Advanced Imaging

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Advanced Imaging Magazine

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

How to... Get Megapixel Results at 500 FPS Using USB 2.0

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FastVision provides high speed cameras which can do more than capture images. For example, in many applications portability and ease of use are important. While it is possible to interface a low speed camera to a portable computer, when it comes to real speed, you just canít get it. The FC13 (1.3Megapixel) and FC40 (4Megapixel) products, through their use of USB and large amounts of internal memory, can provide the solution.

Both of these cameras are very good high speed cameras. Both provide full Camera Link interfaces and can be used in typical machine vision applications. One problem, however, is itís difficult to capture the data from these cameras as the data rate is so high. The FastCamera13 provides 10 bit pixels at 660 mpixels/sec, while the FastCamera40 provides 10 bit pixels at 800 mpixels/second. When you consider DMA-ing the data into a computer, you find that most frame grabbers just canít handle that much data. That is the advantage of large amounts of internal storage.

Both cameras can have up to 1 Gigabyte of internal memory. This means you can record 500, full resolution images to memory using the FC13, and 250 images using the FC40. Even better, if you reduce the image size you extend the number of images proportionately.

Compression

Beside the internal storage, FastVision provides both lossless and lossy compression among its available IP, so additional storage capabilities are available or one can even stream at full speed from the camera to a basic Camera Link or USB2.0 port in real-time.

The internal memory can be used as a circular buffer. When you provide a trigger to the camera, the camera starts counting frames, while collecting images to memory, until the post trigger frame count is reached. The post trigger frame count parameter can be set up to 65,535 frames, so the actual trigger point need not still be in memory.

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