We have a small shared office in the industrial co-working space: Factory Hub Vienna. To increase hardware production speed of the AXIOM Beta we collaborating with our hosts to utilize the in-house hardware manufacturing capabilities. This allows us to focus more on research and development and less on the hardware manufacturing side of the project.
Our second in-house hardware production run has been a success after it required longer than originally expected preparations to source component in a still pandemic rattled international chip shortage. We now have AXIOM Beta hardware in stock!
The following list shows some of the endeavours currently being worked on and contains links to further information or current source code repositories. If you find one of these areas interesting for collaboration or contributing please get in touch with us.
Some time ago we discovered the "Magewell HDMI USB3 capture Gen 2" that enables us to record uncompressed/unaltered raw 4K/UHD footage from the AXIOM Beta with 12 bit per channel colour depth and 24/25/30 FPS. On the AXIOM Beta side we generate a custom packed HDMI stream for this purpose. This allows us to create a custom recorder device with off the shelf parts that is very flexible with what storage media is used or what transcoding/backup processes are run while not recording. On the recorder we unpack the raw data again from the custom format transferred over HDMI. All tests showed the method indeed worked very well and now we are optimizing and improving the HDMI format and file handling on the receiver side as well as testing different mobile recording solutions (SBC, Intel NUC, etc.). We even successfully ran multi HDMI lane applications already with a Magewell PCIe HDMI card that supports up to 3 streams in parallel to almost triple the captured frame rate.Further Information on the Wiki
We started collecting people interested in becoming early adopters for the CNC milled metal AXIOM Beta Compact (CP) enclosure. The idea is that we optimally gather a group of 10+ people to benefit from the manufacturing prices getting slightly lower with raising quantities. Once we have a headcount we will be able to deliver an accurate estimate for the cost.Further Information on the Wiki
The graphical user interface running directly on the cameras web server (accessible over Wifi or Ethernet is progressing. With new UI elements like the Piecewise Linear Response (PLR) Mode to allow HDR captures within a single exposure being the latest addition.Source Code on GitHub
A dedicated work group is currently working on systematically profiling the image sensor. This means both the static and dynamic noise profiles but also the colour response. One rather unconventional approach is deriving the colour correction process from the spectral response curves of the image sensor combined with the spectral data of the used UV/IR cut off filter - but we are also capturing colour charts look at the raw data of course. The results will then flow into the raw recording software so the footage captured from the AXIOM Beta is already non-destructively calibrated and compensated..
Up until now the image data acquisition inside the AXIOM Beta was hard wired to be triggered by the same impulse that also provided one image being output eg. over HDMI. Everything was synced by the same clock signal essentially. Not any more! In collaboration with the Laboratoire d’astrophysique de Marseille a new approach was developed where the acquisition and output triggers and memory mapping can be controlled from the user-side (the Linux operating system essentially). This enables various rather interesting new applications like using pixel binning to reduce image resolution on the image sensor and outputting multiple frames within one big raw HDMI image. It also enables high speed bursts being written into the AXIOM Betas RAM and then "slowly" outputting them one after the other. Variable frame rates, ultra fast line scanning or slit scan modes, ... endless possibilities! These new additions will arrive in the normal firmware and wiki documentation soon.
Note that not everyone who received a kit has agreed to be published on this map.