CSS Menu Buttons Css3Menu.com

Flooring and Stance mats Drape enclosures Impact screens Budget enclosures Cage and solid wall enclosures PC's and Projectors Flooring and Stance mats
id="nav" class="bottomenu"> Ccam Club Tracking CTS Club Tracking Ball spin camera VisTrak CX Surround Camera Wiring Camera Installation Installation and setup

Technical News

System Updates & Development News

GSA Golf daily updates and news

Hi! I'm Martin Paul Gardiner

Electronics and software development engineer and founder of GSA Golf

Regularly check out my tech news page for all our latest developments and free updates

GSA Golf tech news is updated almost daily!

so make sure to check in for all the latest updates and news regularly

If you have any questions

please feel free to contact me personally anytime from M to F - 12noon to 3pm US ET via e-mail at

Please Note: We're closed on weekends and all US national holidays

If you are contacting us on the weekends or on national holidays,

then we'll make best effort to get back to you within 24 hours of the next working day.

Did you get a response to your e-mail?

We get really busy at times and e-mail responses can be late or even forgotten at times.

Please remind us again if you didn't get a response to your e-mail.

Note: we are not receiving or responding to emails

on weekends or on national holidays.

Weekends at GSAgolf are used solely for system development and product assembly

Emails sent to us after 3pm Friday will get answered to the following Monday

Emails sent to us after 3pm on work days are not read until the next day

Email responses are usually only made between 12 noon and 3 pm

 


Full CP updates

Lite CP update

May 5 Control Panel update V 9.7.8.6

Note: the above are links to Control Panel updates only.

They require that the full version has previously been installed.

Without the full version installation, the CP application will not function.

Also note that the above Control Panel updates are only for regular VisTrak Eagle based systems.

The new "Lite" CP updates install just the latest CP .exe (executable) files only.

In comparison to the full CP update download files ( that contain many other files like images, DLLs, sounds etc) ,

these lite download files are over 10 times smaller. i.e. instead of being over 15MB in size, these "Lite" files are just 1.2 in size.

Other than the much faster download speed, these files should help in browsers blocking large downloads.

Most of the time, the Lite update is only required.


CPi Update for the new SSi and SCXi cameras

Please note that this update this version is really only intended for use with the new SSi cameras.

Although this version should also function for all other systems without issues.

If you have acquired the new SSi cameras and this is the first installation,

then you will require additional files in order for the system to function.

Contact us for download links for these additional files.

If purchasing your own cameras from another source other than directly from us,

then the camera serial number has to be submitted to us in order for the software to function.


Browser blocking the download?

From what we gather, Google's new policy is to block all exe file downloads from websites that are not on their trusted "White List".

So until then, all users wishing to download the latest CP updates may have to go through the above shown process.

Note: do the above procedure after the download has completed and you get the "blocked" message from Google Chrome

Even then, your Virus Protection software will probably be complaining about it too.

Click the "Trust Now" in this case.

Download VC redistributables hereHere

Download latest Camera DLL hereHere

Don't forget to run the download after it's downloaded!

A number of customers don't realize that a CP update is a dual process

i.e first download and then run the download

Note that anti-virus programs will probably try to block the GSA Golf CP update download but - be assured - there's no malicious software in the download update

so just ignore any warnings from your anti-virus programs and choose the "More options" and "Run anyway" option.


Technical Support

Email and remote access support is available for all original purchasers of GSA Golf systems.

For all non original purchasers (i.e. purchasers of used GSA Golf systems) remote access support can be purchased separately.

Click above images for more information.

 


June 28 3:15 pm

LX/KX/EV system ball spin detection

As most users of the LX (and other floor mounted) systems won't want (or need) to use special spin dots balls in order to detect ball spin,

we've upgraded the ball logo detection methods today.

SCX system ball spin detection without the requirement to use balls with special markings

Tests are currently being made to see how well ball spin detection can be made with the ceiling mounted SCX system using regular balls without special markings.

As the SCX cameras are running at such a high frame rate (i.e. 1500 to 3000 fps ) the chances are great that the ball logo will appear in the frame images.

And thus ball spin can be detected using just the ball logo or even just a part of the logo.

If these tests prove positive, then this will negate the requirement to develop the SCX Xenon system.


June 27 4:40 pm

SCX casing update

The original idea with the walnut sides is turning out to be a tad too ambitious so - order to keep the price as low as possible - we've moved over to a more simplified version.

Parts are on order but the anodized frame parts have a 4 to 6 week lead time.

June 27 9:00 am

An optional extra IR plexi-glass shield is now available for the LX


June 25 3:10 pm

Second VisTrak LX design concept

Tests today revealed that yesterday's LX design concept doesn't work well.

First problem was that having the camera mounted on the side of the IR light skewed the frame images far too much

Second was that the single IR LED light didn't provide sufficient light spread to illuminate the ball from both sides.

The above design - using two smaller LED IR lights with the camera center mounted - solves both these issues without increasing the parts cost.

i.e. the price of 2 smaller LED lights is the same as one of the larger IR LED light.


June 24 2:12 pm

New VisTrak LXi design concept

As the original LX - priced at $1,999 - cannot compete against SkyTrak at the same price,

I've come up with a new design that drastically cuts manufacturing time

(basically next to zero) and thus the price can also be drastically cut. i.e. less than half the price.

Also, as the new SSI hi-speed cameras are larger than the previous cameras,

it was not possible to fit both the camera and lights in the original carry style case.

This design uses the IR LED light as the case and the camera is just attached to the side of the light.

Not sure if there's a market for this but as the software is essentially already completed and there's no hardware to design or manufacture,

I'll just put it out there and see.

June 24 11:52 am

Today's new VisTrak features

1. AOA launch angle and club loft comparisons now shown

The red balls show what the launch angle would be if ball was struck square to the ball so that the LA would equal the loft of the club

The white balls show what the actual LA was for the shot.

2. Measured spin axis is now also shown.


June 23 5:35 pm

New VisTrak LX/KX ball spin calculation method

New improved ball spin detection methods coming shortly for VisTrak side mounted camera systems. i.e. LX and KX

June 23 1:15 pm

VisTrak SCX/Eagle ball spin calculation

Spin calculations are now being made over multiple frames.

i.e. not just the last 2 speed frames but all relevant frames of the ball in flight.

An average back spin and side spin is then calculated.


June 21 4:08 pm

Regarding ball spin detection with the new SSi cameras used in the VisTrak i systems (SCXi and Eagle),

the only remaining issue I'm dealing with now is the ability to precisely detect the center of the ball spin dots with low resolution ball images.

Note: To the best of my knowledge and judging from the shot playback videos I've seen, Uneekor QED systems are also running the cameras in low resolution mode.

Presumably in order to attain the high 800 fps or so frame rate.

The problem doesn't occur when using hi-resolution images (as shown below) but we won't be able to attain the high frame rate with such hi-resolution frames.

I hope to have this issue resolved shortly though.

Note that the SCX Xenon will be using one of the 2 stereo cameras in hi-resolution mode.

Talking of the SCX xenon, there's a possibility that we wouldn't require a third high res camera.

i.e. we could operate one of the two stereo cameras in high res mode - for hi def ball spin images - and the other in low res mode for full FOV frame images of the swing.

If works, this would reduce the price of the SCX Xenon down to just $3,999

i.e. almost a third of the price of a Uneekor EYE XO that - to the best of my knowledge - has a MSRP price now of $11,000.


June 2012:35 pm

VisTrak ball spin calculation method using spin dots


June 19 3:35 pm

VisTrak / Uneekor comparison tests

Many more Uneekor / VisTrak comparison test results coming up.

The nice this about Uneekor is that they show all the captured frames of the shot in a shot playback video.

This allows me to copy and paste the Uneekor frames into VisTrak frames and run a recalculate function to compare the results.

To-date, all comparison tests show a very close match with all data including ball speed, path, club speed, path and face angle and - of course - spin data.

The one thing I can't deduce from the Uneekor shot videos is LA (launch angle).

As with the VisTrak SCX, Uneekor are using 2 stereo cameras, so in order to deduce LA I'd need to see the video playback from the other camera.

I could then deduce stereo disparity and thus LA.

One thing I did notice from most of the Uneekor videos posted on YouTube, is that the player isn't using any markings (i.e. tracking dots) on the clubs.

Yet, Uneekor are still able to see AOA (angle of Attack), club speed, path and face angle.

If that's the case, then why are Uneekor stating that 3 tracking dots are required for "enhanced club data" on the clubs?

My guess is that - without the dots - club data is being estimated from ball data. Just my guess though.

In my comparison tests, I will apply club markings in the video frames to see what the club data is in the VisTrak system.

VisTrak AOA (Angle of Attack)

The VisTrak AOA feature will be added to the system next week too.

If using clubs without the AOA strip, then AOA will be calculated from the difference between LA (launch angle) and the club loft degrees.

i.e. if striking the ball absolutely square, then AOA will equal to the loft of the club and thus AOA be zero degrees.

If LA is lower than club loft angle, then AOA degrees will be loft angle minus LA (i.e. striking on the down swing)

and vice-versa if higher (i.e. striking on the up swing).


June 18 2:15 pm

SCX vs Uneekor ball spin comaprison

In order to do a first basic comparison test, I copied 2 ball frames from a Uneekor playback video and plugged them into a VisTrak playback video.

I was pleasantly surprised to see that the comparison results are very close even though the VisTrak spin dot detection is still not perfect.

Using Photoshop measuring tools, I could calculate that the average dot shift on the vertical axis with the two Uneekor ball images was 7 pixels,

as was the dot shift in the VisTrak ball images.

Due to a phantom spin dot in the center of VisTrak ball frame 1, the side spin had to be estimated.

The main discrepancy being just caused by using different shot videos. i.e. the VisTrak video had a closed club face and the Uneekor an open club face.

If both shot videos were the same then even the estimated side spin would be almost identical.

This test confirms that my method of ball spin detection from an overhead camera works well.

Main issue now is to figure out where the phantom dot is coming from in frame 1 and to improve spin dot centering when the dot is close to the ball's perimeter.

The math to measure ball spin from an overhead camera is a tad complicated (at least it is for me) but seems to work well.

Below a basic description.

Measuring spin rate from an overhead camera system

A little math is required to deduce the spin rate from the circle arc measured from the rotating and shifting key point pattern on the ball.

Knowing the circle arc length (i.e. the vertical shift of the key point pattern on the ball as viewed from above) and the radius of the ball, the arc central angle can be calculated.

This arc central angle is the rotation in degrees (or radians) for a given time between the two frames (1 ms) and from this, the spin rate can be calculated.

In order to measure the degrees of ball rotation from an overhead camera system that only sees the arc width (chord),

a number of calculations have to be made.

1. Calculate arc length from arc width and ball image radius

Using the formulas:

first find S = height of arc (sagitta or sag)

S = r - sqrt(r² - L²)

r = radius. L = half arc width (chord).

Then find arc length

ArcLen = (π (L² + S²) arcsin (2LS/(L² + S²)) / 180L

2. Calculate degrees of rotation given Arc length and ball radius

Using the formula: CA (Central Angle) = ArcLen * 360 / 2 π r

3. Given time t and the amount of rotation within this time, calculate spin rate in rpm

Using the formula: Spin rate rpm = (r/t) / 6

where r = degrees of rotation

and t is the time in which the rotation occurs.

Divide by 6 to get RPM

Spin rate in RPM = w / 6


June 15 1:45 pm

V 9.7.9.5

New SCXi CP release

Second release of the new SCXi software is now available.


June 14 4:30 pm

VisTrak SSi SCXi system testing

The main pre-production testing period for these systems is now underway.

Final version release date is expected by the end of this month.


June 13 4:20 pm

SCXi ball spin dot centering

In order to measure precise ball spin, not only do the dots themselves on the ball have to be detected

but also the center of the dots have to detected.

Today's first attempt at detecting the center of the dots showed quite good results but still requires a few minor tweaks


June 12 4:05 pm

V 9.7.9.3

New SCXi CP release

First release of the new SCXi software is now available.


June 11 2:38 pm

SCXi IR light intensity test

Using 2 of the CM Vision IR 324 ($79) illuminators set at a height of 9ft show reasonably good results.

Ball is detected correctly, as are the dots with a camera exposure time of 373 micro seconds.

3 or 4 illuminators would be better though.

To be on the safe side, I'll recommend 3.

Mounting heights greater than 9ft will probably require 4


June 9 3:38 pm

SCX Dynamic ROI (Region of Interest)

The SCX Dynamic ROI feature is now completed.

The Dynamic ROI feature allows the user to place the ball in a 2ft wide area on the hitting surface

SCX stereo camera aiming

The main reason for the Dynamic ROI feature is that the ball in the image frames always appears precisely on the center line of the image

- no matter where the player places the ball on the mat -

and thus users don't have to ( painstakingly) aim the cameras so that the ball appears exactly on the center line during the initial setup.


June 8 7:15 pm

SCX xenon

Next up will be a system that detects ball spin without the requirement to use marked balls.

In order to detect ball spin without marked balls, super high resolution and bright images of the ball will be required.

As we already have the xenon flash technology in place, it's just a matter of the software image processing development.

Price of the SCX xenon will be $3,999 i.e. far less than half the price of a Uneekor Eye XO.

Expected release date: 4th quarter 2022

June 8 3:25 pm

SCX Dynamic ROI (Region of Interest)

Coding of this new feature is nearly complete.

The main reasons for this feature are:

1. Users don't have to ( painstakingly) aim the cameras so that the ball appears exactly on the center line

2. Precise stereo vision is only possible when the image of the ball is as near as possible to the image center line before ball strike.


June 7 3:30 pm

Dynamic ROI (Region of Interest)

An issue that has been a problem to date is that players would place the ball on the hitting mat in varying positions

so that the ball is not centered on the center line.

If off-line, then the ball images can easily go out of the FOV of the camera and thus eroneous ball tracking data can result.

The new Dynamic ROI feature will automatically align the ball to the center line every time the ball is placed on the mat.


June 6 5:00 pm

SCXi / Eagle i - Ball spin dot detection

Tests today showed that ball spin dot detection works just fine using the Bridgestone marked balls.

SCXi - Club Angle of Attack (AOA) detection

AOA detection is coming later this month

How the AOA strip works:

The AOA strip has an overall known length and a known length when viewed from overhead with a known club loft.

If striking the ball on the down swing, the length will appear to shorter, and appear longer if hit on the up swing.

Based on this variation, AOA can be calculated.


June 5 9:15 am

SCXi - The case for a case

SCXi Track version

SCXi cased version

For those that would prefer a fully closed cased version, the above design has now been completed.

Cased versions with walnut edging will be available in the next few weeks.


June 4 3:25 pm

SCXi - Installation and setup instructions

Basic SCXi installation instructions completed.


May 30 2:20 pm

VisTrak SCXi and Ei Spin detection coding now completed

Both back spin and side spin detection coding is now completed and initial tests show very good results.

While more testing and the inevitable tweaks will be made over the coming months, I'm confident in releasing the first Beta versions now.


May 29 3:15 pm

Ball and club markings are optional

Above - GSA Golf club single strip sticker

Above - GC Quad tracking dots stickers

To the best of my knowledge, most users of camera tracking systems (like the Uneekor and GC3/GC4 etc)

that recommend applying 3 or 4 tracking dots to their clubs, don't even bother doing that.

Likewise with ball markings.

i.e. they just go ahead playing without these ball and club markings and seem to be just happy with that.

As I keep getting questions about the requirement to use ball and club markings -

I've thus pointed out on the relevant system pages that the use of club and ball markings is purely optional

and that the system is perfectly playable without such markings.

For the sole individual working on his game, applying stickers to the clubs isn't a big deal,

but if you've invited the guys over for a couple of rounds and beers, you're unlikely to want to say to them

"okay guys, here's a bunch of 50 little stickers in a bag that you have to apply to all your clubs before we can even start"


May 22 2:00 pm

Estimated Uneekor QED frame rate compared to VisTrak SCXi frame rate

The above image is composite of 2 frames of a Uneekor QED post shot video playback.

The image was taken from one of the many YouTube videos of QED post shot videos.

According to my calculations - using the distance the club traveled in between the 2 frames and scaling pixel distances to inches -

the frame rate appears to be around 790 fps in the video.

These tests were conducted on many other other videos too and all seem to correspond to the above findings.

Disclaimer:

Whether or not the Uneekor QED is really running its cameras at 790 fps cannot be conclusively verified though

and I am not intentionally implying or inferring it here.

All tests were only based on published Uneekor shot videos available on YouTube.

In comparison, the VisTrak Eagle-i and SCXi captures double the number of frames with its dual 1500 fps cameras.

i.e. the distance the club and ball move in between frames is halved.

Of interest, the frame rate of the SCXi camera at a resolution of 640 x 480 is also exactly 790 fps.

So, in case the SCXi requires a higher resolution than its current 640 x 240,

then we can use this higher resolution without losing any functionality.


 

 

GSA Control Panel (CP) full version

$ 99.00

 

Installation

Click above for all your accessory requirements


Factory

Based in Naples, Florida,

all GSA Golf products are meticulously assembled and tested by hand to meet the highest industry standards

GSA Golf golf simulator components and kits

CX and Vistrak system components can be used to build the complete GSA Golf golf simulator camera tracking system

at a far lower price than the ready made system prices

Click above to read more about GSA Golf components and kits

The GSA Golf camera tracking software is available to

all OEM golf simulator manufacturers

and/or DIY enthusiasts for just

$ 299.00

Just purchase your own cameras and lighting

Click above image to read more

GSA Golf Investment and Reseller Opportunities

Recent customer comments

Hi Martin, I just wanted to drop you a note to say how amazing the new VisTrak camera is.

I am still playing around with the settings and learning but the video capture and being able to see the frame by frame impact is awesome!

I also really like the way you show the ball ready/playback buttons as an overlay on the TGC.

The best part of my day is going to the tech page and seeing your latest updates - keep up the good work!

Richard L. Illinois 12/17/2020

Hi Martin- I wanted to let you know how much I appreciate your efforts.

I could have bought any of the expensive and well-known golf simulators, but I’m glad I ultimately took the chance and bought your products.

It wasn’t an easy decision, as it takes a leap of faith to take the road less traveled, but it has made all the difference.

I love that your products are not perfect (no one's are) but that you strive for perfection while pushing innovation.

You’re clearly never satisfied. As soon as you develop a new software feature, or build a new camera system, you're immediately back at it working on the next iteration.

You’re a true inventor and engineer. Almost every day I download the latest beta and see how it enhances the simulation.

It's like Christmas morning everyday.

Sometimes there’s a marked improvement. Sometimes the new feature “breaks” something else.

But over days and weeks, I feel how the collective innovations are improving the overall experience.

Your products aren’t for everyone but they are a clear alternative to the high-margin corporate products that have an arm's length association with their user base.

Buying a GSA product is buying into you and becoming part of your user community.

You listen, you care, and you explore. I know many of us appreciate it but perhaps not enough of us say thanks.

Martin, thank you for an enjoyable and rewarding journey with your products in 2020.

You’ve made a COVID 19 year more endurable.

Eric P. Burien, WA 12/25/2020

Matt P. 1/15/2021

Hello Martin, I have had 2 weeks of excellent play and stability in Eagle Mode! This has been very enjoyable! Matt T.

Matt T. 1/14/2021

Hi Martin, I see your daily updates on the Tech News page and I just want to say thank you for all your hard work and dedication.

Your passion for golf and engineering clearly shows and thank you!

Mike B. 05/03/2021

Thanks Martin……..

I appreciate the excellent customer service and fair pricing! And the very informative website!

Have a great day!

Mike.

Note that all GSA Golf software is written in the C++ programming language, which isn't particularly easy.

As they say, while it's easy to shoot yourself in the foot with the standard C language,

you can blow your whole leg off in C++. : )


Martin Gardiner

Founder of GSA Golf

These days, when I'm not developing golf simulators, you'll find me in my keyboard music studio

Contact us


 

 

All camera products Club Tracking Camera Ball spin camera VisTrak DIY Kits - Components Enclosures All products PX Systems Software Business Installation and setup