DSE WebCam with Microphone

Bob Edwards picked up a Dick Smith web cam a little while ago. It was interesting because we’ve both been looking for OV511 based web cams for a while after I picked up a nice on on holidays in Perth — I haven’t been able to find a supplier since. This new camera is an interesting one for a couple of reasons:

  • It’s OV519 based
  • It speaks JPEG natively (and therefore doesn’t work with video4linux)
  • It’s cheap (about $60 Australian)
  • The driver only works with Linu 2.4 kernels at the moment

So here I am on a Sunday evening, in my office at ANU fiddling away. I’ve had this camera on my TODO list for a little while, so I have some code already. The basic approach I am taking is to take the 2.4 driver which outputs JPEG files, and write a little user space daemon which decompresses these, and then reinserts the images into the video4linux system so that other applications can still use the camera.

I’m standing on the shoulders of giants here, because there is already a driver, there is sample code for the reinjection (from the dude who wrote Motion), and JPEG decompression still pretty well understood. So far I have a user space application which reads a frame from the camera and sticks it in a file on disc. I just have to solve the reinjection problem now…

The images aren’t too amazing. Here’s a sample:

It’s pretty hard to focus at the moment because it’s getting dark outside. This might not be the best image quality the camera is capable of…

Playing with vloopback, the following sites are of interest:

To be continued…