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USB bandwidth and connections

frodr7
Beginner
5,466 Views

I have a question about the realsense physican connector on the D400 series (I am looking at the D435 camera). I see it is a USB C (usb 3.1) connector, but the specs page says that is USB 3.0 Type - C. is this just a typo, or does the camera run on usb 3.0 (meaning a 5 ghz bandwidth).

Does the camera developer kit come with any bundled cables? USB C to USB type A cables are available, as I have USB 3.0 ports, if the spec is correct I should be able to use these ports for the camera. If I use a USB 3.1 connection do I get access to any higher features (the 90 fps seems a lot for USB 3.0) ?

I also do not see any power requirements on the specifications, USB 3.1 can provide more current, (usb 3.0 has 1.5 amps and 3.1 is up to 5 amps), it would be great to know the requirements for the cameras.

I am asking this also as I am looking at the cameras to replace kinect V2 cameras, I have high quality USB 3.0 cables that are 5m long that allow me to use kinect V2 cameras at full 5gpps. I dont find many usb 3.0 to usb c cables, mostly charging cables for phones that dont support data, or full data rates, I am happy to make a custom convertor for myself if I know the actual specs.

What cables are people using with the D435? Has anyone extended the distance between the camera and the computer?

I know I can use remote computers and retreive the data over a network but I am trying to avoid this for various reasons.

Thanks for your time.

Fred

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25 Replies
MartyG
Honored Contributor III
1,878 Views

USB Type-C is just the technical name for USB-C. The 400 Series cameras are designed to use USB 3.0.

RealSense USB cameras always come bundled with the USB cable.

I am not aware of any speed advantage gained by using the camera in a USB 3.1 port.

The camera is powered through VBUS power of the USB port and requires 5v. The Vision Processor D4 component in turn powers the depth module. You can read the camera's full technical specifications in its data sheet document.

https://software.intel.com/sites/default/files/Intel_RealSense_Depth_Cam_D400_Series_Datasheet.pdf https://software.intel.com/sites/default/files/Intel_RealSense_Depth_Cam_D400_Series_Datasheet.pdf

Long extension cables do not typically work well with RealSense cameras due to the huge volume of camera data that is passed through the cable, using up the bandwidth. Even with high quality premium grade cables, the camera has usually not worked with cables longer than 2 m. There has been suggestion that optical USB cables may extend this range, but this is unverified by Intel lab testing.

The 400 Series cameras have not been available for long enough yet for cable recommendations to have been offered by the community, unfortunately. It is possible that someone may provide feedback as a result of seeing your message.

frodr7
Beginner
1,878 Views

This company claims these cables will work with the d series cameras.

https://www.ntcdistributing.com/usb-3-1/type-c-cables/a-to-c/usb-3-1-gen-2-a-male-to-c-male-cable-1m-2m-3m-5m/ NTC | USB 3.1 Gen 2 A Male to C Male Cables

MartyG
Honored Contributor III
1,878 Views

My opinion is that unless you purchased the highest grade cable possible then you risk the camera not working at cable lengths over 2 m. Even with a top-end cable there would be few guarantees. In over three years of supporting RealSense, I have never come across a person who has been able to make RealSense cameras work with cables longer than 2 m. If it were possible then there probably would have been some reported cases of success by now.

BHerl1
Beginner
1,878 Views

Fwiw, we are successfully using "active" USB 3.0 cables to extend the 1m cable shipped with the D435-cameras. Works nicely, even with two and three cameras.

My apologies for hijacking the thread, but I noticed that "bandwidth" is mentioned in the original post: Are there any guidelines or best-practices for calculating the USB bandwidth-requirements of the D400-cameras? (I know how to calculate size of a frame and multiply this by framerate - I am interested in actual/real-life bandwidth, including protocol-overhead, when streaming depth and rgb.)

Ultimately, we want to drive multiple D435 from a single host and it is useful to be able to understand and estimate this limitation.

Regards,

- Bjarne

MartyG
Honored Contributor III
1,878 Views

I could not find any formal processes for calculating the USB bandwidth of RealSense cameras, unfortunately. As a general rule of thumb though, bandwidth is related to resolution. The lower the resolution being used, the less bandwidth that should be used. The opposite is true for using high resolution.

One of the leaders of Librealsense, Dorodnic, also had this advice in 2016 about multi-camera use in Librealsense: "Using the same USB3 controller for more then one RealSense device is not recommended. Bandwidth of USB3 is limited and you will inevitably lose frames. If you're using separate USB controllers, you will still need a powerful PC or you will have frame drops at the kernel driver level."

BHerl1
Beginner
1,878 Views

Thanks, MartyG.

I have tested up to four cameras on a single Intel NUC running Ubuntu 16.04. The total amount of image-data must be limited by reducing resolution, framerate and channels (grayscale instead of color), but it does work without losing too many frames. I connected the cams via two separately powered USB-hubs (NUC shuts down otherwise) but I'm still rather impressed by the fact that this works when running the realsense-viewer.

Would anyone from Intel like to comment on Dorodnics advice from 2016? Does this still apply? Have you done any benchmarking in this direction? Any clues to amount of overhead in the protocol?

Regards,

- Bjarne

idata
Employee
1,878 Views

Hello BjarneG,

 

 

Thanks for your interest in the Intel® RealSense Technology.

 

 

Intel will soon publish a white paper that contains all the information regarding USB bandwidth requirements for the D400 series cameras.

 

 

We don't have a publication date yet. We will post a blog on this community when it is available.

 

 

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

 

 

Best regards,

 

 

Josh B.

 

Intel Customer Support
BHerl1
Beginner
1,878 Views

@Newnex: Thanks for info!

@Josh B: Looking fwd to reading the whitepaper.

Regards,

- Bjarne

益胡
Beginner
1,878 Views

Hi Josh:

I tryed 3 D415 at aPC(Gen 8 i7 6Core, Z370 MB(Gigabit),16G DDR4). D415 will loss frame, including RGB & depth. But at a lod dell PC(optiplex3020), which is only gen4 i5 4core,8G DDRIII, 4 units of D415 is work good, less frame loss. I want to how to choose the PC.And I also try a ASUS ROG NB which is i7 7700HQ 16G RAM, GTX1070, it also has problem.

MartyG
Honored Contributor III
1,878 Views

The 400 Series cameras work with any Intel or ARM processor, and only need a USB 3.0 port. If there is lesser performance on some machines than it may be related to the stability of the USB ports on a particular machine. You may get greater stability if you use the camera with a mains-powered USB 3.0 hub instead of plugging the camera directly into the PC.

益胡
Beginner
1,878 Views

Hi Marty:

I got the MB, which has 6 USB3.0 port A, and 1 USB type-c. I also uplug in D415 at MB USB port.https://item.jd.com/5407479.html 【技嘉Z370M D3H 主板】技嘉(GIGABYTE)Z370M D3H 主板 (Intel Z370/LGA 1151)【行情 报价 价格 评测】-京东 , I also upload MB picture.intel_corp

益胡
Beginner
1,878 Views

I got the MB, which has 6 USB3.0 port A, and 1 USB type-c. I also uplug in D415 at MB USB port.https://item.jd.com/5407479.html 【技嘉Z370M D3H 主板】技嘉(GIGABYTE)Z370M D3H 主板 (Intel Z370/LGA 1151)【行情 报价 价格 评测】-京东 , I also upload MB picture. i

益胡
Beginner
1,878 Views

I got the MB, which has 6 USB3.0 port A, and 1 USB type-c. I also uplug in D415 at MB USB port.https://item.jd.com/5407479.html 技嘉(GIGABYTE)Z370M D3H 主板 (Intel Z370/LGA 1151)

MartyG
Honored Contributor III
1,878 Views

Sometimes a camera will work better in some USB 3.0 ports on the same machine than others. So for example, if you have six USB 3.0 ports on this machine, 4 might be ok with the camera and 2 might have worse performance. Have you tried the camera in all of the USB 3.0 ports and got the same results, please?

益胡
Beginner
1,878 Views

I will check it one by one. I update later.

益胡
Beginner
1,878 Views

I check 6 USB port one by one. When I connect 4 camera combination at any 4 prot. The problem remains. At tomorrow, I will try DELL PC again.

And I also will restore the WIN10.

益胡
Beginner
1,878 Views

Add another information. I test 4 cam, depth at 720P 15FPS Z16 other setting default; RGB 720P 15 FPS RGB8 other setting default. USB cable is attetched by intel.

MartyG
Honored Contributor III
1,507 Views

Apologies for the delay in responding further. I was carefully considering your problem.

Are you using version 2.10.0 or earlier of the RealSense Viewer? I ask this because these versions have a known issue that makes the CPU load (utilization) high when streaming depth or color. The newest 2.10.1 version does not list this issue in its release notes, so maybe they fixed it.

I would suggest checking the percentage of the CPU utilization when you are running tests. If it is high, I would recommend updating to the newest 2.10.1 version of SDK 2.0 if you are not using it already, and see if it makes a difference.

益胡
Beginner
1,507 Views

Hi Marty:

I will try lastest SW. And I will feedback later

益胡
Beginner
1,507 Views

Marty:

TKS for help. I update FW to last. And update SDK to 2.10.1; this issue is done. I use 5 units, depth & RGB are all setting to 720P & 30FPS. Units work well.

So I suggest update FW 7 SDK.

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