High Quality Camera with Auto-focus for RPi

Hi all,

We’re currently using the 6mm Wide Angle Lens with the HQ Camera, but just wondering: are there any recommendations on a high quality camera / lens with auto-focus? For example, what sort of cameras do they use on roving robots etc.?

Thanks so much.

Hi Kirk,

I think you might be a bit out of luck on this one. I did some searching, but came up fairly empty handed - that’s even if the Pi HQ camera could be configured to drive an autofocus.

I did find this interesting project for it though:

hmm i found this …if any help…??

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Thanks for that link @Oliver.

Thanks also @brian86770. I came across that site too - as the page boasts,

Therefore, the top search results always lead you back to Arducam…

I did look with some interest at their 12MP with Motorised Focus. Very interesting! :thinking:


seems not much round the web for the focus gear…

My thoughts too. I thought this sort of kit would be available, especially for those that are into robotics??

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Well, for machine vision applications you generally don’t need the quality of lens available in a C/CS mount or the resolution. A smaller, more robust camera with fixed focus is usually better for those applications, like the Pi Camera V2:

They can get away with fixed focus on tiny cameras because with tiny apertures and very short focal lengths the effective depth of field is very large. See:

The other challenge is the mechanical complexity and manufacturing cost. Checkout this disassembly/repair video for a DLSR lens - look at all those gears! There’s a stepper motor in there too!:

Compare that to the mechanical complexity of a small phone camera with autofocus:

And the HQ camera has only been out about 6 months - ArduCam will probably come up with something (looks like they’ve been doing some experimentation judging by that page) but for now it’s manual only. The commercial viability will be key - I suspect it’d be more cost effective and viable to design a lens adapter to a DSLR mounting standard - though it’s certainly a bit of an edge case scenario because for the money, by the time you get lenses you’re probably better off getting a used DSLR with video out.

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