Author Topic: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix  (Read 66947 times)

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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« on: May 25, 2013, 05:49:26 PM »
 :-$ Don't tell anybody...
I didn't see this in the forums, so here goes:
Lots of the little webcams have only about a 3 meter 'infinity'. Beyond 10ft, focus/ sharpness is up for grabs.

Fix it: Make a negative 2 diopters correction.
Get yourself a -2 diopter (negative 2 ) film or digital camera eyepiece/viewfinder adapter that folks like Nikon, et.al. make available for us nearsighted folks.
Secure the little booger right on your camera, over your camera's lens. Tape will work. You might find 'em around 5 bucks somewhere... or up to 20.
Rename your camera 'Hubble'. Get some coffee. Enjoy.
One of my Logitech c920s (cam2) has this installed as I post this, since I'm still modifying my cam installations. The difference is astounding.

Feb 19 2014:
And we have a HubbleCam collection page hosting at
http://frankfortweather.us/campage/

Apply your fix then Add your Hubble Cam

Mike
« Last Edit: April 16, 2014, 08:54:32 AM by Cutty Sark Sailor »

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Offline Papa_Smoke

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2013, 10:01:11 AM »
I have the same camera and I took Mike's advice. Here is the result::

Before -2 diopter correction:  ](*,)



After -2 diopter "Hubble Fix"   =D>

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Offline miraculon

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2013, 10:09:58 AM »
Wow, that is amazing. It looks like you replaced it with a higher resolution camera!

I am going to check into this. I thought that it was just the resolution on my webcam, but if the fix is this easy it will be great.

Any particularly good place to find these -2 diopter lenses?

UPDATE: I ordered this one: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009FRD7RC/ref=oh_details_o00_s00_i01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Greg H

« Last Edit: June 02, 2013, 10:22:03 AM by miraculon »




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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2013, 10:27:33 AM »
Wow, that is amazing. It looks like you replaced it with a higher resolution camera!

I am going to check into this. I thought that it was just the resolution on my webcam, but if the fix is this easy it will be great.

Any particularly good place to find these -2 diopter lenses?

Greg H


http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00009R8TE/ref=oh_details_o00_s00_i00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
is where I ordered 'em.  Adorama Camera...
No, it's not the webcam resolution... it's the focus length. Most of 'em's 'infinity' is only about 10 feet. The diopter extends it, and also 'widens' somewhat the lens. I think the original C920 has a 74 field of view... with the diopter it appears a few degrees wider. You'll notice a very slight bit of 'wide angle' distortion, but that's better than blur.!!! Not too noticeable unless you have a lot of straight vertical / horizontal shapes in the field.

Well done, PapaSmoke!
Cheers!
Mike

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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2013, 10:28:41 AM »
 :grin: Looks like you found one at same place while I was replying!

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Offline miraculon

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2013, 10:45:22 AM »
Here is the image from my web cam. It is a TrendNET TP-IP501W. I'll have to figure out how to cobble it in when the lens arrives.



I am hoping that this trick can do something for it.

Greg H




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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2013, 11:09:56 AM »
I dunno... that wireless camera's a different breed than the USB Webcams we're discussing. I know the -2 is satisfactory on several versions of Logitechs I've tested it on, some want about a -3. And it's even possible, I suppose, that some weird assemblies might want a +, can't see how, but I'm not an optical physics expert by any means.
Your Trendnet has a Resolution: up to 640 x 480 pixels -
Focal length: 4.57mm
F/No: F1.9
Focus depth: 20cm ~ infinity
View angle: horizontal: 45 degree, vertical: 35 degree

Compare that to the C920 we're using as ref (up to 1920 x 1080 pixels 74 viewfield with a focal length of 3.67 mm... that's a lot of difference)
Be real interesting to see how it comes out!  FYI: Amazon sells the C920 for 73 bucks. If the Fuji you ordered doesn't do it, and you need a bigger correction, for example- you can "Stack" the lenses, I think it works like -2 + -2 = -4... Not sure about that.

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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #7 on: June 02, 2013, 11:50:24 AM »
Here are three quick shots of the c920s with the "Hubble Fix"





 :twisted:
Mike

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Offline Papa_Smoke

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #8 on: June 02, 2013, 05:58:51 PM »
Cutty Sark is correct. Diopters CAN be stacked but be careful.... a -2 plus a +2 = 0.

a +2 plus a +2 = +4
a -2 plus a -3 = -5

and so on, within limits.

I am NOT an optical physics expert either but the sources I have read say this.

Good luck. I hope this works as well for you as it did for us. I have mine strapped on with electrical tape. I do plan to epoxy it on since it looks so DanGed good.
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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #9 on: June 02, 2013, 06:09:19 PM »
I have mine strapped on with electrical tape. I do plan to epoxy it on since it looks so DanGed good.
Hmmm... and if the camera went south, I might damage the diopter removing it.... Think I'll leave mine taped, esp since the little diopters may become hard to get with new digital evfs and viewfinders... Yep.. I'll leave mine 'portable'.

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Offline Papa_Smoke

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2013, 09:36:31 AM »
OMG! Cutty Sark brings up a GREAT point. I just read that they may stop making these diopters since the new digitals can have it "built in".


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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2013, 09:57:27 AM »
Guess ya could trip on over to local Walmart optometry and order a -2 diopter pair of glasses and rip out the lenses. But then, you gotta have an Rx for negatives... positives are off the shelf reading glasses... so now ya gotta forge an eye exam too,...   :twisted:

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Offline Intheswamp

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #12 on: June 03, 2013, 11:33:12 AM »
Being creative with a couple of dabs of epoxy around the camera lens, a couple of machine nuts to embed in the epoxy and a primitive form/pattern around the diopter to pour additional epoxy into and an easily removable mount for the lenses could be fabricated.  When the dabs of epoxy and machine nuts are hardened in place cover the camera lense and epoxied nuts with siran/food wrap and push some matching screws carefully through the foodwrap and screw them into the nuts...use long enough screws so that ample screw length is left sticking out of the nuts.  Lay the camera with the lense facing upward and place your "form" over/around the lense and nut/screws and pour epoxy into the reservoir.  Have your diopter ready to put in place on the prepared epoxy.  Let it cure and you should have a removable lense attachment.

You could also do the same with some rare earth magnets which might even be more simple...metal nuts or washers on one surface and magnets on the other.  I have no idea if this would affect the electronics of the camera or not...probably not.

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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #13 on: June 03, 2013, 12:03:52 PM »
Currently in negotiation with agents representing a coalition of small orb spiders - they will secure my diopters with adhesive webbing if I allow them to hide inside the camera housings, which would also serve as anchors for their webs.  Am optimistic about outcome...

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Offline Papa_Smoke

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2013, 11:46:02 PM »
Currently in negotiation with agents representing a coalition of small orb spiders - they will secure my diopters with adhesive webbing if I allow them to hide inside the camera housings, which would also serve as anchors for their webs.  Am optimistic about outcome...

A similar situation for me BUT the spider failed to contact my agent. Just moved in without a howdy-do or ANYTHING. I gave the spider a splash of WD40, as a "housing warming" gift but the spider did not care for the slick look and left!
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Offline smorris

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #15 on: June 05, 2013, 09:05:19 AM »
Wow, I didn't realize how near-sighted my Logitech 900 was until giving it a corrective lens!

Granted, the images were taken in drastically different light, but you can still tell the improvement in sharpness. Both have degradation at the edges, and as noted, the field of view is now increased. I don't have a good place to view more sky without running cables to teh upstairs windows...

Thanks for the idea, Cutty Sark Sailor, and for the link, Greg

Top: Before, with standard lens
Bottom: After adding -2 diopter lens
« Last Edit: June 05, 2013, 09:12:03 AM by smorris »
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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #16 on: June 05, 2013, 09:36:36 AM »
Steve,  =D> Awesome. How did you quick-negotiate with the spiders to hold the diopter in place for you? :-P
Did you mean a Logitech 9000?  That's a 2M px cam, and seemed to focus pretty good up to about 20-25ft by itself. I have one still mounted in similar location to yours, unused now, (too lazy/busy to dismount and put to other use). It provided good pics, but I changed to 920s for a bit more resolution. I'm wondering if your software has a jpeg quality adjustment? I run mine at 90 (or 10% compression... whatever scale). I know the 9000 provided great pics at 800x600, even without correction. If you're like me, more interested in 'sky' shots than terrain, other than reference, and what's a little blurriness on a cloud anyway????
I've been getting 33' USB active extenders on Amazon for 11 bucks. (I keep spares after a near miss lightening bolt took out two of 'em). That could get you upstairs.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2013, 09:39:53 AM by Cutty Sark Sailor »

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Offline smorris

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #17 on: June 05, 2013, 10:16:28 AM »
Steve,  =D> Awesome. How did you quick-negotiate with the spiders to hold the diopter in place for you? :-P

Two drops of super glue!  :grin:

Yep, it is a Logitech 9000, not a 900. I'm on a Mac, so none of the camera controls are available. The acquisition software I use has limited digital exposure controls, but no control over the focus or quality of the camera; just whatever the factory defaults are.

I'm in an offset split-level on a slab (picture a split level [six stairs up/six stairs down from the ground level portion] shifted up to near ground level [one stair down/11 stairs up from the ground level portion]), so any wiring I do is generally through an exterior wall, across the house, and then drill back into a wall. Consequently, I try to keep that to a minimum. My exterior camera is a wireless IP cam, but not very high quality.

I'm just collecting components for a setup like Greg's Skunk Bay webcam using an Olympus SP-500-UZ 6 mp camera as described here: http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=19128.0 So I will want to mount that in an area with a better view.

Steve
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Offline blizzardof78

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #18 on: June 13, 2013, 08:31:19 PM »
Guess ya could trip on over to local Walmart optometry and order a -2 diopter pair of glasses and rip out the lenses. But then, you gotta have an Rx for negatives... positives are off the shelf reading glasses... so now ya gotta forge an eye exam too,...   :twisted:

Are you saying that if my brother in law can get me a single lense for a pair of glasses that has a -2 reading it'll work? As you can see by the attached photo the picture leaves a lot to be desired right now!

Don in Ohio
« Last Edit: June 13, 2013, 08:34:59 PM by blizzardof78 »

Offline mkutche

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #19 on: June 13, 2013, 10:27:38 PM »
Will this work on my foscam ip camera

:-$ Don't tell anybody...
I didn't see this in the forums, so here goes:
Lots of the little webcams have only about a 3 meter 'infinity'. Beyond 10ft, focus/ sharpness is up for grabs.

Fix it: Make a negative 2 diopters correction.
Get yourself a -2 diopter (negative 2 ) film or digital camera eyepiece/viewfinder adapter that folks like Nikon, et.al. make available for us nearsighted folks.
Secure the little booger right on your camera, over your camera's lens. Tape will work. You might find 'em around 5 bucks somewhere... or up to 20.
Rename your camera 'Hubble'. Get some coffee. Enjoy.
One of my Logitech c920s (cam2) has this installed as I post this, since I'm still modifying my cam installations. The difference is astounding.


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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #20 on: June 14, 2013, 06:51:37 AM »
Guess ya could trip on over to local Walmart optometry and order a -2 diopter pair of glasses and rip out the lenses. But then, you gotta have an Rx for negatives... positives are off the shelf reading glasses... so now ya gotta forge an eye exam too,...   :twisted:
Are you saying that if my brother in law can get me a single lense for a pair of glasses that has a -2 reading it'll work? As you can see by the attached photo the picture leaves a lot to be desired right now!
Don in Ohio
Specifically your brother-in-law??? No, but -2 diopters is -2 diopters, far as I know... I was really trying to be '  :twisted: ' with that comment... but "Why Not" a brother-in-law who grinds lenses?
Will this work on my foscam ip camera
Dunno, probably... Papa Smoke, Steve M, and I know it does on the Logitechs. Maybe need more than -2... remember these things can be stacked. My 'cam4' actually is running a -3, since that's what I had left over.. -2 would have been enough, I figure.
« Last Edit: June 14, 2013, 06:53:17 AM by Cutty Sark Sailor »

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Offline blizzardof78

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #21 on: June 14, 2013, 07:13:33 AM »
Guess ya could trip on over to local Walmart optometry and order a -2 diopter pair of glasses and rip out the lenses. But then, you gotta have an Rx for negatives... positives are off the shelf reading glasses... so now ya gotta forge an eye exam too,...   :twisted:
Are you saying that if my brother in law can get me a single lense for a pair of glasses that has a -2 reading it'll work? As you can see by the attached photo the picture leaves a lot to be desired right now!
Don in Ohio
Specifically your brother-in-law??? No, but -2 diopters is -2 diopters, far as I know... I was really trying to be '  :twisted: ' with that comment... but "Why Not" a brother-in-law who grinds lenses?
Will this work on my foscam ip camera
Dunno, probably... Papa Smoke, Steve M, and I know it does on the Logitechs. Maybe need more than -2... remember these things can be stacked. My 'cam4' actually is running a -3, since that's what I had left over.. -2 would have been enough, I figure.

Actually my Bro-In-Law is an eye doctor and has access to all of those lenses. That's why I was asking. I guess I should have stated that from the start lol.

Don in Ohio

Offline mkutche

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #22 on: June 14, 2013, 07:39:20 AM »
Ok so where can i find a diopter for a foscam ip cam i searched and couldnt find one or maybe im not lookin in the right spot.
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Offline Papa_Smoke

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #23 on: June 14, 2013, 07:58:53 AM »
The diopters we have are NOT made for our cameras. We jury-rigged the diopters to the cams. I suspect that each brand of camera  MIGHT use a different diopter. A -3 or -4 might work.

Amazon.


(This is experimental so results may vary).
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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: Near-sighted webcams - The Hubble Fix
« Reply #24 on: June 14, 2013, 08:01:48 AM »
The diopters we have are NOT made for our cameras. We jury-rigged the diopters to the cams. I suspect that each brand of camera  MIGHT use a different diopter. A -3 or -4 might work.

Amazon.


(This is experimental so results may vary).
Ditto: Stay tuned... I've got a couple of pics to process and post

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