How does the Day and Night functionality work?


With most manufactures a day and night color network camera delivers color images during the day and when light diminishes below a certain level, the camera uses an IR-cut filter to switch to night mode to make use of near infrared (IR) light to deliver black and white images.

With this approach the camera uses a mechanical IR-cut filter. When such mechanisms are used the cameras have higher failure rates than cameras without any kind of moving part. The main reason for failure with this type of camera is that the filter wears out or it gets stuck. It is for this reason that MOBOTIX has a different approach to the Day and Night cameras.

Single lens cameras

MOBOTIX single lens cameras come in two variants: Day or Night. In this case the camera will always show the color image using Day models and a black and white image using Night models.

The Moonlight technology present in all camera models and sensors enables the camera to generate high quality images of moving objects in low-light environments such as moonlight. The following table refers to the light sensitivity with different exposure times.

Sensor type light sensitivity @ 1/60s light sensitivity @ 1s
Color (day) 0,1 lx 0,005 lx
BW (night) 0,02 lx 0,001 lx

Choosing the right camera relays on scouting the location properly. If the cameras are to be installed in an environment where there is not going to be sufficient lighting available to support color recording then you should consider going with a MOBOTIX dual lens Day & Night camera or using a single lens Black & White camera.

Picture to the left is a Day color camera and picture to the right is a Night black and white camera. The advantage of a Night sensor is that it is able to capture all light in every pixel. With Black and white video the camera will not capture colors but it will allow for higher quality identification at lower light levels.

Dual lens cameras

MOBOTIX dual lens cameras are fitted with both color and black and white image sensors allowing the camera to record in either color, black and white or both depending on the illumination level.

The camera measures the illumination levels continuously and when the illumination goes below an user specified value it switches between the color and black and white without without using moving parts to achieve this. With this type of camera it is possible to have the best picture quality for every situation.

Dual lens cameras can show both images at the same time benefitting from the black and white higher quality in low light conditions and from the color detail when light level rises.