There are all sorts of problems that leave you wishing you had a way to look deep inside something. Clogged pipes, leaking HVAC systems, damaged motors, lost cables in walls, or maybe even a wedding ring down the sink. The solution to these problems and many, many more is an endoscope.
This tool is like a pipe snake, but with lights and a camera on the end. It allows you to look deep into the tightest spaces and find what you’re looking for. While some expensive models come with their own monitors, there’s a cheaper workaround. You can connect some endoscopes to Android mobile devices that you already have.
So let’s take a look at the best endoscopes for Android devices out there right now.
Top 5 Best Endoscopes for Android in 2023 Reviews
1 Fantronics USB Snake Inspection Camera – Best Budget Endoscope for Android
Length: 16.4 feet (5m)
At just under 20 bucks, the Fantronics USB Snake Inspection Camera is unbelievably cheap.
Unlike the next few products that we’ll look at, which connect to your Android device via WiFi, this best low cost endoscope for Android uses a simple USB-C connection to plug right into your phone or tablet. You could also use an adapter to change the end to USB-A so you can plug it into a laptop. The only connection you can’t make here is with an iPhone.
You will need Android 10 or up to use this device. You also need to download an app to go with it. That will allow you to control the view on the camera, take snapshots, and of course, record video as you snake along through the murk.
However, I found the free version of the app was full of issues. You can, of course, pay more for an advanced version, but that will end up adding a lot of cost to this tool’s final price over the long term.
Low cost, but there are reasons for it…
This endoscope can focus well at only about 3.5 inches from the lens and has quite a poor depth of field. It features a 2-megapixel camera with a resolution of only 720P. That’s not great and not very competitive, as you will see. However, if you’re looking for a really cheap tool you’ll use only occasionally, the price sure is right.
It does have an IP67 rating which means it can be run through standing water and come out unscathed. It’s 16.5 feet long, which gives you a good length for most jobs. The camera is 0.315 inches (8.0mm) in diameter which is small enough for most uses, though not the smallest on this list by far. It does come with accessories like a magnet, hook, and 45-degree mirror for a 90-degree side-view which all attach easily and are convenient.
All told, it’s cheap and just barely gets the job done. But if that’s all you need, it will do the job. Not a glowing review, right? Don’t worry; things get a lot better from now on.
- Connects via USB without having to deal with WiFi issues.
- Free app may not work well, leaving you with more cost for the paid version.
- Camera resolution is not impressive.
- Poor depth of focus.
2 Depstech Wireless Endoscope – Best Affordable Endoscope for Android
Length: 11.5 feet (3.5m)
Next in my Best Endoscopes for Android review is the Depstech Wireless Endoscope at a length of 11.5 feet. While it’s shorter than the Fantronics snake we just looked at, it’s double the price at around $40.
The big difference here is that instead of plugging into your phone, it includes its own WiFi transmitter that allows you to make a wireless connection between it and any Android device (version 5.0 and up).
Record your findings…
You will still need to download an app from Depstech to make this thing work. But once you do, you can take still pictures or record video. That video gets to your device quick, streaming in at 30 frames per second. However, the app can sometimes be buggy and difficult to connect with.
The camera here is also a 2-megapixel camera that has a resolution of 1200P, which is far superior to the Fantronics endoscope. This one is illuminated with an LED array that gives you four different lighting levels. You have a much wider depth of focus here, with the lens able to send you back sharp images from a range of 2.76 to 15.7 inches. Again, this is miles ahead of the Fantronics snake.
A little wider…
This scope is just a tiny bit bigger at 0.331 inches (8.4mm) in diameter, so it can go just about anywhere the other snake can.
Like the Fantronics endoscope, this Depstech comes with an IP67 waterproof rating. It also has the handy triple set of accessories – hook, magnet, and side-view mirror – that is an endoscope standard.
One major downside of this scope is the battery power. With the LEDs on at full power, the battery lasts not hours but in the range of about 20 minutes. Normally you probably won’t be using it for that long anyway, but it’s still far from convenient.
- IP67 rating.
- Sharp, high-resolution camera.
- App is hard to use, and connection can be difficult.
- Shortest length in this review.
- Short battery life.
3 Nidage Wireless Endoscope Camera – Narrowest Endoscope for Android
Length: 33 feet (10m)
For the same price as the Depstech, you could also choose the Nidage Wireless Endoscope Camera. At $40 for 33 feet of semi-rigid snake wire, you’re definitely getting a great deal on length.
But does it get the job done?
The top feature of this endoscope is the small diameter. It’s’ already tiny at 0.244 inches (6.2mm), but that’s with the end cap on. If you dare to use it without that protective cap on, or if you just have to, you can get down to a diameter of just 0.216 inches (5.5mm). That’s pretty unbelievable, and it is certainly the best smallest diameter endoscope for Android that we’re going to take a look at.
Once again, we’re seeing a standard package of three handy accessories that you can attach easily for different uses. You also have the IP67 rating that is an industry standard for these tools that have to be able to deal with both water and grime.
Great for close-up work…
The camera here is a 2 MP camera and has a resolution of 1080P, putting it right in the middle between the Funtronics and Depstech scopes. However, it’s much better at close-ups, with a range of focus from 1.18 – 8 inches. That’s not as broad as the Depstech, but being able to focus really close-up is a bonus.
And like the Depstech endoscope, you get a WiFi connection with this one that has a range of about 30 feet (10m). You will need to load their app to your Android (5.0+) device, and in this case, the app seems to work properly.
Up to an hour…
Finally, the battery is an improvement here. You need to charge it up for 30 minutes to get a full charge, but at least it will then last up to an hour. Still not great, but a lot better than we’ve seen!
- Long and very thin.
- IP67 rating.
- Better battery life.
- Resolution isn’t great.
- Limited depth of focus.
4 Amiter Wireless Endoscope for iPhone & Android – Best Twin Camera Endoscope for Android
Length: 16.5 feet (5m)
If you toss another $10 on the pile, you can grab the Wireless Endoscope for iPhone & Android by Amiter. At about $50, you’re getting a 16.5 foot long cable that also has that IP67 rating we now know and love.
At only half the length, it’s not nearly as long as the Nidage, nor is it as thin. The end cap on the camera measures 0.315 inches (8.0mm) in diameter, making it tied in second place for tiny-ness. It can still get into most teeny cracks and crevices, and has a good rigidity to help you go up as well as down and through.
With a 2-megapixel camera on board and a resolution of 1080P, it’s also the second-sharpest camera we’ve seen so far. The resolution is OK, but definitely not the best you can get.
But there’s something really special about this endoscope…
Instead of having an accessory 45-degree mirror, this endoscope has an entire second camera. It’s located on the side, and this allows you to view everything in front of you and on the side as you move along. The side camera is also 2MP and also lit by an array of dimmable LEDs, making it the best side camera endoscope for Android that you can buy.
The front camera has the ability to focus very close up, with a range of 0.78 and almost 4 inches (2-10cm). The side camera can focus in an even tighter 0.78-2.3 inch (2-6cm) range. While this sounds limited, you generally don’t need a lot of depth when you’re snaking a pipe or a machined tube.
Long battery life…
Another improvement here is a 2600 mAh battery that gives you superior usage time. With a full charge in it, it seems to last a few hours, maybe even up to three or four (though the manufacturer claims five hours).
Finally, Amiter has upped the ante here with a phone mount on the base/control handle. I think this is a really great idea because it means you can hold your phone and operate the endoscope with one hand while snaking with the other, making it one of the most practical endoscopes for Android around.
- Has front and side cameras.
- Includes a convenient phone mount.
- Resolution is not the best.
- Only moderate length and diameter.
5 Limink Wireless Endoscope Camera – Best Premium Endoscope for Android
Length: 33 foot (10m)
To round things up, we’re again going to take a step up in price and see what that gets you. Limink’s Wireless Endoscope Camera sells for $70 and is back to the whopping length of 33 feet we saw with the Nidage.
For starters, you’re looking at the best endoscope camera that we’ve seen on any product in this list. The 2-megapixel camera has a resolution of 1944P, which is far superior to anything we’ve seen. You get way sharper images here, which can allow you to even see tiny fractures in pipes.
The focus range here is between 2.36 to 11.8 inches (60-300mm), which is really wide, if not the best, for close-ups. Unfortunately, it has no side camera like we just saw with the Amiter endoscope. Still, it does come with the standard 45 degree mirror attachment that helps you see, though not as sharply, what’s happening at 90 degrees from the run of the snake.
You get the good old hook and magnet attachments, too…
The camera can be controlled by the app you need to get to take stills or video. But you can also get it to zoom in up to 6x. This can be a great option if you run into an obstacle but want to see what’s past it.
It might be hard to get this thing stuck, though, as the diameter is once again pretty tiny. At 0.268 inches (6.8mm) in diameter, it’s only a smidge bigger than the Nidage unit.
But what we do see besides far better resolution is better battery power. The battery can last about two to three hours on full illumination and up to about four hours on lower levels. That means you have better resolution and better battery power, the longest length, and the second smallest diameter with this Limink endoscope.
- Highest resolution.
- Good battery power.
- Long and very small diameter.
- No side camera (but does have a side-looking mirror).
How to Buy the Best Endoscopes for Android?
Choosing the best endoscope to connect to your Android device can be tricky. So, here are some of the factors you might want to consider before making your purchase:
For many applications like HVAC and motor repair, you don’t need incredible length – a few feet should do it. But for wall inspections and plumbing uses, you might want to look at something that has the extra length you could need. Though it costs more, you might be better off getting something longer just in case.
Diameter is also important and depends on your applications. Wall inspections and pipes don’t need tiny diameter snakes to get through them. But engine parts sure do.
Resolution and Focus
What is resolution, and why is it important? Resolution tells you how many pixels you’ll get down the smaller side of a rectangular picture. So numbers like 1080P are OK but not nearly as detailed as 1944P for the same size image. If you’re going to be looking for faults and cracks in engines, for example, high resolution is key.
Depth of focus is also a big factor. This tells you the distance from the lens that your camera can focus. Again, for things like engine repair, you will want to look for faults and flaws really close up and should look for a camera that can focus as close as 1 inch or so. For HVAC or plumbing, a broader range like 2-10 inches can help you see both near and far to find problems quickly.
The standard accessories we see for endoscopes/borescopes include a hook and a magnet for retrieving lost objects or pulling out clogs, and a mirror. The 45 degree mirror allows you to see 90 degrees to the side of whatever you’re snaking. It won’t be as crips on your screen, but it can still help a whole lot.
A side-looking second camera can be a far better way to give you a much broader view of what’s going on.
Longer battery life makes electronic devices of any sort more convenient. If you can only use an endoscope for minutes before the battery runs out, you’re going to find yourself constantly frustrated. Look for batteries that can last for hours.
Do You Also Need an Endoscope for an iPhone?
If so, check out our in-depth reviews of the Best Endoscope for iPhone you can buy in 2023.
So, Which of These Best Endoscopes for Android Should You Buy?
An endoscope can see into the deepest, darkest, tightest spots, but you want to get one that will give you the best picture. This will help you to solve problems quickly and accurately.
And because of that, I have to hand it to the…
This is a long yet super-thin borescope camera that has a good stiffness and the length to get you everywhere. It also has enough battery power to get the job done. But ultimately, it wins because it gives you the best picture resolution for your money.
Whichever product you choose, get your hands on a quality endoscope, and you’ll be surprised just how many applications you’ll end up using it for.