Product Description: Ruby CCTV from Freedom Scientific

We’re going to give you a quick run-down of the features available on the Ruby CCTV from Freedom Scientific.  If you’d like more information on CCTV basics, consider watching our tech tip video.

The Ruby CCTV is one of the newest models of handheld CCTV’s.  Its portability allows you to take it with you when you want to read a menu at a restaurant, easily read the price tags on items when you are shopping, or anytime you need to spot read.  First, take a look at the design in the image below.


The device is lightweight (at 7.7 ounces) and has a handle.  The camera is located on the back of the screen, and is accompanied by two small lights to illuminate the text or image you want to see.  There are four buttons on the device and each is a different color.  On the left is the power button and the contrast button, and on the right is the magnification button and image capture button.  Overall, the device implies simplicity as there are not a lot of customization options available.

In the image below you can see that we have turned the device on and placed it on a text document.  Here we have focused on the lowest level of magnification available on the device, which is 5x as laid flat on the paper.  If you click the yellow magnification button you can amplify the image two more times to a total of 10x magnification.  We’ve also folded the handle underneath the screen, allowing a small base for the device to sit on so you do not have to hold the device still while reading.

Color magnification
Color magnification on the Ruby CCTV

The blue contrast button allows you to change the way the image is displayed on the screen.  There are five different contrast options: color (or as-is view), black text on white background, white text on black background, yellow text on black background, and yellow text on blue background.  This image shows the yellow text on blue background:

Yellow Text on Blue
Yellow Text on Blue

You can use the snapshot feature to take a picture and move the device off of the paper, however the device does not act like a camera and will not store multiple images at a time.

The Ruby CCTV is a great item for spot reading.  If you’re looking to read a book, a newspaper, or are planning on doing a lot of reading at home, you may consider a desktop CCTV that has a larger screen and is more customizable.  The Ruby is available in the INDATA loan library for 30-day loans to residents of Indiana.  Please visit our website for more information.

Looking for descriptions of items you’ve seen in our loan library? Leave a comment on our blog or email Sara Croft at

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  1. What happens as you lift it above the paper? Does it stay focused? does it see and display more letters? How high to see the width of a newspaper column?

    What happens if you apply these questions to other hand held CCTVs? If you set it on a little box to keep it at the right height, coulld you reada newspaper by draggoing it down the column?

    1. When you lift it off the page it will focus, but only about 1 or 2 inches. If it’s further than 2 inches away from the page, the display gets fuzzy. Concerning the newspaper – it will depend on how much magnification you need to be able to read. If you need a high magnification, you won’t be able to see the whole newspaper column at once.

      If you’d like to demo this product, give Carol Girt a call at 888-466-1314 and we can test it out on a newspaper with you.

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