[aprssig] APRN status?

Stephen H. Smith wa8lmf2 at aol.com
Fri Mar 26 17:12:01 EDT 2010

Stephen H. Smith wrote:
> [The Kenwood VC-H1 died five years ago, because of it's lousy camera 
> head, and because it's unbelievably awful support software package 
> that absolutely positively won't run on NT-based Windows (i.e. Win 2K, 
> XP and later).

The cam is a low-quality low-resolution NTSC CCD imager similar to a 
home security CCTV cam or X10 spycam.  Adding to that is the 
excessively  wide-angle   field-of-view   of the fixed-focus   
short-focal-length lens.  With only 240 lines of effective resolution in 
standard SSTV, you absolutely must fill the entire field of view with 
the subject of interest to see any detail at all.   The VC-H1's 35mm 
equivalent 30mm fixed lens makes this nearly impossible.

Adding insult to injury, the VC-H1 imager was apparently intended for 
indoor lighting levels. It overloads and produces nearly featureless 
blown-out images in outdoor daylight conditions.

The solution to this is to replace the imager!   The camera head pulls 
off, revealing a 1/8' stereo mini-jack on the top of the unit that 
accepts any composite NTSC video source.   I connected the video monitor 
output of a Canon Powershot digital still camera to this input which 
increases the image quality at least 1000%.  I now have autoexposure 
control, auto white level and a wide-range zoom lens.   I just finished 
homebrewing an adapter bracket for the VC-H1 that supports the new camera.

See my "HD" upgrade for the Kenwood VC_H1's crappy camera head here:


By an amazing co-incidence,  I had just finished homebrewing this 
adapter for the replacement camera two days before this SSTV thread 
erupted on the APRSsig.


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