Approximately 12 million people 40 years and over in the United States have vision impairment.

Hands held Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) systems have improved the quality of life of people suffering from low vision through providing them with a high-tech vision aid that magnifies images, improves color contrast, and is hands free. CCTVs primary use is to magnify what is seen by using the video camera to provide magnification on reading materials or other things when we need to see something on a bigger screen.

What a portable CCTV? What is it used for?

A portable CCTV works the same way as a conventional CCTV (which are usually very large and kept in one place at the home, work or school), except that it is in a handheld design. The benefits of a portable device is that it can be put in a pocket or purse and brought to the grocery store, to the classroom and for any thing that is outside of your home and work. Portable devices have become increasingly popular and versatile.

  • Increased magnification - For a portable device,let's say you want to see a menu, so you'll place this over it. In addition, it has its own lighting system, which is very useful for video magnification, and it can have various magnifications.  Like a desktop device you can use it to magnify anything from reading, drawings, arts and crafts, sewing and more. Everything is conveniently projected onto the screen at the desired magnification and other settings. Another example is magnifying school materials and then flipping the camera to magnify what is on the board.  The great thing about CCTV is you can adjust the magnification anywhere from two or four times all the way up to almost 30 times. That is all the magnification you have at your disposal.
  • Changing the contrast - As it is a digital device, you can also change its contrast. For instance, if you're still not getting enough contrast with the original colored image, you can switch to various ones and select the one that suits you best. Some people are more comfortable with less lighting. Nevertheless, contrast can make a big difference as well.
  • Taking a picture - With certain systems, if you are looking at a map and want to get directions to somewhere, you can take a photo of it, and then you can move it, essentially freezing the image. From there, you can even zoom in if necessary, and then when you unzoom or take off the freeze, you're back to the live feed.

How heavy is a handheld CCTV? How long does the battery last?

They are usually very lightweight but it does depend on the device. Their battery usually lasts about five hours, sometimes more, and they come with a portable charger.

For example the Ruby 7 HD, a popular option has these specifications:

  • Continuous zoom with 2x–24x magnification
  • See more on the vibrant 7-inch screen
  • Lightweight design at 18 ounces
  • Fast reading with no blur
  • Unique PivotCam rotating camera
  • Advanced Features
  • Freeze Frame with adjustable magnification and panning
  • Adjustable Reading Line and Masks to keep your place
  • 20 high-contrast color viewing modes so you can adjust text to be easy on your eyes
  • Built-in reading stand
  • HDMI port to connect to your TV
  • Save images and send to computer with USB port
  • 4 hours continuous use
  • Includes charger, carrying case, and USB cable
Schedule your visit with our eye doctors for a low vision evaluation at our renowned optometry clinic in Bellflower, serving patients from the surrounding areas including Long Beach, Lakewood, and Los Angeles. Call (562) 925-6591 or fill out this form to make an appointment today.
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