November 15th, 2013

DIY Big-Screen Target Cam System with High-Gain Antenna

target cam systemForum Member Okey developed a cool, low-budget, long-range target cam system that displays target views on a large, flat-screen TV. Initial testing shows the system works very well. The TV monitor is installed in a Shooting Shack that allows year-round shooting, even in cold weather. The big monitor allows shooters to easily see their groups from any shooting position in the shack.

Okey tells us: “Here’s a system my buddy and I put together. He is the brains behind it. I had the charge card. This is a home-made wireless target cam for long range shooting. It runs off a motorcycle or car battery. It uses a plain old camcorder camera, and a 2.4 GHz wireless digital link. The goal was to design something that has at least a 1000-yard range with good battery life. The transmitter puts out less than a watt, and runs on 12 volts. The camera runs on 7 volts, so there’s an on-board voltage regulator. The system draws a little less than one amp, so battery life estimate is simply the amp-hour rating of the battery. Everything was done to permit fairly rough handling, but it’s obviously not bullet-proof. It will last until somebody puts a 6mm hole in it.”

target cam system

target cam system

Back at the shack, there’s a high-gain receiving antenna, the receiver, and a wall-mounted flat TV. Okey notes: “Since the transmitter is fairly low power, we needed lots of antenna gain. We cobbled the system together and tested it at 100 yards before the conversion to DC power. It had lots of headroom, and should perform well without adding any more antenna gain. The system has worked well at 600 yards, with a reliable signal and good image. Look below for the image of the targets at 600 yards. We had the image zoomed to eight sheets of paper and could still see the hits.”

target cam system

Recommended Equipment Sources
The 700mW 2.4 GHz A/V transmitter and receiver were sourced from Combo price for both transmitter and receiver was a reasonable $179.00 (NOTE: it is $159.99 ON SALE right now, November 2013). The 2.4 gHZ, 24 dBi antenna cost only $57.99 from

target cam systemtarget cam system

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