Section 1: Capturing .AVI videos:
- Plug in the camera to a USB2.0 or USB3.0 port and the red light on the back should indicate a USB connection. Click on the camera name (e.g. AA183CPROTEC) to activate video preview on the righthand screen to activate the camera. Video preview should display.
- NOTE: If the preview screen is black, either the exposure and gain are too low to show an image, or there is not enough light entering the system to display an image. If increasing gain and exposure settings still do not display an image, go to the “Frame Rate” box in the lower right-hand menu stack and set the frame rate to zero.
- Note: The Record button is used to capture video, or use F9 Key Shortcut. For Pause / Restart, use the Pause button (usually top right on keyboard):
- When the video preview is running, set Exposure, Gain and choose RGB Mode, 8bit Mode. (Note: AVI does contain enough data per frame to support other settings):
- Set White Balance & Colour Adjustment. White Balance shows a red sampling square with draggable handles on the preview pane, such then when “White Balance” button is pressed, Red, Green and Blue will be automatically set. Fine adjustments can be made by using the slider-bars:
- Black level set to zero is sufficient for most video applications:
- Click “Options” > “Preferences” in top menu and select .AVI video format.
- Select “Record” preferences. Type file prefix, in this example “specimen name” and choose “Name Format” in this case “yymmddHHMMSS”. If “Show the rename dialogue” is ticked, you will be prompted to name the video every time the Record button (or F9) is pressed. “Time Limit” and “Frame Limit” can be ticked and parameters set.
Section 2: Capturing Image Sequences / Timelapse with “Auto Capture”:
Capturing an image sequence uses the same exposure, gain, colour balance and other settings as for video capture, however the file format is a single frame saved in one of several file formats such as .TIFF, and .PNG (recommended for most applications):
- First the file format and save directory must be set up for images in a similar manner to video. Select the “Options” > “Preferences“ > “Auto Capture” menu, and as before choose destination directory, file naming, file format, and image type:
- Tip: For image sequences, you can select automatic numbering file format per image to help with collating and organising files, such that the file names in the sequence would be numbered “specimen-A_0001.png”, “specimen-A_0002.png”, and so-on:
- Select the interval between frames, for example 6 seconds and the number of frames. In this example, 100 images will be saved to the hard drive with a 6 second interval between them:
NOTE: If “Capture every frame” is selected, the camera will attempt to capture and record files at “Video” speeds of more than one frame per second and up to 200 per second with some cameras. This can easily fill up a small hard drive, as the files are uncompressed. It is therefore best to constrain the number of frames by keeping the “Total images” option ticked. (Frames can be converted into a .AVI video using separate free PIPP software and compressed etc.)
- To begin Auto Capture use the “F7” shortcut key. To pause, press the “Pause” Key. Auto Capture can also be accessed in the top menu by pressing this icon: