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All CX and LX Camera Setup and installation instructions

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System cameras

CX1 - Vcam

CX2 - Vcam + Hcam

CX3 - Vcam + Hcam + Ccam

CX4 - Vcam + Hcam + dual Ccam

CX6 - Vcam + Hcam + dual Ccam + dual Bcam

F1 / PX4 - Vcam + Hcam + PX1 sensor mat

PX5 - Vcam + Hcam + PX2 sensor mat

Note: All systems come with SX Line Scan cameras

Important ! Note that camera systems require that two areas within the enclosure be dark and non-reflective

and that there should not be too much ambient light getting into the enclosure. ie daylight windows near the enclosure and / or other electric lights

Also note that PC's may have to have additional powered USB hubs and dedicated USB channel card(s) added if using more than 2 or 3 cameras.

Powered USB hubs are around $9.00 each and dedicated 4 USB channel cards cost around $85.

Most good PC's are okay with 2 or 3 cameras but anymore cameras will most probably require this upgrade

Warning! Multiple camera systems of 4 or more cameras require that the host PC be capable of running 4 or more cameras.

If not using our custom made and dedicated PCs, GSA Advanced Golf Simulators LLC cannot guarantee that multiple cameras consisting of 4 or more cameras will function correctly

Note that F1, PX3, PX4 & PX5 systems use PX1/2 club tracking mats

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Click the images above to see how these mats are installed

F1 / PX4 = Vcam + Hcam + PX1 sensor mat

PX5 - Vcam + Hcam + PX2 sensor mat

GSA Golf software

Installation Instructions

Free remote access support

How to make screens shots

Note that we often require customers to make screen shots of their camera windows in the Control Panel during the support period

Click the above video to see how to make screens shots

Typical screen shots are as in the below images

The side mounted Vcam detects vertical launch angle and speed of the ball

The ceiling mounted Hcam camera detects ball path for normal shots

and ball path plus speed when putting

 

Principle of operation

The cameras - which are normally in an idle wait state - are triggered by any bright object passing through the line scan area.

Image processing will then detect if the object was a flying or rolling golf ball in the captured frames

and determine the ball speed, path and launch angle. This data is then passed to the game software

which in turn will calculate the ball's flight trajectory and launch the ball in the system.

The above image from the GSA Golf Control Panel is a true live shot from the floor mounted vertical launch angle camera of a ball hit with a 7 iron.

The camera field of view is actually far greater than what is actually required

and captures the player (on the right), the projection screen (on the left) and the floor.

The blue border lines dictate the valid field of view

and the red line dictates the maximum ball height a ball will have to be considered as a rolling ball or sculled shot.

Note that the length of the ball trace is directly proportional to the ball's speed

and providing the camera's exposure time (10 milli seconds here) and the pixel to cm scale (0.2 here) is constant - which it always is - this correlation is constant and consistent.

i.e. no matter what the launch angle is, the length of the ball trace will always be the same for a given ball speed and will always be directly proportional to the ball's speed .

Note the strong contrast between the background and the ball trace.

This is achieved by setting the camera gain high which amplifies the contrast.

The room is actually much lighter so you are not playing in the dark but the camera sees it as very dark due to the fast shutter speed.

The ball is illuminated by the overhead and side mounted halogen and IR LED lamps.

The above video shows what the 3 cameras do in the CX3 system

The above video of the control panel is in HD

 

CX1/CX2/CX3/PX5 camera setup video

GSA Control Panel main window buttons explained

1. Club fitter mode- used to show club and ball data only without any game software running

2. Camera - opens the Camera control window (if cameras are being used)

3. Show Sensors - shows the status of the optical sensors (only of interest if an optical system is being used, i.e. sensor mat or ball track)

4. Setup - opens the setup window. Use this to configure the system with whatever optical sensor or cameras are being used.

5. Exit - closes the GSA Control Panel

6. GSA / TGC / ProX / E6 radio buttons - used to select the type of game software

7. Show Club Angles - shows the after shot swing analysis window

8. Full Analysis on/off - when set on, a larger graphic swing analysis window will be shown after every shot

9. Carry adjust mode - when set on, carry distances can be adjusted for every club. (Note this function is now superseded by carry adjust features in the game application.

10. System Status - The status squares - which are normally red - turn green for a few seconds after a swing. They show that the system has captured frames and club track and that the data is valid.

If any of these status squares are still red after a swing then this indicates an error

Courses can be played with the Control Panel via either a mouse or manual launch parameter setup for evaluation.

View camera images of your shots in the GSA Golf Control Panel camera windows

The side mounted Vcam detects vertical launch angle and speed of the ball

The ceiling mounted Hcam camera detects ball path for normal shots

and ball path plus speed when putting

 

This is the basic floor layout for the 5 cameras.

Click above image to see our show room layout and suggested mat flooring layouts

 

Please note: Camera systems require setting up and are not plug and play.

Please be patient and read the instructions carefully

Note that Setup times can vary between 30 minutes to as much as 3 hours - depending on your technical abilities and knowledge of the Control Panel's parameters - when doing yourself without our remote access support

With our free remote access support, setup is usually less than 10 minutes

Installation steps

The following steps will be required to install GSA Golf camera systems

1. Install the software on the PC with the supplied DVD

2. Physically mount the cameras and IR/Halogen lamps

3. Connect the USB and RCA cables

4. Assign the cameras to their function

5. Adjust the valid field of view of the cameras in the Control Panel

6. Adjust the line scan camera's sensitivity to trigger when a ball rolls under it


PC requirements.

GSA Golf simulation game software is high-end graphics software that requires a good gaming PC in order to run up to speed and reliably.

It is recommended that your PC feature the following:

1. A good graphics card with at least 1 GB of video memory (examples include: ATI radeon 6950 or NVIDIA GTX 580 or higher)

2. Fast CPU ( preferably 3.8 Ghz or more)

3. 6 to 8 GB of CPU RAM

4. If using more 2 or more cameras, at least one free PCIe slot should be available to add a USB bus expansion card if necessary.

Note: even though your PC may feature multiple USB ports, these ports may be running or shared on the same USB data bus so you'll still need to add the additional PCI multi channel USB card.

Failure to do this may result in camera images being corrupted or cameras not being detected or cameras not responding to trigger signals from either the SX line scan camera or the trigger mat.

It is possible that the system will run on a PC with lower specs but we cannot guarantee this.

Note: Laptops - due to the above rather high spec requirements - are generally not suitable.

Also note that PC's may have to have additional powered USB hubs and dedicated USB channel card(s) added if using more than 2 or 3 cameras.

Powered USB hubs are around $16,0 each and dedicated USB channel cards cost around $85.

Most good PC's are okay with 2 or 3 cameras but anymore cameras will most probably require this upgrade


Connecting the cameras to the PC and basic tests.

Cables and connectors:

CX2 - Vcam + Hcam

CX3 - Vcam + Hcam + Ccam

CX4 - Vcam + Hcam + dual Ccam

PX5 - Vcam + Hcam + PX2 club tracking mat

 

The systems are supplied with a number of cables.

For the PX5 system these are:

2 USB camera cables with mini A to B connectors

5 10ft long USB extension cables.

1 15ft RCA camera trigger extension cable

1 15ft RCA trigger signal cable connected to the trigger array with dual outputs

1 2ft USB power cable connected to Line Scan camera

1 4ft USB cable connected to the sensor mat

Connect the cables as follows:

1. Connect a mini A to B USB cable to each camera

2. Connect one USB extension cable to the floor mounted Vcam camera USB cable to give a 14ft length

3. Connect two USB extension cables to the overhead Hcam camera USB cable to give a 24ft length

4. Connect line scan camera USB cable to PC or USB power supply

5. Connect one USB extension cable to the sensor mat USB cable

6. Connect one of the trigger RCA signal output cables of the trigger array to the Vcam camera RCA connector (not required if using a Line Scan camera)

7. Connect the 15ft RCA extension cable to the other trigger signal cable of the trigger array and the other end to the Hcam camera RCA connector

Now connect all USB cable ends to the host PC.

When connecting the camera and sensor mat USB cables to the PC you might want to wait until the PC has installed the drivers and you get the "successfully installed" message from Windows

USB ports

Note: When using multiple cameras, each camera should ideally be connected to a separate dedicated USB channel and be powered by separate powered USB hubs

This simply means either adding a new single USB bus PCIe card for each camera - these are quite inexpensive (around $15.00) - or adding a multi USB bus channel PCIe card (price is usually around $80 for a quad dedicated channel USB card)

Quad channel USB cards can run up to 16 cameras at full frame rate without any image tearing or power loss drop outs on a single PC.

Note that most ports on PC mother boards - and on basic low cost USB PCI adapters - use only a single channel and the ports (usually 4) are all shared on this single channel.

Connecting multiple USB cameras on to a single USB channel can cause image tearing and power loss drop outs so if you are experiencing such issues then

either additional multiple single channel cards should be added to the PC (i.e. one for each camera) or a quad channel USB card should be added..

The advantage of a quad channel card is that it only requires one PCIe slot on the PC mother board and most PC's only have one or two free PCI slots.

Your PC will require a free PCI-e X4 or greater slot in order to install this card

Click above to purchase the quad dedicated channel USB card on Amazon (USA)

Click above to purchase the X1 to X4 adapter card on Amazon (USA)

If using your own PC you may find that there is not an PCIe X4 slot available for the quad USB card on your PC's mother board.

Usually there is at least one free X1 slot though - in which case you can use an X1 to X4 adapter

Note: If it's just one extra camera that is not working then a lower priced single channel card will probably suffice, otherwise you'd require a multi dedicated channel USB card.


How to determine what USB ports are sharing a USB bus or hub on your PC

This is quite easy to do using the Windows Device Manager.

Simply connect all the cameras to the PC with just the USB cables and double click on the camera in the Point Grey Research Devices.

Check that the Hub_# number is different for each camera. If they are the same then the cameras are running on a shared USB bus or hub so you should remove all other cameras from this port.

Another method is to use the USBView app. (this can be downloaded from the Internet free of charge - just Google "USBView download")

In the above example, two cameras are showing up on a single hub. One of these cameras should be connected to another USB port on the PC (back or front) to see if it appears on different hub.

If not, then you should add a new PCIe USB card to the PC for this camera.


 

 

USB camera cables

 

When running the USB cables from the camera to the PC ensure that the USB cable is not close to or touching any other cables such power cables and RCA cables and not touching metalic surfaces.

Camera USB cable lengths.

The camera manufacturer strongly recommends that the USB cable be no longer than 3m or 12ft and that they can't guarantee stability when extending - even with active USB cables - beyond this length.

We've noticed that some PC's and cables work better than others so you may find that all is OK with cable lengths up to 16 ft but if not then you'll have to place the PC closer to the cameras in order to keep the cable length to 16ft or add a powered USB hub.

The overhead Hcam presents the biggest problem here as you'll need around 6 ft to get from the camera to the wall of the enclosure and another 9ft or so to get to the floor where the PC is.

Extending USB cable lengths with powered Hubs

You may find that cameras function perfectly well on your PC when the cable length is below 12ft but when more than that, then the cameras are either not detected, are not responding to trigger signals or there are stability problems and /or "image tearing" is occurring

(see below to read more about "image tearing")

USB camera cable length problems are overcome by using a separate powered USB hub such as the above unit that costs just $26.00.

Connect the hub to a USB port on the PC using the supplied 5ft miniB USB cable that comes with the hub. You can also extend this cable with another 6ft with a USB extension cable.

Also connect the hub power supply to the 5v input on the hub.

Then connect the camera to one of the ports on the hub using 8 to 12 ft USB cables. This should give you a total USB length of up to 20ft.

Most probably you'll only need a USB hub with the Hcam camera as this is usually the furthest away from the PC.

Note that you can only use one USB hub per camera so if you require USB cable lengths greater than 12 or 16 ft on other cameras then you'll need extra hubs.

Connect powered USB hubs between the PC and the camera so that the hub is centered between the full cable length

Note: Do not connect more than one camera to each US hub!

Other than SX line scan cameras, each camera will require it's own individual USB powered hub

Camera power consumption

Note that each camera will require around 2 watts of power

That's around 500 mA at 5 volts and that's about the limit a USB port can supply on single hub so if encountering stability issues, non-responsive triggers, image corruption or image tearing then add powered USB hubs to each camera

Also note that PC mother boards designate power to each port on the internal hub so that 4 USB ports may only get 125mA each which is insufficient power for the camera.

Note that this designation process - also known as enumeration - can vary from one PC mother board to another so while multiple cameras connected to one PC may work well, they may not work on another PC.

Most standard PCs these days can easily cope with 2 cameras and usually 3 cameras too but anymore than this will require adding powered USB hubs to each camera in addition to a multi dedicated channel USB adapter to the PC.


RCA SX camera trigger cables

The V and H cam cameras are triggered from the SX line scan camera.

On the back of the SX camera (or on the side if using a multiple-channel SX camera) - you will see two RCA connectors.

Using the supplied RCA cables, connect the short one from the SX cam to the Hcam RCA connector and the long RCA cable from the SX cam to the RCA connector on the back of the Vcam

Click any of the above image to read more about the SX line scan camera


Installing the Software and Camera Drivers

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What's on the disc

There are a number of installation programs on the supplied disc that should automatically start after inserting the disc into the drive.

If for some reason the auto start does not run then you can manually start the programs by double clicking on them directly from the disc.

The following install programs should be started:

1. GSAGolfInterfaceSetup.exe This is the Control Panel

2. GSAGolfDemoSetup.exe The RedChain 18 hole course software

3. FlyCapture_2.x.x.x_x86.exe The camera drivers and SDK. Click on anyone of the these

4. vcredist_x86.exe The MicroSoft Visual C redistributable files

5. E6_Demo.exe The older version of the E6 software 18 hole course

6. E6_Demo_1.6..exe The latest version of the E6 software 18 hole course

Note! If you encounter a windows error message stating that it could not find d3dx9_30.dll when first running the GSAGolf game software (RedChain)

then copy the d3dx9_30.dll on the disc to the windows\System32 folder.

Auto method of installing the camera drivers

The above SDK installation program FlyCapture_2_4_3_11_x86 is located on the supplied DVD and must be started before any cameras are connected.

All camera drivers are now installed automatically with this new Camera Control Software

Select "I will use USB cameras" and select "Install PGRUSBCam driver" when prompted.

Do not select the "USBPro" option !

If you have previously run this install program and think you may have selected the USBPro option then you must uninstall the SDK and re-run it


Multiple cameras (CX systems)

Most systems are supplied with at least two cameras. One for the vertical launch angle and ball speed (Vcam), the other (Hcam) for ball path.

It is important to identify which camera is which before mounting. Usually the cameras are marked Vcam and Hcam on the casing but in case they are not you must identify the cameras yourself.

To do this, connect both cameras to the PC via the USB cables, start the GSA Control Panel and go to the Cameras window.

The floor mounted Vcam camera is always assigned to camera 1 and the overhead Hcam camera as camera number 2.

With both cameras lying on the floor, point one camera in one direction and the other in another direction so that you will be able to identify which captured image is from which camera.

Click the Soft Trigger button in the Cameras window of GSA Control panel and you should see what camera has been automatically assigned as the Vcam and and what camera has been assigned as the Hcam.

The vertical launch angle camera is floor mounted either left or right and in line with the SX Line scan camera and Hcam.

The ball path camera is overhead mounted next to the Hcam camera.

Start the GSA Control Panel. You should see from the GSA Control Panel's main window that the camera has been detected and that the camera engine is running.

Go to the Setup Window and ensure that the Vertical Camera radio button has been activated.

Go to the Camera Window in GSA Control Panel. You should see that camera 1 has been found.

Click the Soft Trigger button to capture a single new image. You should see that the image has been updated.

Select the Video Stream Mode radio button. You should see that images are being continuously streamed.

You can stay in this mode to align the camera to the desired FOV and set the focus.


Important ! --- Camera function assignments (CX systems)

In the control panel cam 1 is the ball launch angle camera, cam 2 is the ball path camera, cams 3 & 4 the club tracking cameras and cams 5 & 6 the ball spin cams.

Check that all cameras connected to the PC and go the "Cameras" window of the Control Panel

The control panel is designed to see the cameras in the following sequence

Camera 1 is the Vcam (The floor mounted Vertical ball launch camera in a CX2 to CX6 system)

Camera 2 is the Hcam (The ceiling mounted horizontal ball path camera in a CX2 to CX6 system)

Camera 3 is the Ccam (The ceiling mounted club tracking camera - frame 1 in a CX3 to CX6 system)

Camera 4 is the Ccam (The ceiling mounted club tracking camera - frame 2 in a CX4 to CX6 system)

Camera 5 (bank 2) is the Bcam ball spin camera - frame 1 (floor mounted in a CX6 system)

Camera 6 (bank 2) is the Bcam ball spin camera - frame 2 (floor mounted in a CX6 system)

To identify which camera is which you can click the "Soft Trigger" button to grab a new image or set the camera to "Video Stream Mode".

From the images you should be able to see what camera was being triggered.

If you find that cameras are not being assigned in the correct order then you can manually re-assign the cameras.

To do this, select the camera in the CP cameras window, hold both the shift and ctrl keys down, and press the left or right arrow keys to move the camera up or down the sequence.

Note that color cameras - as used in the CTS club tracking systems - will appear in monochrome if not correctly assigned. i.e. if a color CTS camera appears as camera 1 in the control panel then the images will show in monochrome instead of color. CTS color cameras must always be assigned to camera positions 3 or 4.


 

Mounting the cameras

The Hcam, IR lamp and SX line scan cameras should be mounted in this order on the enclosure center line : 1. Hcam - nearest the screen 2. Then IR LED lamp 3. and then the SX cam

This setup should be mounted approximately 5 feet or more away from the normal hitting psosition and 5 or more feet away from the screen.

 

New alternative IR LED lighting system consists of 2 60 degree IR LED lamps spread 1 or 2 feet apart.

Vcams are now supplied with a base plate mount. We recommend mounting the second IR LED lamp next to the Vcam so that the ball is also illuminated from the side as well as from above.

The cameras and lighting should be mounted similar to those shown in the above floor plan image.

If you don't have this space then the distances can be reduced.

Once the cameras are mounted , connect the camera USB cables to available USB ports on your PC and the camera trigger cables to the trigger sensor array.

The cameras are supplied with sufficient length high quality USB and trigger cables. (30ft / 10 meter lengths)

Camera orientation should be set so that the screen appears (or would appear if in the FOV) on the left side of the camera image.

CX2/CX3 ball tracking wirth a single IR LED lamp

A number of CX customers have expressed their doubts recently that a single IR LED lamp is sufficient for the ball tracking

The above 2 images - that are direct from a customer remote support recently - show that the ball traces using just the supplied single IR LED lamp are perfect.

Using two IR lamps to illuminate the ball from both the side and top

The above is a screen shot from customer "Jim" showing a perfect ball trace achieved by placing one IR LED lamp next to the Vcam as well as the ceiling mounted IR LED lamp


Mounting the Vcam camera

The Vcam (Vertical launch camera) is floor mounted (either left or right hand side of the enclosure or room).

The camera views the ball from the side and measures ball launch angle and ball speed.

It is mounted in line with the overhead mounted Hcam and Line scan cameras (as shown in the above image).

The Vcam camera should be facing the opposite wall and tilted up some 25 to 30 degrees.

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If the Vcam is not tilted upwards then too much floor will be in the FOV of the camera (as shown in the above left image).

When adjusting the camera's aim, switch to "Video Stream" mode in the CP's camera window.


Mounting the Hcam camera

The Hcam (Horizontal plane camera) is overhead mounted. It should be mounted such that the ball's direction of play is right to left as viewed by the camera.

On the back of the camera you should see the text "Screen" to help assist with the mounting direction. Mount such that this text is towards the projector impact screen.

The above 2 images show what the ball traces should look like using just the supplied single IR LED lamp.


SX line scan camera

The SX line scan trigger camera is mounted next to the overhead Hcam ball path camera. i.e. dead center of the enclosure and facing straight down.

Connect one of the RCA connectors on the SX Line scan camera to the Hcam using the short RCA cable and connect the other RCA output on the SX line scan camera to the floor mounted Vcam using the supplied 16 ft RCA cable.

Important! Mount the Line Scan camera so that the RCA connectors are facing one the side walls of your enclosure. i.e not facing the screen or back of the enclosure but either the right or left side of the enclosure or room.

The lens is factory pre-focused for a distance of 8 to 10ft and requires no adjustment.

Power to the camera is either via a supplied power supply or a USB cable connection to the PC (note: this USB connection on the SX is only used for power, no data is being transmitted)

The sensitivity is also preset but depending on the reflection of the flooring in the FOV of the camera might require slight adjustment.

To do this, with the the overhead lamp(s) on, camera powered up and facing down onto the flooring without any white objects or golf balls in the FOV , turn the sensitivity dial on the side of the camera until the green LED lights up.

Then turn the dial slightly back until the LED goes off. When making the adjustments ensure that you and your arm are not in FOV of the camera otherwise light will be reflected back into the camera.

Keep your distance and adjust with your arm stretched out. As you'll be doing this on a step ladder, ensure to keep your balance.

Test operation by rolling a golf ball on the ground under the camera. You should see that the LED goes on for a short while.

Connect the supplied RCA trigger cables to the SX camera and the full frame cameras that you want to trigger. This will usually be the V and H cams.

Note that all SX line scan cameras are now supplied with a remote sensitivity control that saves you from having to climb up a step ladder to make adjustments

Click the below link button for more information on setting up the line scan camera.

An alternative method to mounting the Line Scan camera and IR lamp on the ceiling is to mount both the SX line scan camera and IR LED lamp at floor level next to the Vcam.

The advanatge here is that light bouncing back off reflective flooring doesn't get into the SX line scan camera and thus it's sensitivity can be increased to better detect low shots and rolling balls.

Testing that the line scan camera triggers the full frame cameras

Start the GSA Control Panel, select the appropriate camera options on in the Setup window (i.e. Vertical Camera and/or Horizontal Camera - if you have one)

and go to the Cameras window.

You should see that the camera(s) are detected and running.

Starting with camera 1, switch to Video Trigger Mode.

When passing any object ( a club or your foot) under the line scan camera you should see that a new camera image has been captured in the Control Panel's camera image window.

Now hit or throw a ball over the trigger sensors. You should also see that a new camera image has been captured in the Control Panel's camera image window.

Do the same for camera 2.

The flooring area directly under the line scan, IR lamp and Hcam cameras must be dark and non reflective.

It is possible to treat the floor turf area so that is non-refective but most use the supplied black carpet strip (3ft * 5ft)

You can use the supplied 4 inch wide black felt tape to transition the carpet edges to the turf flooring

 

 

Note: With all GSA Golf cameras, the ball or club direction is always right to left.

If you find that the direction is 180 degrees reversed, then you can use the "X Reversed" option in the Camera window of the Control Panel to correct this.

If the image is only 90 degrees reversed, then you must rotate the camera 90 degrees to fix this.


 

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In order to keep the enclosure as dark as possible so that projected screen image is of best quality, we're recommending dual IR (Infra Red) LED lamps for all ball tracking cameras.

Dual 198 large 10mm LED IR illuminators suitable for V and H cams. (wave length 850nm)

These IR LED illuminators keep the enclosure dark so that projected screen image is best quality

with no visible light getting in your eyes or on the screen and - in comparison to Halogen lamps - stay cool and last much longer.

Note that both the Vcam and floor mounted IR lamp are tilted 30 or so degrees upwards.

The above image shows the standard and recommended lighting positioning.

Vcam Trace tapering

As measured ball speed is directly proportional to the length of the ball image trace , it's important that the ball trace from beginning to end is well illuminated.

With really fast high speed shots, it is possible that the ball won't be sufficiently illuminated to leave a solid trace and appears to taper out towards the end.

The image processing software in this case won't detect the full length of the trace and thus the measured ball speed will be too slow.

In order to avoid this problem you either need to tilt the IR Lamp further towards the screen or additional illumination (either IR LED or Halogen) has to be added further ahead towards the screen

The above 2 images show what the ball traces should look like using just the supplied single IR LED lamp.

New wide angle IR Illuminators


Background material in the field of view of the cameras

It is essential that this material is non-reflective! And that there are no reflective objects in the valid field view of the cameras.

Normally both the opposite wall from the floor mounted camera and the surface in the valid field of view of the overhead camera will be covered in some type of carpeting.

A recommended carpet is : Beaullieu of America - Type: Dayside Ebony, Product 6670-890 which is available at your local Home Depot store at around $4.00 a ft 6ft wide.

Regarding the optical sensor camera trigger array, the carpeting should be cut to size in 2 strips and glued to the acrylic glass top of the trigger casing leaving a 1/4 inch space gap for the optical sensors.

The optical sensors are in line with the green LEDs.

This carpet is also very good for lining the inside of your enclosure. Especially for the wall opposite the vertical camera.

You do not have to carpet the complete enclosure: only the part in the valid field of view of the camera.

Preparing a non reflective surface

The flooring area directly under the line scan, IR lamp and Hcam cameras must be dark and non reflective.

It is possible to treat the floor turf area so that is non-refective but most use the supplied black carpet strip (3ft * 5ft)

You can use the supplied 4 inch wide black felt tape to transition the carpet edges to the turf flooring

It is essential that this material is non-reflective!

And that there are no reflective objects in the valid field view of the cameras.

The above Vcam image is from a customer that obviously missed the instruction that the background in the FOV of the camera should be non-reflective.

This is what the background and a ball trace from the Vcam camera should look like.

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Testing the Cameras

Start the GSA Control Panel and go to the Setup window.

Use the presets CX2, CX3, CX5 etc shown at the top of the Setup Window and go to the Cameras window.

You should see that the camera(s) are detected and running.

Starting with camera 1, switch to Video Stream Mode.

If using multiple cameras, you should ensure that camera 1 is the floor mounted vertical launch camera.

If the view displayed for camera 1 is from the ball path or club track camera then you need to switch the cables to the USB ports.

Caution: Do not remove any camera USB cable while the camera is running. Before hand, shut down the GSA Golf Interface or ProX software.

Otherwise the camera engine may hang which may require re-booting the PC.

With the camera parameters and camera lens settings set to default, the view should be quite dark apart from the illuminated floor and any other objects out of the camera's valid FOV (field of view).

If this is not the case, then you must ensure that anything in the valid FOV is of a non reflective nature and dark.

ie the enclosure's background is dark and there are no other objects in the valid FOV causing reflections.

Camera Focus.

Ensure that the captured images are sharp and clear. Adjust the lens by screwing in or out if not.


Adjusting the camera's view and setting the valid FOV borders.

The system searches for golf ball traces only in a certain segment of the captured images and does not use the entire FOV of the camera.

This segment is determined by the blue border lines. In the case of the vertical launch camera this is Min / Max height and Start and End borders.

These define the Valid FOV and are preset but you may need to adjust slightly according to your enclosure.

To test, place two golf balls at either far end of the sensor array trigger but so that they do not actually cover any sensors.

Aim the camera so that both balls are as low as possible in the FOV. Place the balls at different distances if the ball nearest the camera is obscuring the further end ball.

Important Note:

the direction of play in the camera image is always from right to left.

If you have mounted the cameras so that this is reversed, then select the X Reversed setting.

If the ball direction in the camera image is going up to down or vice-versa then you will have to turn the camera 90 degrees.

Select the Min Height button and use the keyboard arrow keys to adjust the Min Height blue border line so that the visible floor is below it.

Select the Max Height for Ball Rolling button and use the keyboard arrow keys to adjust the red border line so that the ball at the far end of the trigger is just below it.

The Start blue border should be set exactly in line with the line of trigger sensors.

To ensure this place a golf ball next to and in line with the sensors and grab an image by clicking the Soft Trigger button in the Camera window.

Move the Start Border line so that the line is down the center of the ball in the image.

Double check by taking a shot so that you can see that the start of the ball trace is in the valid FOV.

The above image (sent in from a customer that reported that the measured ball speeds were too slow and carry distances were too short)

shows that the ball trace is starting way behind the start border line. The start border must be moved to just behind the beginning of the trace so that the full trace length is in the valid FOV.

The Left End and Max Height border lines should be set to cut out any bright objects in the FOV.

Using the Image shift controls to fine adjust the Vcam's FOV

After adjusting the angle of the Vcam you may still find that the flooring is still in the FOV of the camera.

Using the Y shift control allows you to bring the view of the camera down.


Ball Speed : Setting the scale factor for correct ball speed detection

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Ball speed is directly proportional to the length of the ball trace captured by the camera during the exposure time.

In order to calculate ball speed we need factors two factors: Time and Distance. This is then used in the equation : Speed = Distance/Time

Time is simply the camera's shutter speed i.e. exposure time.

Distance is the length of the ball trace.

As the camera sees only pixels a real distance-to-pixel scale factor must be used to calculate the real distance traveled.

The system uses the scale value to calculate the real distance (in centi-meters or inches) the ball has traveled during the exposure time.

Thus, adjusting the scale factor will increase or decrease the measured ball speed and thus the carry distance of a shot.

To set the scale setting place a yard stick or any object of a known length on the floor in front of the vertical camera at the same distance as the tee on the hitting mat.

In the Vertical launch camera window of the GSA Control Panel click the Soft Trigger button to capture an image so that the yard stick is visible.

Move the Start Border line to one end of the object and the Left End line to the other end.

Adjust the Scale factor so that the calculated length (shown at the bottom of the image window) is equal to the known length of the yard stick or object in the captured image.


Testing the vertical launch camera.

Select Video Trigger Mode and hit a ball.

You should then see the trace of a brightly lit ball in the image with two green crosses at either end.

The read out at top right of the screen should show the measured launch angle and ball speed.

If the ball trace is not completely within the blue border lines, then adjust these accordingly.

If you do not see anything, then check that the trigger function of the camera by passing an object (a club or your foot) over the trigger sensors.

You should see that the camera will take a shot every time.

Depending on your specific lighting conditions, you should adjust shutter speed, camera gain and gray scale to obtain ball trace images similar to those shown below.

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Captured image of full 3 wood shot

Captured image of wedge shot

Raw Angle / Launch Angle

If you like you can now switch to Raw launch angles. The raw angle is the angle between the start and the end of the trace instead of between the defined ball launch position and the beginning of the trace.

Use the new "Use RAW launch angle" button to switch this on or off.

Note that when using raw angles the angle measured between small traces won't be so accurate and when chipping, the ball may already be on the downward path in which case the ball launch reading will be negative.


Ball Launch Position

When setting the ball launch position you might find that this position is not in the field of view of the camera. i.e. it's further right.

In this case continue moving the launch position further right until you see the launch position wrap around in the camera window - as above.

The distance that launch position is from the trigger is displayed in inches and centimeters.

Physically measure the distance the launch (tee) position is on the sensor mat to the trigger array and set the launch position in the camera window to correspond to this.

Another way of doing this is to make a shot so that you can see the trace in the camera window.

Then move the launch position so that the launch angle is the same as the RAW angle - as shown in the above image.

Sand and Rough launch Positions

If you have sand and rough panels you should set these positions in the Vcam camera

so that the system can calculate the vertical launch angle from these positions when hitting from sand or rough.

As of version 7.4.7.2 of the Control Panel these positions can be automatically set to their defaults by right clicking anywhere on the screen when in Sand or Rough positioning mode.

The positions are shown in fainter shades or yellow (sand position) and green (rough) position. They will normally be 12 inches and 24 inches ahead of the normal launch position on the tee.


Adjusting the measured ball speed and ball carry.

See the camera calibration page for details on how to adjust carry and ball speeds

The above video shows how to adjust both the measured club and ball speeds to effect ball carry distances.

The speed of the ball is dependant on the distance the ball traveled within the camera time frame (shutter speed).

The camera sees only pixels so a real distance-to-pixel scale factor must be used to calculate the real distance traveled.

Thus, adjusting the Scale factor will alter the measured ball speed which in turn will adjust the distance/carry the ball will have in the golf simulation software.

If you find that high shots are carrying too far in the game software, you can use the Speed Decrease setting in the Vcam window to adjust this.

A user defined percentage decrease is evenly spread over a vertical launch angle range from a user defined launch angle to 60 degrees.

The above image shows a setting that would gradually take 25 percent off the speed over a vertical launch angle range from 40 degrees to 60 degrees.

The spread is then 20 degrees ( 40 to 60) which means that the ball speed will be reduced by 1.25 percent (25 / 20) for every degree over 40 degrees.

In the above example, the ball speed - and thus the carry and roll - will be reduced by 25 percent if the launch angle is 60 degrees or greater and 1,25 percent if the launch angle is 40 degrees

When setting, use the left and right arrow keys on your PC to adjust the percentage or speed decrease and the up and down arrow keys to adjust the vertical launch angle range.

Speed controls are also displayed in every camera window when "Show Trajectory" is on.

Trajectories and carries are automatically updated with every speed adjustment

Ball speed reduction proportional to launch angle

Click above image to read more about Ball speed reduction proportional to launch angle

Vcam Trace tapering

As measured ball speed is directly proportional to the length of the ball image trace , it's important that the ball trace from beginning to end is well illuminated.

With really fast high speed shots, it is possible that the ball won't be sufficiently illuminated to leave a solid trace and appears to taper out towards the end.

The image processing software in this case won't detect the full length of the trace and thus the measured ball speed will be too slow.

In order to avoid this problem additional illumination (either IR LED or Halogen) has to be added further ahead towards the screen


Left Right Ball speed and LA adjustments

When hitting balls left or right, the ball will either be getting closer or nearer to the floor mounted Vcam camera depending on it's mounted position in the enclosure. i.e. either left or right.

If the ball is getting nearer the camera then the trace will appear larger and thus the measured speed will be greater and if getting further away from the camera the trace will appear smaller and thus the measured speed will me lower than what it really is.

To compensate for this, the CP offers two solutions: 1. A fixed calibration method, 2. a user adjustable linear method.

Linear Left/Right ball speed and launch angle adjustments

adjustments,

In addition to L/R speed adjustments, LA adjustments may also be required when using the linear method (i.e. when calibration is switched OFF).

This is automatically done when Vcam calibration is ON but wasn't available when using the linear L/R adjustments.

L/R LA adjustments are now done using the up/down keyboard arrow keys and L/R speed adjustments are done with the left/Right arrow keys as before.


Overhead ball path camera.

The overhead camera captures the trace of a ball to measure ball path.

 

 

Setting the valid field of view of the Hcam camera.

The Hcam overhead has a larger field of view but only a small strip is actually used to capture the ball's direction. This area is called the Valid FOV.

Hit a ball to the screen to capture a new image from the Hcam.

Using the controls set the valid FOV by moving the borders. Set the Start border just past the start of the ball trace, the End border to some 6 to 8 inches behind the Start border and the Left and Right borders to approximately the edges of the line scan area.


Putting

Click above button to read about putting


Once the individual cameras are setup and working, the system can be checked with just the GSA Control Panel running.

With just the Control Panel running, after every shot you should see the "Launch Data Ready" message.

All parameters sent to the game software (E6, GSA Golf or ProX) are displayed.

Click the "Show Club Angles" button to see the shot analysis screen.


How to make Screen shots.

We often require you to send us screen shots during the support period.

To make a screen shot you need to run GSA Golf Control Panel in a windowed mode.

Screen shots don't work when the software is running in full screen mode.

If required, increase the screen resolution to a higher level than the usual 1024 * 768.

(right click on the Windows Desktop to select a higher screen resolution).

When you do this the Control Panel will run in a window.

You can then make screen shots.

Press the Print Screen or Prt Scrn key on your keyboard (usually near the upper right hand corner of the keyboard) when you want a screen shot. The image is then stored in the clipboard.

Start the Windows "Paint" graphics tool and click the "Paste" button in "Paint" - the Past button is in the upper left corner - and the image in the clipboard will appear.

Save the image with a any unique name you want and select Jpeg or PNG type files.

Repeat the procedure for all screen shots.

Camera image screen shots:

When making screen shots, ensure that the "Control Panel window not on top of other windows" option is on in the CP setup window

To test, don’t start GSA Golf or E6. Just GSA Control Panel with the Camera window open.

After each shot you should see the Launch Angle and Ball Path detected message.

If not, then make a screen shot and send to us.

Don’t forget to increase the screen resolution when GSA Control Panel is in window mode and decrease to 1024*768 when back in full screen mode

We often require customers to make screen shots of their camera windows in the Control Panel during the support period

Click the above video to see how to make screens shots

Typical screen shots are as in the below images

See the camera calibration page for details on how to setup your system for optimal accuracy


Storing Camera images

 

To help with support we sometimes require the actual raw camera image and not just a screen shot of it.

Press F7 in the camera window to store the current image into the Windows Clipboard

Note: When copying images to the Windows clip board with the F7 key, do not close the GSA Control Panel.

Exit the Cameras window and click the Send Back button. Then start Paint and and paste.

 

How to make screen shots and get raw camera images for GSA Golf Support


CX2 draws and fades

The above video shows how fades and draws can be produced with the CX2 system even though CX2 doesn't detect club face so that spin tilt or side spin can be calculated.

New control for Fade / Draw / Push / Pull ball trajectories with CX2

Click the above button to read how to setup the CX2 for fades and draws


Club Tracking system (CTS) setup.


 

Real Putting setup

Note: This feature is new and only available on versions 7.6.5.3 or higher of the Control Panel.

To setup real putting , switch Real Putting On in the CP's main window.

Go to the Hcam camera window of the CP (usually camera 2).

Ideally you would embed a real cup hole into the flooring but you can also just mark a cup area in the flooring to simulate a cup. Take a soft trigger so that you see the cup in the field of view of the Hcam overhead camera.

Using the keyboard's arrow keys, move the putting hole marker to the cup in the image and set it's size.

Depending on lighting conditions and floor/cup color and brightness you may have to adjust the camera's shutter speed, gain and gray level setting. There are now separate real putting settings for this.

When in real putting mode the overhead Hcam camera will be continuously grabbing images to see if the ball is in the defined cup hole.

The image processing just scans the cup area to see if any object is as bright or brighter than the defined Real Putting gray scale.

To test, use the CP (control panel) without the game software running. From the CP's main window press the P key on the PC's keyboard to go into putting mode.

You should see the below image being displayed.

When you then place a ball in the cup or marked cup area. You should then see the ball in hole image.

If not then decrease the real putting gray scale and/or increase the gain.

If the "ball in hole" image is immediately displayed without a ball in the hole area then increase the real putting gray scale.

You can repeat the testing process by pressing the P key on the PC's keyboard again to go out of putting mode and once again to go back in.

 

After this one time setup the CP will automatically go into "real putting" mode anytime a putter is selected or the ball is on the green in the game software.

When in this real putting mode, the above image will be displayed in the game software.

The player should then place the ball at the distance to the hole as shown in the game software and putt.

Obviously there will be limitations to this distance. i.e. if your enclosure is only 20ft then you won't be able to place the ball correctly for a 30 ft putt.

If the ball goes into the hole (or in the marked cup area) then the system will automatically go out of this mode and either the next player is up or you go to the next course hole.

During this mode the cameras will not be used to detect any shots and the overhead camera will automatically grab frames to see if the ball is in the hole.

If the ball doesn't go into the hole you can get out of this mode by simply clicking in the image or pressing the Esc key.

At present you have to keep your own score of the number of putts and set the Auto Putting mode to one shot in GSA Golf..

A later version of this software will allow the user to enter the number of putts into the game software to keep score.


Camera window explained

Speed controls are displayed in every camera window when "Show Trajectory" is on.

Trajectories and carries are automatically updated with every speed adjustment

Each camera has its own individual set of working parameters. These settings are preset but can be adjusted if required.

These include:

1. Shutter speed (set according to lighting conditions) Default is 10,000 micro seconds.

2. Gain (set according to lighting conditions) default is 20db.

3. Min Gray Scale: When images are captured, software scanning routines will look for a golf ball in the image.

In order for the search to succeed there must be a good contrast between the background and the ball. Depending on lighting conditions this contrast may vary.

ie. the background may not be as dark and the ball not as bright. In any case, the ball must be distinctively brighter than anything else in the background.

You set this Minimum Gray Scale parameter to the minimum brightness (or gray level) of the ball. The value is from 0 (black) to 255 (white).

4. Ball min and max sizes: Depending on the distance the ball is from the camera, the image size of the ball will vary slightly.

The scanning routines use this value to help identify a golf ball within the image.

5. Min Height, Max Height, Left end, Start border: These four parameters dictate the valid Field of View (FOV).

This is used to block out any parts of the image that may contain static objects in the camera's field of view (e.g. the floor) that may cause problems for the ball search scanning routines.

The scanning routines will only search within these borders of the image.

Max Height for a rolling ball: Set this red border line to the maximum height a rolling ball will have as seen through the camera's lens.

All balls found under this level will then be considered as a ball rolling on the ground.

6. Min Ball Speed: For the vertical launch monitor camera only, the ball must attain a minimum ball speed to pass within the cameras FOV in a straight trajectory line.

If the ball is hit with a slow speed (ie a chip) its trajectory will curve down within the cameras valid FOV and the calculated launch angle will not be correct.

7. Ball Launch Position: When set to the launch position - ie where you strike the ball - the launch angle will be calculated from this co-ordinate to the first co-ordinate in the ball trace.

8. Software Trigger: All cameras are triggered by an electrical signal sent to the camera when a ball or club head passes over one of the optical camera trigger sensors.

When testing and during setup you can simulate this hardware trigger by clicking this button.

9. Camera Assignments: The 4 radio buttons under each main Camera button allow you to assign the camera to a particular function.

The 4 functions are : Vcam - Vertical Launch Angle and ball speed, Hcam - Horizontal camera for ball path, Ccam - Club track camera and Bcam - ball spin and spin axisi tilt detection camera.

10. Video Trigger mode , Video Stream Mode: When a camera is in trigger mode, frames will only be captured (grabbed) with either a hardware or software trigger.

When in Video Stream mode, frames will be live captured and displayed at the standard frame rate in real time.

11. X,Y shift and X Y reversed buttons: These buttons allow you to move the image in the field of view (FOV) instead of having to physically move the camera.

If the camera has been mounted up side down or left to right you can correct this by reversing the camera axis image instead of re-mounting the camera.

12. Segment Screen: The camera image displayed is only half the actual size of the image. This is because the size of the image is greater than the window.

When in Segment screen mode you will see a segment of the full size image. This is either one of the four corners or the center.

13. Defaults button: Press this button with the shift key down to set all parameters to their default values.

14. Calibration: No longer required. As of last year, ultra low distortion lenses are being used that eliminate the need to calibrate the cameras.

Ensure all settings are cleared by holding the ctrl key down and clicking the Enter button.

15. Scale: The system uses this value to calculate the distance the ball has traveled and - with the shutter speed - the ball speed.

The camera sees only pixels so a real distance-to-pixel scale factor must be used to calculate the real distance traveled.

16. Drivers: Trace angle Select this option so that when teeing off the launch angle is measured only from the trace and not from a pre-defined launch position.

The system then doesn't need to know the tee height.

Segment screen: The camera's resolution is double that of the camera view window.

If you want to see the image in full resolution then only a quarter segment of the image can be shown at a time. Top/Left, Bottom/Left, Top/Right or Bottom/right segments

17. Putting Shutter speed (set according to lighting conditions) When putting, a separate camera shutter speed and gain setting will be used in order to account for the much slower ball speeds.

18. Putting Gain (set according to lighting conditions)

19. Putting Indicator set when putting and is only used for test purposes to show which shutter speed and gain setting is used.

20. No multiple triggers Select this option on to prevent the following club head from re-triggering the cameras after the ball. The default setting is always on.

21. Line width checking.

The optional Line Width Checking feature is used to verify that the camera image is actually of a golf ball in flight or rolling in the Vertical camera

and not any other object or persons in the valid FOV.

It is mainly used to avoid inadvertent shots being launched when players walk over the camera trigger sensors to pick up balls.

22. RAW angle Raw angles are those that are calculated directly from the captured image frame without any calibration.

When a fixed ball launch position has been set (by moving the "Ball Launch X" line behind - to the right of - the Start Border the "Launch angle" will be the calculated from this position to the end of the trace.

The Raw angle is the angle between the two ends of the ball trace in the image.

23. Cam Left click this if the floor mounted camera has been mounted on the left side of the enclosure.

24. Left/Right speed adjust when hitting the ball to the left or right the ball trace in the camera image will appear slightly shorter or longer.

If the ball is traveling towards the camera the trace will appear longer, if away from the camera it will appear shorter.

As the length of the trace determines the ball speed some adjustment is required to compensate for this.

The ball path range is -20 to +20 degrees and this adjustment percent factor is used to adjust the ball speed in gradual steps.

e.g. If this percentage is set to 10% and the ball's path is 20 degrees towards the camera then the full 10% will be subtracted from the ball speed.

If the ball's path is only half this - i.e.10 degrees towards the camera - then half of this percentage i.e. 5% will be subtracted from the ball's speed.

25. Allow ball under ball rolling height some very low shots start under the maximum height for a ball to roll. Select this option on to allow the system to detect very low shots.

26. Motion sensor on We have a new motion sensor that detects if someone is moving around in the enclosure and in the field of view of the cameras (usually to pick up balls).

In this situation it is possible that the system will inadvertently detect what looks like a ball and launch a shot in the game. The motion sensor will temporarily de-activate the cameras to prevent this.

26. Sand Pos / Rough pos click once for Sand and once again for Rough If you have sand and rough panels then the system should know where these are so that when you play from these positions the correct launch angle will be measured.

The positions are shown in faint yellow and dark green lines just in front of the normal launch position. Adjust to the middle of the sand and rough panels.


Setup window explained

The System Setup section should show what optical sensor systems - if any - and what cameras are being used.

Use the product Presets at the top of the window to set these automatically.

If you have Sand and/or Rough panels set these two options on. The system will then calculate the launch angle from the positions you have set these in the Vcam window.

With camera ball tracking systems you won't need to adjust the carries for individual clubs so the De-activate Carry Factors should be on.

If you have a Sand and/or Rough Panel and play from these when the ball is either in the Sand Trap or in rough the system won't pick up any valid club data. Switch the Allow ball launch with club data with SW on in this case.

The system won't normally launch a ball without valid club data being detected. If you are using a club tracking camera and want to use clubs

without club tracking reflective dots then switch the "Always allow ball to launch without club data" option on.

If club data is detected then it will be used but if not then the ball will fly anyway but the club data will be set to ball data. i.e. club path will be equal to ball path and club face angle will be set square relative to ball path.

Max (relative to path) calculated club face angle can be used to make the system more forgiving and easier to play for high handicap players. When set to a low number, hooks and slices will be reduced to draws and fades.


Possible Problems and camera fault finding

Camera USB cable lengths.

If you are experiencing camera shutdowns during play or CP hangs then this is usually due to the USB cable length being too long.

The camera manufacturer strongly recommends that the USB cable be no longer than 5m or 16ft and that they can't guarantee stability when extending - even with active USB hub cables - beyond this length.

We've noticed that some PC's and cables work better than others so you may find that all is OK with cable lengths up to 26 ft but if not then you'll have to place the PC closer to the cameras in order to keep the cable length to 16ft.

The overhead Hcam presents the biggest problem here as you'll need around 6 ft to get from the camera to the wall of the enclosure and another 9ft or so to get to the floor where the PC is.

Accessing the PC can then be difficult.

In this case we recommend extending the keyboard / mouse and monitor cables rather than extending the USB cables.

Use powered USB hubs to ensure enough power is getting to the camera when using long USB cables when issues are arising

Image tearing

Image tearing is when the captured image from the camera is split or only partial images are captured by the camera.

In multiple camera setups the images or parts of the images appear swapped. ie whole or part images from one camera appear in the frame from other cameras.

The cause of this is either insufficient bandwidth on the USB bus or insufficient power being delivered to the camera via the USB bus and/or cable.

The solution is to use separate USB buses and powered USB hubs for each camera. This simply means adding a new PCI USB port card for each camera.

These are quite inexpensive (around $25.00).

You may also find that simply adding powered USB hubs to the camera will solve the problem

You may find that cameras function perfectly well on your PC when the cable length is below 16ft but when more than that, then the cameras are either not detected or there are stability problems

USB camera cable length problems are often overcome by using a separate powered USB hub such as the above unit that costs just $26.00.

Image tearing is where the images of 2 or more cameras get mixed up.

The problem is caused by too much data coming in on the USB bus at the same time causing the bus to overload and drop data.

The issue is often only sporadic and usually only arises on slower PCs.

The usual method of fixing this problem is to either add a separate USB PCI card to the PC , replace the PC with a faster one or adding powered USB hubs.

The issue is primarily with the ball tracking cameras (V and H cams) that get triggered at the same time - in contrast to the CTS camera which is triggered a few milliseconds beforehand by the club.

Fast shots not being detected

This is usually caused by insufficient contrast between the ball and the background so that the cameras can't find or recognize the ball trace.

The faster the ball is traveling, the fainter the trace will be so it is important to have sufficient overhead lighting and that the background in the camera's field of view is a dark non reflective material.

e.g. dark colored or black drapes.

Equally important is that the light from the overhead lamps is not reaching the adjacent wall (vertical camera) and that there is little ambient light in the enclosure.

ie daylight coming through windows etc. You wouldn't want this anyway as the brightness and contrast of the projected image on the screen would suffer.

Camera is detected but goes off-line, dead or freezes after taking a few shots.

This is usually caused by too long USB cables with weak or corrupt data.

To test for this, connect the camera to the PC without any USB extension cables. i.e. just with the 6ft mini A camera USB cable.

Go the camera window in the control panel and switch to Video Stream mode. You should see that the camera is capturing images at a steady 15 or so frames per second.

You should also see that the green LED on the back of the camera is stays on.

If this is not the case then try using a different USB cable. If the problem persists then contact us as this could be a faulty camera, although this is very unlikely

Assuming the first test is successful, close the control panel and disconnect the camera. Add one of the USB extension cables to the camera and repeat the above test.

If you now find that the camera does not capture frames when in video stream mode then it is the cable causing the problem.

If the USB extension cable is not an active one then replace with an active one that is no longer than 16ft.

f you are experiencing camera shutdowns during play or CP hangs then this is usually due to the USB cable length being too long.

The camera manufacturer strongly recommends that the USB cable be no longer than 5m or 16ft and that they can't guarantee stability when extending - even with active USB hub cables - beyond this length.

We've noticed that some PC's and cables work better than others so you may find that all is OK with cable lengths up to 26 ft but if not then you'll have to place the PC closer to the cameras in order to keep the cable length to 16ft.

The overhead Hcam presents the biggest problem here as you'll need around 6 ft to get from the camera to the wall of the enclosure and another 9ft or so to get to the floor where the PC is.

Accessing the PC can then be difficult.

In this case we recommend extending the keyboard / mouse and monitor cables rather than extending the USB cables.

Support:

Storing Camera images

To help with support we sometimes require the actual camera image and not just a screen shot of it.

Press F7 in the camera window to store the current image to a file. Note: Windows UAC has to be switched off for this to function.

Default file name is "CamImage.bmp" located in the root folder of the ControlPanel.

The image is also written to the Windows ClipBoard so you can paste it into any graphics tool like Paint.

Note: When copying images to the Windows clip board with the F7 key, do not close the GSA Control Panel. Exit the Cameras window and click the Send Back button. Then start Paint and paste.

go here to see support instructions on how to make screen shots


Why use camera triggers?

We have opted to use a camera trigger method mainly in order to keep the price of the system as low as possible and to ensure that the image data is captured at a very precise and known time.

Free running firewire cameras that are capable of 1000 fps are quite expensive and the image processing would usually require a second dedicated processor (ie PC) to process the images.

You would normally require at least two cameras so the image processing would have to handle 300 frames a second.

As the host PC is usually very busy rendering complex 3D scenes, it would not have time to do this.

 

Elaboration on why we use camera triggers:

As you probably know all cameras - including video cameras - just take individual pictures (shots).

If the camera takes upwards of 24 pictures per second (24 frames per second) and you play the sequence back it appears to our eyes as smooth motion.

However, this is just an optical illusion as our eyes are relatively slow. In reality it is still a sequence of individual pictures (frames).

If a camera is taking pictures at a rate of 24 frames per second then each individual shot takes 0.041 seconds (1/24).

Although this sounds really fast, it is slow compared to golf balls traveling at up to 200 mph.

Golf club heads and balls travel at high speeds (100 – 200 mph) and will travel comparatively long distances in 0.041 seconds.

Example:

a club head traveling at 100 mph (160kph) will travel 6.14ft (1.86 meters) in 0.041 seconds.
a golf ball traveling at 200 mph (320kph) will travel 12.28ft (3.72 meters) in 0.041 seconds.

If we want to capture a video of these objects in this time period then the camera’s field of view (FOV) would have to extend over large distances which

is not possible in the confined space of a golf simulator enclosure.

The object of cameras in a golf simulator is not only to capture the ball in flight but also to measure its speed.

For this we would require at least two frames taken at a known time interval or time frame.

We can then detect the distance the ball traveled in this time period and thus calculate its speed i.e. Speed = distance/time.

If we say the cameras field of view is 6 ft (1.8meters) and we need to capture two frames of a ball traveling at max speed of 200 mph

then the camera must be able to capture the two frames within 3 ft (90 cm). ie half the FOV.

We would thus need a camera capable of capturing frames at 4 times the normal rate of 24 frames per second. ie 96 frames per second.

Going further, if we want to capture the club head at impact to the ball in order to see and measure the club face angle and club speed

the camera’s FOI (Field of Interest) would have to be down to only an inch (2.54cm) or so.

In order to capture two frames of the club head in this very short distance and at a max speed of 100 mph (160kmh) then the camera must be

capable of capturing frames at a rate of around 4000 frames per second.

Such cameras exist of course but the price is prohibitively high (upwards of $10,000).

In addition, data transfer at these high rates to the host PC and the following image processing required would be such a high burden on the performance of PC

that it wouldn’t have any time to do anything else. Host PCs in a golf simulator are usually very busy just rendering 3D graphic scenes

so there’d be no time to process the incoming data from cameras at these high rates.

You would basically require a high performance PC for every camera.

Fortunately there is a solution to this problem. This involves using an external trigger signal to trigger the camera to take a shot at the exact moment

in time when the club head is just before the impact to the ball.

The trigger is generated from the overhead mounted line scan camera.

The host PC is then free to do all the wonderful 3D graphics rendering and is only interrupted when a incoming image arrives from a trigger signal.

 

See the camera calibration page for details on how to setup your system for optimal accuracy