Laser Cutter camera set up

I would like to set up a camera that can be monitored live on a TV screen whilst laser is cutting/engraving.
Is there a set up or product you can recommend for this type of thing?
Attached is a picture of laser bed etc and opening door.
Would be ideal if were wide angle to capture the entire bed.
Trying to minimise looking directly into the machine itself, and rather look at a monitor on the wall directly behind machine


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Hi Luke,

Welcome to the forum :slightly_smiling_face:

This should be pretty doable without too much setup using a Raspberry Pi provided you want the camera and TV monitor connected via wires and aren’t streaming video.
Once video needs to be streamed over the network things get more difficult.

You can use a specialty Pi camera module like the wide angle camera module or just any USB webcam.

Then using the built in camera libraries that are covered in more detail in our guide
entering libcamera-hello -t 0 into the terminal should get the Pi to stream video continuously to the desktop which you can view with any HDMI monitor you have handy.

There is a global silicon shortage at the moment that is impacting Raspberry Pi boards, but provided you aren’t streaming over a network or doing anything advanced a lower specced Pi like the 3A+ should be sufficient to stream video to your monitor.


Hi Luke,

There are some hardware incompatibilities that are still being worked out in the latest Raspberry Pi ‘Bullseye’ release which means some cameras may not work with the new camera library functions when running older Raspberry Pi boards like the Pi 3A+.

There is a software solution to this, you just need to use the older ‘Buster’ release and then the Raspistill commands covered in our older camera guide will work fine.

This guide covers how to flash buster.

This guide covers how to use the older camera library commands.

I’ve tested a Pi3A+ today with Buster and a wide angle camera module.
You can view a stream from the camera using the terminal command.
raspistill -p 100,100,640,480 -t 0
You can then kill the video window using CTRL + C or CTRL+SHIFT+Q in the terminal.


Thanks Trent. Worked well.

Is there a way to resize (fullscreen) the camera vision screen?



Hi Luke,

Unfortunately, you cant grab the edges of the window to resize them but you certainly can in the command (note that higher resolutions will impact the performance of the Pi)

Another option that will increase the size without the performance hit would be changing the overall output resolution of the Pi > Navigate to the start menu > Preferences > Screen resolution > Then lower it a bit to make the window bigger.