12 Replies Latest reply on Mar 23, 2021 7:15 PM by dougw

    Custom Camera builds

    o.thornwall

      Hello,

       

      I'm interested in building a new universal camera of a sort.

      For Action, for survailance, etc.

       

      1. But I'm not sure what or how to chose the correct lens and sensor ?

       

      2. I also have a currant camera I'd like to modify with a better lens and sensor.

       

      3. Is it possible to plug a sensor into a phone or laptop and check the quality of the images it will give before installing it in camera ?

       

      4. Is there a room on this forum of other posts of others who have built their own cameras ?

       

       

       

      Thank you, Oscar.

        • Re: Custom Camera builds
          dougw

          There are lots of camera blogs on this forum - just search for "camera".

          Here is a road test I did that tried different lenses with a Raspberry Pi camera:

          Raspberry Pi HQ Camera - Review

          • Re: Custom Camera builds
            DAB

            I have a bit of experience in testing experimental cameras, mostly in the IR range.

             

            Before building a new camera I would assess what parameters you want and then look at what is currently available.

             

            There are hundreds of cameras and lenses to choose from.

             

            What is your specific objective?

             

            DAB

              • Re: Custom Camera builds
                o.thornwall

                Yes I've been looking for several years. It has to be small. Like something that can be mounted on a RC Car or plane. Maybe a little bigger.

                 

                Video stabilization would be nice.

                 

                But I have to be able to hook it up to a monitor of some sort for trouble shooting image quality or shot set up and testing.

                 

                Battery life should be adjustable from 1 to 6 hours on stand by. With about 1.5 hours of video recording time maybe.

                 

                Micro SD card is ok for memory.

                 

                How's that for a start ?  Any ideas ?

                 

                OT

                1 of 1 people found this helpful
                  • Re: Custom Camera builds
                    DAB

                    Do you need color, monochrome?

                    How many pixels?

                    Camera speed?

                    Storage?

                    Weight?

                     

                    There are some very good cameras used in first person viewer drones and RC cars.

                    Battery life will depend upon resolution and time to record each frame.

                    Stabilization can be done with HW or SW, which will also impact battery life.

                    Digital or RF video link?

                     

                    DAB

                      • Re: Custom Camera builds
                        o.thornwall

                        Color: Yes

                        Everything else ? Is there a book that explains the rest of the camera build considerations your asking about ?

                         

                        FVP cameras require a HAM license do they not ?

                         

                        Can FVP camera's operate without RF's ?

                         

                        OT

                          • Re: Custom Camera builds
                            greenmate

                            It depends on the power output and where you live, but in most cases it's legal without a license. You can get just the camera, which outputs composite video, or get a transmitter as well which can take that composite video and transmit it at 5.2/2.4/1.3GHz.

                            However, the usual FPV cameras aren't that good quality, they are made to have low latency and high dynamic range, not good quality.

                            If you need something that's good quality, I'd suggest you look into the Raspberry Pi HQ camera, hook it up to a Pi, and you can do some processing and transmitting over WiFi with that, while also recording to an SD card or flash drive. For the lens, basically all you have to worry about is focal length, which is basically the "zoom" amount of the lens. Lower number means less zoom, more fits in the frame.

                          • Re: Custom Camera builds
                            o.thornwall

                            So can I get an answer to my last reply ?

                              • Re: Custom Camera builds
                                DAB

                                Sorry for the delay, I have been down with health issues.

                                 

                                I think you need to do a lot more research before you can attempt your project.

                                Camera design is a very difficult process especially given all of the various new sensors, filters, lenses and electronics tied together.

                                 

                                As to your second question, some cameras can be tested via USB, but others require special interface boards. Especially those with high frame rates.

                                USB cameras should readily interface with Windows or Linux, though you might have to hunt for drivers.

                                If this task was simple, everyone would do it.

                                 

                                DAB

                              • Re: Custom Camera builds
                                o.thornwall

                                These would both be good starting points I think.

                                But I"m wondering how I would power them up to check the view though the lenses.

                                Would I just plug them into my laptop as a webcam to get the focus or setting right ?

                                Would I have to install special software to set them up ? Or specific "Drivers" ?

                                 

                                The Foxeen has an actual cable instead of a ribbon cable which is better for my design

                                • Re: Custom Camera builds
                                  o.thornwall

                                  Digital or RF video link ? What is the differents ? How do I learn more about both ?