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Embedded Vision and Multi-Camera system Setup: How to connect multiple cameras with FIREFLY to PC

XIMEA xiX cameras can be easily connected into multi-camera vision systems over Firefly and a PC

XIMEA offers xiX line of compact and high speed cameras suitable for embedded vision and especially for Multi camera setups.

While the main approach is to interconnect multiple of these cameras directly through the xSwitch platform, also included in the portfolio of options are the PCIe (PCI Express) camera versions with so-called Firefly connectors.

Contrary to FPC (Flexible printed circuit) cable the Firefly enables lengths of 1 to 3m with copper (ECUE type) and 5m to 100m with fiber (PCUO type with MTP trunk cable).

In cases where instead of xSwitch a connection to PC is required, there are several ways how to set up a system divided into two approaches:
Copper
Fiber

Copper Firefly Cables

This is the succession of components needed for a setup with copper cables.
It starts with the camera:

1. xiX camera with Firefly connector

Note: Choose the camera part numbers ending with FF

2. CBL-ECUE-X4G3-xM0 - Firefly cable

Note: The low x in the cable part number stands for 1, 2 and 3m.

3. ADPT-MX-X4G3-FF-IPASS - Adapter from Firefly to Ipass

With CBL-ADPT-PWR-0M10 + power supply

Note: another option is ADPT-MX-X4G3-FF-M2-AVM - Only for Auvidea JN30 Jetson Nano Carrier board

4. Copper or optical iPass cable



5. Host adapter for Gen3 x4



Direct Firefly connection

Camera with Firefly connector + Firefly cable + Firefly host adapter


Fiber optics MTP Cables

This is the sequence of components for a setup with Fiber cables.
In this case, the cameras have to be powered using the GPIO connectors on the camera.

Note: To power and Trigger/Synchronize the cameras additional cables are needed available under following numbers:
A03ZR03ZR28H51B (5cm), A03ZR03ZR28H102B (10cm), A03ZR03ZR28H152B (15cm), A03ZR03ZR28H203B (20cm), A03ZR03ZR28H254B (25cm), A03ZR03ZR28H305B


The details for power supply and synchronization or triggering are shown HERE
The connection starts with the camera:

1. xiX camera with Firefly connector

Note: Choose the camera part numbers ending with FF

2. CBL-PCUO-X4G3-0M10 - Optical cable

Warning: This is a fragile part that needs to be fixed and encapsulated.

3. MECH-OPA-S-ALIGNED - Optical patch adapter

Note: This is the Aligned version.

4. CBL-MTP-X4G3-FF-xM0 - MTP fiber cable

Note: The x stands for 5, 10, 20, 30, 53 or 100m.

5. HA-1P-X4G3-MTP-X8G3 - Host adapter card for MTP cables


Note: X1, X2 or X4 - represent the number of ports allowing cameras to be connected in parallel.

iPass to MTP connection - Gen3 x4 lanes

Camera with iPass connector + MTP adapter + MTP cable + MTP host adapter

iPass to MTP connection - Gen3 x8 lanes

Camera with iPass connector + MTP adapter + MTP cable + MTP host adapter