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USB webcam as wifi camera

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elrond

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USB webcam as wifi/rf camera

Hi ,
I am building a project in which I have to use a usb webcam/digicam/camcorder and use it to transmit video through wi-fi.

1)The problem is that how to interface the data coming out of the usb so that I can transmit it through wi-fi...

2)If I interface how to interpret the data that my wifi card on laptop receives so that I can watch the streaming video. Means how to make the drivers...

COST NO BAR
 
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Sceadwian

Banned
You might want to pick a simpler project, USB is a nightmare, and interfacing to a laptop wifi card isn't any easier. Without full specifications on both the camera and the wifi card you have no place to start from, and getting those protocol specifications may not be possible.
 

Technogumbo

New Member
Hey elrond I actually have a lot of software experience doing this with Flash. I use the open source Red5 media server to do network streaming of webcams.

I would think about some way to incorporate a laptop into your project, like a tablet PC. Maybe a gumstix or something.

The rules for interfacing and implementing a USB Host are pretty onerous. I have used the FTDI FT232RL with a microcontroller in a few projects with really good success.

I haven't ever implemented wifi in an embedded project either.

A commercial product I have used before is the IQEye series of cameras. They require wired ethernet though.
 

elrond

New Member
ok how about using a webcam and take the video output and converting it into serial stream and than transmitting it using wifi or if I can get a fps of 10-15 with rf even that will do
 
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elrond

New Member
well there should be a way.. plz help me ... And is there any source where i can get the ccd sensor datasheets for logitech webcams
 

dknguyen

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
well there should be a way.. plz help me
Not like this, not for a hobbiest. We are telling you that you are going about the project the wrong way. Tell us WHAT you are trying to do. Not HOW you are trying to do it. There are other cameras out there that are actually made for individual users to easily interface with (ie. no USB). Interfacing with WiFi is still not easy though and I know of no wireless link available to hobbiests that is anywhere near fast enough for video transmission.

If you are trying to save money, it is much cheaper to buy it than to build it yourself.

well there should be a way.. plz help me ... And is there any source where i can get the ccd sensor datasheets for logitech webcams
Sure there is a way to get CCD sensor datasheets- you just ask the CCD manufacturer. They usually aren't available freely online because almost no individuals deal with CCDs. The CCDs are also difficult to get and so are the other parts needed to use them like lenses and high speed hardware. But even then, webcam manufacturers do not give out product schematics so you may never find out what CCD sensor is actually used in a Webcam.

And the type of CCD sensor inside the webcam doesn't even matter. What is matters is that you get the USB protocal for the camera (and there is no standard for webcams) which like Sceadwian said, is very difficult to get if you can get it at all..

You are trying to make something that interfaces with not one, but multiple protocals that are, to put it mildly, not user friendly.
 
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elrond

New Member
ok than I come back to my last point .....
I have seen in the forum that very low quality low fps video can be transmitted using rf .... can't we transmit the video that way.......
 

dknguyen

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
It is still too slow.

The RF that is easiest to work with and get parts for is basically a wireless RS-232 with a maximum speed of 256kpbs. So say we have a very small low quality video frame that is 100x100 pixels. That is 10,000 pixels in total. Let's also say this is a black and white image so each pixel is 8-bits (1 byte) that represents the shade of the pixel from pure white to pure black in 256 steps. That means that each image is 80,000 pixels.

At 256kbps, that means each image 3.3 frames per second. This is for 8-bit black and white video frames that are only 100x100 pixels large. Just making the video colour is triples the size by three times sinthree primary colours instead of just black and white shading. Increasing the colour resolution to 16doubles the size. And increasing the resolution to 800x600 increases the size by 48 times. It's just not fast enough. Even if you used compression, it is still nowhere near fast enough.

Plus you have to write all the code to convert the video to RS-232 for transmission, and all the software to convert/display the video.

It is much easier to transmit video by RF if it is analog (like a TV signal) rather than digital. YOu could just get a regular analog wireless video camera with a transmitter and receiver, and then use a RCA video-to-USB adapter to read the video into your laptop. But a WiFi Webcam is still better.

Is there a reason you don't want to use a WiFi webcam? What are you trying to do?
 
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elrond

New Member
Actually the project I have been assigned is to convert a normal camera of any sort into a wireless camera....


As for your analog signal camera what type of analog cameras are easily available ( I live in india).. And if I get it how to use that signal.... means what type circuit I will be needing....
 

dknguyen

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
Does it have to be a video camera? What if it's just a frame-by-frame picture camera. Then those data rates might work and you can write software just to draw a bunch of black and white pixels on the screen at different shades of black and white like I described above. You could even make it an itty-bitty 100x100 image then.

Analog camera are just the regular wireless security cameras that display video on a normal TV.

(why is it all these impossible school assignments seem to come from India? The last I remember answering was for a humanoid robot that could walk and had vision so it could grab things on it's own)
 
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Technogumbo

New Member
If your assignment is simply to do wireless video transmission by any means possible, you can do an all PC + software implementation without writing any code.

1. Get two computers with WIFI and install webcams on them
2. Install Red5 on one of the computers.
3. Connect them both to the same access point
4. Use Red5's already made Demo applications "SimpleBroadcaster" and "SimpleSubscriber".

If you have to do it the hard way involving EE; Have you looked at the CMU Cam at all? CMUcam - Trac There is a lot of documentation available for the platform.
 
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