Archived: NI-IMAQ for USB Cameras

Publish Date: Mar 04, 2019 | 100 Ratings | 3.04 out of 5 | Print | 51 Customer Reviews | Submit your review


This document has been archived and is no longer updated by National Instruments.

Starting in August 2009, Vision Acquisition Software officially supports DirectShow imaging devices as part of the IMAQdx driver. You may download the driver at the following location: Vision Acquisition Software 2009

NI-IMAQ for USB Cameras driver software allows users to configure any DirectShow imaging device and acquire images into LabVIEW. Devices that  support this feature include USB cameras, webcams, microscopes, scanners, and many consumer-grade imaging products. 

Students and academic professionals can use this software with the NI Vision Development Module (included in the LabVIEW Student Edition) to analyze images with the aid of functions for image processing, including filters, binary morphology, pattern matching, and color inspection. The NI Vision Development Module also includes Vision Assistant for prototyping different functions, benchmarking inspections, and automatically generating code.

With NI-IMAQ for USB Cameras, you can:
- Acquire images from any USB imaging device with DirectShow support
- Select One-Shot or Continuous Image Acquisition modes
- Configure cameras programmatically, including the ability to programmatically select video modes
- Acquire directly into Vision Assistant for easy application prototyping
- Use the USB Express VI to quickly acquire images

Note: Although NI-IMAQ for USB Cameras comes with  documentation, it is not officially supported by the National Instruments Corp.

System Requirements:
- Windows Microsoft Windows Vista/Vista x64/XP/2000  (English, Italian, Japanese, French, Italian, Norwegian, Dutch, Spanish/Portuguese, Russian, or simple Chinese).
- LabVIEW 7.0 or later.  
- Vision Development Module 7.1 or later
- NI Vision Acquisition Software 7.1 or later, for USB LabVIEW support.
- Vision Assistant 7.1 or later, for  USB Vision Assistant plug-in module support.
- Vision Assistant 8.0 or later, for USB Express VI support.

Known Issues:
- NI-IMAQ for USB Cameras only supports a single acquisition from one device at a time.
- Launching and closing camera sessions repeatedly will cause a minor memory leak.
- Exiting LabVIEW without closing the session properly will cause a system failure.
- Using an external image display window on a dual-processor machine or hyper-threaded machine may cause the computer to freeze when moving or clicking the external display window.

Related Links:
Products & Services: Vision Acquisition Software

Back to Top

Customer Reviews
51 Reviews | Submit your review

error imaq for usb cameras  - Jan 15, 2016

Installation Error You must have vision 7.1 or higher with LabVIEW 7.0 or higher, or you must have Vission Assistant 7.0 or higher installed to use this add-on I have labview 8.5 and vission assistant 8.0 , and I don't understand the generated error.

Handling the DLLs  - Jun 5, 2015

Also, when you have successfully unpacked the installer, you should probably register both dlls after you placed them in the system32 folder. To do that open the cmd-window, go to where the dlls are (cd C:\windows\system32) and type regsvr32 dllname.dll in the cmd interface. You also might have to update the Call Library Function Nodes in all the IMAQ USB VIs in the imaqUSB.llb. Just open the VIs, view the Block Diagram (ctrl+e) and double-click the Call Library Function Node. Then put in the location (system32) of the desired dll-file. Restart LabView.

Use Universal Extractor to install the Package for LabVIEW 2009 and higher  - Jun 5, 2015

The problem with this installer is, that it only has paths for LV Versions up to 8.6. Newer Versions will not be found and therefore the files are not installed. This is I think due to the already inbuilt USB module since LV 2009, where the IMAQ USB would not be necessary anymore. However, if you want to use old VIs that need VIs from the imaqUSB.lbb, you might have a problem. If the manual extraction described below via the command line interface fails to work, like in my case, you can use the tool "universal extractor" found here: Just extract the installer somewhere and then copy or move the needed files to the right places. The extracted folder structure and folder names should tell you where.

  - Jan 20, 2014

What are the steps described by by and who is Where do I find these steps? And is there anybody who solved the problem in this mi-imaq for usb cameras installation?

Acquire image in Vision Assistant Under Windows 7??  - Nov 2, 2013

I have windows7 and I followed the steps described by and everything worked fine under labview, but I can't acquire images in Vision Assistant. What other steps should I do to make the Vision Assistant to recognize my webcam? Thanks for your help in advance!

  - Sep 1, 2013

I did exactly the steps described and it worked

  - Jul 12, 2013

Anybody can solve the problem? I need to use this VI. After I installed, I got the same problem. I use LV2012 in WindowXP. Could you give me the direction to use it?

  - May 3, 2013 thanks for your comment it totally works.

where to find USB-VIs  - Aug 30, 2012

Hi, I found the missing USB-VIs after successful installation under "National Instruments\LabVIEW 8.6\vi.lib\imaqUSB". Maybe someone has the same problem.

How to use imaqUSB under Windows7  - Aug 14, 2012

(1)Download “ni_imaq_usb_installer_86.exe” (2)Move this file to “C:\imaqUSB\”. If folder does not exist, you need to make it. (3)Press ‘Windows key + R’ to run “RUN”. (4)Input “CMD” then press ‘Enter’. (5)Input “cd C”\imaqUSB” on command window then press ‘Enter’. (6)Input “ni_imaq_usb_installer_86 /x” on command window then press ‘Enter’. (7)Select all files then click ‘OK’. (8)Click “Save” or “Yes” on Save (or Save as…) window. (9)Move the file ‘vision7.mnu’ to "C:\Program Files\National Instruments\LabVIEW 201x\menus\Categories\VisionMotion” (10)Move the folder ‘C:\imaqUSB’ to C:\Program Files\National Instruments\LabVIEW 201x\vi.lib (11)Snap and Grap example is located in following LabVIEW library file, “C:\Program Files\National Instruments\LabVIEW 2011 \vi.lib\imaqUSB\ imaqUSB examples.lib”

  - May 31, 2012

I am using original copies of LV2011 and Vision Assistant 2011 but still cannot install this driver. Any help would be apperciable.

  - May 17, 2012

I've tried to use the above .exe file many times, and as noted, only get a .pdf user file. I downloaded an evaluation version of NI-IMAQ to try . Why isn't this being addressed, with so many users experiencing the same thing. Sure would like to evaluate and maybe purchase the software if it works for us.

NI-IMAQ for USB Cameras on win7 and labview2011  - May 17, 2012

I have the same problem: many times installed -,but nothing happened.I've installed LabView2011 and IMAQ Vision 2011. Please help. Thank you.

problems with LAB  - Apr 14, 2012

hi, i have the same question when i tried to install the usb for the camera: there is no update in the program panel( my OS is win7 & LAB2010)

NI-IMAQ for USB Cameras  - Apr 1, 2012

I have installed the ni_imaq_usb_installer_86.exe several times and can't find IMAQ USB from the Functions palette.

NI-IMAQ exe only installs a pdf?  - Mar 8, 2012

Hi, I downloaded the NI-IMAQ for USB Cameras, but it only installed a PDF file. Is it a problem with Windows 7 or LabView 2011? Please help. Thank you.

IMAQ on Windows 7  - Feb 29, 2012

Here's the answer chaps. This download is obsolete. Download the Vision Assistant software; it contains NI-IMAQdx, which is the successor to this software package

  - Feb 22, 2012

I have installed the ni_imaq_usb_installer_86.exe four times still nothing happened,no VI for me to choose,I don't know what's wrong.I hope someone can help me,I'm using the LabVIEW 2010 and VAS 2010.

NI-IMAQ for USB Cameras   - Feb 7, 2012

Same for me. No way to install the VI's. Just need the camera to acquire video and machine vision is not required.

  - Dec 17, 2011

I have the same problem: three times installed - no VIs to choose.I've installed LabView2011 and IMAQ Vision.

Nothing Happens  - Nov 5, 2011

I've tried to install this at least 5 times and I still don't have any vi's for USB cameras.

IMAQ USB problem  - Jul 4, 2011

The acquistion properties cannot be set programmatically... only possible via a dialog, very uncomfortable.Can we do it through programmatically?

compatible cameras  - Jan 13, 2011

Hello, is there a way to find which cameras are supported for labview NI-IMAQ for USB Cameras?

Win7 + LV2009 solution  - Oct 26, 2010

Instead of puzzling with the USB driver, simply install IMAQdx 3.4 or later from the drivers DVD.

USB for Canon Cameras  - Sep 10, 2010

Hello, Has anyone used USB for Canon Camera models SX200, SX210 or G10?

Windows 7 + Labview 2009 solution  - Aug 14, 2010

I figured out how to get it working perfectly on my Labview 2009 student edition under Windows 7. It seems like NI could release a simple modified installer to remedy the problem. I just performed a manual install as mentioned in an earlier post using the command line. I installed to the following directory on my windows 7 machine. C:\Program Files (x86)\National Instruments\LabVIEW 2009\vi.lib\imaqUSB\" The installer does create a folder named "NI-IMAQ for USB" but I just move the files out of that folder and into the "imaqUSB" folder I created.

Windows 7 Fail  - Aug 14, 2010

I am having same problem as I am running Labview 2009 and Windows 7. I am not getting anything in labview with a normal install. I performed a manual install to "National Instruments\NI-IMAQ for USB\" and tried to open the VI's manually but I am getting odd errors. Any help on installing this on Windows 7 with Labview 2009??

IMAQ for USB on Win7  - Jun 17, 2010

I installed NI-IMAQ for USB now manually as best as I could but since then Labview seems to crash sometimes which it has not done before. Please release a setup.exe that works with Win 7 and LabView 2009

Solution for Windows 7  - Mar 3, 2010

I had the same Problem with Windows 7. Manualy extracting the files worked for me. just execute "ni_installer_....exe /x" from cmd and select the files to extract.

Windows 7 incompatibility?  - Feb 19, 2010

I have to use Windows 7 Starter on a notebook. I managed to install the Vision module, I can see many VIs in the function palette under the Vision tab. But when I try to install the IMAQ-USB extension, I think it fails. The ImageDirectShowDll and ~Export.dll is copied to the system32 dir, but is not registered, and the regsvr32 gives an error msg, when I try to reg. it manually. The "NI-IMAQ for USB" directory, under the program files\National Instruments, contains only the manual pdf, and nothing else. There is no corresponding example file under the IMAQ\Examples dir, only the Imaq related ones. Is there an ni_imaq_usb_installer.exe which works with Windows 7 (Starter) ? Thanks a lot, in advance, MN

labview-compatible cameras  - Jan 4, 2010

Hi, can someone give me some ideas on what type/brand of usb cameras are suitable for labview? i need to use it with labview vision module and image acquisition IMAQ Cheers

camera  - Nov 21, 2009

is there a list of camera's that are compatible or how can we check if are camera's are compatible?

  - Nov 21, 2009

u say some solution but it isnt work for me, labview 8.5 and vista os i renamed folders and tested it. it didnt install

Property cannot be set programmatically  - Sep 30, 2008

The acquistion properties cannot be set programmatically... only possible via a dialog, very uncomfortable.

Vision Develppment Module is necessary for LabVIEW use  - Aug 25, 2008

Hi, unfortunately, skuehn is right - to use the IMAQ for USB driver with LabVIEW, the corresponding Vision Development Module must be be installed beforehand.

  - Jul 26, 2008

Works great under LV8.5 without any special modification.

  - Jun 25, 2008

It's kind of handy for messing around but the memory leak is pretty brutal. With my app, it crashed after a couple hundred captures with the Snap example (had to reboot to fix it). I was alternating between two different cameras though, so it's possible that exacerbates the problem.

IMAQ USB vs. Vista  - Jun 16, 2008

Hello! Any changes to make IMAQ USB drives compatible with Windows Vista??? Thank you!

Same version problem  - Feb 28, 2008

This installer does not even work on my system with LabVIEW 8.2 AND LabVIEW 7.1 installed!!!

use without Vision Dev Mod?  - Feb 12, 2008

I am running LabVIEW 8.2 and would like to simply control my USB digital camera with NI-IMAQ. I don't need to do any image processing. Is it necessary that I have the Vision Development Module in addition to LV 8.2 to run this? Thank you!

Same version problem  - Jan 7, 2008

I used the process submitted by MBFlower and I still cannot get past the "must have Labview 7.1 or higher" step. I have Labview 8.5 with the July 2007 Vision installed. Any ideas?

  - Jan 2, 2008

With Labview8.2 you just need to rename the labview8.0 folder. Start the .exe file. You must see un new folder labview8.0 with the needed files.

  - Nov 21, 2007

Thanks, MBflower. I followed your instruction and it worked perfectly. Akira

Fix for LV 8.5  - Sep 12, 2007

Worked on 8.20. Didn't work on 8.5 until I made some changes. 1. Rename the "LabVIEW 8.5" folder to "LabVIEW 8.2" (If you have LabVIEW 8.2 still installed, rename that folder to something else first) 2. Install the EXE file for USB. 3. Change LabVIEW 8.5 folder back to "LabVIEW 8.5" 4. Find "vision7.mnu" and copy it into this directory: C:\Program Files\National Instruments\LabVIEW 8.5 \menus\Categories\VisionMotion Step 4 puts the icon back into the submenu in Vision+Motion.

IMAQ USB works great  - May 22, 2007

I use IMAQ USB for grabbing single shots of edges and calculating MTF. It works great.

LV8.2 issue  - May 15, 2007

It is impossible to install IMAQ for USB ver. 1.1.1 if the only LabVIEW is 8.20. ToDo: 1. Install LabVIEW 8.0 (evaluation or registered) 2. Launch IMAQ for USB installation 3. Temporary rename "LabVIEW 8.0" folder to "original 8.0" 4. Finish IMAQ for USB installation. It will be installed in the "LabVIEW 8.0" folder. 5. Copy this "new" LabVIEW 8.0 folder both into LabVIEW 8.2 folder and renamed "original 8.0" folder. 6. Rename "original 8.0" folder back to "LabVIEW 8.0". Enjoy! PS: It is possible to copy just only installed files. But how we can find all of them? 8-)

doesnt work with my labview 8  - Apr 26, 2007

When installing it says I ned to have labview 7. or higher...but I have the 8.x ... what am I doind wrong?!?

  - Apr 25, 2007

Any availability in Vista?

Deploy apps  - Dec 28, 2006

Can anyone please write down what is necessary to deploy an application that uses this driver !

LV 8.20  - Dec 20, 2006

It works on my LabVIEW 8.20 !

LV 8.2  - Dec 4, 2006

Does'nt work with LV 8.2

View more reviews

Bookmark & Share



NI-IMAQ for USB Cameras



Rate this document

Answered Your Question?
Yes No