Bosch 8000i Starlight dome camera. The top image is 1080p at 7.2mm uploaded at half native resolution.

BOSCH’S new FLEXIDOME IP starlight 8000i is available in 1080p, 6MP or 4K versions with 60ips rates for fast moving scenes, H.265 compression and a design optimised for simplicity of installation and operation. It’s nicely built camera with performance to match.

BOSCH’S 8000i is a solid performer that handles the role of robust external dome with aplomb. In fundamental areas such as depth of field, management of backlight and WDR, colour and light balance across a partly shaded scene, and motion blur during daytime gloom, performance is excellent. I’m running at a somewhat longer focal length than usual – a bit over 7mm – even so, the 8000i can deliver faces and plates much deeper into the scene than I’m used to. Night performance is good, but day performance is better – I’m getting fast moving plates at 25 metres.

This file is half the res of the original – depth of field is excellent and colour is strong, too. Light levels sub-10 lux.

The 8000i is nicely made in cast aluminium and its construction includes a waterproof connection area and a dehumidifying membrane. The 8000i is IP66 rated against water and dust and IK10 rated against vandalism. Dimensions are 175mm wide x 145mm high and weight is 2.2kg. The dome bubble is clear polycarbonate with a UV blocking anti-scratch coating. Operating temperature range is -50C to 60C.

Moving faces in monochrome are court admissible in sub 10 lux – subject is 10m from lens. DoF is very strong. 

The motorised pan, tilt and roll lens has pan range of 180 degrees, a tilt range from -55 degrees to 87 degrees and a roll range from -92 degrees to 92 degrees. A PTR dome sounds quirky but when driven in combination with optical and digital zoom, it makes the 8000i very flexible indeed. The idea of PTR is to make installs easier for techs – you put the camera up and then twiddle settings via the camera view wizard. However, this functionality also allows you to steer the camera about in real time. Typical Bosch, these functionalities are fast – auto-focus is rocket propelled.

Plates at 50kmph – the 8000i is champion with license plate identification. Again with the strong DoF. 

Installers can also use a smart device running Bosch’s Project Assistant app to set up pan, tilt, roll and zoom (PTRZ) functions. This means you can set and tweak the required field of view without having to go up to the camera on a ladder or scissor lift. This remote commissioning and configuration can be adapted at any stage beyond the initial set-up, making it quick and convenient to adjust the field of view should initial planning requirements change. Pretty neat from Bosch.

After a couple of days of testing in less than ideal weather conditions, I’m delighted with this Bosch 8000i camera. It covers off those key operational strengths end users want – depth of field, subtle colour rendition, almost no chromatic aberrations, low noise, and low blur – as well as giving the ability to tamp down the effects of strong backlight. Performance at night is impressive, though I could not get moving plates, I got faces within 8 metres at around 4 lux and further out with a little more light.

Read the full review of Bosch’s 8000i in SEN’s July issue!