GigE Vision® is a standard camera interface for machine vision. It was introduced in 2006 and has since been widely adopted by industry. It allows for fast image transfer over long cable lengths. As it is based on the standard ethernet framework protocol, adoption of this interface standard was cost effective as proprietary hardware is not required.
There are four main elements to GigE Vision which should be considered:
- GVCP - Vision control protocol (UDP)
- GDDM - Device discovery mechanism
- GVSP - GigE vision stream protocol
- There is also an XML description file for GeniCam that enables camera control and image stream access.
The benefits of GigE Vision are many, including:
- Very scalable using Ethernet networks
- High bandwidth, up to 125 MB/s
- Reliable data transfer up to 100 metre along ethernet cable
- Based on low cost hardware standards such as CAT6 and CAT5e
Gigabit Ethernet means data can be transferred at 1,000 MBit/Second. The consequence for machine vision is that wide bandwidth means high resolution cameras can be used at a high frame rate, for example, an 8MP colour camera can stream approximately 13 frames per second at maximum resolution.