Raspberry Pi Global Shutter Camera

A camera for motion photography and machine vision
R1,040.90  Inc VAT
A camera for motion photography and machine vision

Built around Sony’s 1.6-megapixel IMX296 sensor, the Global Shutter Camera is able to capture rapid motion without introducing rolling shutter artefacts. This makes it a great fit for sports photography, and for machine vision applications, where even small amounts of distortion can seriously degrade inference performance.

Rolling shutters, global shutters

Every camera we’ve released to date, from 2014’s Camera Module 1 to our High Quality Camera and beyond, has used a rolling shutter sensor. These sensors have a two-dimensional array of light-sensitive pixels, which generate an analogue value proportional to the amount of light falling on the pixel during the exposure time; and a row of analogue-to-digital converters (ADCs), which convert these analogue values into digital values which are fed back to your Raspberry Pi.

The row of ADCs is connected to each row of the pixel array in turn, so each row is sampled at a slightly different time. Provided there is no motion in the scene this isn’t a problem, but once things start to move — and particularly if something is moving fast — we start to see rolling shutter artefacts. Linear motion results in compression, stretching, or shearing of the moving object. Rotary motion can create some very odd-looking shapes indeed.

Severe rolling shutter artefacts are unsightly, and hard to detect and correct, but even imperceptible artefacts can interfere with the operation of machine vision algorithms. If we want to eliminate them altogether, we need to use a global shutter sensor. This pairs each pixel with an analogue storage element; when the shutter fires, each pixel immediately copies its analogue value into its storage element, from where it can be read and converted at leisure.

The storage element adds complexity and area to each pixel. Global shutter sensors tend to have a lower resolution than rolling shutter sensors of the same size: contrast the 7.9mm, 12-megapixel IMX477 sensor used in the High Quality Camera with the 6.3mm, 1.6-megapixel IMX296.

Enter the Raspberry Pi Global Shutter Camera

Despite the challenges associated with rolling shutter artefacts, our existing cameras are widely used in hobbyist and industrial machine vision applications. And we’ve seen some real ingenuity: to compensate for artefacts when imaging products on a high-speed conveyor belt, one of our industrial customers ended up training their models using pre-sheared input data.



For these applications, a global shutter sensor offers clear advantages. And reduced resolution isn’t a problem, as high-resolution images are generally down-sampled before being fed into machine vision models.

The Raspberry Pi Global Shutter Camera combines the C/CS-mount metalwork of our High Quality Camera with Sony’s IMX296 sensor. It is compatible with the same broad variety of lenses, including the 6mm CS‑mount and 16mm C-mount CGL lenses that we offer through our Approved Reseller partners.

The video below illustrates the benefits of a global shutter in the presence of rapid rotary motion. First we see the output from the High Quality Camera, showing distinctive rolling shutter artefacts, and then we see the artefact-free output from the Global Shutter Camera.



Like all our camera products, you can use the Global Shutter Camera with any Raspberry Pi computer that has a CSI camera connector, and we’ve updated our hardware documentation to include everything you need to know about the new product.

You’ll need to update Raspberry Pi OS to use the new camera: sudo apt update; sudo apt full-upgrade; sudo reboot and you’re good to go.

Specifications

Form factor: 38 × 38 × 19.8mm (29.5mm adapter and dust cap)
Weight: 34g (41g with adapter and dust cap)
Sensor: Sony IMX296LQR-C
Resolution: 1.58 megapixels (colour)
Sensor size: 6.3mm sensor diagonal
Pixel size: 3.45μm × 3.45μm
Output: RAW10
Back focus length of lens: Adjustable (12.5–22.4mm)
Lens standards: CS-Mount, C-Mount (C-CS adapter included)
IR cut filter: Integrated
Ribbon cable length: 150mm
Included accessories: C-CS mount adapter, screwdriver
Tripod mount: 1/4”-20

What's in the box?

1 x Raspberry Pi Global Shutter Camera

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Resources

  • Availability: 27 In Stock
  • Model: GS Camera
  • Brand: Raspberry Pi