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Closed Circuit Televisions (CCTVs)

Mail, maps, work products, newspapers and other paper text or graphics can be accessed using a Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) System. A CCTV system can enlarge the type or graphic on a page up to two to sixty-four times its original size.

The starting point for a CCTV system is a camera. The camera creates the picture that will be transmitted to the control position. A lens is added to the front of the camera to enlarge the text. The unit also has a zoom feature to allow the user to focus on a specific area of the document.

Many CCTV systems can reverse the color contrast; view image in color or black and white. When using with a computer some CCTV systems have split-screen technology. This means that a user can view one half of the magnifier image from the CCTV on their computer screen while still viewing whatever they have on the computer. (e.g. hand-written form and word processing form where data is going to be entered).

Types of Closed Circuit Televisions

CCTV Systems come in a variety of styles and amounts of magnifications. They can be portable or desktop versions. Typically they can be:

  • Hand held with a built in monitor
  • Hand held camera which is connected either to a computer monitor or a TV
  • A self contained portable version
  • A stand alone unit
  • A camera unit used with a computer

Before anyone purchases a CCTV, they should consider having a low vision examination with either an optometrist or ophthalmologist who has had additional training in low vision.