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Published on September 9th, 2015 | by Greg

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Seek’s Thermal Camera For iOS: Identify Hot Spots

During the summer, thermal leaks can be an issue, with your air conditioner working overtime to keep your apartment cool. But the bigger issues come with winter, when it can be critical to seal your house or room against the wind and snow. Insulation and dual-paned windows help maintain your environment, but all the patches in the world won’t help if you cannot identify just where to put them. Pipes and vents, ducts and doors- there are a million ways for air to sneak in or out.

The Seek Compact Thermal Camera is an accessory that might seem a little out there at first, but quickly proves it’s usefulness. Available in two configurations for Android (via micro-USB) or newer iOS devices (via the Lightning connector), the Seek is uniquely handy. And it’s not just for contractors or maintenance- you can use it wherever heat detection might be helpful. You might not find yourself looking for heat signatures in the darkness very often or wishing you had infrared vision, but it gives your phone a superpower of sorts and it works in sunlight or at night. The range that the Seek can detect is incredibly broad, from -40° up to 626° Fahrenheit, though it doesn’t include a traditional camera or imaging sensor so you’ll have to use a bit of imagination if you’re simply trying it out.

The terms “Vanadium Oxide Microbolometer” and “Chalcogenide Lens” might not mean much to you, but all that matters is that it’s very easy to basically plug and play with the Seek Compact. Download the free app and you’re ready to go, and you can record videos or take pictures too along with live viewing. It’s sensitive and accurate enough to use for low-level medical uses, as you’ll be able to detect elevated skin temperatures, and automatic calibration is simple. You’ll want to stand a little bit away from your subject, because the field of view is pretty narrow and initial impressions can seem fuzzy, but in a couple of minutes you’ll have it all figured it. The more expensive version includes a variable focus and longer range, but we rarely missed those (but they definitely would have been our top feature requests).

The Seek Compact is a little bulky, and using it means changing the way you hold your phone. Also, it may not work with all phone cases, but we had no issues with needing to remove ours). A carrying case is included, and we definitely suggest storing it safely when not in use. The Seek Compact will drain your battery life pretty quickly, but you’ll barely notice if you are simply doing a quick sweep or figuring out how warm your cat is. If you’ve ever wanted to pretend to be Predator or easily win your next hide and seek game, the Seek Compact might be your new best friend. It’s available now, online and in stores, for around $250.

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About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Apple’s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.



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