lux lighting in surveillance cameras

A Learning Lesson on Lux and Lighting in Surveillance Cameras

When choosing surveillance cameras, especially in an outdoors setting, selecting cameras that can capture imagery at all the light levels you will experience is critical. Knowing how important this is, in order to select the proper camera first we must determine the Lux rating necessary for the environment that you are intending to place the camera in.

What is lux?

Lux is used as a measure of the intensity specific to the amount of light that hits or passes through a surface (as perceived by the human eye).
So to expand upon this in human eye terms below are some common scenarios with the appropriate Lux ratings noted:

How lux translates to human eye viewing
  • 0.0001 lux – Moonless overcast night sky
  • 0.002 lux – Moonless clear night sky
  • 0.27–1.0 lux – Full moon on a clear night
  • 50 lux – Family living room lights
  • 80 lux – Office building hallway lighting
  • 100 lux – Very dark overcast day
  • 320–500 lux – Office lighting
  • 400 lux – Sunrise or Sunset on a clear day.
  • 1000 lux –Overcast day
  • 10000–25000 lux – Full Daylight (not direct sun)
  • 32000–100000 lux – Direct Sunlight


As a good general guide, anything outdoor that has a less than 1.0 Lux condition would warrant a recommendation to moving over to an Infrared equipped camera. The infrared feature would ensure that all objects are visible.

The professional surveillance engineering team at Access Control Technologies has the knowledge and installation experience to ensure that you get the right security cameras for the right situation. We always take the time to review your individual site needs and propose a proper cost-effective solution.

Want to learn more about lux, lighting conditions and the right type of cameras to properly protect your unique site situation? Give us a call today to schedule a free on-site assessment.