Gone are the days of night vision cameras being used only in wildlife documentaries, ghost hunting, and the military. These days CCTV technology is widely available and very affordable in property security, making it an ideal solution for home and business security at night.

This post will dive into the intricacies of night vision security — what factors influence how far they can see and how far they can see at night. If you’re looking to further safeguard your home, then continue reading.


Why use night vision CCTV?

Many break-ins or attempted break-ins (particularly for businesses) occur in the evening, so ensuring your home or office is protected 24/7 should be a priority.

How far can security cameras see?

On average, security cameras can see about 155 feet (47.24 meters) at night. The maximum distance of security cameras is around 300 feet (91.44 meters). 

As a rule of thumb, black and white night vision cameras cover a longer range than colour security cameras (most cameras operate in colour during the day, but switch to black and white at night). Colour mode often fails in under 100 metres, but the black and white mode will still capture clear images.

What factors influence how far your security camera can see?

1. LEDs

Most night vision cameras employ infrared technology. This involves flooding an area with light invisible to the human eye, meaning that cameras can go basically undetected.

The number and type of LEDs in your camera play a huge part in its focal distance. LEDs are vital for night vision because it provides the infrared light needed for the camera to record at night, by illuminating the field of view. 

2. Focal length of CCTV camera

The focal length is the most important factor in determining how far your security camera can see. Some cameras have a variable focal length, while others have a fixed focal length.

The focal length of your camera is measured in millimeters (mm). The smaller the focal length your camera has, the wider the field of view, and vice versa.

3. Infrared (IR) sensor strength

Another important factor here is the strength of the infrared sensor. There exist two main types of IR sensors; passive and active infrared sensors. Most security cameras employ Passive IR.

Passive infrared (PIR) sensors use a pair of pyroelectric sensors to detect heat energy in the surrounding environment. These two sensors sit beside each other, and when the signal differential between the two sensors changes (if a person enters the room, for example), the sensor will engage.

Some cameras don’t even feature infrared technology and instead rely on a different form of night vision. This too will affect its focal distance.

4. Resolution

As well as ensuring that your security camera can see at the right distance, you also need to make sure that it’s able to provide you with a clear image. The resolution of the camera will often affect its price.

5. Location of CCTV camera

Particularly for wireless security cameras, the location of the camera itself is also important. Materials such as concrete or brick, as well as obstacles such as trees, can weaken the signal strength between the receiver and the camera.

6. Lux rating

Lux ratings are a measure of the total amount of visible light that the camera is able to see while still providing a clear picture. The lower the camera’s Lux the lower amount of light that is needed to obtain a good picture.


Many standard cameras on the market require some amount of light to see. As a result, these cameras are not functional at night. Always check the product specifications to ensure the camera has night vision capabilities.

If you’re interested in how night vision security cameras can help keep your home or business safe, then please contact us. We can provide you with a free security assessment or quote, ensuring your home and business are safe and secure.

We can also set up remote viewing, so you can keep an eye on your home no matter where you are.

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