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Standard Hi-Def interface for Sony Camera

Sony Europe, ISS Division : 29 August, 2008  (New Product)
Sony HD cameras can now be used across multiple industries and applications with the development of standard interface
Sony Europe's Image Sensing Solutions Division (SISS) has announced that TAGARNO, a developer and manufacturer of electronic low vision equipment and magnification software for the visually impaired, has developed a standardised interface for the Sony FCB-H10 high-definition camera. TAGARNO was one of the first companies in the world to gain approval to test Sony's HD block camera as part of its own product development. The board, originally developed for use with TAGARNO's own products, is of such a high standard that the unit will now be made available to the marketplace as a product in its own right. Crucially, the TAGARNO converter board will enable the FCB-H10 camera to be easily used in almost any application including industrial inspection systems.

TAGARNO has developed two versions of the board for OEMs; the HD-DVI advanced version, and a simpler HDMI board with limited functionality. The boards' main functions are to convert the signal from an HD camera to an HD screen in accurate reproduction. The DVP (digital video processing) boards enable razor sharp images with an increased resolution detail of up to threefold when compared to current systems. On the HD-DVI board TAGARNO maintains a fully digital signal (LVDS to DVI) and therefore does not loose crucial information when translated from analogue to digital and vice versa as in current conventional systems.

The HD-DVI board, the advanced version, features 2x digital LVDS HD video inputs (720p), an individual DVI input and output, a USB 2.0 interface, DDR RAM interface and an FPGA which includes a 'soft-core' re-programmable microprocessor module. The advanced version was designed to include specialised functions such as the ability to store individual still images. The basic HDMI converter board simply supports 720p and 1080i with VESA timing for DVI/HDMI and an HDMI output.

'TAGARNO's interface, which takes camera technology close to a microscopic level, has manufacturers of industrial equipment for a wide range of industries putting their thinking caps on,' stated Andreino 'Dino' Bonometti, Marketing & Sales Manager Nordic, Sony Semiconductor & Electronic Solutions. 'In the course of a few months, TAGARNO has sold both versions of the converter board to manufacturers all over Europe. They will use it for everything ranging from industrial surveillance, quality control and automatic crane camera systems, camera systems for dental operations, and passport photos. Zooming in on tiny details, they continue to look like razor-sharp photos, no matter how you convert them.'

'We can magnify a single letter on the screen reader so that it fits the whole screen and it still remains so razor-sharp that you can't see the individual pixels on the screen. This is a quantum leap in technonolgy within TAGARNO's own market for electronic sight enhancers and the idea of other industries benefiting from this technology is obvious,' added Eli Tommergaard, General Manager, TAGARNO.

'For example, when manually inspecting plastic or metal components one can zoom optically up to 10 times and achieve a magnification of more than 200:1 - and then send the still image by email. This significantly improves your opportunities for showing a person who might be sitting on the other side of the world that there's actually a small scratch in the surface alloy, or that the metal piece is slightly crooked. There's an incredible number of savings to be made here, in terms of both time and money,' concluded Tommergaard.

In future, TAGARNO plans to work on developing new screen and camera technologies that can also be sold as OEM products.

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