Most people at this point have heard of the Ridgid Micro Seesnake and some of the very positive reviews of people using this tool. The Micro has a very wide appeal not specific to plumbing or any other one industry like the traditional Seesnake. The Micro has even picked up some competition in the form of the new Milwaukee M-Spector and probably additional companies looking to share it the success of this type of product.
To stay ahead of the competition and really take the Seesnake Micro to the next level Ridgid is introducing the Micro Explorer. This unit answers every possible complaint about the Micro and takes Ridgid way above any of the competition trying to copy the Micro. Potential weaknesses from the first generation design are now all but gone with the Micro Explorer. The Explorer is fully digital with the ability to capture images (1280 x 1024) and video (320 x 240) onto SD cards which are very easy to then load onto any computer. The new camera also features zoom and the ability to pan left or right. I am assuming the pan and zoom are digital features. The Explorer also has built in Self Leveling which some of the larger $10,000+ Seesnakes don’t even feature. This feature is truly impressive and very very useful as it’s easy to get disoriented when the camera head bends around a corner as to which way the camera is actually headed. Some other key point is the screen is now larger at 3.5” and the kit comes with it’s own lithium rechargeable battery and charger.
The Ridgid microExplorer will not replace the existing Seesnake Micro as the list price is $784.45, well above the Micro. It will however give professionals the ability to choose the features they need. For a plumber this might be a really great solution as opposed to adding the second or third full Seesnake setup.
Now for the bad news, these are not set to be in stores until September at the earliest. I would be happy to see them by Christmas time. Ohio Power Tool is taking *Pre-Sale* orders for Seesnake microExplorer at $690.32 which basically means you will receive your Explorer in the order it was placed, like a reservation. Your credit card will not be billed until the item is ready to ship.
RIDGID microExplorer™ Digital Inspection Camera 30063Display ………………….3.5" Color LCD
(320 x 240 resolution)
Image Capture……….JPG Images (1280 x 1024)
AVI Video (320 x 240)
Recording Medium …Internal Memory or SD Card
Image Controls ………Pan, Zoom, Self Leveling, Low Light Vision
Lighting…………………4 Fully Adjustable LEDs
Camera Diameter…..0.7" (17 mm)
Cable Reach …………3′ (expandable to 30′ w/optional extensions)
Waterproof…………….Camera & Cable to 10′ (when properly assembled)
Power Source ……….Rechargeable Lithium Ion Battery
(4 Hours of Continuous Run Time)