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Advanced Imaging Magazine

Updated: July 8th, 2008 05:26 PM CDT

Frame Grabbers

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PRODUCT FEATURE

April 2004

Frame Grabbers

by Hank Russell

The LFG range from Active Silicon (l-r): PC/104-Plus, PCI and PMC , plus the 16-input version.

On its face, all frame grabbers may look the same, but how they operate is a different story. A frame grabber that is used for machine vision, scientific or industrial applications is not the same as one that is used for, say, multimedia applications. True, both acquire and digitize images that are to be processed by computer, but that is where the similarity ends.

Machine vision-based frame grabbers (as well as those for industry and science) require that the video data be converted without any alterations whatsoever to the image. Whether it be measurement and gauging, microscopy or wafer inspection, there is no room for error. Multimedia-based frame grabbers, on the other hand, can alter images for aesthetic purposes ? good for creating interactive video, not good for getting accurate measurements.

Then there is the video format for each part of the world. In North America and Japan , both use RS-170 and its equivalent NTSC -RS-330. In Northern Europe , the standard is either CCIR or PAL . In France , Russia and the CIS, there is SECAM, a CCIR equivalent.

Here is a list of the latest frame grabbers for which there should be something for everyone.

CAPTURING THE MOMENT

The Uxbridge, UK-based Active Silicon has added the Phoenix DIG 24 PCI frame grabber to the already extensive range of Phoenix digital high-performance frame grabbers. The DIG 24 is a CameraLink board available in PCI format and is designed for use with the increasing number of Base CameraLink cameras appearing at the low-cost end of the market. It supports the 32 bit/33MHz bus, and is supported by a simple-to-use software developer's kit that includes Bayer image decoding as well as sequence capture and storage functionality. Built-in, third-party image analysis software drivers such as IPP and CVB allow integrators to develop applications quickly and simply, promoting even shorter development times. INDICATE 201 .

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