Thursday, July 10, 2008

A NIC for GigE

One of the attractions of GigE cameras is the ability to plug them straight into the network interface card in your PC, or even laptop. While that’s not bad, I hear that it’s also not the way to maximize the performance of your system. It seems that to realize the full potential of GigE you should be using an appropriate card, such as this GigE card from National Instruments, or the equivalent from Matrox Imaging.

At an eye-popping $895 for the NI card, this seems to run counter to the idea of Gigabit Ethernet eliminating the framegrabber. In fact it might make one look again at
CameraLink. But if you really like the new GigE cameras that everyone’s rolling out, I suggest you read this paper, “Why GigEVision™ needs a dedicated NIC” from Matrox.

1 comment:

Linescanner said...

It looks like the $895 NI board is for PXIexpress and not a standard PCI NIC card, which might explain the price. They have a PCIe card for much less.

On a partially unrelated note, I find it very frustrating that Matrox doesn't post prices directly on their website, like NI does. When I'm researching components for a system, this makes 'apples to apples' comparisons much more difficult. Do you also run into this, B Grey?