JAI’s newest Spark Series 12.4-megapixel camera delivers 64.6 fps over Camera Link interface.

JAI has introduced the SP-12400-PMCL, a new 12.4 megapixel camera in its Spark Series of high resolution area scan cameras. Two models are offered – a monochrome model (SP-12400M-PMCL) and a color model (SP-12400C-PMCL). Both models are built around the Sony PregiusTM IMX253 CMOS imager and feature a high performance Camera Link interface supporting Base, Medium, Full, and 80-bit configurations.


The IMX253 is the faster “cousin” of the IMX304 imager featured in the SP-12401-PGE (GigE Vision) model launched in July. Both imagers feature 3.45-micron pixels and a dark noise rating of less than 6 electrons for excellent image quality even under low light conditions.

The combination of a faster sensor and higher interface bandwidth enables the SP-12400-PMCL models to perform at nearly seven times the speed of the GigE Vision models – up to 64.6 frames per second for full resolution 8-bit images. The SP-12400M-PMCL provides 8-bit, 10-bit, or 12-bit monochrome output, while the SP-12400C-PMCL provides 8-bit, 10-bit, or 12-bit raw Bayer output.

Users can utilize flexible region-of-interest (ROI) capabilities to define the output resolution up to a maximum of 4112 x 3008 pixels. A multi-ROI function allows users to define multiple image subsections which are combined into a smaller output frame to reduce bandwidth and increase frame rates.  

The new SP-12400-PMCL models are housed in a new “second generation” enclosure that is considerably smaller than previous Spark Series cameras, while maintaining the high shock and vibration ratings of the earlier models. Overall size is 44 x 44 x 44 mm. This is more than 50% smaller by volume than previous Spark Series cameras – while preserving the 80 G shock rating and a 10 G vibration rating needed for high durability in industrial environments.

The Camera Link interface features mini-sized connectors and can accept power over the interface from a properly-equipped frame grabber. Alternatively, power can be supplied via a separate 12-pin connector.

Both the monochrome and color models feature a “Reset Continuous Trigger” (RCT) exposure mode that allows the cameras to operate in a free-running state, without outputting frames, while waiting for a trigger pulse. In this way, auto exposure capabilities, such as auto-shutter and auto gain can continuously react to varying light conditions to ensure the correct exposure at the instant the triggered frame is captured. This capability, coupled with its high frame rate, makes the SP-12400-PMCL well suited to traffic, surveillance, or other outdoor applications where ground loops, motion detectors, or other sensors are used to initiate precisely-timed image capture of moving objects.

The SP-12400-PMCL models support the use of C-mount lenses with a 1.1-inch optical format. The compact size and lens format make the cameras suitable for a wide variety of applications ranging from life sciences to robotics.

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