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FireBird Dual CoaXPress 2.0 frame grabber 2xCXP12 3PE4 low profile

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FireBird CoaXPress Frame Grabber (2xCXP12-3PE4L)

Part Number: AS-FBD-2XCXP12-3PE4L

  • CoaXPress v2.1 frame grabber.
  • Supports CoaXPress speeds up to CXP-12.
  • Two connections for up to two CXP-12 cameras.
  • Fast PCI Express 4-lane Gen3 interface.
  • ActiveDMA engine – acquisition with zero CPU usage.
  • Comprehensive I/O including end bracket I/O.
  • Supports PoCXP (Power over CoaXPress).
  • Micro-BNC connectors.
  • Low profile PCI form-factor.
  • Suitable for regular PCs, small embedded PCs and 2U rack mount cases.
  • Full GenICam support (including GenTL Producer).
  • Supported by the proven ActiveSDK.
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  • Description

  • Product Specs

  • Downloads

  • Ordering Info

  • Videos


Products Specs


Ordering Info


The FireBird Dual CXP-12 low profile frame grabber is one of the latest members of Active Silicon’s state-of-the-art FireBird frame grabber family. It supports one 2-connection camera or two 1-connection cameras at up to CXP-12 for simultaneous streaming. As a low profile board it is suitable for small embedded PC enclosures and 2U rack mount cases, as well as standard PCs.

FireBird is designed for ultimate performance using Active Silicon’s proprietary DMA Engine technology, “ActiveDMA”. This technical innovation applies RISC based processor techniques and guarantees high speed and low latency image data transfers and zero CPU intervention.

CoaXPress is a leading transmission standard for high-speed imaging in professional and industrial applications, now including the faster CXP-10 and CXP-12 speeds. Each CoaXPress connection supports up to 12.5 Gbps data rates, along with device power up to 13W and device control at up to 42 Mbps – all on a single coax cable. For faster devices, the connections can be concatenated to provide multiples of the single coax bandwidth. Very long cable lengths are supported – up to 35m at 12.5 Gbps and 100m at 3.125 Gbps using Belden 1694A cable – or even longer lengths using thicker cables. Active Silicon was one of the primary authors of the CoaXPress international standard, which is hosted by the JIIA (Japan Industrial Imaging Association).

FireBird is supported by Active Silicon’s software development kit, ActiveSDK. This is available as a separate item and allows rapid system development and integration. It provides comprehensive example applications and optimized libraries, and supports a variety of operating systems via a common API, including Windows, Linux (64-bit environments) and QNX. Drivers for third party applications are also available, such as Cognex VisionPro, HALCON, Common Vision Blox, StreamPix, LabVIEW etc.

Full GenICam support is included in the drivers and this includes a GenTL Producer for data streaming as well as register accesses. Additional to functions that control the hardware, the libraries include general purpose functions for the manipulation and display of images. A separate datasheet describes ActiveSDK in detail.

Further information and compatibilities

Application notes

Specification summary

CoaXPress Interface:

Two 75 Ohm Micro-BNC connectors (also known as HD-BNC) each operate at all CXP speeds up to 12.5 Gbps. To power cameras, up to 17W is available on each Micro-BNC via Power over CoaXPress (PoCXP), with 13W available at the camera according to the CoaXPress specification.
The FireBird Dual CXP-12 low profile frame grabber supports one camera using both connections, or two cameras each using each using one connection.
LEDs on the end bracket show the link status according to the CoaXPress specification.

Buffer Memory:

Up to 2GBytes of DDR4 memory is fitted for buffering between the CoaXPress interface and the PCI Express bus.

PCI Express:

Four-lane Gen3 interface to support up to 3.4 Gbytes/sec transfer from FireBird to the PC.


The following I/O lines are available for triggers, optical shaft encoders, exposure control and general I/O:

  • 4 opto-isolated inputs.
  • 4 opto-isolated outputs.
  • 4 TTL inputs, 5V tolerant.
  • 4 TTL I/O, 5V logic.
  • 4 RS-422 inputs.
  • 4 RS-422 outputs.

All these I/O signals are provided on a 50-way header on the FireBird board.

A 15-way D-Type connector is located on the end panel bracket and allows access to a subset of the above I/O:

  • 2 opto-isolated inputs.
  • 3 TTL I/O, 5V logic.
  • 2 RS-422 inputs.
  • 1 RS-422 output.

Power Input:

An 6-way PCI Express Graphics (PEG) connector is provided to connect to a 6-way PEG connector from the PC power supply. This is only needed for PoCXP.


PCI Express Interface:

PCI Express Bus four-lane Gen3 interface to Specification Revision 3.1, with a max payload size of 512 bytes.

The FireBird Dual CXP-12 low profile frame grabber supports both Short (32-bit) and Long (64-bit) Address packets. It also generates Posted Writes for image data, thus achieving transfer rates up to 3.4 Gbytes/sec, subject to host performance.


The FireBird Dual CXP-12 conforms to v2.1 of the CoaXPress specification.



  • CE-mark for compliance with EMC EN 55022:2010 (class A) and EN 55024:2010 in accordance with EU directive 2014/30/EU.
  • RoHS compliance to RoHS3 directive 2015/863/EU.


  • EMC FCC Class A.

The printed circuit board is manufactured by UL recognized manufacturers and has a flammability rating of 94V-0.

Physical and environmental details


PCB: 168mm by 69mm.
Overall: 181mm by 69mm.



Power consumption (typical):


Storage Temperature:

-15ºC to +85ºC.

Operating Temperature:

0ºC to +60ºC.

Relative Humidity:

10% to 90% non-condensing (operating and storage).

Ordering Information

Part number Description


FireBird Dual CXP-12 low profile frame grabber with four-lane Gen3 interface and low profile PC card bracket, supporting:

  • One dual-connection camera up to CXP-12
  • Two single-connection cameras up to CXP-12


FireBird Dual CXP-12 low profile frame grabber as above, but with full height PC card bracket.


ActiveSDK, Software Development Kit for xxx operating system. (xxx standing for WIN, LIN or QNX)
Supported environments include 64-bit Windows, Linux and QNX, please see the ActiveSDK datasheet.


Micro-BNC to Micro-BNC cable x metres in length for use with CoaXPress video sources.  Made from Belden 4855R cable rated to CXP-12.

The standard stock length is 3m, 5m or 10m.

High-flex rating and much longer length cables also available – contact your distributor for details.


Micro-BNC to BNC cable x metres in length for use with CoaXPress video sources. Made from Belden 4855R cable rated to CXP-12.

The standard stock lengths available are 3m or 10m.

High-flex rating and much longer length cables also available – contact your distributor for details.


Micro-BNC to DIN1.0/2.3 ccable with x metres in length for use with CoaXPress video sources. Made from Belden 1855A cable (DIN connectors are only supported in CXP up to CXP-6 speeds).

The standard stock lengths available are 3m or 10m.

High-flex rating and much longer length cables also available – contact your distributor for details.

Video tutorial – Introduction to ActiveCapture

ActiveCapture is a consumer application for camera and frame grabber control and is provided with all FireBird frame grabbers.

FireBird CoaXPress and Camera Link frame grabbers

Frame grabbers from Active Silicon bring real-time, high-resolution image acquisition to your vision system. Learn more about Active Silicon range of frame grabbers, about possible customization and additional benefits by watching this video: