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Equipment Discussions >> Video and Electronically Assisted Astronomy

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dragonslayer1
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 02/25/12

Loc: SLC, UT
frame grabber for pulling pics
      #5735822 - 03/16/13 09:55 AM

I have a VSS+ with remote controler and have been viewing on a portable DVD player. I just recieved a diamond frame grabber and installed to my HP laptop. The question is do I need to download anything else or will it start showing images for grabbing on my puter? It even has a S VIDEO connection.. I know Miloseck is a program that is for Millicam, but will this be enough to get me started as is not specifically for Millicam, Also I don't need computer camera controller as have the remote that came with it. Thank you
Kasey


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mclewis1
Thread Killer
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Reged: 02/25/06

Loc: New Brunswick, Canada
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: dragonslayer1]
      #5735939 - 03/16/13 10:45 AM

Kasey,

I would initially just plug the frame grabber in and see what Windows will do with it. Windows may go looking for a newer device driver (there are generic frame grabber device drivers already in place). You may also want to do that yourself by specifically looking for drivers for the Diamond unit on their website. I wouldn't at first load anything from the CD that might come with the hardware. I'd have a look at the CD and see if there is a separate device driver for the unit.

If the generic driver Windows tries doesn't work, or you can't download anything then point Windows at the CD when it tries to find a new driver.

As a last resort, if you and Windows can't get a driver to work then let the CD load software automatically. You'll probably also get a video edit/display application and likely a few other apps loaded. In general I've found these apps are of pour quality and unnecessary for use with a Mallincam but sometimes you might be surprised and find a little gem. Do also keep a close eye out for other things like new search tools or browser dashboards and the like that the installation software sometimes wants to load, those you definitely want to stay away from.

All of these steps mentioned above to load the drivers manually is to keep you from having the bundled apps on the CD load up and take up space. In some cases I've seen these apps get in the way of other video display apps that I wanted to use for my Mallincam.

Beyond that no, there should be nothing else you need to do. The Miloslick s/w has a video display capability that looks for a webcam/WDM device ... which is what the Diamond device driver will create. If the driver and hardware are working correctly (even with nothing connected to the frame grabber) the Miloslick sw will probably show the Diamond unit identified under video sources - if you can't find the Diamond frame grabber identified as a video source then the device driver is probably not working correctly. Another indicator that things are working well is if you have the sound on your PC turned on when you plug in the frame grabber to a USB port you should get the chime from Windows that a new USB device has been plugged in and is working ok.

You may also have to specifically select composite or S-Video inputs within the Miloslick s/w (you do have to do this on many other applications). If you have a simple composite video cable I would try that first as most software defaults to use the composite input.

I would simply set the Mallincam to put out the video test image (the vertical color bars) and check out your PC side of things. Don't go trying all kinds of Mallincam settings, just leave the bars up and ensure that the PC side is all working as it should.


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Stew57
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 05/03/09

Loc: Silsbee Texas
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: dragonslayer1]
      #5735949 - 03/16/13 10:50 AM

You will need some type of software such as AMcap, SharpCap, wxAstro Capture, or the mallincam control program. I am unsure of the software that came with your hardware but these will work, after installing your drivers for the capture dongle.

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dragonslayer1
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 02/25/12

Loc: SLC, UT
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: Stew57]
      #5736023 - 03/16/13 11:18 AM

Yipes I already installed thru DVD that came with it and as it was installing had reservations,,, but its done now. This has a frame grabber program with it just need to try it now. I attatched a post where I got info from for it, there are soooo many types out there. If this has the grabber and playback etc with it I may not need AM CAP etc. etc??

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001FAE8MA/ref=oh_details_o00_s00_i00?ie=UTF...

This one is cheap and solid. It works with win XP through 8. It uses few resources and is fast on even a cheap netbook. I know tech pretty well being an IT professional.


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Stew57
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Reged: 05/03/09

Loc: Silsbee Texas
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: dragonslayer1]
      #5736188 - 03/16/13 12:27 PM

The software that came with your device won't hurt anything. It will take up space at worst and be usable at best. To be honest the programs I mentioned are much better for astro work. they won't cost you anything. There are the paid programs like DeepSky Imaging and the Miloslick software. I usually either use the mallincam control software or SharpCap. There are numerous other programs both paid and shareware out there. One nice feature of the more specialized software is you can set a number of frames for the program to grab and the time between grabs. You go in the house and pour a cup of coffee while the program grabs an image at every integration refresh for you until you say stop.

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mclewis1
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Reged: 02/25/06

Loc: New Brunswick, Canada
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: dragonslayer1]
      #5736209 - 03/16/13 12:40 PM

AMCap, Sharcap, Craterlet, WxAstroCapture and the like are free video display apps. AMCap is sort of the default product but it has some usability issues (menus etc.), I like SharpCap better.

These standalone video display apps (and anything that comes bundled with the hardware) are used if you choose a Mallincam control program that doesn't have video support (some folks like to have separate apps, some prefer everything in one). If you choose an all in one control program (like MiloSlick) then you won't need any of these video apps (but I think it's useful to have one of them around for troubleshooting).


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dragonslayer1
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 02/25/12

Loc: SLC, UT
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: mclewis1]
      #5736253 - 03/16/13 01:06 PM

Ok think I got it,,, I will try this and see if I can at least get it to capture, the other programs are for getting better picture results??? I have used registax and DSS before but with so so results... If I do use any other program (probably Miloslic) after testing this one, they should work with this grabber from what I gather?? Am thinking Miloslic because that one is specifically for the Mallincam?? You guys rock..
Kasey


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Stew57
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Reged: 05/03/09

Loc: Silsbee Texas
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: dragonslayer1]
      #5736268 - 03/16/13 01:15 PM

Good choices here
http://mallincam.tripod.com/id38.html

I am not a fan of the miloslick software. It is not bad but it doesn't fit the way I think. I like Stephan's software better.

SharpCap
http://www.sharpcap.co.uk/

wxAstroCapture
http://arnholm.org/astro/software/wxAstroCapture/


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dragonslayer1
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 02/25/12

Loc: SLC, UT
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: Stew57]
      #5736324 - 03/16/13 01:39 PM

awesome, thank you so much... From what I gather when I capture the images (with included software) it will create a file in photos to keep them (as most do)? Can Sharpcap work with pictures downloaded by other programs for finish work till I get it installed?? Also when using a frame grabber program can one still view live as they would on just a monitor?? Is supposed to rain here or just real crummy conditions tonight,,, UGGGHHHH can't wait to try it

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Stew57
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Reged: 05/03/09

Loc: Silsbee Texas
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: dragonslayer1]
      #5736482 - 03/16/13 03:04 PM

You will get a "live" view from the monitor. You can also use the mallincam's other video stream to a second monitor. I often hook the svhs to the frame grabber and the composite to a small portable crt.

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dragonslayer1
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 02/25/12

Loc: SLC, UT
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: Stew57]
      #5736654 - 03/16/13 04:59 PM

thank you so much for the help,, as soon as I get off work headed to radio shack for a section of s video wire

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mclewis1
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Reged: 02/25/06

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Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: dragonslayer1]
      #5736936 - 03/16/13 07:08 PM

Kasey,

Just about all the apps Mark and I have mentioned display the live video feed from the frame grabber and have an option to save the stream as a video file. A few also have the capability of saving individual frames (in SharpCap it's called a snapshot). When they save video streams or single images they all maintain the "live" view of the stream coming from the frame grabber.

Once you've saved the video file or the single images you can then run them through a stacking app like Registax to create better quality images.


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dragonslayer1
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 02/25/12

Loc: SLC, UT
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: mclewis1]
      #5737315 - 03/16/13 09:14 PM

Am really stoked, just got thru testing it using supplied software and saved a couple frames or shots. The composite video worked good, but could never get S-Video to work, It was just distortions and scrambled signals.. I selected S-video and tried about every combination there was but just would not materialize a picture; tried the NTSC PAL SCEAM, then DVD SVCD AVI etc.?? Is there a selection/combination that is supposed to match with s video?? I can say the composite worked pretty well and picture seemed good but was of overcast mountains and not sky stuff.. Thanks again Kasey

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ccs_hello
Postmaster
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Reged: 07/03/04

Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: dragonslayer1]
      #5737338 - 03/16/13 09:18 PM

Kasey,

Just a basic question...
When you tested the S-video input, did you remove the composite video input on the dongle.
Do do that. Never two types connected simultaneously!

Clear Skies!

ccs_hello


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dragonslayer1
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 02/25/12

Loc: SLC, UT
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: ccs_hello]
      #5737495 - 03/16/13 10:28 PM

whats the dongle? I see now from pics I took of display screens with software that there seemed to be only one screen that had option of composite or s-video unless I missed something. The instructions never said anything about settings really or what all the abbreviations stood for. Now as to those not sure which are specifically for s-video, one had NTSC M, NTSC M J, NYSC 443, and then 3 PAL selections and 2 SECAM selections.. then the other option one was selecting DVD, AVI, SVCD, VCD, WMV, WMA, MPG4, MP3... Am a little light in the tech dept):
Kasey


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ccs_hello
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Reged: 07/03/04

Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: dragonslayer1]
      #5737676 - 03/16/13 11:34 PM

Sorry. Dongle is that little gizmo (the USB Video Capture device).

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dragonslayer1
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 02/25/12

Loc: SLC, UT
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: ccs_hello]
      #5738483 - 03/17/13 12:11 PM

Oh yes, i had s video into the puter with frame grabber and composite video into a little portable DVD player I use,,,,, as a matter of fact it was one of those little Sony ones you told about from Amazon a few months ago ,, and it really works great CSS,,,,,
Kasey


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ccs_hello
Postmaster
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Reged: 07/03/04

Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: dragonslayer1]
      #5739173 - 03/17/13 05:21 PM

Kasey,

Please try this
- only use the S-video output from your cam to USB Video capture dongle, disconnect composite video cable from the videocam
- On the video capture dongel side, only use S-video input, disconnect other input feeds
- Use AmCap (free software) to perform the preview. Set option > input > video input Svideo
(usually video will auto-detect signal type to be NTSC-M / 3.58)

Clear Skies!

ccs_hello


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dragonslayer1
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 02/25/12

Loc: SLC, UT
Re: frame grabber for pulling pics new [Re: ccs_hello]
      #5739317 - 03/17/13 06:18 PM

Hey CSS, I had already downloaded sharpcap and tried the new cable,,, it turns out the new cable from radio shack was bad. Tried the one from Walmart and worked great, thank you so much for your help tho.... Still have no clue what all the settings stand for with software LOL.. Thanks again,
Kasey


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