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View Full Version : Webcam recommendations for use with indoor lighting @ 30fps?



JadeKnight
01-28-2009, 10:38 AM
Does anyone have any recommendations for a really small webcam that performs well with indoor lighting, and still gets ~30fps (preferably at 640x480, or higher)?


Reson being, I just picked up a small $15 webcam to prototype the vision on my project, and the performance is barely useable (probably why it was so cheap :p).

It has three 'no flicker' settings - Outdoors, 50Hz, and 60Hz. I tested it indoors, with normal indoor lighting (no spotlights or anything).

'Outdoors' - The image is almost completely black, even with all the lighting/brightness controls cranked up. I do get a clean 30fps, though. If I closely aim it at the PC monitor it shows that image fine, just not any other objects in the room. Apparently too little light for the camera/mode...

If I set it to '50Hz', objects are clearly visible, but the fps is around 6-7 (not really good for any motion, massive blurring).

If I set it to '60Hz', objects again are clearly visible, but the fps is around 4-5 (even worse for motion).

That is the only setting that seem to majorly affect the lighting/performance. The rest of them I tweaked had minimal impact (most options slowed the fps down even further). Resolution between 160x120 and 640x480 did not have any significant changes to the fps.

To confirm the FPS, I tested it both in my own program, and using captured video with the included app.

No0bert
01-28-2009, 11:04 AM
I am using this cheap guy for my upcoming project, and using a TV Tuner Tuner Card I picked up at Best Buy

http://www.bestofferbuy.com/wireless-pinhole-spy-camera-hidden-spycam-nanny-cctv-12ghz-p-26.html
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=8853797&type=product&id=1209166068373

anandoc
01-28-2009, 11:27 AM
I cant really look at the FPS output of my cam since I am at work, but for my project, I am using a Microsoft VX3000 webcam, and with the lowlight function turned on, I get a pretty good image. Without the lowlight setting, I am pretty sure it gives me a 30FPS. Good enough for watching where my robot is crawling up next :P

JadeKnight
01-28-2009, 11:38 AM
I am using this cheap guy for my upcoming project, and using a TV Tuner Tuner Card I picked up at Best Buy

http://www.bestofferbuy.com/wireless-pinhole-spy-camera-hidden-spycam-nanny-cctv-12ghz-p-26.html
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=8853797&type=product&id=1209166068373

Thanks for the idea, but a wireless camera wouldn't work too well. I am going to use the webcam on a small autonomous robot that will be using an onboard pico-itx motherboard for the 'brains'.

I do like the idea of using a TV tuner, though. Having a separate small USB TV tuner, alongside the webcam, that can accept outside video signals for alternate vision input would be handy for some of the things I have planned...