C. Cameras and Light Boxes

Quantitative image analysis using Image requires the use of a high quality TV camera and light source. You should select a high resolution solid-state (CCD) monochrome camera designed for imaging applications. There should be a way to disable any automatic gain control (AGC) or automatic black level features. The light source should provide uniform illumination, as well as stable output with normal line voltage variation.

One CCD camera that is well suited for quantitative densitometry is the Sony XC-77. Other CCD cameras to consider include the Sierra Scientific MS-4030, the COHU Model 4815-5000, and the Dage CCD-72. Sierra Scientific, COHU and Dage also sell lenses and filters. When ordering a camera, particularly the Sony XC-77, make sure it comes with all necessary components, such as power supply, tripod attachment (if needed), and documentation.

Imaging Research, creator of the highly regarded MCID biomedical image analysis system for the IBM-PC, makes a stabilized fluorescent light box that provides the uniform illumination needed for autoradiographic densitometry. They also sell several needed accessories, including the Nikon Micro-Nikkor f2.8/55 mm lens, the F-C adapter needed to connect the lens to a TV camera, and the Kaiser RS-1 copy stand. In addition, they sell Sony and Dage cameras.

For digitizing gels, Fotodyne has an unstabilized light box called the VariQuest 100 that is considerable less expensive than the one from Imaging Research. Fotodyne also distributes a program called "Collage" for imaging of electrophoresis gels, blots and autoradiograms.

For specialized applications, Perceptics has a NuBus frame grabber card that supports the 1340X1037 resolution Videk MegaPlus camera, and can supply a version of Image that supports the MegaPlus. Photometrics has a cooled CCD imaging system for the Macintosh that supports CCDs with a resolution of up to 2K X 2K. The Photometrics system, however, is not directly supported by Image . Dage-MTI has a real-time video processor (the DSP-200) that does real-time averaging and integration to enhance noisy, low intensity images. They also have an image intensifier for CCD cameras.

San Diego, California
fax: 619-277-0221

Perceptics Corp.
Knoxville, TN
fax: 615-966 9330

Dage-MTI, Inc.
701 N. Roeske Ave.
Michigan City, Indiana 46360

Photometrics Ltd.
Tucson, AZ
fax: 602-573-1944

Fotodyne Inc. Hartland, Wisconsin
fax: 414-369-7013

Sierra Scientific
Sunnyvale, CA

Imaging Research Inc. Brock University
St. Catharines, Ontario
Canada L2S 3A1
fax: 905-685-5861

Sony Corporation of America
Component Products Company
10833 Valley View St.
Cypress, CA 90630
fax: 714-229-4285