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Accessories - Everything you might need along with your vision system

Cameras - Cameras used for PC basce

Lighting - Includes LED, Fiber Optic, Xenon Strobes, etc.

Optics - This is a key component of any vision system.

Organizations - Groups dedicated to Vision Systems

Vision Systems - These Range from Smart Cameras to PC Based Vision


Here are links to suppliers of extra accessories that you might need for your specific applications. If you are looking for something unusual for your application, it just might be listed below.

Directed Perception, Inc.
These guys make a line of pan and tilt products for mounting cameras on.

In most middle-to-upper end Machine Vision systems, you must purchase your central element, the camera, from a third party supplier. Yet obtaining information for this critical element from the manufacturers is difficult, and support can be near non-existent. To top it off, just finding the website for certain manufacturers can be a chore. Listed below are links to various camera manufacturers — most are of reasonable quality, and some are your only available option for a specific manufacturer's system. We have also included some nuggets with in-depth information about various products.

Basler has a full line of high resolution area scan cameras as well as a small line of Line Scan cameras.
CCD Direct
CCD Direct is a direct wholeseller who also sells/resells used cameras, framegrabbers, and other equipment.
Dalsa is probably best known for their line scan cameras, but they also do have a line of area scan cameras as well.
JAI is based out of Copenhagen, Denmark. They recently acquired Pulnix and have added their products into the JAI mix. Where I have most seen the JAI camera's is High Resolution Analog applications. They also have high speed Camera Link units as well.
Panasonic has a small line of industrial black and white cameras and also sells some board level cameras.
Sony, the Japanese electronics giant, is probably the largest industrial camera manufacturer in the world. Their XC-75 product was the industry standard until just a few years ago when Sony obsoleted the product.

Lighting for Machine Vision systems breaks down into three main categories: LED, Fiber Optic, and Flourescent. Our preference is LED lighting. There are many reasons for this, but the primarily they are very low maintenance as the "bulbs" don't really burn out, they have a wide array of arrangements and colors, and they are generally pretty easy to integrate.

LED Lighting

There are a number of lighting companies that are using LED's for applications because of the (previously mentioned)advantages that LED's have over other types of light bulbs. As the new super-bright LED's come down in price, look for this technology to start invading your house as well, with LED light bulbs for your lamps, the tail lights in your car, street lights, flashlights, etc...

Advanced Illumination
Advanced Illumination is a US based manufacturer that features Evenlight® which provides a very even distribution of light. They primarily work through a network of Distributors.
CCS America
CCS America is a Japanese manufacturer with a number of employees in the US. They are one of the largest LED light manufacturers in the world. They have a network of distributors, but are very happy to sell direct as well.
Moritex is a European Supplier of LED based Lighting and C Mount Lenses.
Metaphase Technologies
Metaphase Technologies is a US Based Manufacture of LED Lighting. Their main advantage is they are significantly less expensive than other LED manufacturers. They primarily sell direct.
RVSI NER is now Siemens. They have a number of LED light sources. They sell through a network of distributors.

Machine Vision Fiber Optic Lighting Providers

Illumination Technology
Illumination Technology is a provider of Fiber Optic Lights and Light Sources. The two especially unique properties of their systems are that they have integrated feedback to keep their light output constant and they have programmable sources, allowing an external device to adjust the light output as needed.
RVSI NER also is a fiber optic lighting supplier.
Manufacturer of fiber optic light sources and lights including the widely used Fostec Line.

There are an enormous range of optics available for cameras. Optics encompass everything from simple mirrors and prisms to telecentric lenses and trinocular microscopes. Obviously, with the range of products available, there is much to feature here; below are just a few.

Edmund Optics
A division of Edmund Scientific, this site has a smattering of just about every optical product out there including cameras, microscopes, lights, and even vision systems. They have an excellent, knowledgable staff and can be of great assistance with most optics suggestions.
Melles Griot
Melles Griot is more of a optical laboratory supplier, but has a pretty broad array of vision products. They have a good staff that can help users to select optics and lighting for their applications.
Keystone Automation, Inc.
Keystone is really more of a local supply company, but I use them quite a bit — especially when I am looking for hard-to-find items like lenses for Line Scan Cameras or special lighting.
Midwest Optical Systems, Inc.
Midwest Optical Systems is a manufacturer of various bandpass filters. These filters are especially useful for blocking out unwanted light. They also are great for highlighting various material differences and are relatively inexpensive.
Moritex is a European lens manufacturer as well as a lighting manufacturer.

There are a number of organizations that either focus strictly machine vision or have a division dedicated to Machine Vision.

Advanced Imaging
Advanced Imaging Magazine focuses on high end imaging applications and the design of imaging systems. A lot of their focus is on embedded products such as satellite imaging, medical x-ray imaging, bio-id applications, etc. They also have the MVP (Machine Vision Professional) program. This program is designed to test professionals specializing in Machine Vision, but there are some nuggets that can be gleaned even by people new to the technology.
Automated Imaging Association
Automated Imaging Association focuses almost exclusively on the Machine Vision Industry, with many articles about the industry movers and shakers, changes in the industry, and new products and technologies.
Optical Society of America
Photonics Magazine focuses on high end optics applications and articles, which makes for fascinating reading, but is geared more towards fiber optics, lasers, image processing applications, etc. Occasionally, they will have an article about Machine Vision, but it is the exception rather than the rule.
Vision Systems Design
Vision Systems Design is a magazine really geared for Machine Vision users and integrators. They also have a comprehensive buyers guide, industry news, and excellent articles about successful machine vision installations.

Vision ICS is a Cognex Certified System Integrator (CSI) for InSight™, VisionPro™, ProofRead™, and DVT products. Other companies we have experience with are listed below. Unfortunately, with hundreds of Vision companies in existence globally, not many integrators can claim in-depth knowledge of more than a few of them; however, vision systems have enough in common that we feel comfortable working with systems that we have little or even no experience with. We recommend these companies listed below to handle your vision needs, they are proven to work well for us and our customers.

Cognex Corporation
We have the most experience with Cognex. They are the largest dedicated Machine Vision provider in the world. They feature a broad range of products, from their Smart Cameras to High End PC & VME based systems. We have direct experience with Cognex InSight, VisionPro, ProofRead, CheckPoint, acuFinder, acuReader, OMI, as well as many of their Application Specific Products (ASP's).
DVT is now part of Cognex. They have a range of products that complement much of the Cognex InSight family of low end vision sensors. We have experience with both their Framework (the older product) and Intellect packages.
Keyence makes a family of vision sensors that are primarily targeting the lower end of the spectrum of machine vision applications. They typically work best in very high contrast applications. They also make a color system that is a good gross color detector.
You may be familiar with the video adapters from Matrox, but they also have a smaller division dedicated to Machine Vision systems. As one of the top PC hardware suppliers in the world, they have outstanding hardware and an excellent understanding of video/imaging technology. Their product has a pretty complete tool set, but tends to be more oriented/directed toward the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) market and in many cases are a favorite of various Robotic Vision Companies.
PPT is one of the long term players in the Machine Vision market. Their strong suit in the past was blazing speed, but with advances in the PC Processor market this advantage has slipped some. They are now focusing on a more user-friendly programming environment with their Impact family of Machine Vision System. They have successfully filled the niche between the low end Smart Sensor market and the high end PC market.

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