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What’s New in Low Vision Technology 2008 CCTV Video Magnifiers Trends and Considerations. Robert McGillivray Certified Low Vision Therapist The Carroll Center f/t Blind Mass Commission f/t Blind. PowerPoint Presentation Downloadable at:. www.carroll.org/resources/. Plan .

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what s new in low vision technology 2008 cctv video magnifiers trends and considerations
What’s New in Low Vision Technology 2008CCTV Video MagnifiersTrends and Considerations

Robert McGillivray

Certified Low Vision Therapist

The Carroll Center f/t Blind

Mass Commission f/t Blind

powerpoint presentation downloadable at
PowerPoint PresentationDownloadable at:


  • Explore some newer and unique devices
  • Discuss characteristics and considerations
  • Identify trends
  • Review resources
traditional cctv video magnifiers
Desktop systems

Variable Magnification

Color, W/B, B/W

Large Field of View


Increased reading speed

Increased duration

Reduced visual effort

Comfortable working position

Traditional CCTV Video Magnifiers
trends in video magnifiers desktop units
Trends in Video Magnifiers:Desktop Units
  • Integrated LCD displays
    • Color, Auto Focus
    • Adjustable height screens
    • Faster Response Rates
    • Screen sizes: Standard, Widescreens
  • Transportable Classroom, distance viewing
  • Laptop Compatible systems
trends in video magnifiers compact systems
Trends in Video Magnifiers: Compact Systems
  • Compact/pocket video magnifiers
    • New features, designs
    • Variable Magnification
    • Batteries improvements
  • Ultra-compacts
    • Small size
    • Replacement for Optical magnifier?
    • Less Expensive
newer desktop video magnifiers integrated lcd displays
Newer Desktop Video MagnifiersIntegrated LCD Displays
  • Available from all major vendors
  • Sizes: 17” to 22” + with WS
  • Adjustable height screens
  • High contrast
  • Flicker free
  • Improved response rates
  • Well received by consumers
newer desktop video magnifiers integrated lcd systems considerations
Newer Desktop Video MagnifiersIntegrated LCD SystemsConsiderations
  • Image retention problems for some at low magnification
  • Costs
  • Stand by mode
  • Cleaning the screen
newer desktop video magnifiers lcd display aspect ratios
Newer Desktop Video MagnifiersLCD Display Aspect Ratios
  • Bigger screens gives more magnification?
  • Not necessarily!
  • Standard Aspect 4:3 (older TVs, current & older CCTVs)
  • Widescreen (WS) aspect 16:9 (newer designs)
  • Comparing Standard to WS, apples to oranges
newer desktop video magnifiers lcd display aspect ratios10
Newer Desktop Video MagnifiersLCD Display Aspect Ratios
  • Screens are measured diagonally
  • A 22” WS will give a wider image than a 19” Standard but may be equal in screen height
  • Limited vertical magnification, only stretching the width
  • Characters may be wider and more spaced but not much taller.
newer desktop video magnifiers lcd display aspect ratios11
Newer Desktop Video MagnifiersLCD Display Aspect Ratios
  • Currently both ratios are available so be cautious in thinking a larger screen will give you a larger image.
  • Soon it is expected that only widescreen systems will be available. That may reduce the confusion.
newer desktop video magnifiers integrated lcd displays12
Newer Desktop Video MagnifiersIntegrated LCD Displays
  • Freedom Scientific Topaz
  • Telesensory Apex
  • Enhanced Vision Merlin LCD
  • Magnisight Journey Optelec
  • ClearView Plus
  • HumanWare Extend
  • Vision Technology Inc.
  • Others
compact video magnifiers newer features
Compact Video Magnifiers:Newer Features
  • Variable Magnification
  • Replaceable Batteries
  • Longer battery life
  • Image Freeze
  • Color Select
  • Light off mode: for reading cell phones, other displays
  • Writing Cameras
  • Distance Viewing
  • Smaller Designs
compact pocket video magnifiers
Compact/Pocket Video Magnifiers
  • Advantages
    • Wide field of view
    • Image at display level
    • Use at arms-length
    • Reverse contrast available
    • Cell phone, PDA displays!
    • Short-term writing tasks
    • Kids reading comic books under the blanket
enhanced vision nemo
Enhanced Vision Nemo
  • 4 inch screen
  • Brightest in all modes
  • 4.5X to 9X Magnification
  • Freeze Frame
  • Integrated, rechargeable Batteries
  • 3 Hour battery Life
  • 6 Viewing modes
  • Cost: $795.00
freedom scientific opal
Freedom ScientificOpal
  • 4 inch display
  • Weight: 10 ounces
  • 4.5X to 9X magnification
  • Output; TV, USB
  • 6 viewing modes
  • Integrated Lithium Ion rechargeable battery
    • Run time: 4 hours
    • Charge time: 3.5 hours
  • Cost: $795.00
optelec compact
Optelec Compact +
  • 4 inch screen
  • Replaceable, rechargeable AA batteries
  • 5X to 10X Magnification
  • Retractable Handle
  • 3 hour battery life
  • 5 viewing modes
  • Lights off modes
  • Freeze frame
  • Cost: $795.00
gw micro senseview
GW Micro SenseView
  • Thinnest of the 4 inch screen systems
  • 5 hour battery life
  • Integrated rechargeable battery
  • Battery meter
  • 4X to 22.5X magnification
  • Freeze frame
  • 6 Viewing modes
  • 4 brightness levels
  • Limited range of focus
  • Cost: $825.00
compact systems with distance capabilities
Compact systems with distance capabilities
  • Near and distance capabilities
  • Read mail, products on a shelf and get a better view of distance object.
  • Allows users to see an object that is at distance close up on the screen
  • Limited clarity and magnification at a distance
gw micro senseview duo
GW Micro SenseView Duo
  • Two cameras
  • Stores up to 20 images
  • 3X to 13X magnification
  • Lights off mode
  • Image panning
  • 7 Viewing modes, 4 Brightness levels
  • 4.5 hour battery life, integrated, rechargeable
  • Cost: $1299.00
ash technology quicklook focus
Ash Technology Quicklook Focus
  • Has four ranges of focus; 3 near, one distance
  • Auto or manual focus
  • Advanced settings menu
  • 3X to 18X magnification
  • 4 hour battery life
  • Integrated rechargeable battery
  • Cost: $995.00
sub compact systems looky
Sub-Compact SystemsLooky
  • 3.5 inch screen
  • Magnification between 3X to 8X depending on distance from object
  • Replaceable, rechargeable AA batteries
  • 1.5 hour battery life
  • Folding handle/stand
  • Small enough to fit shirt pocket
  • Handle
humanware smartview pocket
HumanWare SmartView Pocket
  • 3.6 inch screen
  • 3X to 9X
  • S-video output
  • Light weight: 4.9 ounces
  • Centralized camera
  • 2.5 hour rechargeable battery
  • Cost $615.00
ultra compacts
Ultra Compacts
  • 1.8 inch screens
  • Very limited field of view
  • Limited contrast enhancement
  • Smaller to carry
  • Affordable?
  • Compare with optical devices
ultra compact clarity i vu
Ultra CompactClarity i-vu
  • 1.8 inch screen
  • 3 hour battery life
  • 5X-20X magnification
  • Color and inverse color modes only
  • Auto shut off
  • Freeze frame
  • Cost: $279.00
ultra compact humanware nano
Ultra CompactHumanWare nano
  • 1.8 inch screen
  • 3 hour battery life
  • 5X-20X magnification
  • Color and inverse color modes only
  • Auto shut off
  • Freeze frame
  • Cost: $259.00
ultra compact ila dino view
Ultra CompactILA Dino View
  • 1.8 inch screen
  • 3 hour battery life
  • Replaceable rechargeable AAA batteries
  • 5X-20X magnification
  • Color and inverse color modes only
  • Auto shut off
  • Image capture software allows image to be uploaded to computer
  • Video out to TV
  • Freeze frame
  • Cost: $224.95
classroom desktop video magnifiers features
“Classroom” Desktop Video MagnifiersFeatures
  • Full Size screen
  • Full Features
  • Remote Controllable
  • Near and Distance Viewing
  • For Classroom, Conference or In- Service Training Activities
  • Transportable “Luggable”
  • AC or optional battery
near and distance viewing
Near and Distance Viewing
  • Near tasks
    • Desktop: Reading, writing, note taking
    • Inspection, work tools
  • Distance tasks
    • Objects on display
    • Audio visual displays
    • Limited board work
classroom desktop video magnifiers near and distance
“Classroom”Desktop Video MagnifiersNear and Distance
  • Clarity Deskmate
  • Enhanced Vision Acrobat LCD
  • Freedom Scientific Onyx Deskset
clarity deskmate
Clarity Deskmate
  • Near, intermediate and distance viewing
  • 17-inch LCD display
  • Auto focus
  • Color, W/B, B/W
  • Remote controls
  • Optional battery pack Advanced modes
  • Lifetime warranty
  • $2595.00
vision technology inc view
Vision Technology Inc.VIEW
  • Near, intermediate and distance viewing
  • Folds ups into carrying case
  • Precision setup
  • $3440.00
  • Weight 15 pounds
  • Battery/Charger option
  • 2 hours
enhanced vision acrobat lcd
Enhanced VisionAcrobat LCD
  • 19 inch display
  • Sliding camera arm
  • Camera rotates 340 degrees
  • 7 Viewing modes
  • Advanced features, windowing , lines, etc.
  • Cost: $2395.00
freedom scientific onyx deskset
Freedom ScientificOnyx Deskset
  • Swing arm model
  • 17 inch system (12 pounds)
  • 19 inch system (15.4 pounds)
  • Distance View, document view, self view
  • Remote control
  • Rolling carrying case
  • Cost for 17”: $2595.00
  • Cost for 19”: $2795.00
laptop compatible video magnifiers42
Laptop Compatible Video Magnifiers
  • Most students use laptop computers
  • Video magnification could be helpful
  • Portable camera using notebook display
    • Computer, read, write, see at a distance
  • Classroom, Conferences, In-Service Training
  • On-site activities; reports, forms, assessments
advanced laptop compatible systems
AdvancedLaptop Compatible Systems
  • Special modified software/systems
    • More acceptable image
    • Visual enhancement features
    • Keyboard controlled
    • USB powered cameras
      • USB operation gives portability
      • Some drain on laptop battery
  • Requirements
    • High performance computer
    • High performance video card
the technology
The Technology
  • Video Camera
    • CCTV video magnifiers, others
  • Camera Power Source
    • USB, Battery, AC
  • Laptop Computer
    • High End
  • USB Interface/Adaptor
  • Video Imaging/Capture Software
    • Simple, Advanced, Complex
  • Advanced Software Features
    • Visual Enhancement
    • Controlling Software
      • Mouse
      • Keyboard
      • Combination
    • Camera control by keyboard
      • Magnification
      • Modes, colors
      • Markers
    • Setting views/presets, windows, enhanced images
    • Saving images
considerations laptop lcd displays
Displays not tuned for high contrast

Display video response rates vary, may be a concern

Software results in a slight image delay as the camera or target moves

ConsiderationsLaptop LCD Displays
  • Image Quality: Camera
    • Modes: B/W, W/B, HC, color
    • Range of magnification: low, high
    • Depth/range of focus
    • Ambient lighting: material, screen
  • Image Quality: Computer
    • Brightness level
    • Contrast
    • Image retention; static and moving
    • Processing display
    • Images of poor contrast material
  • User Interaction
    • Technical control of software
    • Aiming the camera, following continuous text can take a good deal of effort
    • Desk space limitations
    • Transporting, large cart or case
distance viewing issues
Distance ViewingIssues
  • Information gathering
  • Classroom activities
  • Short term tasks
  • Image captures
  • Intensive board work, distracting
  • Magnification/distance
distance viewing
Distance Viewing
  • Field of View deceases as Magnification increases
  • Magnification is limited when viewing at a distance
compatibility with screen magnification software
Compatibility with Screen Magnification Software
  • Without compatibility a screen magnifier will also enlarge the images already enlarged by the CCTV video camera
  • Compatibility allows a split screen of the computer image and the video magnifier image. Each is controlled separately
  • Compatibility is within the design of both software programs being able to sync together
dolphin screen magnification software
Dolphin Screen Magnification Software
  • Lunar, Lunar Plus, SuperNova
  • Compatible with a range of digital CCTVs
    • Optelec ClearNote
    • LVI Student
    • Ash Tech OPTi
  • May need upgrades
zoomtext magnifier reader software
Zoomtext Magnifier/Reader Software
  • ZT V9.1
  • CCTV USB compatibility
  • Split view allows simultaneous view of CCTV image and ZT
  • Vendors have implemented
    • Optelec ClearNote
    • LVI Student
    • Ash
    • Clarity
    • HumanWare Graduate
magic screen magnification software
MAGic Screen Magnification Software
  • MAGic Eye-Merge
  • Available for Freedom Scientific Onyx cameras
  • Allows split screen features
laptop compatible systems
Laptop Compatible Systems
  • Clarity PCMate
  • Ash Opti Systems
  • Optelec Clearnote
  • Optron I-Stick
  • LVI MLS Student
  • Freedom Scientific Onyx PC
  • HumanWare Graduate
clarity pcmate
Clarity PCMate
  • Clarity camera
  • Capture software
  • USB 2 powered
  • Requires 2 USB 2 ports
  • Camera mounts
  • Desktop and distance viewing
  • PIP, full screen
  • $2595.00
clarity pcmate59
Clarity PCMate
  • Powered by USB
  • Requires 2 USB 2 ports
    • Sequence, setup
  • Remote control camera
  • Keyboard controlled software
ash freedom vision opti verso
AshFreedom Vision OPTi Verso
  • Desktop and distance
  • Magnification: 2X-20X, 80X digital
  • Built in 6 hours rechargeable battery
  • Keyboard controlled zoom
  • Keyboard controlled software
  • $2495.00
ash freedom vision opti lite
AshFreedom Vision OPTi Lite
  • Prism mini desktop design
  • Integrated USB 2.0 camera, battery, software
  • 4X to 40X magnification (~screen)
  • Near tasks only
  • Manual focus
  • Relative distance Magnification
  • Weight 2.7 pounds
  • Built in 10 hours rechargeable battery
  • $1795.00
opti software
OPTi Software
  • Unique OPTi interface toolbar with keyboard control
  • Laptop or Desktop PC compatible
  • Fully adjustable image size horizontally and vertically
  • Enhanced positive and negative image
  • Choice of eight high contrast foreground and background semi-colors
  • Full control of video display parameters
  • Image capture and save facility
optelec clearnote
Optelec ClearNote
  • Desktop and distance viewing
  • 2.4GHz, USB 2 Laptop compatible
  • Advanced Software
  • ZoomText compatible
  • 3X to 46X
  • Integrated 5 to 6 hour battery
  • $2695.00
optelec clearnote64
Optelec ClearNote
  • Ease of camera aiming
  • Built in Light source
  • Camera control positioning
  • Keyboard controlled software
  • Keyboard controlled camera
  • Dolphin, ZoomText compatible
optron istick
Optron: iStick
  • New to North America
  • Desktop, distance viewing
  • Folding swivel arm
  • TwistCam ring camera
  • Control box
  • Exchangeable, rechargeable battery
  • Up to 3 hours
  • Video streaming capture
lvi mls student addition
LVI: MLS Student Addition
  • USB powered camera
  • Keyboard controlled camera
  • Keyboard controlled software
  • Dolphin, ZoomText compatible
  • Desktop, distance viewing
freedom scientific onyx pc edition
Freedom Scientific Onyx PC Edition
  • Swing arm and flex arm models
  • Remote control
  • MAGic with EyeMerge software included
  • Camera can be powered by USB port
  • Distance, desktop, self view modes
  • Cost: $2895.00
humanware graduate
HumanWare Graduate
  • Swing Arm
  • Distance & Desktop Modes
  • ZoomText Compatible
enhanced vision
Enhanced Vision
  • Under development
    • USB adapter for all EV cameras
    • Specialty Software
    • Screen Magnifier Compatibility
  • Tasks
  • Setup: space, connections, sequence
  • Transportation: weight, size
  • Laptop integration: software, applications
  • User interaction: approaches, uses, trouble shooting, training
  • Multi Tasking: sequences, controls, reliability , concepts
video magnifiers trends
Video Magnifiers Trends
  • Continued changes, advances, innovation
  • LCD displays;
    • more common, smaller and faster
  • More Laptop compatibility systems
  • U3 smart tech USB Drives
    • Run software, save preferences, store data
  • Wireless cameras; Near and distance
  • Digital cameras/cell phones input/output
  • Electronic images and enhancements
  • Internet integration
  • Innovations from UK, Europe, Asia
  • Response to the use of low vision services, devices and technology can vary with each individual.
  • Knowledge of the features, options and uses of technology is just a starting point
  • Proper assessments may prove useful
assessment factors
Assessment Factors
  • Evaluation of visual functioning
  • Response to low vision approaches
  • Analysis of tasks, task specific
  • Required performance level
  • Integration of systems
  • Training
  • Trial of system; speed, duration, productivity
  • Modifications
  • Provision
newer products and technology worth exploring
Newer Products and Technology Worth Exploring
  • Bierley Shoppa Portable Video Magnifier
  • Clarity Portable Systems
  • Reinecker Products
  • FOCI iDex
  • Tagarno Live Reader
  • Other European Companies
  • SightMate LV 920
bierley shoppa
Bierley Shoppa
  • Portable: hand scan or mounted camera
clarity portable systems lynx rio
ClarityPortable SystemsLynx, Rio

Flexible Portable Designs

reinecker reha technik
Reinecker Reha-Technik
  • New Advances in North American Market
  • LS&S
foci idex
  • Laptop system and PC compatible
  • ZoomText, SuperNova compatible
  • Distance and Desktop Modes
tagarno live reader
TagarnoLive Reader
  • See it, Touch it, Hear it
new headborne low vision system
New Headborne Low Vision System
  • Eyetonomy SightMate LV920
  • www.vuzix.com/medical/lv920.html
  • Zoom at near: 3X optical, 4X digital
  • Zoom at distance: 0.5X to 6X
  • Edge contrasting, Inverse mode
  • Sleek design, 8 ounces
  • $3499.00
  • Not yet available for purchase or review
to learn more visit the exhibit area
To Learn More Visit the Exhibit Area
  • Unique opportunity to see and compare technology
  • Review products with vendor
  • Ask competitor about products and alternatives
  • Explore other options
  • Get case studies, examples

Clarity Solutions www.clarityusa.com

Enhanced Vision www.enhancedvision.com

Freedom Scientific www.freedomscientific.com

Freedom Vision www.freedomvision.net

Humanware www.humanware.com

Magnisight www.magnisight.com

Optelec www.optelec.com

Telesensory www.telesensory.com

Vision Technology www.visiontechnology.com


ABISee Inc. www.abisee.com

Bierley Associates www.bierley.com

Eschenbach www.eschenbach.com

Independent Living Aids www.independentliving.com

Innoventions Inc. www.magnicam.com

Optron www.optronusa.com

OVAC www.ovac.com

LS&S, LLC www.LSSproducts.com

Lowvision.com www.lowvision.com

Tagarno www.tagarno.com

Video Eye Corp. www.videoeye.com

video magnifiers uk europe
Video Magnifiers: UK, Europe

Ash Technologies




Low Vision International


New Vision Tech www.newvisiontechnology.com

Reinecker Reha-Technik www.reineckerreha.com/



resources reviews
Resources: Reviews

Access World

American Foundation for the Blind


Extensive Equipment and Technology Reviews

Including CCTV Video Magnifier Reviews by:

Lee Huffman

Carol Farrenkopf

Bryan Gerritsen

resources web sites
Resources: Web Sites

Texas School for the Blind:

Adaptive Technology Links


New York Institute for Special Education:

Blindness Resource Center


Screen Magnifiers Homepage



resources web forums
Resources: Web Forums

Closing the Gap Forums

Video Magnification:

The good, the bad and the future


bob mcgillivray
Bob McGillivray
  • robert.mcgillivray@carroll.org
  • bobmac@carroll.org
  • www.carroll.org
  • 617-969-6200 X229