News | January 27, 2016

That's A Lot of Data

Source: Vision Research, Inc.

In today’s world, time is money and that’s especially true when it comes to high-speed imaging. When investing in a high-speed camera, the more time you’re able to keep your camera online and recording, the better your ROI.  To do so, you have to look beyond just top level specs.

While factors such as speed, resolution and light sensitivity weigh heavily when choosing the right high-speed digital camera, it’s memory capacity and the workflow supporting the system that are critical when it comes to keeping a camera rolling.

We at Vision Research are always pushing the boundaries when it comes to introducing cameras that are capable of shooting faster and at higher resolutions. These capabilities give cameras the ability to deliver slow-motion videos that capture incredible detail that is simply too fast for the human eye to see. Faster frame rates and higher resolutions generate an enormous amount of data to manage. 

Want to push your camera to the limits and shoot as fast as it can at its highest resolution? Be prepared for incredibly short record times as you’re going to deplete your camera’s available memory rather quickly. Depending on the event or the application, a short record time may not work for you. That’s where memory comes into play.

With Vision Research’s family of ultrahigh-speed cameras, users have access to models that offer up to 288GB of onboard memory whereas comparable models available from other manufacturers offer a maximum of just 64GB. In regard to recording time, at a resolution of 1024x512 and speed of 40,000 fps, you can expect approximately two seconds from the competition and over nine from a Vision Research ultrahigh-speed camera. Moreover, with more available memory, users can also segment larger portions of memory for back to back shooting of multiple clips of longer duration. Being able to record longer back to back clips mitigates any downtime that users would typically face by being forced to first offload the files before triggering the camera for the next experiment.

Now what about workflow?

In the simplest of terms, workflow is all about getting data from point A (the camera) to point B (a PC). From an ROI and investment perspective, the faster and more efficiently this can be done, the better, and no one understands this quite like Vision Research.

We’ve invested considerable resources not only to enhancing the onboard memory capacity of our ultrahigh-speed cameras but to developing a comprehensive suite of tools to help our customers maximize the time they spend using them to capture high-speed movies. First, we focused on a solution that would allow users to quickly and safely offload data from our cameras. This is where our CineMag system comes into play.

A CineMag is a swappable non-volatile memory device that can be inserted directly into a compatible Vision Research Phantom camera. Instead of spending hours downloading footage from the camera, it’s safely transferred in seconds from the camera to the CineMag at a blazing speed of 1.4Gpx/s (assumes a 2TB CineMag IV). Users can then insert a new CineMag into the camera and begin recording while the loaded CineMag is docked with a Vision Research CineStation where the files can be downloaded or copied to a PC via 10Gb Ethernet. For even more flexibility, users can record directly to a CineMag that’s inserted into the camera and rotate magazines to and from the CineStation.  For those who would rather offload directly to a PC, our ultrahigh-speed cameras feature a 10Gb Ethernet port for incredibly fast downloads.

Again, when thinking about what your ROI will be, remember - time is money. When investing in your next high-speed digital camera, make sure to dive deep into data sheets and don’t overlook memory and the workflow when comparing systems. It’s all about reducing downtime and getting your camera back up and running and ready to record as soon as possible.


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