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ht-04 thermal imaging camera review

HTI HT 04 Thermal Camera Review

The HTI HT 04 Thermal Camera is designed for commercial and consumer use. It has exceptional storage capacity and is priced pretty reasonably.

The HT 04 captures sharp and clear thermal contrast images with excellent resolution. It also provides a large 2.8" display that makes field thermal analysis a lot easier. 

In addition, the HTI HT04 has an impressive temperature range and is plenty accurate for most electrical and mechanical inspections.

It has a huge 3GB storage, so you don’t have to worry about deleting images.

The battery life is better than most other models and features an LED light to aid in inspections and targeting. 

Note: HTI's HT 019 thermal camera is an upgraded version of this model; that said, the HT04 is still sold online and may meet your needs at a lower cost.

Read on to learn more about this thermal cameras best and worst features - and how it compares with the newer HT 019.

Pros and Cons 

ht-04 thermal imaging camera review

Pros

  • Long battery life
  • Amazingly accurate
  • Clear and crisp images
  • LED light that doubles as a flashlight and illuminator for photos
  • Powerful tool

Cons

  • Not designed for medical use (taking body temperature)

Unique Features

ht-04 thermal camera

The market for thermal imaging & thermal cameras is growing quickly and specializing due to lower costs, intelligent/connected applications and improved sensitivity. 

There are now hundreds of products on the market with a wide range of features  for amateurs or for professionals that are specialized for different applications and industries.

This can make it difficult for you to choose one.

In this review, we explain what makes the HTI HT 04 Thermal Camera stand out from the bunch for industrial and consumer/HVAC applications and why we love it so much. 

Resolution

The HTI HT 04 has a thermal sensor and an infrared camera with high-resolution image quality.

Every time you click a photo with this thermal camera, you get sharp and crisp images at 220x160 pixels. 

Furthermore, the thermal sensitivity of this camera is 0.07°C with a measurement accuracy of ±2°C or 2%. 

Thermal images showing hot and cold patterns will help you detect energy waste, plumbing clogs, structural defects, and  other trouble spots that are difficult to detect otherwise.

Design

The HTI HT 04 Thermal Camera uses an effective and creative design. It is styled like a gun, which makes handling and pointing it for shots very easy. 

The user menu is strategically placed at the front panel, and the navigation buttons are positioned well within reach.

This is a small and lightweight device, too, so it's perfect for job sites.

Colors

ht-04 thermal camera

The color palette of a thermal camera is a critical feature that determines the  effectiveness and performance of the product.

The HTI HT 04 Thermal Camera offers a wide range of colors they can choose from. 

The high heat temperature palette enhances color contrast between different temperatures. In color format this device uses iron oxide red, rainbow and gold. 

The white and black heat colors provide a linear scale that is useful for conducting inspections.

Versatile

Infrared cameras have revolutionized the way professionals work.

Their ability to see heat or detect heat patterns has opened up new levels of awareness and diagnosis and is radically different from conventional inspection.  

In mechanical / HVAC systems, the HTI HT 04 is designed to detect heat gain or loss, leaks and blockages in plumbing, water penetration, and malfunctioning  mechanical systems including motors and heat pumps.

The HT 04 is also perfect for analyzing shorted and overloaded electrical circuits.

Display

The HTI HT 04 Thermal Camera uses a large 2.8” display. This is larger than most other units and provides a bright and easy to read viewing. 

The central point temperatures, color codes, and the highest/lowest temperatures are easily visible and easy to detect. 

All of these features help you identify problems more easily and more quickly. 

Moreover, the LCD display shows current time and emissivity.

Lastly, the battery icon on the corner of the screen indicates how much charge is left in your device.

Battery

ht-04 thermal camera

This unit works with standard rechargeable lithium batteries that can be recharged with a USB cable.

Make sure you don’t overcharge the battery, however - never charge it for more than 24 hours.

A fully charged battery will last about two to three hours. 

If you want to improve  battery life, make sure you charge this device for a minimum of two hours every three months.

Image Storage

The storage capacity of this camera is massive. It features a built-in capacity of 3 GB, enough for about 20,000 images.

You can also transfer these images to your phone and laptop easily. 

With this kind of storage, you won’t have to worry about running out of space and can always compare older shots on the device itself - not waiting until you get back to the computer.


Issues & Concerns

ht-04 thermal imaging camera reviews

Warm Weather

During seasons of high temperatures, it can be difficult to distinguish between items. 

For example,  a hot rock can often glow red, and it can come to the point that everything just takes a similar pattern. However, this only happens in extremely hot (~100F) scenarios.

Wet Season

Humidity and rain can confuse the range of your camera.

This problem is not limited to the HTI HT 04 thermal camera, but is common to all thermal cameras.


Care and Maintenance

The exterior of the HT 04 should be cleaned using a damp cloth or a weak soap.

Don’t use harsh solvents like isopropanol.

You should clean the lens with a lot of care, as well. Don’t use excessive force and pressure to clean the lens, and only use an adequate alcohol-based cleaning solution. Use compressed air tanks to blow dust and debris off.

To clean the lens, get a piece of cloth that is free from any lint and dip it in an appropriate alcohol solution. Squeeze the cloth to get rid of any excess solution.  

Alternatively, you can apply the wet cloth to a dry cloth lightly. Wipe the lens with soft circular movements and then discard the piece of cloth. If the lens needs further cleaning, use a new piece to dip in the alcohol solution.


Warranty

This device comes with a one-year warranty.

If it runs into trouble due to a manufacturing defect, then the manufacturer will replace or repair the unit. 

However, damage caused by improper use does not fall under the warranty.

Learn more about HTI's warranty in their user manual.


Specifications

  • Display: 2.8-inch colour display
  • Temperature range: -4-572°F;
  • Total pixel: 35200
  • Measuring mode: Infrared focal plane measuring temperature
  • FOV/shortest focal length: 35 x 26°/0.15m
  • Thermal sensitivity: 0.07°C
  • Measuring accuracy: ±2°C
  • Resolution: 220*160
  • Emissivity: 0.1-1.0/adjustable
  • Wavelength range: 8-14μm
  • Image frequency: 9Hz

HT 04 Thermal Camera vs. HTI HT-19

ht-04 thermal imaging camera review

HTI HT has released many quality thermal cameras over the years.

We will be comparing HT 04 with HTI HT 19 to give you a clearer picture of both products.

Both are excellent products that have satisfied many customers, so what you choose boils down to preference.

These two products are similar in some aspects. They have the same temperature range of -20℃ to 300℃ (-4°F to 572°F) and the same storage capacity.

They also have identical measuring accuracy and wavelength range.

However, because the HT 19 is a newer model, some of its features have been enhanced by the manufacturer. 

For example, it has a higher resolution of 320×240 compared to the 220×160 of the HT 04, which is a critical feature for an infrared camera as it determines the quality of the captured images. 

Moreover, it has a larger display. However, due to these factors, it is also considerably more expensive than the HT 04.

Hence, it depends on which features you want and how much you are willing to pay for it to decide which product you choose.


Where to Buy

If the HTI HT 04 Thermal Camera interests you, you can buy it here.

About the Author Rob Carson

I work in commercial construction, in Dallas, TX.

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