ScanImage 2016 : Bundled Hardware Solutions

We are building an inexpensive and simple xy raster confocal endomicroscope with laser resonant scanning either from Cambridge Tech or Sutter.

It will not need to do anything fancier than just xy raster scanning at video rate using a PMT.

However, the NI hardware requirement of ScanImage becomes comparable expensive if this solution is chosen.

Are there any cheaper bundled ScanImage solutions that could be used used?

(e.g. if we chose to order the Sutter Scanbox-are the NI hardware requirement strict for ScanImage software?)

If we order from Cambridge Consultant, in order to realize xy scanning we should obtain the CRS galvoresonant mirror + CRS electronic driver board

and then then couple this to your NI devices + ScanImage. Is more hardware needed?

Is a pixel clock needed?


The selection and purchase of Resonant and Galvo mirrors can be selected from vendors other than NI, such as Cambridge Technologies or Sutter as you propose.

  • Cambridge offers the individual mirrors and control board parts.
  • Sutter packages the Cambridge mirrors into a nice secure unit which accommodates noise reduction, and places the control board into a control box.

Both of these options work with ScanImage.

However, NI data acquisition hardware and a Matlab license are required to run scanimage.

The NI hardware listed on our site is a minimal set for any microscope configuration.

Refer to the table of Required NI hardware listed on our site, Supported Microscope Hardware, in the Acquisition and Control Hardware section.

Some options:

  • We can help put together a quote for you.
  • We are NI partners and can assist if you have questions about NI hardware and/or pricing.
  • If you want to build and entire microscope setup that uses scanimage software, you can also talk to Sutter for their price options.

Other components you may need depend on your system:

  • If you do not need more than 2 channels, the NI two-channel digitizer, NI 5732, will suit your needs. This is the cheaper option.
  • If you need more than 2 channels, you would need to purchase the NI four-channel digitizer, NI 5734.
  • If you need to use a pockel cell, an additional PXIe-6341 would need to be purchased.
  • If you need to use a piezo, an additional PXIe-6341 would need to be purchased.


Yes, you can obtain the CRS galvo-resonant mirror and the CRS electronic driver board, and then couple these to the NI devices.

The following NI hardware is needed for your configuration:


No, a pixel clock is not needed. Timing is handled within ScanImage.


Useful ScanImage Link:

  1. Supported Microscope Hardware