Something for Nothing

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Screen Capture from DVI Using USB

Posted by techie on July 5, 2006

I just ran across a new product that takes a DVI(or VGA) input using your USB port. It is called DVI2USB and comes from a company called Epiphan (http://www.epiphan.com). It seems like a pretty simple product to implement and capture. They have a large set of users from the tech industry and also it seems like a lot of government and military users. This is a good sign if you’re looking for ongoing support. I also like that all the cables you should ever need are included in the package:

The DVI2USB product ships with a user guide and the six (6) items shown above:

* One DVI cable (male to male)
* One VGA cable (male to male)
* One DVI-to-VGA converter (male to female)
* One USB mini type B
* One Power Supply
* One VGA Y-splitter

It does require a USB 2.0 interface, but that should be assumed if you are looking for high quality video. In fact, take a look at http://www.epiphan.com and you’ll see they have some examples of video they’ve captured that is excellent quality. My favorite was when they captured the xbox game. That’s pretty sweet considering its all going over usb.

Another interesting feature is that it can support 2 signals simultaneously. Here’s their FAQ on it:

Can I connect two or more DVI2USBs to one computer and capture signals simultaneously? What is the resulting rate of capture for each DVI2USB?

Yes, you can connect two or more DVI2USB devices and capture multiple signals simultaneously. You will need to run the DVI2USB application for each DVI2USB device attached. However, you will notice a significant difference in the frame rate for each additional active DVI2USB. The higher the performance of your computer, the better the possible frame rate. Our internal testing on a Dell Dimension 2400 (Celeron 2.4GHz processor, 512mb RAM) at 1024×768 with two DVI2USB, yielded average frame rates of 7.1 fps and 4 fps. In contrast, a Pentium 4, 3.0Ghz desktop with 512MB of RAM at 1024 x 768 yielded average frame rates of 9.52 fps and 5.85 fps. Please note that you must start the DVI2USB application after connecting each DVI2USB.

It’s nice to see more vendors getting into these specialized products. The only problem in the future will be sifting through all the very specialized products.

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2 Responses to “Screen Capture from DVI Using USB”

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