(As seen in True Lies and Mission Impossible)
This is a  black and white 9V battery powered video camera that is in a plastic case 1.1" x 0.635" x 2.1".  It doesn't look like a camera and sells for approxiamately $970!  With its viewing hole of 1/32", it transmits a picture up to 1000 feet away with 420 lines of resolution.
Some more technical information:
Frequency:  437,900-937 MHz
Power:  80 mW pep (low power) 250 mW pep (high power)
Voltage:  8-14 volts DC
Current:  50 mA (low) 125 mA (high)
(Spy Shop)
These "glasses" record both visual and audio.  They look like regular glasses in normal light, then change to sunglasses once the user goes outside in the brighter light.  They have a high resolution and a field of view of 92 degrees. ($3710)
(Spy Shop)
Slide Show
This camera comes with a remote control so you can tell the 3.6 mm lens inside this "dome" where to point. ($190)
Resolution:  420 TV lines
Voltage: 12 V
Current: 130 mA
(Spy Shop)
Looks like a regular, lamp, huh?  Well, it isn't.  If it was, I guess it wouldn't be on this page, would it?
    It's a wireless video camera with video and audio transmitters with a 150 foot range and 60 degree field of view.
Frequency:  900 MHz vid005.jpg (3228 bytes)
A smoke alarm! No... a smoke alarm video camera.  It shows its black and white image onto a VCR or monitor.
Well, I guess this isn't exactly SPYING... But here is a practical use for a spy camera.  This is called the baby cam and it is just like a baby monitor, except you get a visual recording of your baby as well.  Of course... This can be used for OTHER things besides monitoring BABIES...
Resolution:  350 TV lines
Output level:  50 mV/m
Voltage:  AC 120 V
Power: 4.0 watts pinc.jpg (4292 bytes)
The viewing hole is only 1/32" and it gives a clear black and white picture. It is 1" x 1" x 1" with a 60 degree field of view.  It should be connected to a 12 V power supply and a recorder where it will depict the image with 420 TV lines. (Spy Shop)

Some other hidden cameras that I found at the I SPY Company Home Page were a sprinkler head camera, wall clock, emergency light, Exit sign, desk pencil sharpener, desk speaker, and a fire emergency siren.

What they are used for:

    *Taking a picture by hand:  The only way that a picture of a document will be readable is if the camera is in perfect focus, which is the primary problem because spies must take pictures quickly and often.  Besides, the camera doesn't necessarily need to be tiny to take pictures of documents because the circumstances probably wouldn't force that.  Soviet spy Christopher Boyce used a 35mm Minox with a chain measure for focusing and a small tripod stand for sturdiness.  It is pointless to take pictures of documents unless you can do it correctly, so that they are readable.  (Yost 208)
    *Another way to take a picture of a document is by wiring a camera into an office copier.  It will take a picture of every document passing through! (Yost 210)

An example of a use of a "mini-lipstick cam," as it was called in an article from the Columbia Journalism Review, was in 1992 by the ABC news.  Some of their journalists lied about who they were to get a job at Food Lion.  Then, they used cameras the size of lipstick to capture such horrors as a “supervisor take chicken out of the bone can, make us wash it, and put it back out.  And it was rotten.”
They encountered a problem with the law for lying, but that has nothing to do with our project, so...  The article states that:
“North and South Carolina don’t ban the use of hidden cameras, but a growing number of states do.  Yet although no numbers are available, the networks all have hidden cameras, and local television stations throughout America have added them to their arsenals in the last few years.  Advancing tecnology has made them easier to hide, as small as a lipstick.”
(Baker, 28-34)

This page was last updated May 15