Digital microscopy
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Internal PCI card
Microscopes & computers
Images may be captured on computer - both PC and laptop providing the necessary signal decoder is present. CCTV cameras cannot be connected directly to a computer monitor, the signal has to go through the motherboard of the computer. For PC’s a PCI card that can change the CCTV analogue signal to digital is required. Lap tops are too small to accommodate a PCI card and an external decoder is required unless the CCTV camera has a firewire connection which will be able to download images directly through a four pin adapter or PMCI card. At present these firewire CCTV cameras are very expensive. Images may be captured as video clips or as “grabbed” still frames by the software associated with the signal decoder, and manipulated with any photographic software - Photoshop, Micrografix etc.

PC’s are not usually supplied with image PCI cards, these can be inserted easily into the desk top or tower unit providing a BNC connector for the CCTV signal. Relatively recently, microscopy specific CCTV products have become available. These include the Minicam PC and the Video Compound and Stereomicroscopes. This equipment has the necessary hardware and a CCTV camera “built in”, together with the necessary software for images to be downloaded through a USB port directly to lap top or PC, without the need for a PCI card or additional external decoder. However it is important to recognise that this type of computer specific CCTV equipment will not be able to produce an image through a TV or stand alone monitor.

Computer Tech Spec:

Almost all computers are suitable for this type of imaging which is not exacting in its requirements. Listed here is the absolute minimum specification.

IBM PC compatible with Intel CPU Pentium MMX200 or higher, 32M RAM or more, Windows 98 or above, 2MB VRAM on the VGA card. Vacant PCI slot available on the PC motherboard (or USB port for Hauppage external unit).

Network computer systems are a problem with most PCI cards and specialist computer advice is recommended.

PCI Cards and External Decoders.

There are a number of medium priced PCI cards suitable for microscopy. Brunel Microscopes recommends the Meiji internal card which supports high resolution images, is easy to install and comes complete with the necessary software. For less exacting resolution requirements, for lap tops or for those not wishing to insert internal cards into their computers, we recommend the Hauppage external capture card system which connects to a PC or Laptop via the USB port and directly to the CCTV camera. No internal PCI card is needed, and the CD ROM software and all connectors are included at a very reasonable price.
We also provide excellent measuring software for distance, area and geometric measurement of images with both PC and lap top.

Meiji PCI card - Price £295
Hauppage external capture card - Price £67
BRUNEL MICROSCOPES LTD
Specialists in their Field
All prices exclude VAT @ 17.5% which is
added to orders from within the EEC
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Internal CCTV camera microscopes
Internal PCI card
PCI card
External Hauppage unit
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Videoscope
Meiji PCI
Hauppage.
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