The Imaging Source is one of the few manufacturers in the world to produce FireWire cameras with an integrated motorized lens (block camera). The cameras' zoom, focus and iris setting can be controlled by the shipped software, via the FireWire bus. The cameras ship with end-user software and an SDK, which allows system integrators to create their own applications with the cameras.
The motorized lens of The Imaging Source cameras is used to adapt the cameras to objects at varying distances. The field of view can be set from wide-angle to telephoto. Using the cameras' auto-focus feature, the motorized lens is able to remain in focus in both the telephoto and the wide-angle position.
With the aid of a close-up lens, the cameras with motorized lens can also be used for macro imaging. Close-up lenses and optical filters can be attached to the cameras with a filter holder, which is available as an optional extra.
Automatic settings for visualization applications
The cameras automatically adapt to varying lighting conditions by changing three parameters: The first and foremost is the exposure time. Additionally, in the case of a low light situation, the cameras' iris automatically opens up. Should the exposure time and iris be set to their maximum values, the gain can be increased to improve the image quality. On the other hand, in the case of a high light situation and the exposure time has already been set to its maximum value, the camera automatically closes its iris and sets gain to the lowest possible value.
Manual settings for machine vision applications
For machine vision applications, it is important to be able to override all parameters by hand. Consequently, all electronic and optical parameters can be set manually, using the shipped end-user application and/or SDK.
The interface of cameras with motorized lens is based on the standard IEEE 1394a (FireWire). This interface provides three basic functions:
- The transfer of the image data from the camera to the computer.
- The transfer of the parameter settings from the computer to the camera.
- The power supply of the camera.
Therefore, the cameras with motorized lens need neither a special power supply unit, nor a serial interface (RS-232) for control purposes.
For the handling of the image and control data, the cameras ship with drivers for LabVIEW, HALCON, TWAIN, WDM, DirectShow and DirectX, the SDK IC Imaging Control and the image capture application IC Capture.
IC Capture is a powerful end-user application, which allows all cameras parameters to be set, live video to be displayed, singular images and image sequences to be captured. IC Imaging Control is an SDK for image acquisition and camera control, which consists of a .NET component, ActiveX control and C++ class library for Windows 2000, Windows XP and Windows Vista.
Wide range of applications
The Imaging Source cameras with motorized lens are used in application areas as agriculture, assembling, quality inspection, law enforcement, logistics, medicine, packaging, printing, robotics, security, traffic control, science and visualization.
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