How Far Can a Security Camera See at Night

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Last Updated on January 9, 2023

Most security cameras come with night vision capabilities. This means that the camera can see in low-light or even no-light conditions. But how far can a security camera see at night?

The answer depends on several factors, including the type of camera, the lens, and the lighting conditions.

Most security cameras come with night vision, but how far can they actually see at night? The answer depends on a few factors, including the type of camera, the quality of the image sensor, and the amount of ambient light. For example, an infrared (IR) security camera can see up to 30 feet (9 meters) in complete darkness.

This is because IR cameras use an array of invisible LEDs to illuminate the area around them. However, if there’s even a small amount of light (like from a street lamp), the camera’s range will be limited to about 15-20 feet (4-6 meters). On the other hand, a thermal imaging camera can see much further in low light conditions.

Thermal cameras detect heat signatures, so they don’t need any visible light to work. In fact, they can often see up to 1,000 feet (304 meters) away in complete darkness. However, like IR cameras, thermal imaging cameras are also affected by ambient light sources.

If it’s too bright out, the image will be washed out and you probably won’t be able to see anything beyond 50-100 feet (15-30 meters).

-How Far Can a Security Camera See at Night

Most security cameras have infrared LEDs that allow them to see in the dark. The distance that they can see depends on the amount of light that is available and the sensitivity of the camera sensor. If there is no light at all, then the camera will not be able to see anything.

4 secrets CCTV camera can see clearly at night.


A security camera can see quite far at night, depending on the type of camera. An infrared (IR) camera will pick up heat signatures, so it can see in complete darkness. A regular camera needs light to function, so it won’t be able to see as far in the dark.

You can use IR illuminators to extend the range of a regular camera, but they need to be carefully positioned or else they will create glare that washes out the image.

Olivia Bouler

From a young age, camera's fascinated me. My dad gave me my first Canon when I was seven, and since then I've tried to improve my craft. As a young Ornithologist and photographer, I travel a lot and love to bring a camera with me. I love the feeling of capturing a moment that can never be repeated and providing someone with a memento of a time or place.