Introducing the IR4+ V2 Night Flyer. Paring this compact lightweight infrared floodlight with an IR sensitive camera allows a user to see in the dark without light visible to the human eye.
The V2 model features a more rugged durable design with no moving parts and an upgraded driver unit which provides better control over the input power to the LED’s under different conditions.
The IR4+ provides an extremely bright infrared floodlight with an even wide angle spread of light, perfect for use with action cameras. When viewed through an IR sensitive camera and FPV goggles or screen, this allows the viewer to see clearly in total darkness. Optimised for mini quads, the IR4+ attaches to any PCB running 3S to 4S and allows you the freedom to fly FPV without daylight.
Many board cameras with the right lenses can be used with this module with excellent results. Recording HD night footage with action cameras has proved a lot more complicated as, unlike board cameras, these cameras are not designed for low light use. Check the compatible cameras/lens tab for more info.
Note: This is not an FPV camera, it is an IR floodlight.
* These devices emit highly concentrated non-visible infrared light which can be hazardous to the human eye.
Do not stare into the operating lamp!
The high power LEDs in the IR4 produce significant amounts of heat. The product has been designed to stay cool when in flight on a quadcopter, and is NOT suitable for static installations.
To protect internal components and prevent injury, the IR4+ will throttle the LED output power based on the case temperature.
We recommend you power on the IR4+ immediately before each flight to ensure maximum brightness and switch off as soon as you land.
(We also recommend connecting the IR4+ to a receiver controlled switch as this will also allow the IR4 to be powered off in a failsafe condition)
Always use an insulating separation layer (such as sticky Velcro) between the IR4+ and your action cam if you are mounting them on top of each other.
The Module is completely plug and play. Just solder a JST connector to your PCB running 3s-4s and you are ready.
- Weight: 74g
- Dimensions: 61mm (L) x 18mm (H) x 43mm (W)
- Voltage: 9-17v input (3s-4s LiPo)
- Current draw: ~1A
- IEC 62471 Group: Exempt
- RF Noise: Currently undergoing testing. Low noise LED driver tested extensively using 2.4 / 5.8GHz without any noticeable degradation in range
- Power Connector: JST
- Storage Temperature: -20°C to +45°C
- Operating Temperature: 0C to +35°C
- Duty cycle - 10 minutes on, 5 minutes off.
A number of FPV board cameras have IR cut filters (which prevent IR light being visible) so it is important to test this.
To do so, you can point a TV remote at the camera while you are viewing the video feed through goggles or on a screen. If you see a bright white light when you press a button, you are good to go and can use the IR module to see in the dark.
If you see a dull purple light from the remote when you press a button, it does have an IR filter and the camera is not suitable. This means the infrared light is being cut out by your camera and you will need to change the lens or camera in order to use the IR4+ module.
If this is the case with your camera, then firstly you should check the relevant info to see if the IR filter is inside the camera or part of the lens. If it is part of the lens, you can usually replace the lens with one that does not cut the IR light. Search for IR sensitive lens on eBay or your favorite RC supplier.
If the IR cut filter is inside the camera, it is still possible to remove the filter if you have some technical knowledge. However, board cameras are cheap and we encourage you to just find one from the list below and spend the time flying instead!
Tested board cams
Runcam Night Eagle 2 fpv cam (Recommended)
Foxeer HS1177 600 TVL IR Sensitive board camera (Recommended)
RunCam 600 TVL IR Sensitive
Sony Super Had 600tvl PZ0420 CC1333 IR Sensitive
Different board cameras perform better in low light but the key here is that it must be IR sensitive.
Recording IR with HD Action Cams.
Setup and Tips
The module requires a JST connection for power. It will run on 9-17v power and is plug and play. The module has heat sinks to keep it cool, but add a switch controlled through your TX and you can turn on the module as needed.
You also need to set up your goggles for night flying. Getting the goggle settings right will allow you to see objects far ahead of you while flying fast. Set up your rig and stand with it powered up, facing an object 20-30m away from you and your goggles on. Begin by dialing the brightness up from day settings to see objects in the distance (we use 55/100). Then move on to adjusting the contrast (we use around 44/100). You should be able to clearly see the outline of a tree for example up to 20-30m away or more. If you are not able to then further adjustments are needed.
How do I record the output?
To record the flight, the easiest way is from a Ground Station or DVR attached to your goggles or monitor but most GS's are only SD quality. For HD, it is possible to record on an action camera but you first need to change the lens to one that can see IR light. Check the Compatible cameras/lens tab for more info.
How do I record IR in HD? CLICK HERE
I've set up my module and rig and I am about to go flying. Tips?
Night flying poses many different challenges to daytime flying and extreme caution should be exercised at all times. Remember when you first started FPV flying? Start slow and build up as you become more comfortable.
IR light needs to bounce back off objects to illuminate your surroundings like any torch. Flying in a large open field with nothing in front of you is highly ineffective for this reason whereas proximity flying allows you to have constant points of reference. The ideal location for night flying might be widely spaced trees. Ultimately you should know your flying environment - don't expect to learn it in the dark!
The module is an efficient unit but requires power to run. Therefore it is advised to reduce your flight time accordingly. If you push your packs too far the module will switch off as the power drains (in our experience this happens shortly before you lose overall power).
Take extra effort to secure all components on your setup well during flight. Finding objects after a crash is considerably harder in the dark.
Like any high powered device, the module gives off a lot of heat. The module has a built-in system to lower the input power if the device gets too warm. What this means in practice is that if you leave it powered up for a long time, the light output will be lowered until the module cools. This cooling happens very quickly with airflow but when you first take off the light output may be lower - be careful of this.
- 1x IR4+ IR Module