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Dwight Brown

endoscope for violins

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Does anyone have an endoscope that works well and is really small diameter for looking into instruments.  I could make a joke about what my sister does for a living, but I will be good :-)

 

DLB

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Here you go:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Waterproof-5-5mm-2M-USB-Endoscope-Borescope-Snake-Inspection-Camera-Scope-6-LED-/171573739053?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item27f2977e2d

 

I have one like this, and it works well. The lighting on the endoscope is pretty wimpy, and only reaches out about an inch. A Luthier Light does a really good job with it.

 

http://www.maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/331964-a-new-toy-to-play-with/

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You can poke around on Ebay and find endoscopes of almost any price range. For moderate price endoscopes, you just have to look at the resolution and diameter. Most of the moderate price range video endoscopes seem to have 480x640 resolution. Some claim higher resolutions, but this is often done by image interpolation to bump it up to 960x1280 or so. There also seems to be an optimum distance to view at. Too close, and it's out of focus. Too far, and you loose resolution due to distance. You can see this in some of the linked pictures above. The cleats and grain up close are quite sharp, but the ribs and neck block are too far for good resolution.

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I bought one of the cheap ones just to see how it worked.  All I was wanting to do was look for internal brands and other identifiers that might be hidden.  However one of my violins had a troublesome wolf on G# that was tamed but still left it with an unpredictable response which made me reluctant to play it.  On a whim, most likely remembering something I have read in this forum, I had another go with the endoscope, pointed it at the bass bar and found this:-

post-3387-0-44309200-1428075687_thumb.jpg

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I'll see if I can steal you one the next time I go in. :wacko:

Don't be posting any selfies, OK? :o

 

 

David, you could email Anne Houssay at the Musee de Musique in Paris and ask what model they use there. I'm sure it is top of the line.

Hmm, I don't think I want to pay top of the line prices! I was hoping there was something a couple of notches up from Doug's with a resolution of 1600 by 1400 or so.

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I have a feeling that it would be a very good tool for collectors, buyers, restorers , historians, etc.  I think that it would be best to have as slim and flexible a probe as possible.  I am chicken to even set a sound post for fear of banging up an f hole.  It would be very effective to go into the end pin hole.  Thanks for the discussion guys.

 

I just got some wood in for some big viola projects.  It fell off the face of the earth for a month or so, but as soon as it got to NCY it good here really fast.  It may very well be crap, but it was over 500mm long and really pretty so I did a midnight bored as hell why not order wood from Slovakia Hail Mary thing.  Don't worry I will never lay a knife on this stuff :-)

 

Best

 

DLB

(who got the day off from school!!!)

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There is this one www.cremonatools.com/discovery.html . I don't have it but for that price the image quality should be very good.

 

Maybe not that much better. From the product description:   "The sensor has high sensitivity and a VGA resolution which allows a clear and defined with respect for the color."    VGA is 480x 640   The pictures on the site do look ver good. Perhaps it has to do with the lense or the software

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I have one of the super cheap kind.

A major problem is orientation.

It flops around, twists around.

The orientation of the image is hard to control.

 

A thin stiff wand with a mirror to look to the side

seems to me to be the best setup.

Coming in from the end pin you can control

the position and orientation.

But I do not have one to test these ideas.

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Hey Dwight;

 

Although expensive, the scope/camera from Cremona Tools is quite good.  I believe it's listed as "Discovery" in their catalog.

Hi Jeffrey,

 

I use it all the time and the quality is "good enough". I think it's normal that everyone always wants more. The focus is manual and it's a trial and error process until you get the image sharp. If the lighting is good the color is reasonable.

 

Here's a shot full size.

 

Bruce

 

post-29446-0-38649100-1428096630_thumb.jpg

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Looks like the Cremona has a longer focus distance than the "cheapos".

Here are a couple of pics that I just took. The cleats/bass bar one is of a removed top.(not inside the instrument)

The soundpost one is inside an instrument using the lights on the camera head. I wouls normally use one of my lights, but this was just a quick shot to see what kind of resolution I could get.

post-24157-0-95210700-1428101514_thumb.jpg

post-24157-0-62166500-1428101533_thumb.jpg

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I was messing around with the video filter settings on my "cheapo" USB endoscope a bit to see if I could improve the picture quality. Here's what I could get.

 

post-24157-0-77072400-1428163718_thumb.jpgpost-24157-0-10981400-1428163730_thumb.jpg

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When I used the Cremonatools discovery camera the first time, I was somewhat disappointed about the low resolution and image quality.

The colors are somewhat faded.

Also, we had an issue with the software. It's not just plug and play, you have to register and pay to use it. I think it's called 'debut video capture', and it was asking to register again every time I used it. 

I works on a MAC too, using FaceTime, but the image is mirrored. 

 

That said, the quality of the images of the cheap ebay cameras posted above are far worse than the Discovery images.

Also, the Discovery has and adjustable focus, a great benefit

Further, the Discovery camera is at an 90 degree angle to the handle, which makes it easy to point in the right direction.

 

But, as soon as I see an usb endoscope with a resolution higher than the Discovery (which is small (640 x 480)), which will fit through an f hole I will upgrade.

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This would also be too big I think:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/1080P-Sony-2MP-CMOS-HD-SDI-Board-Camera-IR-CUT-D-WDR-3D-DNR-64x-Digital-Zoom-OSD-/221282595169?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3385787161

 

A video guy said: "Search SDI board cameras, there are a ton of them." So lets see. Regarding Cremonatools: Don´t want to pay for a software to use it.

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When I used the Cremonatools discovery camera the first time, I was somewhat disappointed about the low resolution and image quality.

The colors are somewhat faded.

Also, we had an issue with the software. It's not just plug and play, you have to register and pay to use it. I think it's called 'debut video capture', and it was asking to register again every time I used it. 

I works on a MAC too, using FaceTime, but the image is mirrored. 

 

That said, the quality of the images of the cheap ebay cameras posted above are far worse than the Discovery images.

Also, the Discovery has and adjustable focus, a great benefit

Further, the Discovery camera is at an 90 degree angle to the handle, which makes it easy to point in the right direction.

 

But, as soon as I see an usb endoscope with a resolution higher than the Discovery (which is small (640 x 480)), which will fit through an f hole I will upgrade.

Everyone always wants more. As far as getting an idea of internal construction, signatures, labels, brands etc. how much more would you need?

 

Here's a shot of a label at closer range. Even if you enlarge this image to 200% it's still reasonable.

 

Bruce

 

post-29446-0-00559800-1428228357_thumb.jpg

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Doug

Can this be used with an ipad?

To the best of my knowledge, Ipads don't have usb ports. You may be able to get some kind of usb adapter to fit the power port, but I have no idea about compatability. The software that I'm using is Amcap.

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Everyone always wants more. As far as getting an idea of internal construction, signatures, labels, brands etc. how much more would you need?

 

Here's a shot of a label a closer range. Even if you enlarge this image to 200% it's still reasonable.

 

Bruce

 

attachicon.gifGemunder label.jpg

One reason I was inquiring about higher resolution has to do with a fantasy about using a single scope to look inside, and also mount to an external stand to use as a USB microscope for crack cleaning and retouching. A uniscope. :lol:

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