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Q: MiniDV/Fiberoptic Lens ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   2 Comments )
Subject: MiniDV/Fiberoptic Lens
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: nickyb-ga
List Price: $25.00
Posted: 09 Aug 2002 09:10 PDT
Expires: 08 Sep 2002 09:10 PDT
Question ID: 52604
Where can I find a miniDV recording unit that has a fiberoptic cable lens?

Request for Question Clarification by huntsman-ga on 09 Aug 2002 11:00 PDT

Exactly what are you trying to photograph?

Can you give us an example of the type of "miniDV recording unit" you
are interested in?

Subject: Re: MiniDV/Fiberoptic Lens
Answered By: wengland-ga on 09 Aug 2002 11:40 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars

We're going to make a couple of assumptions here.

1) By MiniDV, you mean a MiniDV camcorder, with a 37mm lens, like most
standard camcorders have.

2) You aren't looking for a multi-hundred thousand dollar system for
inspecting nuclear power plants.

MiniDV camcorders are available from many sources; MySimon lists many
models and vendors at this link:

Now that you have the MiniDV camcorder, you'll need a fiberscope
attachment.  The following scopes are designed to be directly
connected to the lens of the camcorder by way of a 37mm threaded

Now, nearly all MiniDV camcorders have a 37mm lens that has threads
for attching accessories.  I've found one 6 foot fiberoptic lens
attachment that will thread on to a 37mm lens.  The example they show
is a Sony MiniDV camcorder, but from my expericnce, 37mm is 37mm, and
it will fit on most consumer MiniDV camcorders.  If you have a
slightly larger lens, most camera shops will sell a step-down ring
that will attach to your camcorder and provide the needed 37mm
attachment point.

The fiberscope that I think you are looking for can be found at the
following shops:

Affordable Security, for $790.00:

OzSpy Spyshop for $1250 AUS dollars, about $675 USD:

Intellicam Systems for $790

CovertCam for $715

There are other products out that can connect to a MiniDV camcorder by
way of RCA plugs or other video-output methods.  Those include the
videoscopes from at: 

However, those are mighty expensive - on the order of $11,000 and up.

However, for about $560, you can the the Tactical Video System, with
RCA outputs from Spook Tech:

One challege you may run into is the lower-cost units will not have
high-intensity lighting built in, nor will they be using the highest
quality optical fiber.  If simple survelence or nature watching is
your goal, these models should work fine.  However, if you are
planning on doing industrial inspections, you should plan on spending
more and checking out the products at

I hope this answers your question; if you need more information, or I
have made an incorrect assumption, please ask for a clarification of
my answer.

Search Strategy:
minidv at

fiberscope camcorder

fiberoptic lens camcorder

Request for Answer Clarification by nickyb-ga on 10 Aug 2002 20:21 PDT
What I'm trying to do is hands free underwater videos of students.  I
am a scuba instructor and already have a large and bulky housing for a
JVC GR-DVM90U camcorder, but I want to build something into a dry case
that I can then run a lens to a head mount so I can video people
hands-free.  I need high enough quality that it will look great on VHS
and as good as price demands on DVD.  What would do this?

Clarification of Answer by wengland-ga on 11 Aug 2002 20:19 PDT

Thank you for the clarification request.  That's really something
completely different.  A fiber optic lens attachment isn't going to do
the trick there.  What you need is a remote CCD camera that attaches
to a MiniDV recording deck.  Since you already have your camcorder set
up in a dry-box, it may be possible to use that.  Otherwise, you can
purchase several different Sony MiniDV decks that are suitable for
mounting in a dry box.

Activ-Eye Video Recording Systems offers several different solutions
for hands-free video taping underwater.

Starting from the top, the AEV-DDPro system consists of housings for
recorders, remote CCD cameras, connections and more.  It is waterproof
to 300 feet.  It supports MiniDV format.

The AEV-DD model is waterproof to 200 feet, and has a few less
features, although it is still hands free and MiniDV.

You can read all about their systems, and view sample footage at their

Or, for a simpler system, you can get a remote CCD camera with
waterproof housing and video out from SarTek Industries at:

Another hands-free option is the RD Manufacturing setup, with a helmet
mounted CCD camera and 40" cable.  All you'd have to do is attach your
camcorder to the output of the CCD camera.

There are many more options as well; some more elaborate than others. 
I used the following search terms:

underwater video camera hands free

and came up with over 13,000 hits.  Follow this Google search:


and see what meets your exact specifications.  

If you need more information, please ask for further clarification
before rating this answer.  Quite an interesting topic; I hope it all
turns out well for you.

PS - the key to good video, above or below the water, is good

Request for Answer Clarification by nickyb-ga on 12 Aug 2002 11:28 PDT
You mention good lighting as being important.  For underwater use, I
use 2 Underwater Kinetics Light Cannons (HID) with diffusers.  Does
this sound reasonable?

Clarification of Answer by wengland-ga on 12 Aug 2002 11:51 PDT
(whups.  lets hit the right button this time)

Oh my.  Yes, that should be quite sufficient.  Two HID lights will
make it just about as bright as daylight.  Very nice rig.
I wish you the best of luck! 
If you need any further information, please ask for clarification
before rating this answer.
nickyb-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
This researcher was great, worked through several clarifications and
gave me all of the information I was looking for.

Subject: Re: MiniDV/Fiberoptic Lens
From: wengland-ga on 09 Aug 2002 11:21 PDT
Discrete videoscopes with video output to any deck, including mini DV:

Complete fiberscopes (much cheaper)

Nothing yet with a camcorder attachment...
Subject: Re: MiniDV/Fiberoptic Lens
From: wengland-ga on 12 Aug 2002 11:51 PDT
Oh my.  Yes, that should be quite sufficient.  Two HID lights will
make it just about as bright as daylight.  Very nice rig.

I wish you the best of luck!

If you need any further information, please ask for clarification
before rating this answer.

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