TechNexion USB Camera User Guide
  • 04 Jul 2024
  • 3 Minutes to read
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TechNexion USB Camera User Guide

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Article summary

Introduction

This article guides you how to get started using TechNexion USB camera on Windows and Linux.


Supported Camera Modules

Camera SeriesProducts
VCIVCI-AR0144-C
VCI-AR0234-C
VCI-AR0521-C
VCI-AR0522-C
VCI-AR0522-M
VCI-AR0821-C
VCI-AR1335-C
UVC-VLS3UVC-VLS3-AR0144-C
UVC-VLS3-AR0234-C
UVC-VLS3-AR0521-C
UVC-VLS3-AR0522-C
UVC-VLS3-AR0522-M
UVC-VLS3-AR0821-C
UVC-VLS3-AR1335-C

How to use

There are several methods to use the camera when you connect it to a computer or embedded development kit via a USB cable.

Method 1 - Using TechNexion VizionViewer (Windows/Linux)

VizionViewerâ„¢


Method 2 - Using V4L2 Control (Linux)

  1. List all devices.
$ v4l2-ctl --list-device

VCI-AR0144-C (usb-xhci-hcd.1.auto-1.2):
        /dev/video0
        /dev/video1
        /dev/media0
  1. List camera formats.
$ v4l2-ctl -d /dev/video0 --list-formats-ext
ioctl: VIDIOC_ENUM_FMT
        Type: Video Capture

        [0]: 'UYVY' (UYVY 4:2:2)
                Size: Discrete 1280x800
                        Interval: Discrete 0.017s (60.000 fps)
                        Interval: Discrete 0.033s (30.000 fps)
                Size: Discrete 1280x720
                        Interval: Discrete 0.017s (60.000 fps)
                        Interval: Discrete 0.033s (30.000 fps)
                Size: Discrete 640x480
                        Interval: Discrete 0.017s (60.000 fps)
                        Interval: Discrete 0.033s (30.000 fps)
        [1]: 'MJPG' (Motion-JPEG, compressed)
                Size: Discrete 1280x800
                        Interval: Discrete 0.017s (60.000 fps)
                        Interval: Discrete 0.033s (30.000 fps)
                Size: Discrete 1280x720
                        Interval: Discrete 0.017s (60.000 fps)
                        Interval: Discrete 0.033s (30.000 fps)
                Size: Discrete 640x480
                        Interval: Discrete 0.017s (60.000 fps)
                        Interval: Discrete 0.033s (30.000 fps)
  1. List camera v4l2 controls.
$ v4l2-ctl -d /dev/video0 --list-ctrls

User Controls

                     brightness 0x00980900 (int)    : min=0 max=32 step=4 default=16 value=16
                       contrast 0x00980901 (int)    : min=0 max=10 step=1 default=5 value=5
                     saturation 0x00980902 (int)    : min=0 max=80 step=8 default=16 value=16
        white_balance_automatic 0x0098090c (bool)   : default=1 value=1
                          gamma 0x00980910 (int)    : min=0 max=40 step=1 default=18 value=18
                           gain 0x00980913 (int)    : min=1 max=48 step=1 default=1 value=1
           power_line_frequency 0x00980918 (menu)   : min=0 max=2 default=0 value=0 (Disabled)
      white_balance_temperature 0x0098091a (int)    : min=2300 max=15000 step=1 default=5000 value=5000 flags=inactive
                      sharpness 0x0098091b (int)    : min=0 max=64 step=8 default=32 value=32
         backlight_compensation 0x0098091c (int)    : min=0 max=480 step=8 default=256 value=256

Camera Controls

                  auto_exposure 0x009a0901 (menu)   : min=0 max=3 default=0 value=0 (Auto Mode)
         exposure_time_absolute 0x009a0902 (int)    : min=1 max=10000 step=1 default=330 value=100 flags=inactive
                   pan_absolute 0x009a0908 (int)    : min=-648000 max=648000 step=3600 default=0 value=0
                  tilt_absolute 0x009a0909 (int)    : min=-648000 max=648000 step=3600 default=0 value=0
                  zoom_absolute 0x009a090d (int)    : min=100 max=800 step=1 default=100 value=100
  1. Camera streaming test with UYVY format.
$ v4l2-ctl -d /dev/video0 --set-fmt-video=pixelformat=UYVY,width=1280,height=800 --stream-mmap
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< 59.84 fps
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< 59.85 fps

Using "Ctrl+C" to exit v4l2 streaming.

  1. Camera streaming test with MJPG format.
$ v4l2-ctl -d /dev/video0 --set-fmt-video=pixelformat=MJPG,width=1280,height=800 --stream-mmap
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< 59.84 fps
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< 59.85 fps

Using "Ctrl+C" to exit v4l2 streaming.


Method 3 - Using GStreamer (Linux)

  1. List all devices and formats.
$ gst-device-monitor-1.0

Device found:

        name  : VCI-AR0144-C
        class : Video/Source
        caps  : video/x-raw, format=UYVY, width=1280, height=800, pixel-aspect-ratio=1/1, framerate={ (fraction)60/1, (fraction)30/1 }
                video/x-raw, format=UYVY, width=1280, height=720, pixel-aspect-ratio=1/1, framerate={ (fraction)60/1, (fraction)30/1 }
                video/x-raw, format=UYVY, width=640, height=480, pixel-aspect-ratio=1/1, framerate={ (fraction)60/1, (fraction)30/1 }
                image/jpeg, parsed=true, width=1280, height=800, pixel-aspect-ratio=1/1, framerate={ (fraction)60/1, (fraction)30/1 }
                image/jpeg, parsed=true, width=1280, height=720, pixel-aspect-ratio=1/1, framerate={ (fraction)60/1, (fraction)30/1 }
                image/jpeg, parsed=true, width=640, height=480, pixel-aspect-ratio=1/1, framerate={ (fraction)60/1, (fraction)30/1 }
        properties:
                udev-probed = true
                device.bus_path = platform-xhci-hcd.1.auto-usb-0:1.2:1.0
                sysfs.path = /sys/devices/platform/soc@0/32f10108.usb/38200000.usb/xhci-hcd.1.auto/usb2/2-1/2-1.2/2-1.2:1.0/video4linux/video0
                device.bus = usb
                device.subsystem = video4linux
                device.vendor.id = 3407
                device.vendor.name = TechNexion
                device.product.id = 0144
                device.product.name = VCI-AR0144-C
                device.serial = TechNexion_VCI-AR0144-C_000000008E604600A159178868A11A1A
                device.capabilities = :capture:
                device.api = v4l2
                device.path = /dev/video0
                v4l2.device.driver = uvcvideo
                v4l2.device.card = VCI-AR0144-C
                v4l2.device.bus_info = usb-xhci-hcd.1.auto-1.2
                v4l2.device.version = 393527 (0x00060137)
                v4l2.device.capabilities = 2225078273 (0x84a00001)
                v4l2.device.device_caps = 69206017 (0x04200001)
        gst-launch-1.0 v4l2src ! ...
  1. Preview with UYVY format.
$ gst-launch-1.0 v4l2src device=/dev/video0 ! "video/x-raw, format=(string)UYVY, width=(int)1280, height=(int)800" ! videoconvert ! autovideosink sync=false
  1. Preview with MJPG format.
$ gst-launch-1.0 v4l2src device=/dev/video0 ! "image/jpeg, width=(int)1280, height=(int)800" ! jpegdec ! autovideosink sync=false
GStreamer element

The element depends on your system, so the example may not be suitable for your system.


Troubleshooting

  • Auto-suspend
    Since the camera's standby power consumption is low, the system may disconnect camera through the auto-suspend function as like below.
[86452.959044] usb 2-1.2: new SuperSpeed USB device number 5 using xhci-hcd
[86452.983505] usb 2-1.2: LPM exit latency is zeroed, disabling LPM.
[86453.022662] usb 2-1.2: Found UVC 1.10 device VCI-AR0144-C (3407:0144)
[86453.139540] input: VCI-AR0144-C as /devices/platform/soc@0/32f10108.usb/38200000.usb/xhci-hcd.1.auto/usb2/2-1/2-1.2/2-1.2:1.0/input/input8
[86467.470212] usb 2-1.2: USB disconnect, device number 5
[86468.959511] usb 2-1.2: new SuperSpeed USB device number 6 using xhci-hcd
[86468.983960] usb 2-1.2: LPM exit latency is zeroed, disabling LPM.
[86469.022673] usb 2-1.2: Found UVC 1.10 device VCI-AR0144-C (3407:0144)
[86469.139501] input: VCI-AR0144-C as /devices/platform/soc@0/32f10108.usb/38200000.usb/xhci-hcd.1.auto/usb2/2-1/2-1.2/2-1.2:1.0/input/input9
[86472.078213] usb 2-1.2: USB disconnect, device number 6

You can first check flag of auto-suspend and modify it to turn off this function.

$ cat /sys/module/usbcore/parameters/autosuspend
2

$ echo -1 > /sys/module/usbcore/parameters/autosuspend

After turning off auto-suspend, you need to reconnect the camera.


  • Floating framerate
    Because of the product feature "Designed for Low Light Applications", the camera will increase exposure time via automatic exposure mode to maintain image quality in low-light environment.
    You can change the camera to manual exposure mode to keep the framerate. However, if you increase exposure gain in low-light environment, you will see more noise.
$ v4l2-ctl -d /dev/video0 --set-ctrl auto_exposure=1

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