PIXHAWK Gumstix Camera makes it to product!

The design we pioneered in 2009 for machine vision with Gumstix Overo is now finally available as product from Gumstix. They did a great job of converting our initial raw open source design into a usable product, our internal prototype made it not beyond basic sensor readout routines. The picture on the top shows the finished Caspa board, the image on the bottom one of the earlier prototypes:

The module provides 752x480 (640x480) pixel resolution in color and can be purchased from Gumstix either with IR (VS) or without IR cut filter (FS). For most applications not operating at dawn/dusk the version with IR cut filter will provide better image quality.


PLEASE NOTE: We're thrilled that this tiny machine vision platform is now available for the general public. PIXHAWK is however not associated to Gumstix or does benefit financially from the product. We're just happy that the concept of open hardware worked out again.



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Comment by Recmaster on March 1, 2011 at 9:25am
has anyone ideas how to integrate it with AP or APM?

Comment by Gary Mortimer on March 1, 2011 at 9:59am
Very nice, well done
Comment by pixhawk on March 1, 2011 at 10:02am

This middleware was developed for Computer Vision on Gumstix. It reads out the camera and interfaces via MAVLink to ArduPilotMega. So if you want to hook up your APM to a Linux PC, it is a small, nice framework to start with:



Comment by I.S. on March 1, 2011 at 10:50am

Can we use the Caspa without a Gumstix?

Waht kind of output the Caspa has?


Comment by pixhawk on March 1, 2011 at 10:52am
It has a parallel output of image data for which you need a very fast MCU/CPU to read it out in reasonable time. So you can interface it to any small DSP/FPGA or fast microcontroller.
Comment by I.S. on March 1, 2011 at 10:53am

Any further spec about that?

How about interfacing it with an ARM Cortex M3 for example?

Comment by pixhawk on March 1, 2011 at 10:56am
Should work, but for more than just storing the image an M3 is too slow. Any reasonable onboard image processing needs at least a CPU in the 500-700 MHz class, that is at least the experience in our research. The sensor is an MT9V032, you can look it up on the Aptina website.
Comment by Geoffrey L. Barrows on March 1, 2011 at 12:29pm


A long time ago (2006) we purchased a few Gumstix processors to explore using them as a processor for some of our vision sensors. It is an intriguing idea given that Gumstix are tiny, fast, and have more than adequate memory to do the job. However we found IO to be painfully slow- basically every IO operation went through the Linux file system and thus had lags of hundreds of microseconds to even a few milliseconds. This was not useful to us given that we typically generate precisely timed pulse and command sequences to operate our chips.

Is this still the case with Gumstix? Or is it easier now to access the IO at a lower level? A Gumstix-class processor and one of our image sensor chips would completely smoke any optic mouse sensor.

(Oh- we wouldn't be competing with you- we typically operate in lower resolution / faster frame rate.)



Comment by David on March 1, 2011 at 12:40pm
Does anybody know if the gumstick can record the input from two of these cameras?
Comment by Jack Crossfire on March 1, 2011 at 5:41pm
Can't believe these guys are still charging $150 for computer boards & $75 for the camera.  The hirose connectors fall apart in a crash.


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