Standard for Measurement and Presentation of Specifications for Machine Vision Sensors and Cameras

The European Machine Vision Association (EMVA) defines a standard for the measurement of machine vision sensors and cameras. The goal of this standard is to make it much more easier for buyers to decide which camera or sensor to choose.

At the moment, the specifications of cameras for machine vision applications can not be compared between different manufactures. Most of the times, the measurement procedures are not described and if there are some drawbacks of the system, the manufacturer can decide not to publish the measurement results that will show this.

The EMVA 1288 standard is published in Version 3 now, so there has already been a lot of work invested and it can be said, that it has been well tested. The result of the standardized measurement procedure are reliable and can tell a lot about the system under test.

The standard describes the test setup, the test procedure, the algorithms to calculate and the reporting. The basic ideas come form the photon transfer method. The very basic unit of light energy is the number of photons hitting a pixel within the exposure time. A function of digital value against the number of photons can already give a lot of information. Combined with the other methods, a test according to the standard gives these numbers:

• Quantum efficiency
• Non-Linearity-Error
• Dynamic Range
• Saturation capacity

• Dark Signal NonUniformity (DSNU)
• Signal to Noise ratio (SNR)
• Pixel Response NonUniformity (PRNU)
• Dark Noise
• Dark current


The standard is established by the EMVA, but also the JIIA (Japanese Imaging Industry Association) and the AIA (Automated Imaging Association, USA) have signed a cooperative standards accord. So the European standard is also a Japanese and American standard.


The standard can be downloaded here:

EMVA: European Machine Vision Association
JIIA: Japan Industrial Imaging
AIA: Automated Imaging Association




EMVA result


EMVA result


EMVA result

Spectogram (Detail)

EMVA result