GoPro is the most sought-after camera for extreme use or for professional video and photo recording. As a go-anywhere / do-anything digital cam, GoPro is used by professional athletes, sportsmen, drivers, military, or just about anybody with a social media account. While it has long been a staple for recording things like matches, training, or adventures, night vision compatibility has remained elusive in any GoPro so far.
In this article, you will learn about how to turn your regular GoPro into an Infrared Camera with night vision.
Does GoPro have night vision?
No. GoPro doesn’t have built-in night vision capability. While GoPros use an infrared sensitive sensor, its lens is coated with an infrared block filter. This prevents you from seeing the infrared.
So, you need to make certain modifications to your GoPro camera if you are interested in filming at night or in situations with no light.
How to make a GoPro night vision?
You can convert any GoPro into a night vision camera. But it’s a permanent action. So, you’d probably only want to do it with an older model.
To make a GoPro night vision, you need to follow these steps:
- Take off the cap outside the lens by gently twisting it.
- Unscrew the lens assembly from the sensor assembly.
- Replace it with a night vision lens that doesn’t have the infrared filter.
- Plug your GoPro with an HDMI port to get the perfect focus with the new lens.
- Put back the cap after fixing a day/night filter to it.
With the day/night filter on, the camera is good to use in daylight. To use it at night (or in darkness), take the cap off, and you have a night vision camera.
Please note that if you use a lens without an infrared filter, please be aware that your day time colors while outside will not be accurate without a day/night filter.
Have a look at this video (Here, a Hero 7 has been converted into a night vision cam):
Now, to actually use your newly night vision turned GoPro at night, you’ll also need an infrared illuminator. So, after you’ve replaced the lens, you have to attach it to your camera.
Here are the steps to do it:
- Reduce the hole between the illuminator so as to make it fit around the lens – You can do this by using a moldable rubber (Sugru) and molding it to the shape you want (create a hole equal to the diameter of the lens) for letting the infrared light mount properly along the newly replaced lens. Pro Tip: Put soap/detergent on the surfaces that you don’t want it to stick to.
- Push the light straight over the lens.
So, that’s how you attach the infrared illuminator to your GoPro. But you also need to power it up in order for it to work. For this, you need to create a circuit box using:
- Six AA batteries
- XL6009 voltage converter board
- Enclosure box (65mm x 38mm x 22mm) for the voltage converter
- Battery enclosure for the six AA batteries
Have a look at the video below detailing how you can do it:
So, that’s how you make an awesome night vision camera out of your GoPro. You can easily get all the products mentioned to achieve this on eBay. I’ll provide the links below (we are not affiliate with eBay):
- 48 LED infrared illuminator is Available here.
- Sugru (Moldable Rubber) is Available here.
- XL6009 voltage converter board is Available here.
- The small enclosure box (65mm x 38mm x 22mm) for the voltage converter is Available here.
- The Battery enclosure for the six AA batteries is Available here.
Note: We are not promoting the product here. Neither are we affiliated with any brand in this post. These are just some suggestions to accomplish the goal of making your GoPro night vision.
Word of Advice
Although these steps can be followed to successfully turn your GoPro into a Night Vision Camera, you should be a pro in such kind of work. If you have no prior experience in such things, it’s NOT recommended to try it as you can potentially damage your camera.
If you still really want a GoPro with night vision capability, I’ve seen that stuntcams.com provides modified GoPros with Night Vision IR. These modified GoPros is ready to use out of the box.