License Plate Recognition (LPR) Axis App Tested

Author: Ethan Ace, Published on Sep 08, 2014

License plate recognition (LPR) has historically been very expensive, requiring specialized hardware and software.

An embedded LPR app from ipConfigure aims to change that, turning compatible Axis cameras into all-in-one LPR systems, now with integration to Exacq.

LPR vs LPC

Many confuse LPR and LPC.

License plate capture (LPC) is the ability for a camera to 'capture' a clear image of a license plate that a human being can read. For background, see License Plate Capture Shootout 2014.

License plate recognition (LPR) is the ability for a computer to automatically recognize and display the specific characters of the license plate as text, without any human intervention. It requires LPC but is far more demanding.

LPR Test

To see how the ipConfigure app performed in real world applications, we tested it with an Axis Q1604 at both slow speeds, below 5 MPH, and high speeds, 30+ MPH, seen below:

In this report, we detail its performance in these scenes, potential issues in your application, key recommendations, and more.

******* ***** *********** (***) *** ************ **** **** *********, ********* specialized ******** *** ********.

********** *** ********************** ** ****** ****, ******* ********** **** ******* **** ***-**-*** *** *******, *** **** integration *******.

LPR ** ***

**** ******* *** *** ***.

******* ***** ******* (***) ** *** ******* *** * ********'*******' * ***** ***** ** * ******* ***** **** * human ***** *** ****. *** **********, *** ******* ***** ******* ******** ****.

******* ***** *********** (***) ** *** ******* *** * ******** to ************* ********* *** ******* *** ******** ********** ** *** license ***** ** ****, ******* *** ***** ************. ** ******** LPC *** ** *** **** *********.

LPR ****

** *** *** ************** *** ********* ** **** ***** ************, ** ****** ** **** an **** ***** ** **** **** ******, ***** * ***, and **** ******, **+ ***, **** *****:

** **** ******, ** ****** *** *********** ** ***** ******, potential ****** ** **** ***********, *** ***************, *** ****.

[***************]

Key ********

**** *** *** *** ******** **** **** ****:

  • *** ******: ** * *** *** *****, ********** *** *** **** ** ******* ****** ****** *** *** *** at *****, **** ** ****** ***** (**/**), ****** ******** ***** ** the **** ***** **** ********. 
  • **** *****: ** **-** *** ***** * ***** ****, ******** ******* to ***** **-**% **** *** *** ***** (**/** ** * half **** ******), **** *** **** ******** ***** ***** ******** of similar ********** **** ******, **** ** */* *** */*.
  • ********** ***** ** ***** ***** **** ******* ******, **** ** background *******, ******* *******, ** ********** ******* ********* (* *********** in ** ******* *** ~*** ****).
  • ****** ** ********** ******** ** ****** ***** *** ** **** with***** **** ********** *********.
  • ***** ****: ****** ** ************ ** ******** *** ********* ***********, *** **** be ********* *** ** ** *** ** ** *** ****, not ********* ****** ********, *** *** ******, ******* *** *** plate.
  • ***********: *** **** *** **** ******** *** ** *** ***.* ****, *** ****** *** *************** **** ***** *** *****, ********* ** * ****** (~*'*") *** short *** ***** *** **** **** ****** ** *** ********* set, such ** ***** ******* ****** **** ****** ** ****** *** ****.
  • ******* *********: ******* ** ****** ** ********** **** ******-* ******* ****. *** Q1602 *** ******************* *************. ***** ***** * ****** ******* **** *** *****-** (******-* with *****-** **) *** *** ***** *** ******* *** ********************.
  • ***** *********: *********** ********** ********** **** *****. ***** ***** ***** ****** ****** ******* over *** *** ** *********, *** **** *** ****** *************.******************* ***** ************ ***.

*******

*** ******** *** *** *** ** **** ** $*** ***. Combined **** ****** *******, ***** ****** ****, ********* ** ***-** ***********, ** ** the ***** ** $*,***-*,***. **** ** *** ******** ** **** other *** ******, *** *******:

  • ******** ***:********'* *** ***-** ******** * *********** ******, ******** *******, *** server ******** *******, ********* ***** ~$*,*** *** ****.
  • ******* ******:*** **** *********'* ************ **** ********** **** ****** ~$*,***, **** ******* ~$*,*** ** licensing ***** *** ****** ******, ******** $*,*** *** * ****** camera ******.
  • ********************: *********'* ******** *** ** *** ** *** ****** **** *********** *******, **** ** initial ******* **** ** ~$*,***, **** $*,*** *** **** ********** camera. **** **** *** ******* ******** **** ********* (********* ** higher), ********* ******* ** ************.

***************

******* ** *** **** ******** ** *** ****** *** *** cost ******** ** **** *** *******,***********'******** ** **** ****** ** ************ **** **:

  • *** ***** ******* ******* ******* *****, **** ** * ********* campus ** ****** *********.
  • ****** ******* ****** *******, ***** ****** ** **** ***** *********, etc.

** ***** ************, ******** ****** ** ****** ** ***********'* ********** *** *************, ***** ** ****, *** ************ *** followed.

*** ****** ****** ***** **-** ***, *** **** ** ******** makes *** ********** ** ****** ******** *** ******* ********** **** problematic. ***** ******* *** *********** ** ***** ****** ***** ****** be ****** ****** ** ****** *** ********* *** *******. ******* such ** ***** **** ********* ** *** ****** **** ****** such ** ******** *****, ******* ******* ******* ** *******, ***. 

App ***********

******* ** *********** **** *** **** ***'* ******-* ********* ** ********** slow, ***** *** *** *** *********** ** *** ***********:

  • *** ***** ****:********** ** **** ******* ** ********** ** ** ** ***, and **** ** *** ******* ******. ****** ******* ** ***** speeds ******* ** *** ********** ***** ******* ** *******, ******* the **** **** ***** ******* ** ***** **** ***** *********.
  • *** **********:**** **** **** ** *** *.*** *****, *** *** ********* images **** ** *** *** * *** **********. ******* ** this, ****** ** **** *** *****, ******** ****** ******** *****.

Narrow Field ** ****

********************* ******** ** ***** *** ****** *** **** **** ***** the **** *****, ********* ** **** * *'*" ********** ***** of ****, *** ***** * *' ******** ***** ** ****. Because ** ****, **** ********' ****** **** ******* *** **** for *** ***.

************, ******* ** **** ***** ***** ** ****, * **** overview ** *** *** ** *** ********, ********* ******* ****** if **** ** *******. **** *** ***** **** ********* ******* on *** **** ** *** *******, ** **** ** ***** in *** *******. ** *****, *** ** *** */***** ******* *** ** illumination ********, ***** *********** ** ********** ***********.

App/Camera *************

********** ******** ** ** **** *********** ** *** ***** *** Q1604.

*** ********* ***** ******* *****************'* ******** *** *********** ******* ** ****** ********.***********'* ********** ***** * ***** ******* ***** ** */*****, *** **** lowered ** **** ***. 

App **** *********

*** **** ********* ** *** *** ******** *****, **** ****** and ******* (*********** ** ***), *** ****** ***** ** ****** for *** ****** *****. **** ***** ******* *** ****** ** use:

Read ******

***** **** * *** ****** ****** ***** ******** ** ******** and *********** ***********:

******** *****

* ******** ***** ***** ***** ************** *** *********** *** ******** ***** *** *** **** *******. **** increases *** ***** ********** *****, ******* ***********, *** **** *********** reads. ***** ****** ***** ******** **** **** ******* ** ****, inaccurate ****** *** ***** (** ****) ***** ** * ***** otherwise ******** **** ***** **** ******.

******* ***-***** ****

*** *** ********** **** ***-***** **** **** ** *** ********* or **** ****** ********, **** ** **** ***** *******. ***** reads ****** ******** ** ****** ********, ** *** ***** *** also ****, *** ******* ***** ** *** ********* ** *** reads.

******* ***** *****

******* ****** *** ******* ******* ***** ********* ************ ***, ** with *** ***** ** ***-***** ****, ***** *** ******* ******** of ***-******** ********.

********** ******* *** ******* ** *** ***** ***** ************ ****** * false **** ** **** *****.

High ***** *****

***** ** ****** *** ****** ** * ******** ****, **** traffic ****** ***** ** ***.

*******

****** *** ***, ******* *** ******. ** ******** ****, ***** 80-85% ** ****** ********** **** *******. **** ********, *** ***** were *** ** ** ******** *** ** ** ** ******** for **.

*********

** *** ** ** *** **** ***** ** ***** ***** a **** ******* ******** ** ***********, ********** *******. **** ****** ******* ****** *** *** **** ******* ** *****, with ********* ********, *** ******* ******** ******** ***** *** ****.

Low ***** *****

** *** ****** *****, ** ****** ******** ** *** *****, typical ** * ********** ******* *********/*****. ** ***** ******, ******** reads ** *** ****** **** ********. *******, ******** ***** **** still ********.

** ***** ** **** *****, ***** *** ** *********** *** located ****** ** *** *******, *********** ***** *** ** ** carefully ******** ** ******* ****** ******** ** ********** *** *****, but *** ********** **, ******* *** **********.

ExacqVision *********** & ****** *** ** ****

********** **** *****, ********** ***** ****** *** **** ** **** ***** ** * watchlist, ***** *** ********* ** ** ******* ** *** ******'* video ****, *** *** ** ******** ** **** ** ******* events. **** ***** ***** *** ************* ** **** ***********, * typical ****, *** ****** ******:

*******, *** ** **********, ***** *** ** * ***** ******* the ******* ******* ******* *** *** *** *** **** ******* being **** ** *****. **** ******* ** ****** ****** ***** linked ** ********* *****, **** ** **** *******:

**** *** **** ****** ** **** ***** *****, ***** *** processing ***** ******* ******. ****** ** ** **** ** ** seconds **** ******** ** **** ********. ** ****** ******, ****** data *** **** **** *******, **** ****** ** ** *****.

***********

*** *******, ** **** *** **** ***** **** ******** ******* 5.50.3. *** ******** ** *********** **** *** * ******* *******-****.

*********** ******* *.*.***** *** ****.

Comments (27)

**** ** ** **** ***** *** ********? * ** **** many ** *** **.

** ******* **** **** *** ******* *** *** **** *** compatibility **** * ***** ****** ************ ***** ** ******** *** a ***** ******* ** *** ******.

***** *** **** **** ******** ** ******* ***** *******, ** we *** ********** **** ** ******* **** ***.

*** ******** ******* ... ******** **** ******** ****** **** ******** to ********, ******* ** *******, ***** ** ***** *** ***** conditions **** **** ** *** *** ************, *****, **** ******, FoV *** (****** ******* ********** ** **** ****). *** ** the ********** ** ** ******* *********** ****** *** *** ***** variables. *** **** *** *** ***** ** **** ** **** across *** **** ********** ** **** ********** ******** ** ****** who ***** **** ** ****** ***** ********* *********.

*'* ** ********** ** ****** *** ****** ********** *** ***** Sensing *******: **** *** ********* **** ***********.

* ****** *** **** ***********, **** ******* *** *********** **** with ** **** ***** *** * **** ** *** * was **** ***********. *'** **** *** ** ** "*** ****" compared ** ***** *******, *** ** *** ***** ************* ********* for *** ******** ****...

#***************

(* ** ** *********** *** ***********)

****,

* ** *** ***** ** *** ********* ** **** **********, but ** ******* ** **** ***** **** **** *********** ******** is ***** *** ** ** ********* ******** ************. ******* ******** LPR **** * ************-***** ****** *** **** ** * ****** with ******* ********* *********, ************ ******* **** ** ******-***-****, ****** between ****** *** ******* *****, *** ******* ******** ***** **** to ** ******* *****. ******* **** ******, **** **** ********* LPR-specific *** *******, **** ** ** **** ********* ** **** respect.

****,

**** ********

* **** ** ******* **** ****** *** ****** **-******* *** CMOS ****** **** ******* *********** ******* **** ** **** ** fast ****** ****. **** ** **** *** **** ******* ******* and **'* ****** *** ** **** **** ** ** **/* (just **** * **** ** **** ******* ** *** *******). Taking **** **** ******* * ******* **** ******* *** **** cars *** ** ****** ** **** ** ******** ******* ****** view. ************* ******* ******* **** ******* *** *********** *******, **** embedded *** ******-*****. ** ******* **** ** ********* **** ****** license ****** *** **** ** *** * ****** **** ****** shutter ******.

** ****, *** **** ****** * **** **** *****. ** you **** ** *** ************ ******* **** *** * ****** shutter? * ****** ** ********* *** ** *** ******* *** a ****** *******?

** ****, * ** *** **** **** **'** ** ******* to ******* **** ***** ******. ****, ****** ******* **** *****.

** ****, * ******* ** ***** ** **** ******* *** important ** ******* ******** ** ** ************ ******* **** ****** shutter ** **** *****. *'* *** **** *** *** ***** be ******* ** ** ******* **** ***** ** * ******* thing ** **. ** *** **** ** *********** **** *** of *** ******, **** **** ******* **** ** **** **** post *** ** ****** ** ****.

*'* ** ********* ** *** ***** **** ****** ******** ** its ****** **** ** ************ *******. ** ***** ** **** only ****** ****** ***** **** **** ******* *** ** ***** be **** ******* ** **** *** *** **** *** ****** of *** **** *** ****. ** **********, *'* ********* *** topic ** ****** ******* **** *** **** ** **** **** raised ** *** ****, ********** *** ******* ** **** *****. I ****** *** ***?

**** ** ** ******* **** *** ***** **** ** * 'regular' ******* ******* ** ****** ** ***** (**** * */***** shutter):

*** **** ** *** **** ******* ** *** *******, ** cited ** ***** * *******:

*** ******* ** **** ****** *** ***** *****. * ***'* see *** *****.

****** **** **** ****. **'* ***** **** ******* ******* ** a ***-***** ** *** ******** *** **** ********.

*'* **** ********* *** ** ***'* ** *****? * **** that ******* (*** ************) ******* *** **** ** ******* ******* problems, *** **** ******** *** **** ** ******* ******* ******** even **** *** *******. ***** *** ******** **** *** ** be **** ****** **** ******* ******* *** ** ** ** an ***** *** ************ *******?

**** **** * ******* *******, *** ******* ** ****** **** quickly *** *** ******* ***** ** * ********** ***** ****, meaning **** *** ***** ** ** **** ******* ****** *******.

**** * */***** *******, *** ***** ***** ** ******** ** .5ms, *** **** ***** *** ******* ***** ** * ******** of **** ****. *** **** ** *** ***** ****** ** a ******** ** * **?

** *** ******* ***** ******, *** **** ** ****** **** will **** *** **, *** ***** **** ***** ****, **'* not * ********* ******* *****. ***** *** ***** **** *********** at *****, *** *** **** ****** *** ***** *** ** such ******. *** ** ***** ******, ***** *** **** ** other ******, ********* ****** * **** ****** ***** **** ** even *** * **** ** *** *****.

***** *** ****, ****'* **** *******. * ***** **** ** one ******* ***** ** ******* ******* ****** ** ***** ** straight-on ** ********, **** **** ************ ***** ** ****** *** rolling ******* ******.

**** * */***** *******, *** ***** ***** ** ******** ** .5ms.

****, **** *** *** *******, * ***'* ***** **** ** how ******* ******* ******** *****. ******, *** ***** ***** ** NOT ******** ** .***, *** ** *** **** .*** ******. With * *** ** ****** ******* **** *** *** ** true, *** **** **** ** *** ******** ******* ***** ******* (usually) ** *** **** * ********* ** ***** ****** ** each *****.

**** ** ****** **** ****** ************, **** *** **** ***** * ****** ****.

*** ******* ***** **** ******* **** *** ***** ****** ** timeany *** of pixels is exposed is exactly .5ms, but not that it is the same .5ms. This time-shifting of reads is the very cause of rolling shutter artifacts.

*******, *** ******* ******** **** *'** **** ** ******* ******* involve **** ***** ****** **** ******* ** *** ******, *.*. fan ****** ********, ********* ***** *******. *** *** ****** ** not ** ********** ** *** ******* *** ******** ***** ** far ******. ** *** **** ** *** ** ******* * number ******* ** * **** **** **** ** ***** ***** then ** ***** ** **** ********.

"*** ******* ***** **** ******* **** *** ***** ****** ** timeany *** of pixels is exposed is exactly .5ms"

** ** *** *** ** *** *****?

** *** ******* ***** ** */*****, **** ***** *** ****** frame ** ******** ** **** */*****, *** *.***. ** ***** are, *** *******, **** ****, **** ***** **** *** ** captured ** *.*** / ****.***/**?

** *** ******* ***** ** */*****, **** ***** *** ****** frame ** ******** ** **** */*****, *** *.***.

*** ******* ******* **** ** **********not ****. If it ******** ***** ***** ** ** ********.

* ******* ******* ** **** *********. *** ******* ******* ******** exposes ********* ******** ** *** ***** ** ********* ****** ** time, “*******” ******* *** *****. ... *** ****** ** ******* different ******** ** ****** *****-********* ** ********* ******* ** ****, and ** **** ******* ******** **** *** ****** ** *** full *****, ***** *** ****** ***** ** *******.*******.***

*** **** ** ******** ****** **** * **** ****** ****** object ** **** ** *** *** *** ** *** ******, and ** *** ****** ** ****** ******** **** ****** **** it **** ******** ** *** ****** *** ** *** ******, then *** ****** **** ****** ***** ** ******** *********, ** the **** *****! **** **** ** *** **** ***** *** object ***** ** ***** (** ****) ** ******** *******, **** so: (******* ****, ****** *****).

*******,

* ** ****** ** ***** ****** *** ****** ****** ** 0.5ms *** * ****** ***** ** */***** *******.

***'* *** *** ***** *** **** **** (** **** **** simple). **** **** *** ***** ** ******* ** ***** ** the ******* ***** *** */***** (*.*., *** / **** = 500ns). ***/**?

* ** ****** ** ***** ****** *** ****** ****** ** 0.5ms *** * ****** ***** ** */***** *******.

********. * **** **** *** *** ******, **'* ******* *** intuitive *** **'* **** *** ****.

**** ** * ****** ***** **** *** ******** **** **** of * ******* ******* ***** **** ****** ** ****** **** that ** *** ******** ** *** ******* *****.

* ******* ******* ***** ** (*******) **** ** ****** ************, starting ** *** ***,one *** ** * ****, and very quickly*. It does this all the way to the bottom row.

*** ****** *** ********* **turned ** ****, after the ******* ******* ** *** *** ***** ****.

*** ****must ** ******* the ************ **** ****** ***** ****** *** (****), ** *** **** that *** **** *** ** *********** **** **** (*-** ************?*) ***** *** *********** *** *****. ********* *** ********** ******* *** ***** *** turning ** *** *** **** *** ******* *** ** ** least *** ****** ** ******* *****, **** *** ******* *****. So *** ***** **** **** ****** ******* **** *** ** interval *****. *****?

** ***, *'* *** **** **** * ***** ***** *******, maybe *** **** * ********** ********* * *** **** ** I *** ********** **** *** ****.

*** ******* ** *** ****** *** * **** **** ********* from * ** ************** *** *** ** *-** ************ *** **** **** ***** seems **********. *** ** ****** **** ** ******************* **** ** **** ** **** ***.

**** ****,

**** ****** *** ***** *****, *** ********** ***** ******* ** vehicle *****. ** ********** **** ****** ******** ***** ** ***** must ** ***** **** ******* ** ************ ***** ** ********** images. ***** **** ** ********** **** ** ********** ***'* ** this.

***********'* ******** *** ******** * **** ********** ********** **** **** attempts ** ******* ******** ******* ***** ********** ****** *********** **** as ****. **** ** *** *** ********* ***** *** ***** image ** ****'* ** *** ***** ******* ******* **** ****** the **** ** *** ******** ***** ** ********* *******.

* ****** ******* ** ********* *** **** ******* ****** ************, but ** *** **** ** *** * ******* ******* ** not *************** ** *** *********** ********* ******** * **** ********** method, ** *********.

** ****, * **** **** ****** ******** **-******* **** ****** shutter ******. *** *******,****://***.*********.***/********/*****-***.****?*****=***&********=**&********=**

** ****, ***** *** *** *** ****. * **** ***** paper ** ******* ******* ** ****** ******* *** ***** ************. I *** *** ********** **** *** ****** ******* ***** ** useful ** ********** **** **** ************ (** ******* ******) *** fast ********. ******* ** *** ** *** ***** ** **** article **** ****** ** ***** ******** ** **** ** ************ at *****, ** ***** *** ****** **** ****** ******** ***** be ** **** *******.

*** *** ********** *****. *** **** **** ** **** *** matter **** **** ** ******* *** *** *****. "******" *** poor ************ ** **** ****** *********** (********** ** ******* ****).

**'** ********* * ******* ** *** ******* ******* *****. *** $15,000 **** ***** *** ******* ********* * ***-****** ****** ******. The ***** *** * ****** ***** ****** ** ***** $*,*** in ****** *** ********** **** ******** **** ***** $*,*** ** licenses *** ****** ****** *** ******* ********.

** ***

** **** ** * **** *********** ******* *.*. ********* **** moving ******, *** *** ******* ***** ***** ** ** * core **********, * **** ** ***** **** *** * **** I ***** ** * *********** **** **** **** ****** ******* lots ** ******* *** *******. **** *** **** ** ***** the ******.

**** *** *** ***** **:

****://***.**************.***/**********-***-******-**-****-*****-*******-*******/

****'* * **** *********** ***** **** **** ****:

*****, *** **** ********* ***** ** **** *** ******* *** objects ****** ********** **** - ****** *** ********** ** ********* of ***** ** ****. ** ****, **'* *** ********** ** even '****' ****** ****.

**'** **** ********** **** *** **** * ***** ** *** UAE *** ***** *** ******* ********/******* ***** **** **** * system ********** ***** ** ********** *** ***** ****** *** ** US ***** ***. **** **** *** ******* ****** ** ******* checkers *** *** ****** *** ******* **** ** **** ****** up ** ******. ********** ***** ***** ** *** ***** *********** side, *** ******* ** ****** **** *** *****. *** ****** needs ** ** *********** ******* ** ********* *** *** ******. The ******* ********** ******** ** **** **** ** ****, ********* overview, **** *** * ****** ** **** *** ** *** casing. ********, *** ******** *****'* **** ***** ** *** *** does *** *** ****.

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