Salvaging and Reusing an Old Laptop Camera to USB Camera

About: I am a software Engineer with a great enthusiasm to build things and reuse anything that could be.

This tutorial gives you instructions on how to reuse an old laptop camera as a USB Webcam. I salvaged this webcam from the old Acer Laptop I had which was 10+ years old and dead for at least 8 years. You can check my other tutorials on how I reuse other things in the laptop from the below links.

Re-Purposing-Your-Old-Laptop-Charger

Convert-Your-Laptop-LCD-to-External-Monitor

Web Cam Specifications:

The webcam that my old laptop had is a Camellia CNO314-0VO3 identified from the labels on the circuit board. This information can be used to get the drivers online for windows/linux based on the requirement.

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Step 1: Connections

This is a pretty simple task. The webcam module I had 5 wires coming out of the module. Just follow the circuit connection drawing in the images section.

Dont forget to use 2 1N4001 Diodes in series just as shown in the drawing. I tried without these diodes initially and the system showed as "USB Unrecognized" error. And don't ask me why I used the diodes as even I just followed what was shown in the drawing :P

For USB extension I used a mobile USB charger cable, stripped of the micro USB connector from the wire and exposed all 4 wires. Carefully strip the wires and solder them to the appropriate wires and insulate them so that no 2 wires get short.

Once the soldering is done I just used a black insulation tape to put all wire together. I am still planning on making a casing for the circuit board along with some clips to attach.

Step 2: Worked!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Just plugged it into my current laptop and since I have ready drivers already installed, webcam is detected.

I used MyCam software downloaded online to take pictures and video from the USB Webcam.

Here are some pictures from the webcam and the WebCam itself.

Please post your comments and reviews and help me improve.

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    3 Discussions

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    narvorp

    1 year ago

    Nice ! Going to do this. (BTW I think the two diodes are there to bring the voltage closer to 3.3V. It is a standard voltage for some electronic components. With two 1N4001 you have 5V - 2x1V = 3.0V, which may leave the voltage more acceptable for the camera).

    1 reply
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    -Skar-

    2 years ago

    Awesome!
    Got one lying around - definetly going to do this! Thanks for showing up this is so very easy.