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Digital still camera as IP network camera (with Blue Iris)?


 
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Karl in NY
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Joined: 06 Mar 2009
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Sat Mar 13, 2010 4:08 pm    Post subject: Digital still camera as IP network camera (with Blue Iris)? Reply with quote

Can any digital still cameras (with or without video capability) be used as network cameras (with Blue Iris)?

I'm looking at the Canon SX20 as a possible purchase, for example, and note that it has a USB connector, component video outputs, and HDMI output. Is there a usable video signal coming out of the camera when actually taking still pictures and/or video, or are these outputs strictly for playback on a TV set? The owner's manual doesn't mention it.

I don't need to capture video from the camera, just a one frame per second high-rez .jpg would good.

Sorry if this is a really naive question, but it would be so much cheaper than a megapixel network cam with 20x optical zoom...
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sadik007
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Joined: 02 Dec 2009
Posts: 188

PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 8:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Check out

http://chdk.wikia.com/wiki/CHDK
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Karl in NY
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Joined: 06 Mar 2009
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 6:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had no idea such open-source firmware existed...I've just started reading the noobie pages, and it looks like there is potential for what I want to do.

Just having camera control via USB opens many doors, even if I have to capture stills or video manually (as opposed to DVR integration)...the camera will be at the top of a tower in a weather-proof enclosure on a pan/tilt mount...with 20x optical zoom, and with digital zoom practical due to the 12MP resolution.

I have always wondered why IP/Network cameras were so far behind in features, resolution, optical zoom, etc. compared to even low-priced digital still cams and camcorders...maybe we will eventually start seeing RJ45 jacks on cheapo cams in the future.

I appreciate your reply, and the link.

Other suggestions or hints are welcomed.
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40th Floor
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Joined: 10 Oct 2008
Posts: 221
Location: Texas

PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 2:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

USB + tower sound a lot like ethernet + 1 mile of cable

Have you connected anything by USB cable longer than a few feet?
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40th Floor - Software @ http://40th.com/
CAMNET : Keep the bad guys out!
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sadik007
Junky


Joined: 02 Dec 2009
Posts: 188

PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 7:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

40th Floor wrote:
Have you connected anything by USB cable longer than a few feet?


5 or 10 feet is max over USB cable...
Butttt.. You can can get Lan USB server, its used for USB printers, that should work on long distance, never tried but it should..

or you can always get...
USB IP video server for about $80 or so..

some software does work over USB (blue iris might), it just uses Twain to get image.. in your case I would get old PC and install it on tower..

CHDK is nice, just dont know how you would do zoom on it.. maybe over some script or something..

BTW..
This is way to go
http://www.engadget.com/2010/03/15/gigapan-epic-pro-robotic-camera-mount-shipping-in-april/
or
http://www.gigapanner.com/?p=89


Last edited by sadik007 on Tue Mar 16, 2010 9:00 am; edited 1 time in total
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sadik007
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Joined: 02 Dec 2009
Posts: 188

PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 8:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

BTW,
> Karl in NY
please post some pictures if you ever complete this. I would like to see it.. And maybe a post on how/what you have done.. Someone else might need it
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buellwinkle
Wizard


Joined: 28 Mar 2008
Posts: 2504

PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 10:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I here ya, but keep in mind, your live feed from that camrea is not 12MP, it's only 12MP when you take a picture and even then, it's not likely going to get get you more than 1 frame per second. To get a 12MP camera that has a 1/2" CMOS sensor, can do 15fps at 12MP, you are looking at a super expensive camera. For example, even to get HD video (about 1.5MP), you need a fairly serious still camera. To get even 5 fps and maintain it 24/7 from a still camera at it's full resolution is pretty impressive. Also, shutters, even on commercial dslrs have shutter life of about 150,000 cycles, so if you shot 15 fps, 24/7 would probably die in a day, but what they heck, it has a warranty, haha..

So what you are paying for in these surveillence mega pixel cameras is processing power, being able to shoot, compress & send video files to a server at 10-30fps takes a lot more processing power than what's in your p&s camera. Also, consumer cameras have a much greater economy of scale and the top cameras are made in Asia.


Karl in NY wrote:

I have always wondered why IP/Network cameras were so far behind in features, resolution, optical zoom, etc. compared to even low-priced digital still cams and camcorders...maybe we will eventually start seeing RJ45 jacks on cheapo cams in the future.
.
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Karl in NY
Member


Joined: 06 Mar 2009
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 5:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You folks are making a lot of sense, and I'm starting to look around at more affordable megapixel network cams, rather than a Rube Goldberg conversion of a digital still camera.

The best features/price-point right now seems to be the Sanyo VCC-HD4000 which is 4MP with integral 10x autofocus zoom lens for around $900.
I would need an enclosure with heater and fan, and a fairly inexpensive remote pan/tilt mount (I may even use a small 2-axis antenna rotator left over from a ham microwave project). With 4MP, the digital zoom would even have some practicality. I don't need camera integration with the pan/tilt mount, a separate joystick may actually be preferable for my use.

Having an integrated autofocus zoom lens optimized to the sensor seems like a major advantage to me. f1.8 seems pretty fast, too. Also, good day/night switchover.

I'll be zooming with one hand and paning/tilting with the other, and at all other times it will be parked in its "home" position with motion detection enabled to conserve disk space and CPU resources. I'm already running eight 640x480 network cams 24/7 (a hodge-podge of makes and models), but my only experience so far with megapixel was 1.3MP (early IPEye and Arecont models ) and neither were very impressive with any of the lenses I already had in personal inventory.

The Axis Q1755 is very, very similar to the Sanyo, but at about 50% more money.
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sadik007
Junky


Joined: 02 Dec 2009
Posts: 188

PostPosted: Wed Mar 17, 2010 5:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

buellwinkle wrote:
I here ya, but keep in mind, your live feed from that camrea is not 12MP, it's only 12MP when you take a picture and even then, it's not likely going to get get you more than 1 frame per second.


I do and don't agree with you.. Smile
On the market now there are many DSLR cams that do unbelievable HD..
http://dslrhd.com/
Have seen full length movies done with using DSLR in HD..

It is true that they cant do compression and images/clips are large.. It all depends for what you need it. If this cam is to be "remote" triggered for short HQ video then this might not be bad idea.. But DSLR and small cams will probably not last for long in full 24h mode..
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