EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

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EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Night Errant » Wed Sep 10, 2008 11:12 am

http://www.gearlog.com/2008/06/night_vi ... ds_com.php

The manufacturer claims they allow the user to see fifty feet in total darkness. Fair enough, but do the IR leds leak any visible radiation? Judging from the IR elements of normal video cameras and whatnot, they sometimes do. I wouldn't want to run around looking like some weird alien Terminator.
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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Nexy » Wed Sep 10, 2008 1:37 pm

Night Errant wrote:http://www.gearlog.com/2008/06/night_vi ... ds_com.php

The manufacturer claims they allow the user to see fifty feet in total darkness. Fair enough, but do the IR leds leak any visible radiation? Judging from the IR elements of normal video cameras and whatnot, they sometimes do. I wouldn't want to run around looking like some weird alien Terminator.
I don't think it would really matter, if it did emit visible light, you could just tape a filter over it that filters out the visible wavelengths. I modded a webcam to operate purely on IR a while ago by removing the IR filter and replacing it with a couple of layers of a black section of film negative. I guess the same would work in reverse. I fear a more likely posibility is that the display leaks light... Still, I look forward to seeing it! :D
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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Molon Labe » Wed Sep 10, 2008 8:01 pm

Saw this at a Toys-R-Us and immediately grabbed it up for my girl's kids. The boy is gonna love this. Hell, I might buy another 3 more, so we could play hide and go seek at night.
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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Johnsky » Wed Sep 10, 2008 10:16 pm

IR LED's cannot be seen by the human eye.

Other night vision goggles, active and passive will see your IR LED's quite clearly.
In fact, they will appear as though you had a head mounted flashlight.

If it uses IR LED's, it's an active night vision system. Which means it emits it's own IR, which is reflected back to the onboard camera, which CAN see IR. But your eyes can't. The camera translates IR into visible light for you to see.
Passive night vision, which is undetectable, merely amplifies the remaining light available.

The hilarious thing is, if YOU have Active night vision on, and the other guy has passive, your position is given away, BUT, if they look directly at you while you're looking their way, they can't see you, all they can see is a huge source of light, like looking into a spotlight.


Visible sources of IR are those that are simple high powered torches with the filters over the lenses.

But IR LED's cannot be seen by the naked eye.

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by z96cobra » Thu Sep 11, 2008 1:35 am

Johnsky wrote:IR LED's cannot be seen by the human eye...

But IR LED's cannot be seen by the naked eye.
Some cheap "IR LEDs" do emit some visible light. If you have one of the cheap home security cameras with the ring of IR LEDs, you can see some visible red light when the LEDs are powered on. I believe that is what the previous poster was saying also.

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Johnsky » Thu Sep 11, 2008 2:50 am

Yes, there are bound to be manufacturers out there who skimp on quality to make an extra buck.
All the IR LED's I've ever bought and built with have not been visible by the human eye.

I guess I just refuse to call something by it's name, if it isn't doing what it's name implies.

Difference of opinion I guess.

But hey, if you're really worried about visibility... you could always remove the LED's that are on those cameras, and replace them with actual IR LED's.

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Tyler Durden » Fri Sep 12, 2008 3:19 pm

Molon Labe wrote:Saw this at a Toys-R-Us and immediately grabbed it up for my girl's kids. The boy is gonna love this. Hell, I might buy another 3 more, so we could play hide and go seek at night.
Is there any way you can do a test run for us? This looks very interesting.

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Sheol151 » Fri Sep 12, 2008 6:47 pm

I just bought some....couldn't help my self.

So far...I wish you could focus the lens a little. But they work rather well....Have to test it outside tonight. I only tested it in the bathroom at work will all the lights off.

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Tyler Durden » Fri Sep 12, 2008 9:47 pm

Sheol151 wrote:I just bought some....couldn't help my self.

So far...I wish you could focus the lens a little. But they work rather well....Have to test it outside tonight. I only tested it in the bathroom at work will all the lights off.
Do they emit visible light? If so, how much?

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Sheol151 » Fri Sep 12, 2008 11:11 pm

No visible light. IR leds. However the "long range" light does emit a ring of faint red glow. Which i think can me masked using some Screen.

For the range report.

They fit comfortably of my face. Plenty of adjustment (A kids toy that goes on a mans head who wears a xxxl motorcyle helmet, yeah they made these for guys like us. :D )

So far, I can only see about 50 feet (AS advertised). And honestly I could see better with my natural nightvision. (But it was pretty light out tonight, and these work in pitch black)

I'm going to take mine apart and try replace the IR leds with some higher output LEDs.

Im also going to try to add a 90 degree lense to the camera to give me a wider shot as these induce tunnel vision like a mofo. Also a adjustable focus would be nice and anything 5 feet and closer from you gets kinda blurry.

My origional idea was to hook up some panoramic theater glasses that you wear to have your own personal 50" screen.(google it) To a webcam with the IR filter replaced.

But that setup would cost about 300 bucks instead of 80.

Im just gonna tinker with these things to see if i can improve on it.

So if you got the money and need a new toy or project i would buy them. But if your buying them for when the SHTF, save up for a real pair of NVGs

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Tyler Durden » Sun Sep 14, 2008 9:43 am

Sheol151 wrote:No visible light. IR leds. However the "long range" light does emit a ring of faint red glow. Which i think can me masked using some Screen.

For the range report.

They fit comfortably of my face. Plenty of adjustment (A kids toy that goes on a mans head who wears a xxxl motorcyle helmet, yeah they made these for guys like us. :D )

So far, I can only see about 50 feet (AS advertised). And honestly I could see better with my natural nightvision. (But it was pretty light out tonight, and these work in pitch black)

I'm going to take mine apart and try replace the IR leds with some higher output LEDs.

Im also going to try to add a 90 degree lense to the camera to give me a wider shot as these induce tunnel vision like a mofo. Also a adjustable focus would be nice and anything 5 feet and closer from you gets kinda blurry.

My origional idea was to hook up some panoramic theater glasses that you wear to have your own personal 50" screen.(google it) To a webcam with the IR filter replaced.

But that setup would cost about 300 bucks instead of 80.

Im just gonna tinker with these things to see if i can improve on it.

So if you got the money and need a new toy or project i would buy them. But if your buying them for when the SHTF, save up for a real pair of NVGs
Thanks for the report. I think I'm gonna pick up a pair "for my nephews" and tinker with them a little.

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Slugg » Mon Sep 15, 2008 3:26 pm

So if you got infrared flashlights would they help? Im looking to get a handheld inrared flashlight that helps with these. i haven't bought them yet but they are on my wish list for sure.
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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by andygates » Mon Sep 15, 2008 4:06 pm

They should do - they'd be additional IR light sources. Man, I want to go pitch-black mountain biking now!
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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Nexy » Tue Sep 16, 2008 3:57 pm

andygates wrote:They should do - they'd be additional IR light sources. Man, I want to go pitch-black mountain biking now!
I'm thinking pitch black airsoft or paintballing or even just water pistols. Empty underground car park (or warehouse or something) at night + cheap NVGs = mayhem?
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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Squirrley » Tue Sep 16, 2008 7:26 pm

Nexy wrote: Empty underground car park (or warehouse or something) at night + cheap NVGs = mayhem?

Water guns + cheap NVGs = broken cheap NVGs

at least thats my prediction.
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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by hakujin » Tue Sep 16, 2008 10:08 pm

I found a pair of these at Wal-mart while shopping for ammo. I too couldn't resist. They remind me of the early Gen I Soviet night vision goggles that were available in all the catalogs 10-15 years ago. No ability to focus, poor depth of field, severe tunnel vision, etc. I was surprised to note that the display is full color, although severely washed out. There is a green filter that increases contrast slightly in total darkness.

These goggles don't seem to suffer when exposed to bright lights, except to wash out detail when the light source is within the field of view. There is only one display, over the right eye, so depth perception suffers. I was able, in low light, to open the left eyecover and, if I tilted my head just right, regain depth perception by eliminating perceived parallax error.

The top-loading battery tray requires the use of a small phillips screwdriver to open and takes 5 AA batteries. I would have preferred a side loader with a flap of some sort. There is plenty of adjustment in the straps and power cord to fit any head, I wear the largest size helmet and have enough length left over to wear a ballcap under the unit. The eyecups are large enough to wear small framed glasses under, I don't have a large pair to check against. I have noticed no light leakage from the display, in total darkness, in a mirror, with or without glasses on.

Be forewarned, the plastics and/or rubber used is very low quality. The unit I purchased is out-gassing volatiles, causing my eyes some trouble, even an hour after removing them from my immediate area. I plan on wiping them down with denatured alcohol in the morning. Hopefully the smell is the release agent used in the molds, the rubber does seem greasy. I'm pleased with the lack of bright stickers and paint on the unit, it's uber-ninja-style black. Super tactical.

I will likely pick up another after the weekend. When I do, I'll take one of them apart to see the goodies inside. I tend to get excited about taking things apart, so I can't guarantee I'll document the process, but I'll try.

I tried to cover the topics that I thought were interesting, if there are any questions, I'll do my best to answer them.

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Nexy » Wed Sep 17, 2008 12:58 pm

Thanks hakujin, and welcome! :o I guess my first question (partially prompted by Squirrley), how water resistant do they look and how hard do you think would it be to waterproof them?
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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by andygates » Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:27 pm

Sounds like something you could cannibalize the hell out of.
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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by hakujin » Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:17 pm

Cannibalizing is the order of the day. I will look into the feasibility of combining two units to provide depth perception, once I have taken this one apart. Speaking of which, it appears that all of the individual pieces are held together with readily accessible screws. That said, the plastic being as brittle as it is, the threads will probably be shot once the screws have been R&R'd. I haven't removed them yet, but I'm sure they are self-tapping screws.

As far as waterproofing the unit, I don't know. I'm sure judicious use of silicone sealant inside all of the seams would go a long way towards making it waterproof, but given the design of the battery box, I'm not sure that could be waterproofed without making a seal with packing rubber. I think a person would be better off making a new box (maybe out of a pelican case?) which would allow the fitting of a rechargeable battery pack with high Mah batteries.

I'll be testing my stock unit this weekend on a camping trip, to decide if it's worthy of tinkering with. I figure if I can correct any shortcomings for less than the purchase price, it's a worthy endeavor. If it ends up costing more than double the price (including my time) to "fix" it, I may as well plunk down for a surplus Gen I or II unit.

I think these are really neat for what they are. The fact that these are available and sold as toys, is remarkable. I can only imagine the trouble I would have gotten into if they were available when I was young. I'm sure as time goes on, these will either be taken off of the market, the price will double, or will be regulated somehow.

I am somewhat shocked at the other products that are being marketed to kids right now as well. I saw remote controlled, camera'd, airplanes that have a display in the radio with recording ability. Portable video recording microscopes. I thought I saw a "crime scene" forensics kit on the same shelf... Laser tag seems to be making a comeback, or has already, I don't keep up on current toys. It would have been neat to have access to that stuff as a kid.

Edit: Oh, I almost forgot. They still reek after being out of the package for nearly 16 hours. I did a cursory wipe down with denatured alcohol, but didn't spend a lot of time on it with cotton swabs or the like. The rubber is still greasy appearing after the alcohol swab, so I assume it's an artifact of the molding process.

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by URBAN ASSAULT » Wed Sep 17, 2008 3:47 pm

I'm wondering if instead of building a new battery box it wouldn't just be easier to put the battery box in heavy-duty plastic bag, and then use silicone on the opening where the power cord comes out.

Put the whole thing in a MOLLE pouch, and strap it to the outside of a CamelBack water carrier?

Then you could have some hydration, your batteries stay drier, and you no longer need to have the battery box on your waist. Just a thought.

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by hakujin » Wed Sep 17, 2008 6:15 pm

The battery box only uses 5 AA batteries and is attached as a counterweight to the optics. All of the straps are held in place by the battery box and the power switch is located on the rear, in easy reach. A remote battery box would necessitate adding dead weight to the unit as a strap keeper and counterweight, not to mention relocating the power switch. The stock solution is copied from some of the military units.

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by URBAN ASSAULT » Wed Sep 17, 2008 9:22 pm

That makes sense. I would have thought my idea out more before posting, but I was drugged & sickened by some foul c@ke my wife made me eat.

The things we do for the ones we love :cry: :lol: .

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by hakujin » Wed Oct 01, 2008 10:51 pm

I've been back from the deer camp for a week. I did use the EyeClops a couple of times, to much amusement from my campmates. The nights were so clear and the moon so bright, the EyeClops were a serious handicap to normal functioning. The loss of depth perception vs. the increased contrast of the video display on a well lit night cannot be overcome, not to mention the night-blindness in the display eye when the goggles are removed.

I will do some more testing before I write these off completely, however don't hold your breath waiting for results. I was so impressed with them that I accidentally folded them up in my tent when I packed camp. I have yet to find sufficient motivation to unpack the tent just for the goggles. Perhaps if someone were to recommend their favorite canvas-washing soap and water/fireproofing, I would sooner find the motivation to unpack it.

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Re: EyeClops - Anybody have experience with these?

Post by Maeklos » Thu Dec 11, 2008 11:23 am

Sorry for a mild case of necroposting, but I picked up a pair of these as the Wal-Mart near me was having a sale on 'em. I picked up a set plus a 1-year warranty for about $60. Having used (admittedly bad) low-light and IR systems previously, I kind of knew what to expect, but was still quite surprised at the quality of these things. They are an active system, and as such, will light you up like a spotlight at night to anyone with a set of IR goggles themselves.

However, what they are great for is navigating around inside enclosed, lightless spaces. Places like houses, buildings, and underground accessways deprived of power. The LED screen fits over the right eye and the cover over the left eye can be raised so that if there is any visible source of light, you can use your natural vision to augment the IR-fed LED screen, which works surprisingly well.

For an experiment, I flipped off all the lights in my house and walked around using just the goggles, using just my own natural nightvision, and then using a combination of both using only what light was available as well as using a handheld flashlight.

I found that, without exception, in places where my left eye could get enough light to adjust, it was better to use my own nightvision in conjunction with the IR to give me a composite of the area. This let me use my natural vision for navigation (as the goggles tend to have a very slight magnification, which makes it seem that things are a tad bit closer than they actually are - kind of like the effect you get when wearing a newer, stronger prescription of glasses) while retaining the IR to see fairly clearly all around.

In pitch blackness, using pure IR was enough to get around, with the only problem dealing with the minor magnification that they seem to do. But they worked well enough.

Using a flashlight kind of gave the best of both worlds - I could spot with the IR and then using my flashlight to pinpoint things. The light didn't wash out the goggles and so I didn't have to turn them off or switch back and forth. In fact, using, say, a weapon-mounted flashlight with a set of these may give you an edge if you're expecting trouble, as a potential troublemaker could spot your beam and think they're perfectly hidden from you so long as that beam stays away from them - meanwhile you know they're there the entire time due to the goggles.

Anywho, that's my thoughts on these things. Handy and dandy, and definitely worth it for the price. And so far, I've gotten about 4 hours of use out of them without having to change batteries.
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