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Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 4:55 pm
by Hardware_man
Jim JKla,

See my post in this section “Camera Interface Specs” I go back and forth with JamesH over many details of attempting to use a different camera over 7 pages. We primarily discuss using a camera module that is already tuned. Note, there is a LOT more to it that getting the CSI-2 connections right.

Hardware_man

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 5:32 pm
by Jim JKla
Hardware_man

I don't doubt it.

I'm just expounding the belief that sonner or later (and quite probably later than sooner) someone will figure it out. ;)

I am not suggesting it's going to be easy.

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 6:01 pm
by Hardware_man
Jim,

As best as I understand it (I’m a hardware engineer, not a software engineer so maybe my understanding isn’t the best), a lot of the information anyone would need to use a different camera, or any video source for that matter, is Broadcom company confidential. Over time, the Foundation is mapping parameters to OpenMAX. Then people can adjust parameters without needing access to company confidential information. Any video that comes into the CSI-2 connector first goes to the ISP. The CSI-2 connector is the only video input that is fast enough to accept non compressed video. So until (if ever) the Foundation maps ISP parameters out in OpenMAX, nobody (without access to confidential information) no matter how smart or determined could figure out how to use a different camera.

If this is incorrect from a software perspective, please correct this.

Hardware_man

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 7:50 pm
by jamesh
Sort of right. Every camera needs a camera driver, they are all different enough to need new drivers each time. On top of that they need a colossal amount of ISP tuning parameters to be very carefully generated so the pictures 'look right'. This is all done in the GPU. A text file with these parameters starts at 2000 lines of data, and every number in them needs a certain amount of experience to tune.

Some cameras do all the tuning work internally - those could plug in without ISP tuning, but would still need the driver.

Electrically, they all have different plugs, or at least most do, so you need a dedicated PCB per camera.

It's a right pain.

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 7:51 pm
by jamesh
More information. Just weighed the module...
  • PCB+Camera module 2.4g
    RIbbon cable 1.0g
So all up weight is 3.4g - should make it a good options for balloon flights.

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 12:26 am
by jbeale
Amazing when a small ribbon cable is nearly half the weight of the camera module!

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Sat Feb 09, 2013 3:33 am
by M_P
Thanks to everyone for all the hard work getting the camera board working - I'm really looking forward to getting my hands on one!

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 5:15 pm
by not-scott
Looks great. I'm looking at putting a Model A and camera module together for a portable webcam (with or without a USB microphone), any ideas on what current the camera draws? I expect it would fluctuate with the various settings, but are there maximum and minimum values?

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 9:23 pm
by pluggy
Anybody who has repaired a screen on a modern laptop (aka removing the bezel) will appreciate just how small camera modues are. Little bigger than the hole in the bezel they peer through. The pi no doubt uses something much the same.

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 9:35 pm
by daveake
jamesh wrote:More information. Just weighed the module...
  • PCB+Camera module 2.4g
    RIbbon cable 1.0g
So all up weight is 3.4g - should make it a good options for balloon flights.
Ah thanks, excellent low number :D

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Fri Feb 15, 2013 7:30 pm
by jamesh
not-scott wrote:Looks great. I'm looking at putting a Model A and camera module together for a portable webcam (with or without a USB microphone), any ideas on what current the camera draws? I expect it would fluctuate with the various settings, but are there maximum and minimum values?
I don't think we've ever tested it. The current varies with what the camera is actually doing - when not actually capturing they are pretty low power, even when on. We've had manufacturers making us turn stuff off between video frames to save power....

Might be some figures in the datasheet.

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 9:16 am
by peepo
120fps at 320x240 gets my vote! please include

as the 2007 PS3 has the same, you should be able to improve rather than match...

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 9:24 am
by jamesh
peepo wrote:looking good,

what lengths is the ribbon available in?

is there anything more cable like?
ie the ribbon is rather large and ungainly...

how is the camera lens attached?
ie:
is it a standard M12 screw board mount 18mm centres?
or soldered/glued in place?
other?

Hint: the picture could be HD1080?
We think about 15cm should be a maximum but you might get away with more. Shorter will be fine, but you would have to source it yourself. The lens/sensor module is an integrated chunk - see the picture on the first page of this thread.

Not sure what you mean by HD1080, but the camera and GPU are capable of 1080p30 recording to H264 at >30MBit/s datarate.

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 9:57 am
by peepo
120fps at 320x240 gets my vote!

the 2007 ps3 eye camera had this, so after 6 years the latest kit should be able to match and raise.

hopefully, the dropped frames will be zero.

get it on...

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 12:05 pm
by jamesh
peepo wrote:120fps at 320x240 gets my vote!

the 2007 ps3 eye camera had this, so after 6 years the latest kit should be able to match and raise.

hopefully, the dropped frames will be zero.

get it on...
I doubt that will be available on launch (although marketed at that speed, the datasheet only goes up to 90fps), but hopefully soon after if I get the time to try it out and talk to Omnivision.

It's not the Raspi that is the limit btw, but the camera sensor itself.

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 11:13 pm
by Traste
This is sweet!
I had a feeling it would be something similar to the iphone 4/4S camera module, i even bought one dirt cheap off ebay (they are selling for less than $3), but the darn iphone connectors are so tiny it's impossible to connect it to anything (other than an iphone 4 that is).
This one seems to come without the "flash" LED, but i am sure the Pi Community will figure out plenty of hacks adapting these cameras to work with the Pi once the groundwork has been done.

The near future sure is exciting!

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 11:21 pm
by jamesh
Traste wrote:This is sweet!
I had a feeling it would be something similar to the iphone 4/4S camera module, i even bought one dirt cheap off ebay (they are selling for less than $3), but the darn iphone connectors are so tiny it's impossible to connect it to anything (other than an iphone 4 that is).
This one seems to come without the "flash" LED, but i am sure the Pi Community will figure out plenty of hacks adapting these cameras to work with the Pi once the groundwork has been done.

The near future sure is exciting!
One of the problems of these sensors is that they and their connectors are just so small, you need a dedicated PCB with a dedicated connector on it for each sensor. In most respects they are great for the price though.

No flash on this board. Was never really considered as they do make the price much higher - you need a dedicated flash power chip to power the LED - it's not just a matter of turning them on/off via a GPIO as they pull so much current. You could make another board that worked on the GPIO's with the right power supply on - the software already supports flash - would just need to be told which GPIO it was on. (probably need 2 or three GPIO in total)

Where do I sign up?

Posted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 4:21 am
by tag16c
I know this has been ask before but I cannot find it.
Where can I preorder my camera????

Re: Where do I sign up?

Posted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 4:46 am
by wallarug
tag16c wrote:I know this has been ask before but I cannot find it.
Where can I preorder my camera????
You can't yet as far as I know.

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 8:56 am
by janek
Hi, are we going to be able to adjust compresion levels of video stream?
So we could stream 720p with 2Mbit/s over 3G modem.

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 9:40 am
by jamesh
janek wrote:Hi, are we going to be able to adjust compresion levels of video stream?
So we could stream 720p with 2Mbit/s over 3G modem.
Yes, you should be able to do that.

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:29 pm
by Mr_Ranger
Hope this hasn't been already answered, but will there be a delay for sales in the U.S.?

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:24 pm
by jamesh
I have no idea what the plan for the camera distribution is. I'll find out Friday (Raspberry Pi first birthday party!)

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Thu Feb 28, 2013 9:05 pm
by ejcmdq
Jamesh, good evening

We're security company, the camera for pi sounds very interesting. Any chances of an alpha or beta release? We usually do R&D along with IP cameras companies in the security cameras, so maybe we can help the community too.

B. Rgds, E!

Re: Foundation Camera Board information

Posted: Thu Feb 28, 2013 10:31 pm
by jamesh
ejcmdq wrote:Jamesh, good evening

We're security company, the camera for pi sounds very interesting. Any chances of an alpha or beta release? We usually do R&D along with IP cameras companies in the security cameras, so maybe we can help the community too.

B. Rgds, E!
No real chance - there are only a few in existence so far. However, it won't be long before release, so it won't be long before you can get one.