RE: Quickcam problems

Jacqueline Chados (jackie@sri.webmate.com)
Thu, 3 Oct 1996 11:17:05 -0400 (EDT)


On Wed, 2 Oct 1996, Harry wrote:

> "I am running Cuseeme v. W0.84b7 with a Connectix B/W Quickcam on a
> pentium 75 with 16 megs of memory. Every time I run Cuseeme I get an

[SNIPPED]

> Yes, Ralph welcome to the club. I have the same exact problem with a
> 25Mzh 386DX.

The more of these I read, the gladder I am that I went with the COMPRO
instead of the CONNECTIX camera!

One big advantage that I am only recently realizing is that the COMPRO
makes far fewer demands for computer memory and cpu cycles than the
CONNECTIX seems to require.

I haven't posted my experiences with White Pine cu-seeme yet because I've
found the software is somewhat flaky. The CONNECTIX camera side of things
has been just fine. I loaded the WP software, fired it up, and presto, I
was sending/receiving color, no sweat. The camera works well in B/W mode as
with except for a minor strangeness with the WP software (see below). I
couldn't find many color transmissions to receive off the reflectors,
however. (I almost forgot to mention that I bought the camera via WWW at
www.chest.com. If I don't mention this, I'll get a swarm of e-mails asking
where I got the camera).

Now for my real reason for writing...

I've been disappointed with the lack of response by White Pine to my
questions. I've been playing for a couple of weeks and I'm still having a
few problems with the S/W. Perhaps someone here can help.

1. I think this may be a software bug. As I noted when running the Cornell
software with the COMPRO DCAM, I needed to check the box for "invert gray
scale". The same is true with the WP software. However, when I launch the
WP software, then check the "invert gray scale" box, nothing happens. I
have to shut the software down and re-launch it. to make the change take
effect. OK, a simple enough bug. But now the strangeness. The next time I
power up my computer and launch the WP software, The "invert gray scale"
is unchecked! I can't make any sense out of this. The box stays checked
when I terminate and then relaunch WP. Why should it uncheck itself when I
cycle the power on my computer? Anybody got a clue?

2. I have an AP400 audio card. It is one of those Asian knock-offs. It
works great, and was cheap as dirt. A nice feature is that it uses
separate IRQ for play and record. In other words, it is innately full
duplex. Works great with some of the internet telephone softwares, but
that is another story. This audio card works perfectly well, as is, with
the Cornell software. With WP, it works fine receiving what little audio
comes off of the reflectors. But as soon as I hit the transmit button, WP
cu-seeme locks up solid. It requires the old WIN3.1 ctrl-alt-del to shut
down the application. Also, typical of windoze, if I don't then shut down
and reboot WIN3.1, the OS (and I am being generous to call Windoze an OS)
gets flakier and flakier until it, too, locks up. So, is there anyone who
can guess why my audio card works fine with Cornell cu-seeme, but chokes
on transmit with WP? Does anyone know what might be different between the
two packages that could help me diagnose the trouble? Given the vagaries
of windoze, I'm not actually hoping for something as extreme as a remedy,
but I would like to understand what might be going wrong.

If I ever get the WP software working decently, I'll post a mini review
of my experiences. In the meantime, suffice to say that the COMPRO camera
itself works like a gem. The problems I'm having seem to be WP's doing.

I am planning to buy a high speed serial/EPP card for my VESA bus
486/33. I am expecting that this will boost my frame rate from the D-CAM.
I can't exactly prove it, but I'm convinced that my antique,
uni-directional parallel port is my current bottleneck. For 20 bucks for
the new card, it's worth the experiment. Besides, since I don't really
have the cash for a new Pentium, this will be a cheap way to take the edge
off of my urge to splurge on new hardware.

Regards,
Jackie