TimDC

Member Since: October 13, 2013

Country: United States

  • Just thought I’d provide a quick write-up of this module based on several weeks now of trying to get it to work well. Most of that time was spent fussing with code to handle the serial transmissions (between an Arduino and the camera, and between my Macbook and the Arduino) to transmit JPEGs to my Mac.

    Getting the camera to take pictures is relatively easy, although the sample code provided in the wiki is a bit of a mess. I’ll work on a blog post with my sample code.

    I was very disappointed in the image quality. I was hoping for quality that would rival a low-end 2MP (1600x1200) consumer camera. However, the color quality is so bad you’d almost mistake it for a black-and-white camera, and there is significant spatial distortion at the edges of the frame. For example, here’s a high-res photo taken with the Linksprite and here is essentially the same photo taken with my iPhone. You can see they’re not even close.

    If you do get this, be sure to use the User Manual linked on this page, which is different than the one in the product wiki. The latter is out of date and wrong. The correct manual gives instructions for changing the exposure and IR mode on the camera. I was hoping that changing the IR mode would improve the color quality, but I couldn’t get it to work at all.

    I also couldn’t fetch images from the camera (via the Arduino) at anything above 38400 baud, which made for pretty slow image transfer, but that might not have been the camera’s fault.

  • We recommend running the board with a LiPo battery for better portability.

    But the minimum input voltage is 5V. LiPo’s are 4.1V at the very best. So how does the board work when switched to BATT mode, exactly?

  • If you’re having trouble hooking up this module and you’re using right-angle solder pins, be sure to check your solder joints very carefully for a good connection. It’s very easy for solder to “blob” on top of the pin instead of flowing properly b/t pin and pad. I scratched my head for several days trying to figure out why my module wasn’t drawing any current. I was convinced the module was bad, but then I carefully reflowed the solder on the VCC and GND pins and it started up like a dream.

  • Totally agree! SFE, can you please print the voltage on the PCB? Otherwise, there’s no way to tell the 5v and 3.3v boards apart by looking at them, except for the inspection sticker (assuming you haven’t removed them).

  • I have both the 3.3v and the 5v versions of this LCD. This might be a dumb question, but what’s the best way to tell them apart? As far as I can tell, the only visual difference is the inspection sticker on the back.

  • Eureka! Sort of. Yes, apparently my back yard has a canyon effect. Switching locations and a separate power supply gives much better performance. That would be good to note in the hookup guide.

  • Thanks Toni_K, I’ve tried powering the setup several different ways, directly from the FTDI and separately. Either way, the module+antenna draws about 54mA and the result is the same.

  • I’ve had an awful time trying to get a fix with this antenna. My hookup is with the Copernicus II module using an FTDI BOB, basically the same setup as in the hookup guide. I get valid NMEA sentences all day long but never a fix. I’ve tried with two different laptops (Macbooks both) in my back yard, porch, middle of an open-air park several miles away, for 10+ minutes at a time (with the ceramic side pointing skyward). I even sent the whole setup back to SFE, but customer support says they get a fix in 6-8 minutes and that’s indoors. I’m totally at a loss. Any pearls of wisdom would be great. I’m in the DC/northern VA metro area.

  • Can someone confirm if this would work with the RN-XV WiFly Module?

  • I can confirm it is unusually difficult to solder these sockets onto the XBee BOB. Compared to the 0.1" female headers SFE sells, these sockets are about half the depth, and the pins are thinner also, so there is more room for the solder to flow down into the socket. All you have to do is screw up one of the 20 solder joints to make it impossible to reliably seat the XBee module. Definitely buy several extra sets of these and be prepared for some trial and error.

No public wish lists :(