FLIR B400 Review
FLIR B400 Review. The FLIR B400 is a professional Building Inspection infrared camera from FLIR Systems. This ±2% high accuracy, 320×240 IR sensor infrared camera has many features not found in lower FLIR models such as panoramic mode and video recording.
Last Friday, I was able to test out a FLIR B400 demo that FLIR sent us to try out and review. Here’s my FLIR B400 review along with some high quality product photos on everything that came in the box and photos I took around the warehouse and office. Enjoy!
FLIR B400 Review
The FLIR B400 is a feature-rich, light weight, high accuracy professional grade Building inspection infrared camera.
One of the nice things about the FLIR B400 (as with other FLIR infrared cameras I’ve tested) is its incredibly light making them easy to carry around for a long period of time. It weighs just under 2 pounds – 1.94lbs (0.88kg) to be specific and grips similarly to how the Nikon D80 DSLR I used to take these photos.
Powering on, it took about 10 seconds for it to flash the FLIR systems logo and initialize the system. The FLIR B400 menu system is easy to use like I mentioned in my FLIR T300 vs Fluke Ti32 Review Battle, its basically like using Microsoft Window’s start menu. The FLIR B400 features a generously sized 3.5″ touch-screen LCD and a on-screen keyboard that you will only find on the B400 and T400 cameras. I found the screen to be very bright in low light.
At the top of the camera, you’ll notice a tiny rod sticking out – it’s actually the camera’s stylus pen used with the touch screen; it fits snug and didn’t inch or fall out when I was moving the camera around.
Just as you’ll find in the entry-level FLIR i7 infrared camera, the FLIR B400 also features built-in autofocus. A while ago, we received a comment from a FLIR i7 review post I wrote that asked if the clicking sound they heard was normal. The tiny clicking sound is what you’ll hear with any digital camera with built-in autofocus (that pretty much includes them all eh?). But yes, the FLIR B400 includes built-in autofocus that does make a tiny clicking sound, but if you’ve ever used a digital camera before, you know its working just fine.
FLIR’s B-series cameras feature a rotating lens that allows you to keep the camera level and capture up to a 120° angle. Higher end Fluke’s have this feature also but the prices range from US$12,450 to US$22,450 – not an “apples to apples” comparison; the FLIR B-series cameras prices range from US$8,995 to US$15,700. I tested the rotating lens out, see the “Warehouse Ceiling” photo below. The lens is not flimsy by any means – I don’t know how they did it, but when rotating the lens, its a smooth locking position change and not hard clicks.
The FLIR B400 comes with a 25° lens. One of the nice options you get with the FLIR B400 (as well as other T & B-series cameras), is the number of optional FLIR lenses you can use with it. The optional lenses include the Telephoto 15°, Wide-Angle 45°, Wide-Angle 90° and a Narrow 6° lenses. See these FLIR lenses here.
It was about -15°C outside the office last Friday so I wasn’t too keen on venturing out into the cold to demo the camera (haha I know “awe”). But, I was able to take some easy photos inside the building. You can see some of the photos a bit further down this post.
- High Resolution IR Images – 76,800 pixels (320 x 240) Infrared resolution
- Visible Light Digital Camera – 3.1MP resolution with flash provides sharp images regardless of lighting conditions
- 8X Continuous Zoom – Zoom with auto/manual focus
- Rotating Lens – Rotating lens detects up to 120° for easy viewing angle
- Insulation Alarm – Detects areas that don’t fulfill the insulation requirements
- Dew Point Alarm – Displays areas with risk of surface condensation where mold growth could occur
- Scalable Picture in Picture (PIP) Fusion – Displays thermal image super-imposed over a digital image
- Video Lamp – Allows the visual camera and fusion to be used in poorly lit environments
- Temperature Range – From -4 to 662°F (-20 to 350°C) targeting insulation, HVAC, and building applications; Optional higher temperature up to 2192°F/1200°C available
- ± 2%Accuracy – reliable temperature measurement
- Thumbnail Image Gallery -Allows quick search of stored images
- Li-Ion Rechargeable Battery – lasts >4hrs continuous use; replaceable
- Copy to USB – Easy upload of a single image or a folder from the camera to a USB memory stick
- Laser LocatIR™ Pointer – Pinpoints a reference spot with a laser and aligns a marker to it on the image
- IR Window Correction – Menu settings allow you to account for transmission loss through IR windows
- Voice Comment Recording – on images & can be integrated onto report
- Wireless Communication – Bluetooth® Transmitter with METERLiNK™
- Instant Report – Create a Thermographic Inspection report directly in the camera
- Digital Video – Records video to the memory card
- Periodic Image Storage – Stores images every 10 sec up to 24 hours
- SD Memory Card – stores >1000 Radiometric JPEG images
- Panorama Mode – on-screen guide to assist in aligning multi-image captures
- Temperature Screening – Audible alarm sounds when temperature exceeds programmable set point
- Interchangeable Optics – Optional 6°, 15°, 45°, 90°, Close up: 100, 50, 25μm, easily attach to the camera
What’s in the Box?
- SD Memory Card
- Li-Ion rechargeable battery
- 100-260V AC adaptor/charger
- 2 rechargeable batteries
- 2-bay battery charger
- QuickReport software
- USB Mini-B cable
- Bluetooth USB micro adapter
- Sun shield
- Stylus pen
- Camera lens cap
- Hard transport case
FLIR B400 Sample Photos
Here are some photos I took in our warehouse and office. You won’t see any missing insulation or condensation here however, we see those all the time and I’m sure if you’re buying a FLIR B400, you have too at least once or twice. I wanted to just get a feel of how it worked and give you a simplistic, easy-to-use perspective.
How Does it Compare to other B-Series Cameras?
Here’s a chart comparing the FLIR B400 to the B360, B300 & B200 (B-series cameras)
Wireless Connectivity with METERLiNK Technology
The FLIR B400 also features METERLiNK. METERLiNK is an exclusive new technology that wirelessly connects FLIR infrared cameras to Extech meters via Bluetooth to accelerate and simplify inspections. METERLiNK instantly imprints the electrical readings onto a related infrared image not only adding time-savings, but also ensuring accurate, coordinated documentation for PdM inspection reports. Learn more about METERLiNK here.
FLIR B400 Review Summary
The FLIR B400 is a professional series infrared camera for building inspectors. Its amazing features set it apart against other thermal imaging cameras in the market today and is competitively priced. When you compare it to the lower B-series cameras, the FLIR B400 does give you the ability to take panoramic photos, record video and has a higher temperature range. Ultimately, it will come down to your needs. So if you’re looking for a light weight, professional series infrared camera with many of the features you see on the FLIR B400, then click the link below to buy the FLIR B400 or give one of our Level 1 Thermographers a call toll free in US/Canada at 1.877.766.5412.