ArduCAM NOIR Raspberry Pi camera with Motorized IR Cut Filter

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Background

Raspberry pi camera has both color version pi camera board and NoIR version pi camera board. So let’s take a look at the difference between these two types of camera. The color version pi camera has 650nm IR cut filter on top of the sensor, so it can only sensitive to visible light like human eyes. While the NoIR version pi camera also called IR filter removed pi camera which doesn’t have 650nm IR cut filter on top of the sensor, and can sensitive all spectrum of light including ultraviolet light and near infrared light which cannot be seen by humans. So people will think NoIR pi camera is better than the standard color pi camera, because it is sensitive to all spectrum rather than visible light. Yes, it is good, but it depends. The problem of this effect is that the color reproduction is drastically affected.
Unlike your eyes, camera sensors can detect “near infrared” light that just outside the range of the human eye. The image below shows the result.

The plants in this view reflect more infrared than green light so they appear pink in daylight.
To make the image more akin to what humans can see, most cameras are fitted with an infrared-cut filter which only allows visible light to pass through, reflecting unwanted infrared. This is where standard color version pi camera used for.

Motorized (Switchable) infrared-cut filters

There are some instances where capturing infrared light is an advantage. In low-light conditions, cameras capture as much light as possible to produce brighter images, regardless of color. For this reason, some entry-level night-vision cameras don’t feature a cut filter, instead capturing infrared light from on-board LEDs at night at the expense of true color reproduction during the daytime.
The optimum solution is to use a switchable infrared-cut filter. In daylight, the filter covers the sensor to provide color footage, while at night the filter opens for a brighter image. In industry terms, these cameras are known as day/night or true day/night cameras.
These cameras can be combined with infrared lamps which are much more discreet than conventional white-light lighting, since the light produced can’t be seen by the human eye.

Solution

Sometimes you need the camera to work on both daylight and dark (night time) conditions, like the IP-based security camera. ArduCAM pi cameras now feature a motorized IR-cut filter on NoIR pi camera board, the IR-cut can be switched on in the daylight and can be switched off at night, and cooperated with IR light source for night vision. The highlight of this motorized IR-cut mechanism is no additional cable needed between the Raspberry Pi board and camera board.

ArduCAM pi camera with motorized IR cut filter

First we have to edit the config.txt file

sudo nano /boot/config.txt

Add this line at the end of the config.txt file, save and reboot.

disable_camera_led=1

Then use our provide python script to take normal image with IR-cut on and night vision image with IR-cut off. Using the following commands there are two pictures captured.

cd piCamLed
sudo python ./RPI_camera_IR_CUT_NOIR.py
sudo python ./RPI_camera_IR_CUT_IR.py

Software Download

Demo software can be downloaded from here.

ArduCAM USB Camera Shield Released

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The ArduCAM USB camera shield is a universal camera control board designed for both PCs and embedded systems like the Raspberry Pi, TI Beaglebone, and similar products. It supports most parallel interface image sensors ranging from 0.3MP to 14MP, including both global and rolling shutter sensors. The camera is packaged with the software you need to put it to work on Windows and Linux systems and  a comprehensive SDK library is provided to support this.  This SDK is fully integrated with Python, which allows for direct integration of our cameras with your OpenCV based applications.

The plug and play USB control interface simplifies integrating the camera with a wide range of computer hardware. The ready to use SDK library and demo source code makes the software integration process straightforward and efficient. Users can make it work in minutes without writing a line of code. The broad range of modules ArduCAM supports, combined with support for formats like RAW, RGB, YUV, JPEG assures our users a successful outcome.

The ArduCAM USB camera shield joins our product line of shields that offer SPI/IC2 interfaces. The USB camera shield offers significant speed gains over the SPI camera shield, running at as high a frame rate as the USB2.0 480Mbps bandwidth allows which can deliver  640_480(VGA at 60 FPS, through  4384_3228(14MP) at 2 FPS. By using a global shutter camera headboard such as the MT9V034/AR0134 together with USB camera shield, the user can achieve industrial level machine vision with our camera on a Raspberry pi without effort.

The ArduCAM is straightforward enough that it can be easily used with PCs and single board computers such as the Raspberry Pi and the Beaglebone. In short, the ArduCAM brings a plug and play solution to digital cameras at the hardware level.

Please visit our github to find more information and examples, and check the user guide here. Continue reading “ArduCAM USB Camera Shield Released” »

The GotchaCAM Portable DIY Wifi Camera Based Travel and Home Security and Surveillance System

Introduction

The GotchaCAM Portable Travel and Home Security and Surveillance System consists of the ArduCAM CC3200 Uno and the software from the book “Home Security System DIY PRO using Android and TI CC3200 SimpleLink” by Robert Chin. Both are available
for purchase on major sites like Amazon in US.

The recommended way to purchase the hardware for this system is by buying the “ArduCAM CC3200 UNO DIY Wifi Portable Security Spy Ghost Hunter Camera Starter Kit” that is available on Amazon. This provides you with all the hardware you will need. Continue reading “The GotchaCAM Portable DIY Wifi Camera Based Travel and Home Security and Surveillance System” »

Second Generation ArduCAM Shields and Modules

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Introduction
ArduCAM series camera shield is a universal camera control board for Arduino. It hides the complex nature of the camera and provides the plug and play camera control interface as well as the ready to use software source code library and demo code. User can make it works in minutes without writing a line of code. The ArduCAM supports variety camera modules from 0.3MP to 5MP with different format like RAW, RGB, YUV, JPEG and can be well mated with standard Arduino boards.
ArduCAM Shield V2 and ArduCAM-Mini-5MP-Plus are the second generation of ArduCAM products, they offers the improved performance and enhanced functions than the previous revisions. They not only can capture decent 5MP JPEG images, but also can do 5MP full resolution RAW image capture, which makes it to be the ideal solution for IoT and scientific image processing applications. Even more they can record short movie clips as well.
The ArduCAM is straightforward enough that it can be easily used with an Arduino, however this simple interface means that the ArduCAM is equally easily integrated with other single board computers such as the Raspberry Pi and the Beaglebone black. It isn’t just a camera for the Arduino, it’s a camera that because it can be easily interfaced to an Arduino, can be easily interfaced to any single board computer, either directly, or through an Arduino if needed for a larger system without exposed SPI/I2C busses. In short, the ArduCAM brings a plug and play solution to digital cameras at the hardware level.

Continue reading “Second Generation ArduCAM Shields and Modules” »

New Book for ArduCAM CC3200 Uno DIY Wifi Security Spy Ghost Hunter Camera Starter Kit

The author Robert Chin wrote a book for Home Security System DIY PRO using Android and TI CC3200 SimpleLink using ArduCAM CC3200 UNO DIY WIFI Start Kit. If you want to build home security system by yourself, it is right for you to read about it. And now it is available on Amazon. Continue reading “New Book for ArduCAM CC3200 Uno DIY Wifi Security Spy Ghost Hunter Camera Starter Kit” »