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PICList Thread
'Getting HiRes stills from a camcorder ?'
1997\08\06@102806 by Mike

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Hi all, (A real quick query to an off topic item)

Would love to take some pics of a design and might use a camcorder, but
I'd love to get higher res pics from some sort of frame grabber.

Anyone know of a frame grabber which will input colour pictures AND
software which can read in several pictures of say 320x400 and build
up a 640x480 still - suitable for web page output of a quality
comparable to that from a digital camera ?

OR is there a VHS camcorder which has the capability to download higher
resolution stills AS WELL as taking movies ?

rgds

mike
Perth, Western Australia

1997\08\06@105303 by Kalle Pihlajasaari

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Hi Mike,

> Would love to take some pics of a design and might use a camcorder, but
> I'd love to get higher res pics from some sort of frame grabber.

Check out the Snappy from http://www.PLAY.com

Cheers
--
Kalle Pihlajasaari   spam_OUTkalleTakeThisOuTspamip.co.za   http://www.ip.co.za/ip
Interface Products   P O Box 15775, DOORNFONTEIN, 2028, South Africa
+ 27 (11) 402-7750   Fax: 402-7751    http://www.ip.co.za/people/kalle

DonTronics, Silicon Studio and Wirz Electronics uP Product Dealer

1997\08\06@142218 by David W. Duley

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In a message dated 97-08-06 10:29:26 EDT, you write:

<<
Hi all, (A real quick query to an off topic item)

Would love to take some pics of a design and might use a camcorder, but
I'd love to get higher res pics from some sort of frame grabber.

Anyone know of a frame grabber which will input colour pictures AND
software which can read in several pictures of say 320x400 and build
up a 640x480 still - suitable for web page output of a quality
comparable to that from a digital camera ?

OR is there a VHS camcorder which has the capability to download higher
resolution stills AS WELL as taking movies ?

rgds

mike
Perth, Western Australia >>
Hello Mike,
I use a Hauppauge Wincast board.  I got it on sale for $49 US.  Now it runs
$89 US.  It can be used as a TV tuner, Frame grabber from TV or a Video
source,and it will digitize Video at 30 fps.
I also have a Miro Mpeg card but it was $400 and it still only does 30fps.
Miro has a PCI bus board for about $700 that will do 60fps and full hardware
compression.

I got both cards from D&H distributing here in the US.

Dave Duley
V.P. DreiTek Inc

1997\08\06@164405 by Don McKenzie

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Mike wrote:
>
> Would love to take some pics of a design and might use a camcorder,
> but I'd love to get higher res pics from some sort of frame grabber.

snip-----

> rgds
>
> mike
> Perth, Western Australia

If it's for a PCB design or a PCB design based product Mike, which I'll
assume it is, I have spent a fair amount of time trying to find the best
"Cost Effective" method of getting from design to web page and found
that most domestic video cameras require so much setting up, a lot of
your time vanishes playing around with getting the item into correct
focus, setting up good lighting, checking the output etc.

The smaller it is, the harder to get a good shot. You may have to try
for it outdoors on a sunny day.

I also tried a late model Casio $1000USD digital camera with what I felt
was poor to fair results. Again, the same lighting and focus problems.

I decided to take my PCB treasures to a computer store and see if they
could be scanned in successfully. The best quality output for what I was
trying to do, was achieved with a HP-5P flat bed scanner. No setup,
lighting, or focus problems. You don't even need to save massive amounts
of data on disk as it's so easy to duplicate the shots again, or
attempt to improve them at a later date.

I got the HP mainly because I trust the name and the results were close
to perfect first time. I would think most 24 bit resolution scanners
would give an acceptable result.

The proof?
Have a look at my pics of pics at:
http://www.dontronics.com/index.html
A scanner output.

http://www.dontronics.com/dont/html
The Casio digital Camera output.

and
http://www.dontronics.com/dt205.html
This is a relay board with 4 different types of relays fitted. The
smallest is .25" and the largest 1" high. You can still see the board
tracks even though the flat bed scanner surface is at least an inch from
it.

All of the scanner shots have been reduced in size by 50 to 80%, so a
lot of the detail gets lost. If you only have a small number of products
to show on a Web page, then I guess 100% is fine.

OK, I can't get good 3D shots with a scanner, but I figure an
'any-quality' domestic conventional analog camera and a roll of film
will give me the quality I need to scan the shots at good resolution.

And as a bonus, a scanner is great for those data sheets and mag
articles that are impossible to get. Example:
http://www.dontronics.com/temp
(To say nothing of the family photos to gif conversions, and etc., etc.)

I'm sure other list members will have different opinions.
These are just my findings.

BTW. If your product is in the class of "Planes, Trains, or
Automobiles", get the largest flat bed scanner you can. :-)

Don McKenzie  .....donKILLspamspam@spam@dontronics.com   http://www.dontronics.com

SimmStick(tm) Atmel & PIC proto PCB's. 30 pin Simm Module Format.
SLI, the serial LCD that auto detects baud rates from 100 to 125K bps.
Send a blank message to infospamKILLspamdontronics.com for more details.

1997\08\07@121811 by Mike

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At 04:03 PM 8/6/97 +0200, you wrote:
>Hi Mike,
>
>> Would love to take some pics of a design and might use a camcorder, but
>> I'd love to get higher res pics from some sort of frame grabber.
>
>Check out the Snappy from http://www.PLAY.com

Thanks Kalle,

That looks like just the thing I need, fortunately I've found a local
Perth distributor which has one (PAL, its higher resolution) and will
check it out in next few days. The web examples look great.

It would be logical (since the Snappy has a digitiser) that it should
be able to bring an AVI stream into memory without having to do the
JPEG as well - but funnily I see no reference to this ? Never mind...

Rgds and thanks again

Mike
Perth, Western Australia
PS: Will contact you soon re thos interface cards when I have the money...

1997\08\07@123904 by avrbasic

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At 12:18 PM 7/8/97 -0400, you wrote:
>At 04:03 PM 8/6/97 +0200, you wrote:
>>Hi Mike,
>>
>>> Would love to take some pics of a design and might use a camcorder, but
>>> I'd love to get higher res pics from some sort of frame grabber.
>>
>>Check out the Snappy from http://www.PLAY.com
>
>Thanks Kalle,
>
>That looks like just the thing I need, fortunately I've found a local
>Perth distributor which has one (PAL, its higher resolution) and will
>check it out in next few days. The web examples look great.
>
>It would be logical (since the Snappy has a digitiser) that it should
>be able to bring an AVI stream into memory without having to do the
>JPEG as well - but funnily I see no reference to this ? Never mind...

No, thats the thing it would not do,
Sanppy can grab hires from moving video stream, but the captured
frame is downlaoded to PC over slow parallel interface.

for making pictures sanppy *is* great.

antti

PS snappy is always on my desk :)
No Limits                                 Go To
Basics of AVR                              AVR
AVRBASIC         http://www.avrbasic.com          Born for Basic

Grand opening in August.
Watch out for first week offers.

1997\08\07@162135 by nigelg

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In message  <.....3.0.1.16.19970806224451.0df771e6KILLspamspam.....mail.wantree.com.au>> EraseMEPICLISTspam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTMITVMA.MIT.EDU writes:

> Would love to take some pics of a design and might use a camcorder, but
> I'd love to get higher res pics from some sort of frame grabber.
>
> Anyone know of a frame grabber which will input colour pictures AND
> software which can read in several pictures of say 320x400 and build
> up a 640x480 still - suitable for web page output of a quality
> comparable to that from a digital camera ?
>
> OR is there a VHS camcorder which has the capability to download higher
> resolution stills AS WELL as taking movies ?

Sony produce Digital Cam-Corders, these have the capability to be connected
to a PC to provide digital stills. Unfortunately they require some kind of
'interface lead', and these are VERY! expensive (as are the cameras!).

Nigel.

       /--------------------------------------------------------------\
       | Nigel Goodwin   | Internet : nigelgspamspam_OUTlpilsley.demon.co.uk     |
       | Lower Pilsley   | Web Page : http://www.lpilsley.demon.co.uk |
       | Chesterfield    |                                            |
       | England         |                                            |
       \--------------------------------------------------------------/

1997\08\08@005946 by Ross McKenzie

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At 08:14 AM 8/7/97 GMT, you wrote:
>In message  <@spam@3.0.1.16.19970806224451.0df771e6KILLspamspammail.wantree.com.au>> > KILLspamPICLISTKILLspamspamMITVMA.MIT.EDU writes:
>
>> Would love to take some pics of a design and might use a camcorder, but
>> I'd love to get higher res pics from some sort of frame grabber.
>>
>> Anyone know of a frame grabber which will input colour pictures AND
>> software which can read in several pictures of say 320x400 and build
>> up a 640x480 still - suitable for web page output of a quality
>> comparable to that from a digital camera ?
>>
>> OR is there a VHS camcorder which has the capability to download higher
>> resolution stills AS WELL as taking movies ?
>
>Sony produce Digital Cam-Corders, these have the capability to be connected
>to a PC to provide digital stills. Unfortunately they require some kind of
>'interface lead', and these are VERY! expensive (as are the cameras!).
>
>Nigel.

We are currently investigating the digital camera market to support inhouse
data sheet production for short run high value equipment that we produce. I
have found a good catalogue of what the market has to offer at
http://www.digital-cameras.com

Regards,

Ross McKenzie
Melbourne Australia

1997\08\08@031631 by Oliver P.

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I recomend using the "snappy" from play technologies, it will grab video
and allow you to digitize up to a 1200x 1024 at 24 bit planes, best part is
it costs less then 200.00 us dollars, go to play.com

{Quote hidden}

connected
> to a PC to provide digital stills. Unfortunately they require some kind
of
> 'interface lead', and these are VERY! expensive (as are the cameras!).
>
> Nigel.
>
>         /--------------------------------------------------------------\
>         | Nigel Goodwin   | Internet : RemoveMEnigelgTakeThisOuTspamlpilsley.demon.co.uk     |
>         | Lower Pilsley   | Web Page : http://www.lpilsley.demon.co.uk |
>         | Chesterfield    |                                            |
>         | England         |                                            |
>         \--------------------------------------------------------------/

1997\08\11@052253 by Keith Dowsett

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At 10:28 06/08/97 -0400, you wrote:
>Hi all, (A real quick query to an off topic item)
>
>Would love to take some pics of a design and might use a camcorder, but
>I'd love to get higher res pics from some sort of frame grabber.
>
>Anyone know of a frame grabber which will input colour pictures AND
>software which can read in several pictures of say 320x400 and build
>up a 640x480 still - suitable for web page output of a quality
>comparable to that from a digital camera ?
>
>OR is there a VHS camcorder which has the capability to download higher
>resolution stills AS WELL as taking movies ?
>
>rgds
>
>mike
>Perth, Western Australia

Hi Mike,

 I know this isn't really answering you question, but why not use a
conventional camera and get the results on photo-CD. I guess it'll cost
around 40$ for the first batch and around 15$ for each subsequent write
(based on the UK prices). It offers much better resolution providing you
already own a camera.

Just a thought,

Keith.
------------------------------------------------------------
Keith Dowsett         "Variables won't; constants aren't."

E-mail: spamBeGonekdowsettspamBeGonespamrpms.ac.uk  or TakeThisOuTkdowsettEraseMEspamspam_OUTgeocities.com

WWW: http://kd.rpms.ac.uk/index.htm
    www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Lab/8979

1997\08\11@124619 by Mike

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At 10:25 AM 8/11/97 BST, you wrote:

>Hi Mike,
>
>  I know this isn't really answering you question, but why not use a
>conventional camera and get the results on photo-CD. I guess it'll cost
>around 40$ for the first batch and around 15$ for each subsequent write
>(based on the UK prices). It offers much better resolution providing you
>already own a camera.

Thanks but, I don't feel like carrying around a CD drive. What I want
to achieve is efficient downloading images into a PC - I'll leave the
archiving to photo CD for another time...

By the way, looks like I might settle on a cheap camcorder and a snappy
which is on  http://www.play.com - this way I can take videos AND get
hires pics as well.

Anybody tried this combination ?

rdgs

mike
Perth, WEstern Australia

1997\08\12@225135 by Scott Stephens

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I just got a Media Magic frame grabber, which I figured was much faster than
Snappy cuz it fits in a 16-bit slot. Was $120 around, and you can get spec's
at http://www.io.com/cbroker/vsp24kit.htm. It also, unlike snappy, gives
video overlay over your SVGA's feature connector. BTW, does anyone have VESA
spec's for the feature connector?

My only complaints with the card is a bit of noise in the video overlay, and
an apparent low-frequency rolloff which is probably I bet is caused by not
enough video output coupling capacitance. But I like the JPG's & BMP's it
makes from my camcorder. I use LView or paintshop to reduce contrast to 2
bits. My 486 is too slow for over about 10fps 512x384 AVI's.

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