3Dcam: A small, $280 3D sensor from Terabee

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Terabee, a company known for its affordable 2D time of flight sensors, recently released the 3Dcam, a new low-cost 3D time-of-flight camera for indoor depth sensing applications.

The compact camera weighs only 83 grams with aluminum casing and fits the palm of your hand. It is designed for object and people counting, occupancy monitoring, fall detection, hand gesture recognition, stock level monitoring, object classification, object position detection, and robotic navigation.

The camera has a close-range mode, “ideal for close-range applications, like hand gesture recognition,” which captures data from 20 centimeters up to 1.4, and standard mode, “for volume measurement, people and movement monitoring and robot navigation applications”, with a range between 1 up to 4 meters.

As to its specifications, the 3Dcam features an 80 x 60 pixels depth image resolution, running at 30 fps, a 74º x 57º detection area. It is also capable of capturing data in low-light situations, or complete darkness.

Terabee’s 3D camera also “offers an easy back-panel mounting option for a more discreet and integrated look. For research and rapid prototyping projects use the long screw slots to attach it to a surface in no time”.

If privacy is an important factor, Terbaee says that 3Dcam collects only “non-intrusive depth image data” and claims that it never captures personal identity.

With the help of an SDK containing drivers (including ROS) and sample codes, developers can use the OpenNI framework in C/C++ or other languages, like Python, to develop new applications. Terabee has developed a visualization tool to allow users to stream depth data via USB on Windows or Linux OS for testing purposes.

Priced at around $280, the 3Dcam is available for purchase at the company’s website.

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João Antunes

IT and videogames are João's topics of interest since a very early age. Videogames, the Internet, game consoles and computers became his normal toys, as result of being the son of a journalist writing about the infancy of the Web, the games industry and hardware in general. Small game reviews published on the first Portuguese computer games magazine, back in the early 2000s ignited a passion – writing - he now pursues, along with his other interests: programming, web designing and hardware. Technology in general makes him tick.

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