HELP with firewire video input

son_ne's picture

Hi everyone,

maybe someone here can help me with this issue: I have a firefly MV-firewire400-camera connected to my new macbook (via fw400-fw800-adaptor). In the Photobooth-App i do see the picture correctly, but in QC i can't get it in. I use the Video Input Patch and when i select the inbuilt iSight or a Phillips USB-cam i get the picture in the QC-Flow but when i choose "camera", which appears, when i connect the firewire-camera, no image gets out of the "Video Input"-Patch. Here is, what the QC-window tells me, when i switch from iSight (working) to Camera (not working):

02:34:17.427 ["Video Input" @ "Macro Patch"] > Recording video in Component Y'CbCr 8-bit 4:2:2 ordered Y'0 Cb Y'1 Cr, 160 x 120 from "Built-in iSight"
02:34:43.205 ["Video Input" @ "Macro Patch"] > Terminating video recording
02:34:43.207 ["Video Input" @ "Macro Patch"] > Recording video in Uncompressed 8-bit Grayscale, 640 x 480 from "Camera"

Is there some reason for QC not to handle "Uncompressed Grayscale"?

Does anyone have experience with this?

Thanks in advance, h*ns

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cybero's picture
Re: HELP with firewire video input

Just a stupid question, but does the uncompressed grayscale firewire camera show up in a video editing application ?

Does it record in QTPro or QuickTime X ?

Just wondering how well what sounds like it should be supported is supported.

kimba23's picture
Re: HELP with firewire video input

maybe this is not the problem, but if you have photobooth opened (or skype or ichat, any application that can use that camera) then it will fail to open in qc since it is been used by another application. maybe is not the problem. but i also have a firefly and it works fine.

smokris's picture
Re: HELP with firewire video input

AFAIK, there is only one officially-supported greyscale image format in QC, which is Internal_I8 (8bpc, one channel), produced by the Image With String patch. It's unclear whether the "Uncompressed 8-bit Greyscale" mentioned in the logs above maps to Internal_I8.

It may be possible to develop a custom patch that takes these images and converts them to an image format QC is happier with.. Or to use the PointGrey SDK to develop a custom patch to interface directly with the camera, bypassing the QuickTime layer.

son_ne's picture
Re: HELP with firewire video input

Thanks so far for your ideas. Unfortunately i am not with this camera until next week. Of course I closed all the other programs (maybe skype was still running? but without a video window open) and with the small USB-cam i now checked that QC is beware of the problem, that it is used by another App (when it is used by anotehr app)...

@kimba: is your firefly also running in "uncompressed 8-bit grayscale"? or is ther a way to change the mode? (which would not really make sense, because uncompressed grayscale is what i want)

@smokris: i already thought that in the end i will sit in xcode and browse through 1000 of examples, tutorials, references (in the first point to understand xcode)... just dreamed of the new plug'n'play-world.

gtoledo3's picture
Re: HELP with firewire video input

Normally, I wouldn't recommend using the kineme video patch for anything (no insult, it's just usually pointless and not generally recommended since it doesn't do what it was originally intended to... I think it was originally meant to be able to bring in multiple cams, could be wrong on that(?))...

... but you might want to try it in this case. I think it will likely latch to that camera, if your firefly is the default camera in your system settings. I've seen issues with the Point Grey stuff getting into QC solved by using that patch.

No comment on the uncompressed grayscale aspect. That seems weird. I thought that camera put out a color image type.

smokris's picture
Re: HELP with firewire video input

Oh, right, I forgot about that. There's a slight chance that we wrap the QT video stream differently than the built-in Video Input patch. Worth a try, I think.

The most recent version:

And, yes, in general, don't use AudioVideoPatch, as the Video part ended up being redundant due to QuickTime API bugs, and the Audio part has become AudioTools.

I thought that camera put out a color image type.

PointGrey makes both color and greyscale versions of that camera.

son_ne's picture
Re: HELP with firewire video input

OK. I found out the following sad facts:

The Kineme video patch is not working at all on my machine (because of quicktime X?)

While all the cameras are working in quicktime X.

As far as now, only downgrading back to Quartz Composer v3 made the firefly work in QC.

So obviously something was f'd up with QC4? Is there anyone at Apple who could help with that? Or could I help myself? (I am not afraid of Code... but understanding all the context is by far too much for me at this time.) So for now I will stick to the old QC-Version.

By the way - Kineme is amazing! There is so much usefull stuff and information on this site. Thanks!