[nSLUG] USB inspection camera for linux?

George N. White III gnwiii at gmail.com
Sun Nov 16 18:27:55 AST 2008

On Sun, Nov 16, 2008 at 3:59 PM, Jason Kenney <jdkenney at gmail.com> wrote:
> Just to clarify:
>> knockoffs ($50).    Bodelin (US distributer) provided one to the
>> linux-uvc <https://linux-uvc.berlios.de/> developer, but apparently
>> this only supports the video mode, not
>> still image capture.    Video formats generally degrade image quality,
>> so I wouldn't expect frame capture from video (e.g., videodog) to give
>> decent images.   That means I'm looking for SANE image capture
>> support.
> Are you saying the device doesn't support still image capture, or the
> driver doesn't?  Pretty cool little thing either way, but I can't
> imagine a 100x image capture from a handheld camera is going to be too
> clear either.  :)

I would probably use a stand.  The ProScope has 2 standard 1/4 x 20
 camera mounts.

The device supports image capture at 1.3M pixels, with the Windows/Mac

> You might be able to improve the effective video resolution a little
> bit with some object tracking/superresolution type setup, but I'm not
> sure what your goal is...

Superresolution might help, but I'm actually more interested in using
HDR methods to see shadow detail that is hard to get with a loupe
when viewing polished objects.

> Otherwise I think you can get an older used dSLR for not too much more
> than what you're paying, and I'd expect there is some kind of macro
> lens or higher you can get with some intelligent lighting solution?

To use any SLR for > 1x magnification normally requires a microscope
adapter and a microscope.    Some SLR lenses are "supermacro"
2--3X, but I'm not sure about image quality.   People seem to use
10--30X for the sort of work I'm doing, but even with "digital magnification
and a high end camera it would be hard to get past 10x.

A dSLR would need to support direct capture -- you loose time on
the shoot, connect, download, view cycle, and the capture.sf.net site
mentions wear and tear from cycling the lens and switching modes for
every shot using standard methods.   I found <http://capture.sourceforge.net/>
for certain Canon models -- will have to see which ones have interchangeable
lenses.   Reading the docs it appears than gPhoto can work with PTP
cameras, but Canon added some remote control extensions that require
"capture", which in turn uses PTP.   I'd read the sources, but the dogs
are telling me their dinner is overdue.

George N. White III <aa056 at chebucto.ns.ca>
Head of St. Margarets Bay, Nova Scotia

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