Set to Measure the Cooling Rate of the Bead
Fig. 5: Multiple Temperature Points Set to Measure the Cooling Rate of the Bead


Figure 6 Measuring rthe Temperature of Prevous Layers in a Metal AM Process
Fig. 6: Measuring the Temperature of Previous Layers in a Metal AM Process


9. Integration and Compatibility

Thermal cameras should be compatible with various accessories, mounting options, and software platforms to facilitate integration into existing systems and workflows. Seamlessly integrating into the WeldStudio environment alongside other Xiris cameras, the XIR-1800 ensures compatibility and interoperability. For advanced applications requiring integration at earlier stages, the WeldSDK software development kit is also available, offering flexibility and customization options.


Figure 7 The Integration of Camera Video From A Leading and Trailing View of a MIG process
Fig. 7: The Integration of Camera Video from a Leading and Trailing Views of a MIG Process.


10. Cost-Effectiveness

While high-quality thermal cameras may come at a premium price, they should offer good value for the features and performance they provide. Cost-effectiveness involves balancing the upfront cost of the camera with its long-term benefits and return on investment for the intended application. The XIR-1800 offers invaluable insights into welding and additive manufacturing processes, revolutionizing temperature measurements in the presence of arcs or lasers across a wide temperature range. With its unmatched durability and precision, investing in the XIR-1800 promises a significant return, both in terms of operational efficiency and quality assurance.


In conclusion, Xiris XIR-1800 thermal camera stands at the forefront of thermal imaging technology, offering unparalleled precision, reliability, and versatility. Whether it's monitoring welds, analyzing additive manufacturing processes, or conducting research, Xiris XIR-1800 is the ultimate tool for unlocking new possibilities in industrial imaging. 





Stay up to date by following us on social media or subscribe to our blog! 

Instagram Facebook LinkedIn Twitter10


Search this Blog

  • There are no suggestions because the search field is empty.

Subscribe Here!

7-2019-11-25-MachineImages edited

Don't miss a single post!

Get expert weld monitoring and inspection info sent straight to your inbox.