Image of ZLID illumination on a building under construction 1 kilometer from the camera.

ZLID™ Long-Range IR Laser Illumination 1-6km Night Vision

Infrared (IR) is light that is just outside the wavelength of what humans can see. This makes it a covert illumination option that isn’t visible to the human eye but can be read by a camera sensor and converted to a clear black-and-white image. IR LED arrays are commonly used in the surveillance industry to illuminate scenes that are too dark for cameras to obtain a clear picture, however most LED arrays are only effective for a limited range of 300 metres. To go beyond that range, Infiniti has developed a technology called ZLID™ (Zoom Laser IR Diode).

Lasers have been used by other companies to extend the IR illumination range, but they typically result in inconsistent illumination due to the use of cheap lasers and the spot beam nature of lasers. Our ZLID™ Technology adjusts the laser’s intensity and focus area as the motorized lens is zoomed in and out, eliminating the overexposure, washout, and hot-spots that usually occur with lasers. Combined with our precision engineered optics and highly tuned image sensors, we are able to provide a clear, even image in complete darkness for up to 5km.


ZLID example of a camera zoom with the beam re-focusing.

Long Range Night Vision 1-5km

By using powerful lasers and focusing them to a small field-of-view, we can provide illumination for targets as far away as 5 kilometers. Traditional IR LED arrays are often limited to an effective range of 300m.

Washed out image of over-illuminated hyper-focused ZLID beam.
Evenly focused slightly wider ZLID beam.

Even, Balanced IR Illumination

Many competitors offer sub‑par laser illumination solutions. We use high quality lasers in our products that provide an even, balanced light, and we adjust the focus area and brightness of the laser according to the zoom level.

Person in truck visible through the glass window.

See Through Glass

Most glass blocks some portions of IR light, most notably the wavelengths used by thermal energy. The NIR wavelengths used in our ZLID illuminators pass through glass, which makes it the best long‑range technology if you need to see through glass in the dark.

Heavy duty construction equipment at night viewed with thermal imaging.
Heavy duty construction equipment at night viewed with ZLID imaging.

High Detail and Readable Text

Because ZLID uses a wavelength of light similar to visible, objects look close to how they would look lit with a spotlight. This means that things like identification markers and license plates are much more likely to be legible than they are with thermal cameras, which often read such information as a panel of uniform temperature.

The comparison image here shows the difference between thermal and ZLID at night when viewing a construction vehicle.


While ZLID is a revolutionary technology that solves many issues with IR illumination, it isn’t the best solution for every situation. This is why Infiniti believes in multi-sensor systems that can benefit from other technologies to fill in the limitations that ZLID may have.

Not Suited for Detection

While ZLID allows the user to zoom in to see great amounts of detail, it is not a good solution for wide-angle detection of potential threats. This is why we suggest pairing our ZLID technology with a thermal camera to achieve both easy detection and effective identification.

Not Entirely Covert

While the beam that an IR laser casts is invisible to the naked eye, the source of the beam is not. If you were to look at the laser source from a far distance, you would see a faint red glow. Additionally, many cameras will see the IR light beam and could easily follow it back to the source. If you need a completely covert nighttime surveillance solution, ZLID may not meet your needs, but SWIR or thermal can.

Dangerous at Close Ranges

All ZLID products come with an NOHD rating. This means that the laser can cause permanent damage to your eyes if you are closer than the specified eye-safe distance and not wearing protective eyewear. The heat generated from the laser beam can also be a fire hazard for some materials at close distances. We can configure our cameras with LRF safety switches that will automatically shut off the laser if an object is detected within the NOHD, but for situations where there will regularly be people in close range to the camera, ZLID is not a recommended solution.

High Energy Usage

If energy is a concern, ZLID illumination uses more energy than other imaging solutions.

Every situation is unique, and we excel at designing camera systems that deliver the specific performance you need at the best competitive price. Whether your priority is top-of-the-line cutting edge technology or a precise and cost‑effective solution, we can design a custom surveillance system that is a perfect fit for your project.

Talk to a Sales Engineer

Tell us about your project requirements and we’ll work with you to design the ideal solution that best matches your budget and your project needs.