Have just ordered an OpenROV 2.8 kit with some spare parts as well. We are looking to beef up the chassis a little and then use it for some underwater inspection work where we have a small hole to insert it through and then plenty of space in the water. What I am wanting to do though is add some additional cameras to it - are the Pro cameras available to buy separately without the corrective lens etc?
Unless you are going to make major changes to the program and teather, I don’t think you will be able to add additional live cameras. My suggestion is to add Go Pros and view the additional video after the dive.
If we only need the cameras to give us additional viewing angles and only want to transmit one camera at a time from the ROV to the control station would it still require a lot of programming and tether changes? Unfortunately using a GoPro and viewing it later isn’t really going to work for us - we need to be able to see what requires a more intensive look at while we are there as we need to do it then and there - viewing it afterwards and then putting the ROV back in isn’t a real good option.
I will let the experts reply to this but I don’t think you will be able to do this without major changes. There is only one camera input on the board. This would seem to require a switching unit with multiple camera feeds before the standard boards. Doable but not off the shelf or easy.
What sort of depth are you working at? You can make a pretty rough and ready live streaming GoPro setup over an extra twisted pair
For the jobs the OpenROV will be doing usually 10 metres maximum, occasionally 30 metres. Our problem is that we aren’t electronics or programming guys at all - we are specialists in underwater inspection so we need things that are simple for us to put into action - ROV for dummies if you like. For us an ROV is a tool whereas for many of you the satisfaction is in the building and modification.
OpenROV 2.8 out-of-the-box only supports a single camera. We did modify one once with a second remote camera, but it requires some building skills to make it all work out. So it may not be an option for you. After you build your 2.8 and get it working, you can be the judge whether you want to try to add another camera.
I think @Marius_Antares did most of the work for the modification- if he’s still reading the forum, he might have some pictures of it. Basically, a second Beaglebone Black was placed inside the chassis, as well as a small ethernet switch/router. Each Beaglebone was running OpenROV software, but they were set to different static IP addresses. The second camera was put in a waterproof housing, and the cable was run through a hole drilled in an endcap, and potted in place. The two Beaglebones and the Homeplug adapter were each connected to the router.
On the topside, a separate browser tab is used to view each camera stream.
It might be possible to combine two cameras at the USB level, with a USB hub. There was an old thread talking about this here. However, there are issues with the libraries that are used to support the Pro Camera, so unless you want to do a lot of software tinkering, I don’t think its possible to have two of those cameras running on a single Beaglebone at this time.
Hope this helps.