This technology creates illumination in the near infrared spectrum that reflects off of the objects to a standard CCD or CMOS imager via standard glass optical lenses. Image contrasts are more natural in appearance since near infrared is very close to the optical spectrum, but gray scale at night. Faces can be seen and text read. Technology is useful and economical for shorter-range and wide-area surveillance applications up to 200 meters. Typical glass optics can be used.