Cheap cameras/ProMovie Progress (none)

Steve Loboyko (slob@mindspring.com)
Mon, 23 Jan 1995 16:45:29 -0500


1.I bought a $90.00 B/W camera from BG Micro (1-800-276-2206,
214-271-5546), the "SpyCamera II". It is very nice, it comes with a case,
and a power supply (wall wart). It is 12V, so I just made a little cable and
tap off of the PC. The camera lacks an "on" light and an on/off switch, so I
added them. I attached Velcro to the camera and to the top of my monitor and
that holds it well (nice to have a tilt/swivel monitor). I think I read
somewhere that human psychology demands a physical cover over a supposedly
"off" camera, and it does come with a lenscap, but it is not permanently
attached. Other than that, it looks super-professional.

This camera is actually _nicer_ for most videoconverencing applications than
the first B/W camera I bought from BG ($150.00, just a module, no case or
P/S, apparently still available), as it seems to have a bigger objective
lens and has a little tighter field of view that is perfect for a talking
head in front of the monitor. The $150.00 camera is more wide-field and
tends to seem fisheyed, but might be OK for a group shot.

Incidentally, I noticed a problem with my $150.00 camera when I started to
play with the new one: there was vignetting (sp?) on one of the corners. I
really didn't want to send it back, so I removed the optical housing
attached to the PCB, ovaled out the mounting screws, shifted the housing to
the right, and reinstalled it. (As this is a double-sided surface mount
board with vias, kids, don't try this at home... especially if you have a
warranty...). Now it works OK.

2. I have yet to hear from MediaVision concerning problems with the MV
ProMovieStudio driver and Cu-SeeMe. But I will "kick the box" tonight...I
hope that they fix the problem; this board, when the driver is fixed, and
the above camera will be the cheapest nifty combo for videoconferencing
(without using your camcorder...)
Steve Loboyko
Software Engineer
cR Solutions, Incorporated
11285 Elkins Rd suite G-1
Roswell GA 30076

slob@mindspring.com
hhtp://www.mindspring.com/~slob/home.html

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