We have been providing technical support for FinishLynx products and accessories for over two decades now. This FAQ page is designed to address some of the more common questions that our tech support team has received over the years. If you’re looking for more detailed information on how to setup your timing system, head on over to our Quick-Start Guides section and our Support Videos section. And as always, you can contact our tech support team directly with any questions.

10 Most Common FAQsPurchasing FinishLynxCamera Setup (Alignment, Booting, etc.)FinishLynx Software & NetworkingFieldLynxAccessories & Add-OnsCommon Error MessagesOther Common FAQs

My USB adapter is installed, but the COM port isn’t listed in the dropdown.

COM port options are populated when FinishLynx is initially opened.  If the USB adapter is plugged in after FinishLynx is opened, then it will not appear. You must restart FinishLynx and the device will be listed as a COM port in the dropdown.

If the COM port still does not appear in the dropdown, check the Device Manager found in Control Panel and verify the USB adapter is listed and working properly. The COM port number should be listed beside it in parenthesis if it is working properly.

If the device is listed but has a small yield symbol next to it, there is a problem with the device or connection.

In this case, follow these steps:

  1. Plug the device into a different USB port
  2. Reinstall the driver for the USB adapter
  3. Plug in the USB adapter and let the Windows OS recognize the device (a pop-up window will display that the “device is installed and working properly”)

If the device is not listed in the Device Manager, then follow steps 2 and 3 above.

Another possible issue with the COM port listings in FinishLynx has developed due to changes in the technology. If the USB device is listed in Device Manager under Ports, then it is possible that a hidden setting may need to be changed in FinishLynx that was developed in version 8.5.

  1. Hold down Ctrl + Shift while in FinishLynx and go to File | Options
  2. A Hidden Settings window will open
  3. Click on the plus (+) sign next to SerialPort and select TypeMask
  4. Change the value to -1
  5. Close FinishLynx and restart to apply the new settings

+ \SerialPort\TypeMask now defaults to -1, which causes all types of COM ports to be listed.

Device Manager, USB Adapter

USB Adapter listing in Device Manager

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keywords:  USB Adapter, COM port, Device Manager, Capture Button, driver, hidden settings

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Why am I getting a camera boot error?

Errors in booting cameras can be caused by a number of problems.  Most are solved by following these three (3) steps:

  1. Set static IP (192.168.0.5)
  2. DISABLE the wireless card
  3. Turn OFF the Firewall (and any Anti-virus software)

If the issue still persists:

Replace the Ethernet cables one at a time to eliminate the possibility of a bad cable or a bad connection.

If you’re using a multi-port switch, try different connection ports in case there is a loose connection or bad contact.

If this still does not resolve the booting error, then please contact technical support.

Capture Computer Static IP

FinishLynx computer LAN Static IP 192.168.0.5

Firewall Off - Windows 7

Firewall Off – Windows 7

 

Keywords:  boot error, loading camera, bad base IP address

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Why doesn’t the computer recognize the USB adapter (COM ports)?

Usually this is because the driver was not initially installed or an old driver was used when updating to a new operating system (OS). Confirm that you have the appropriate driver for your device and Windows OS and then install the driver. You may have to uninstall the old driver if it is installed on the computer.

You can find the current driver for the USB adapter we supply with FinishLynx packages on our web site (www.finishlynx.com).

Plug the device into a USB port after driver is installed and then let Windows recognize the device. Windows 7 OS will usually prompt with a bubble in the bottom right showing that the device installed successfully and display the COM port number assigned.

If you need to confirm the COM port number, this can be found in the Control Panel under Device Manager and listed under Ports.

Key words: USB, adapter, COM port, driver, Device Manager

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What are the minimum computer requirements for a laptop to run the FinishLynx software?

Windows Operating System

All FinishLynx software and plug-ins are developed for the Windows operating system. Therefore, all computers used by FinishLynx operators must be running some version of Windows.  FinishLynx is not compatible with Apple, iOS, Android, or Linux operating systems. We don’t recommend you try to port the FinishLynx software to another operating system.

FinishLynx is compatible with all modern versions of Windows, including: 98, Me, NT4, 2000, XP, Vista, 7, 8+, and 10. If you plan to use FinishLynx with Windows 8, please review the Windows 8 compatibility information provided here.

Minimum Computer Specifications

Generally any Windows-based computer purchased in the last 8+ years should be powerful enough to run FinishLynx, LynxPad, and all other Lynx software. The more RAM and hard drive space it has, the easier it will be to capture large events. See a the table below for our minimum and recommended computer specs.

 

Computer Specification Minimum Recommended
Operating System Windows 98 or later Windows XP or later
Processor Speed 500 MHz 1 GHz or higher
RAM 512 MB 1 GB or higher
Hard Drive Capacity 16 GB 50 GB or higher
Screen Resolution 800 x 600 1024 x 768 or higher
Network Card 10/100 Ethernet 10/100 Ethernet
USB 1 2+

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Why isn’t SeriaLynx sending data to the display board or receiving data from a wind gauge?

There are multiple components to the setup of a SeriaLynx in the FinishLynx system.  Check the following before reading the Technical Support Guide or contacting Technical Support:

  1. Make sure all wires are connected and secure
  2. Confirm that you can ping the SeriaLynx device (if wireless, ping the Access Point first and then ping the SeriaLynx)
  3. Check the Scoreboard (Wind) options in FinishLynx and make sure the correct IP address and port are selected

To get more in-depth information on the process, download and print the Technical Support Guide listed in the FinishLynx Support Files or consult the SeriaLynx product manual listed below.

Wind Gauge Network Connect setup

Scoreboard Network Connect setup

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SeriaLynx Product Manual
SeriaLynx Product Manual
WiBox_UG.pdf
Version: 1.0
1.4 MB
6718 Downloads
Details...

 

Contact Technical Support here

Keywords:  SeriaLynx, data, scoreboard, display, wind gauge

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Why can’t I connect to the Access Point (AP) with my FieldLynx device?

Each Access Point (AP) purchased from Lynx System Developers should be labeled with the pertinent information for your wireless setup. The IP address should be set in the 192.168.0.3x protocol. The SSID is typically set to “Lynx” and is the name you should see broadcast in the list of available networks. Each FieldLynx unit should have it’s own unique static IP in the same protocol as the AP.

  1. Ping the AP from one of the computers on the wired network
  2. Check the IP address of the FieldLynx device (192.168.0.3x)
  3. Search for available SSID “Lynx” with the wireless card
  4. Connect to the “Lynx” network

If some of the steps above are not working, you should have your equipment available and call technical support (+1 978-556-9780) so that they can help troubleshoot your equipment.  If the AP was purchased from another supplier and set up by the customer, please have the manual available because we may not be familiar with the AP you are using.

FieldLynx is now running on the Windows OS. FieldLynx technology may be updated by purchasing Netbooks. The Netbooks provide a stronger and more reliable wireless network card. Netbooks also add the option to run field events on a wired network and contain USB ports to add direct connections to field even displays and wind gauges.

Keywords:  FieldLynx, AP, Access Point, wireless, network

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What does the flashing light on the back of the camera indicate?

The boot light on the 5L300 (EtherLynx Pro), 5L400 (Fusion), and 5L2000 (EtherLynx 2000+) is the indicator of boot sequence. The boot  light will flash red at first, then quickly flash amber-colored as the camera is booting. If there is a problem with the communication, then the boot light will flash amber, but in a slower sequence – about every second.

Follow the instructions below to correct a communications problem:

  1. Check the static IP  192.168.0.5
  2. Check that the firewall is OFF
  3. Turn OFF any Anti-virus software
  4. DISABLE the Wireless card – this is not always necessary but a safe habit to keep
  5. Check that all cable connections are inserted all the way and secure

Still have questions? Contact Tech Support here.

Keywords:  Rx, light, connection, communication, camera, boot, power

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What is the IP address of the camera so we can ping it to make sure it is working?

The camera is assigned an IP address by the computer upon booting. The IP address is the next one in sequence with that computer. If the camera does not boot, it will not be assigned an IP address and therefore cannot be pinged.

If you want to verify the IP address of the camera, you can open the Camera Settings window and the IP of the camera is listed under the Setup tab.  For ease of troubleshooting, we recommend using the standard IP protocol found in the Quick Start Guides.

Camera Settings – Setup

Keywords:  Camera, IP, settings, ping

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How can I correct overexposed/underexposed FinishLynx images?

Overexposure which may be called “blown-out highlights” or “flared highlights” in photography discussions and may be due to brighter whites or reflective surfaces a bit like the White hip stickers with a black number imprinted on them. If there is overexposure in the image, then reducing the brightness value will help to even out the image exposure.

If your camera is focused properly, you are using AGC and the gain value is between 70 and 90 then you can adjust the Brightness under camera settings to reduce this overexposure.

  1. Go to Camera Settings | Parameters where you will find Brightness listed next to AGC Parameters (if you use manual gain this setting does not apply)
  2. Reduce the value in increments of 5 until you find a good image from trials of capturing images.
  3. Be aware that this will change as the sun moves so don’t forget about it.

Underexposure where detail is lost to shadows and may be called “crushed shadows” or “crushed blacks” in photography discussions. If there is underexposure in the image, then reducing the Gamma value will help to bring out some of the detail.

If your camera is focused properly and the gain value is between 70 and 90, then you can adjust the Gamma.

  1. Go to Camera Settings | Setup where you will find Gamma listed near the bottom (this will work when using AGC or Manual Gain).
  2. Make small adjustments in increments of .05 until you find a good image from trials of capturing images.
  3. Be aware that this will change as the sun moves so don’t forget about it.

To learn about additional factors that affect the quality of your FinishLynx images, click here.

 

Keywords: bright, dark, picture

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Can I send data to my scoreboard over the Ethernet network?

Yes, this is possible with all displays but there is additional software (and sometimes equipment) required.  At a minimum, the Network COM Port (NCP) plug-in is required for the FinishLynx software. A SeriaLynx device may also be required.

The NCP plug-in adds additional selections of Network (connect), Network (Listen) and Network (UDP) to the serial port dropdown in the Option menus so that an IP address and port can be utilized to send to a display board.

The SeriaLynx is a piece of hardware that receives the Ethernet connection (wired or wireless) and converts the communication protocol from Ethernet (10baseT) to serial (RS232) so that displays with a serial connection can be utilized on the network also.

The method used will depend on the scoreboard manufacturer and the infrastructure at the facility.  To explain the options and setup in greater detail, we have a Technical Support Guide on the web site.

Keywords:  scoreboard, network, ethernet, NCP

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Purchasing FinishLynx

Where can I find a product price list?

If you’re interested in learning the price of a specific product, please give us a call at (978) 556-9780 or send an email to:

US Domestic Sales domsales@finishlynx.com
International Sales intlsales@finishlynx.com

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Do you offer on-site training?

Absolutely! Lynx offers training sessions for any new users in the United States, or those looking to advance their Lynx system operation skills. There are a few different training options available depending on your location, schedule, and budget:

  1. Bring in a Lynx Trainer: You can purchase a 2-Day group training session directly from Lynx. A member of our training team will travel to your location and provide a 2-day hands-on seminar at your venue. The cost of this session includes all travel and accommodation costs. There is a 2-day minimum for on-site training, but longer sessions are also available.
  2. Visit the Lynx Offices: You can schedule a training session at the Lynx offices in Haverhill, Massachusetts. A member of our training team will provide training for you or your group. You are responsible for your own travel expenses and there is a “per day” fee for this option
  3. Connect with a local Trainer: We can connect you with a trusted FinishLynx operator from your state and you can work out a training session directly with them. This will certainly save you on travel costs.

Want to learn more or request a training quote? Submit a Training Contact Form now and we will be in touch.

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Which FinishLynx Package is right for me?

Lynx offers a number of packaged solutions tailored to different sports, configurations, and budget levels. You can find the right package for your organization by visiting our Packages section.

Are you exploring FinishLynx for a US high school track & field program or installation? We have Bronze, Silver, Gold and MVP Packages available – each representing considerable cost savings over buying the components individually.

Contact us for more details

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What are the minimum computer requirements for a laptop to run the FinishLynx software?

Windows Operating System

All FinishLynx software and plug-ins are developed for the Windows operating system. Therefore, all computers used by FinishLynx operators must be running some version of Windows.  FinishLynx is not compatible with Apple, iOS, Android, or Linux operating systems. We don’t recommend you try to port the FinishLynx software to another operating system.

FinishLynx is compatible with all modern versions of Windows, including: 98, Me, NT4, 2000, XP, Vista, 7, 8+, and 10. If you plan to use FinishLynx with Windows 8, please review the Windows 8 compatibility information provided here.

Minimum Computer Specifications

Generally any Windows-based computer purchased in the last 8+ years should be powerful enough to run FinishLynx, LynxPad, and all other Lynx software. The more RAM and hard drive space it has, the easier it will be to capture large events. See a the table below for our minimum and recommended computer specs.

 

Computer Specification Minimum Recommended
Operating System Windows 98 or later Windows XP or later
Processor Speed 500 MHz 1 GHz or higher
RAM 512 MB 1 GB or higher
Hard Drive Capacity 16 GB 50 GB or higher
Screen Resolution 800 x 600 1024 x 768 or higher
Network Card 10/100 Ethernet 10/100 Ethernet
USB 1 2+

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Camera Setup (Setup, Alignment, Booting)

Can I use my Lynx camera wirelessly?

Yes, you can add wireless capability to a compatible EtherLynx camera (Pro, Fusion, 2000+) by purchasing the WiFi option (5LWiFi).

Contact our sales team here.

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What factors affect the quality of my FinishLynx images?

Photography basics also apply to FinishLynx image quality and many factors come into play:

  1. Light source
  2. Lens type
  3. Frame rate (fps)
  4. Field depth
  5. Lens speed (f-stops)

Light Source:  Sun,of course, is the best source of light. However, if it’s shining directly into the camera lens, it can wash out your image completely.  The sun is best when it is directly behind the camera and the light is reflecting off the object and back to the camera lens.  Shadows on the camera side of the finish images will also make it more difficult to read hip numbers and identify competitors.  Adjust the iris and gain to account for the amount of ambient light available. If you must use artificial lighting, such as indoor facilities or stadium lights, it helps to add extra light that is shining towards the finish line and reflecting back to the camera lens.

Lens Type:  A fixed lens is going to slightly improve the quality of your images because there are less moving parts and less glass for the light to pass through and be diffused.  A zoom lens does provide flexibility in placement of the camera and several fixed lenses could get expensive so you must weigh your options.

Frame Rate:  The speed of the object moving across the finish line and the frames per second (fps) are closely related.  The faster the object, the higher the fps and reverse for slower objects.  Consider the type of races being timed (sprint versus distance) and the level of competition (youth track versus D1 collegiate races).

Field Depth:  A larger field depth creates difficulty in getting all of the objects, near and far, into focus. To solve this problem, increase the height of the camera location. As the height increases, the ratio of the distances of Lane 1 (closest object) and Lane 8 (farthest object) to the camera decreases, thereby decreasing your field depth.  Closing the iris down (similar to squinting your eyes) will help bring the field into better focus.  Be aware that if the light source is poor, closing down the iris is not a good option.

Lens Speed:  This refers to the f-stops (1.4 to 16) and the distance the iris can open and close in a camera flash (fast is 1.2, 1.4).  Since the iris is fixed during capture on the Lynx cameras, it refers to how wide it can open and how much light will flood the image sensor.  Note: the iris may need to be adjusted when changing the frame rate (a higher frame rate produces a darker image; open the iris to correct).

Learn how to correct overexposed and underexposed FinishLynx images here.

If you want to learn more about taking better pictures, visit our YouTube Channel for tips and watch the “How to take better pictures” video playlist.  It also wouldn’t hurt to buy a basic photography book and learn about some of the things mentioned above if you really want to get the best possible images.

 

Keywords: image, blurry, focus, lens, dark, picture, light

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What type of light will help when capturing in poor/low lighting conditions?

Incandescent Quartz Tungsten Halogen lamps, or overshadowing Metal Halide with Halogen will produce better lighting without creating “striations” or “bars” on the image. LED lamp technology is promising, and may be the solution of the future for photo-finish lighting. According to the speed of camera, you should aim to have between 150 to 300 foot candles, evenly spread across the finish line.

So why do you get those “bars” on the images? Artificial light running on an AC circuit is cycling on and off at 50 – 60 cycles per second, so what you’re seeing is a camera at 1,000 fps taking pictures during the portion of the cycle when the lights are off.

The 5L300 cameras have an option called Phased Light Compensation (PLC) that can be purchased. PLC helps to improve the image by sampling frames before the dark line and after the dark line, then blending pixels to deter the effect of the dark lines in the image due to the AC cycle. Contact Sales for a quote if you are interested in this feature.

The 5L500 Vision camera can be purchased with the option of LuxBoost which can dramatically increase image quality in low-light settings. See the image below for a comparison of the EtherLynx 2000+ and the new Vision with LuxBoost. Contact Sales for a quote if you are interested in this feature.

LuxBoost Low-Light Amplification Sample

 

Read tips on enhancing low-light FinishLynx captures here

Keywords:  indoor, image, lighting, stadium lights, dark lines, halogen

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Where should my camera be located in relation to the finish line?

This can vary greatly based on your camera lens and the light source available. We recommend having the camera between 10 to 15 feet from the track and 10 to 15 feet high.

Some things to consider:

  1. Before building any permanent structure, you should test your lens in the location you desire. Make sure that the lens works with a standard setting and doesn’t require digital enhancement to get all the lanes on the track.
  2. If the camera will be used under stadium lights, make sure there is enough light to reflect off the objects and back to the camera to provide readable images.

It’s also helpful to mount the camera higher so that the view of each lane allows you to see over the torso of each competitor rather than attempting to look through a solid object.  As the height increases, it helps to also increase the distance from the finish line so that the hip numbers are clearly visible and not distorted from a steep camera angle.

If you have a special situation where the camera must be placed in a specific location, let our sales representative know or contact technical support and we can help determine the best lens for your facility.

Keywords:  camera location, lens, finish line, height

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Why am I getting a camera boot error?

Errors in booting cameras can be caused by a number of problems.  Most are solved by following these three (3) steps:

  1. Set static IP (192.168.0.5)
  2. DISABLE the wireless card
  3. Turn OFF the Firewall (and any Anti-virus software)

If the issue still persists:

Replace the Ethernet cables one at a time to eliminate the possibility of a bad cable or a bad connection.

If you’re using a multi-port switch, try different connection ports in case there is a loose connection or bad contact.

If this still does not resolve the booting error, then please contact technical support.

Capture Computer Static IP

FinishLynx computer LAN Static IP 192.168.0.5

Firewall Off - Windows 7

Firewall Off – Windows 7

 

Keywords:  boot error, loading camera, bad base IP address

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What does the flashing light on the back of the camera indicate?

The boot light on the 5L300 (EtherLynx Pro), 5L400 (Fusion), and 5L2000 (EtherLynx 2000+) is the indicator of boot sequence. The boot  light will flash red at first, then quickly flash amber-colored as the camera is booting. If there is a problem with the communication, then the boot light will flash amber, but in a slower sequence – about every second.

Follow the instructions below to correct a communications problem:

  1. Check the static IP  192.168.0.5
  2. Check that the firewall is OFF
  3. Turn OFF any Anti-virus software
  4. DISABLE the Wireless card – this is not always necessary but a safe habit to keep
  5. Check that all cable connections are inserted all the way and secure

Still have questions? Contact Tech Support here.

Keywords:  Rx, light, connection, communication, camera, boot, power

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Why do I continue to get the message “Error Aligning a camera”?

When the camera has not booted and the operator clicks on the Red Stop Sign in the upper left corner to access alignment mode, FinishLynx will display this error message.  It signifies that there is no camera available.  Make sure that the camera has booted and the camera information line appears across the top of the FinishLynx screen before attempting to open the Alignment Mode.

The Hardware Control window should look similar to the image below before clicking on the Red Stop Sign to enter the alignment mode.

Hardware Control – Camera Booted

Keywords:  error, aligning, camera, boot

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What is the IP address of the camera so we can ping it to make sure it is working?

The camera is assigned an IP address by the computer upon booting. The IP address is the next one in sequence with that computer. If the camera does not boot, it will not be assigned an IP address and therefore cannot be pinged.

If you want to verify the IP address of the camera, you can open the Camera Settings window and the IP of the camera is listed under the Setup tab.  For ease of troubleshooting, we recommend using the standard IP protocol found in the Quick Start Guides.

Camera Settings – Setup

Keywords:  Camera, IP, settings, ping

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How do I know if I have the remote lens?

The Remote lens will say TV Zoom Lens on the inside front rim of the lens casing.  The lens is a standard 12.5 to 75 mm lens with a rectangular enclosure which holds three little motors controlled through the serial port so the Zoom, Focus and Iris can be adjusted remotely.  This lens is a C-mount lens.

The black cable with the 9 pin female connector will connect to the Remote Port on the back of the camera, or if using a Remote Positioner, it will connect to one of the serial ports on the Remote Positioner. There is an additional cable that will connect from the Remote Positioner to the Remote Port on the back of the camera.

If you have a Through-Lens Viewer, where you can look through an eyepiece to align the camera on the finish line, then it will have a manual F-mount lens.  If there is a Serial Port on the side of the Through-Lens Viewer, then the iris can be controlled remotely by connecting the Remote Port on the back of the camera to the Serial Port on the Through-Lens Viewer.

Remote Lens

Keywords:  lens, F-mount, C-mount, remote

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I have the Through-Lens-Viewer with the Remote Iris feature but the Remote function isn’t working.

The key to enabling the Remote Iris feature is that the lens “Iris” must be closed all the way before inserting the lens into the Through-Lens-Viewer. This is accomplished by using the “Aperture” ring found on the back side of the lens closest to the camera body and turning the setting to the highest f-stop value. The Iris has a small spring-loaded lever arm that extends out from the mounting ring on the back of the lens. This lever must be able to catch on the lever arm for the motor of the Remote Iris feature. If the Iris is manually set open all the way (smallest f-stop, ex: 1.4), this overrides the spring-loaded lever and then the Iris will not close when using the Remote feature or will only close to the point where the Iris was last set to manually before inserting the lens.

Don’t adjust the Iris manually once it’s inserted into the Through-Lens-Viewer. Also be aware that when the lens is inserted and the levers catch for proper function, the Iris will be open to the point where it was last used when the camera was shut down.  If the lens was last used under low light, then it will be open all the way. If it’s a sunny day when you boot the camera, it may be too much light and your image will be washed out.  Do not try to adjust it manually before using the Remote feature in the software because it most likely will not change it or may slightly close the Iris depending on where the two levers were set when the lens was inserted.  See images below.

Lens Mount

Aperture/Iris Ring – f-stop values

Aperture/Iris Lever

 

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How do I use the Electronic Level Indicator in FinishLynx?

The EtherLynx Vision camera offers an optional Electronic Level feature which displays an indicator inside the FinishLynx software to show whether or not the camera is level. Adjust the Vision camera’s swivel until Electronic Level indicator shows green and 0.0 degrees. The Electronic Level indicates how many degrees the camera is away from being perfectly horizontal (level with the ground).

Watch the tutorial here

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FinishLynx Software & Networking

Why aren’t the athlete names loading into FinishLynx events?

Be sure that the database is pointed to the folder where the meet management software is saving the files for your competition.

Open File | Options | Database. Confirm that the Input Directory and Output Directory are both pointing to the competition directory where the meet management software is saving the competition files. If not, click on Browse and point both of these to the correct directory. They should both be the same path.

You can also open the competition directory and confirm certain files are being written to the directory (lynx.evt; lynx.ppl). Once confirmed, try loading an event again. If it is still not working, see the Technical Support Guide on FinishLynx Networking with Meet Management (LynxPad or Hy-Tek).

Also, check out our Interfacing with Meet Management Software video playlist on our Support Videos page.

Keywords:  start list, athletes, events

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What are the minimum computer requirements for a laptop to run the FinishLynx software?

Windows Operating System

All FinishLynx software and plug-ins are developed for the Windows operating system. Therefore, all computers used by FinishLynx operators must be running some version of Windows.  FinishLynx is not compatible with Apple, iOS, Android, or Linux operating systems. We don’t recommend you try to port the FinishLynx software to another operating system.

FinishLynx is compatible with all modern versions of Windows, including: 98, Me, NT4, 2000, XP, Vista, 7, 8+, and 10. If you plan to use FinishLynx with Windows 8, please review the Windows 8 compatibility information provided here.

Minimum Computer Specifications

Generally any Windows-based computer purchased in the last 8+ years should be powerful enough to run FinishLynx, LynxPad, and all other Lynx software. The more RAM and hard drive space it has, the easier it will be to capture large events. See a the table below for our minimum and recommended computer specs.

 

Computer Specification Minimum Recommended
Operating System Windows 98 or later Windows XP or later
Processor Speed 500 MHz 1 GHz or higher
RAM 512 MB 1 GB or higher
Hard Drive Capacity 16 GB 50 GB or higher
Screen Resolution 800 x 600 1024 x 768 or higher
Network Card 10/100 Ethernet 10/100 Ethernet
USB 1 2+

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Can I use the keyboard to toggle capture?

The Spacebar toggle for capture is a safety feature in case something is damaged or lost. It is not the best option for capturing because it is easy to be mistaken when it is off or on. Additionally, if you leave it on for an extended length of time, the excessive amount of image capture could bog down the computer.

The Spacebar works differently than the capture button. When you first tap the Spacebar to toggle capture it turns on capture. You must tap the Spacebar again to turn off the capture. If you are constantly stopping and starting capture because a race is spread out, it is easy to become confused whether it’s on or off. This could result in capturing moments when there are no competitors finishing.

If you go to File | Options and under the General tab, there is a dropdown for capture button and simply set it to Keyboard if you have to use the Spacebar to toggle capture. If there is no COM port available for the capture button, then the software will automatically default to keyboard capture.

Capture – Keyboard

Key words:  capture, keyboard, spacebar, toggle

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How do you set up networking for a Capture and Read computer?

1.  Set a unique static IP for each computer in the same network protocol (192.168.0.xxx).  We suggest 192.168.0.5 and 192.168.0.15.

2.  Each computer should be in the same Workgroup and avoid being on a Domain to keep it simple.

3.  Have a common Shared Directory which has full read and write privileges for all users (Images saved locally on the Capture computer).

4.  Share the Lynx directory on the C-drive and give full read and write privileges when using Windows 7 computers.

If you have additional questions, please contact technical support.

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My results are in military time (24 HR) format, how do I fix it?

Results displayed in military time are the result of not having a start time applied to a particular event. It correlates with the time of the day that the athletes cross the finish line.

If you have not already turned off the camera, open the event again with the invalid race times and look at the TOD for the first place time. Scroll down in the list of starts and find a start time which would be equal to the TOD at finish minus the time that it took to run the race.  Select this time and then click on the icon with 3 Traffic Lights (“Apply selected start to event”) and it will add the start time to the event. Next, click on the finish times and see if they recalculate and show valid finish times. You may need to try multiple starts to find the correct one.

If you have powered off the camera and are running FinishLynx 8.20 and higher, start times are saved in a file associated with each event.  Open the event with the invalid result times and then click on Event from the Menu and click on Select Start. There will be a list of about 5 start times (the number saved can be increased in the hidden settings – read Release Notes for Version 8.20), select the appropriate start time based on the finish TOD and then apply it to the event. Click on the 1st place time in the Results area and it will recalculate the results based on the new start time.

If the version of FinishLynx is older, then the only method of correcting the times is to find a Hand Time for first place and then manually do the math using the Delta time between each athlete to determine hand times.

Event | Select Start

Saved Start Times

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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How do I recover an unsaved FinishLynx event after a computer crash?

FinishLynx software auto-saves open Events/Files/Images into a TEMP directory. In the event of a sudden software/computer crash, the event running prior to the crash can be recovered from the computer. Simply navigate to C:/Lynx/Temp to find the auto-saved event.

See the video here

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Can I use my EtherLynx camera as a LapTime device for capturing splits?

Yes! Click on the link below to learn how to create splits with an EtherLynx camera by configuring the FinishLynx software and LapTime plug-in. The LapTime plug-in allows you to set the number of laps per race and evaluate the Lynx image on each lap to create split times for athletes. More info on the LapTime plug-in here.

Or view the video here.

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How do I export the video from IdentiLynx to post on the web?

FinishLynx can export the IdentiLynx (IDL) video as an .avi file. There are many new features added to the IDL functions so you may also want to read some of the release notes so that your IDL is used to its full potential.

View the PDF:

QSG - Export IdentiLynx Video to YouTube or File
QSG - Export IdentiLynx Video to YouTube or File
FAQ-Export-IdentiLynx-Video.pdf
504.8 KB
5911 Downloads
Details...

Steps to export video:

  1. Do not click in the IDL image or you will select a single pixel to export on each frame
  2.  If you want a specific area to export, you can left-click and hold, then drag a box around the image area you want exported
  3. Using the player controls at the top left of the image box, bring it to your start frame and select First and then drag it to your end frame and select End
  4. Go to Image | Export video
  5. View your IDL video in one of the media players to make sure you get the desired quality

Read the Release Notes on IDL features and discover the ability to add images (company logos) to the video frames or add a time stamp to each frame so you have a running time on the images as you play back the video.

Keywords: Identilynx, export, video, IDL

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How do I access FinishLynx hidden settings?

FinishLynx photo-finish software allows users to program their own keyboard shortcuts or “hot-keys” to simplify some of the most common commands used during an event capture.  To access the hidden settings, while in FinishLynx click on File | Options… while holding down SHIFT + CTRL.

This video demonstrates how to add custom keyboard shortcuts using the “Hidden Settings” menu inside FinishLynx.

For a list of existing keyboard shortcuts, click here.

 

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How can I correct overexposed/underexposed FinishLynx images?

Overexposure which may be called “blown-out highlights” or “flared highlights” in photography discussions and may be due to brighter whites or reflective surfaces a bit like the White hip stickers with a black number imprinted on them. If there is overexposure in the image, then reducing the brightness value will help to even out the image exposure.

If your camera is focused properly, you are using AGC and the gain value is between 70 and 90 then you can adjust the Brightness under camera settings to reduce this overexposure.

  1. Go to Camera Settings | Parameters where you will find Brightness listed next to AGC Parameters (if you use manual gain this setting does not apply)
  2. Reduce the value in increments of 5 until you find a good image from trials of capturing images.
  3. Be aware that this will change as the sun moves so don’t forget about it.

Underexposure where detail is lost to shadows and may be called “crushed shadows” or “crushed blacks” in photography discussions. If there is underexposure in the image, then reducing the Gamma value will help to bring out some of the detail.

If your camera is focused properly and the gain value is between 70 and 90, then you can adjust the Gamma.

  1. Go to Camera Settings | Setup where you will find Gamma listed near the bottom (this will work when using AGC or Manual Gain).
  2. Make small adjustments in increments of .05 until you find a good image from trials of capturing images.
  3. Be aware that this will change as the sun moves so don’t forget about it.

To learn about additional factors that affect the quality of your FinishLynx images, click here.

 

Keywords: bright, dark, picture

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Why doesn’t the computer recognize the USB adapter (COM ports)?

Usually this is because the driver was not initially installed or an old driver was used when updating to a new operating system (OS). Confirm that you have the appropriate driver for your device and Windows OS and then install the driver. You may have to uninstall the old driver if it is installed on the computer.

You can find the current driver for the USB adapter we supply with FinishLynx packages on our web site (www.finishlynx.com).

Plug the device into a USB port after driver is installed and then let Windows recognize the device. Windows 7 OS will usually prompt with a bubble in the bottom right showing that the device installed successfully and display the COM port number assigned.

If you need to confirm the COM port number, this can be found in the Control Panel under Device Manager and listed under Ports.

Key words: USB, adapter, COM port, driver, Device Manager

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My USB adapter is installed, but the COM port isn’t listed in the dropdown.

COM port options are populated when FinishLynx is initially opened.  If the USB adapter is plugged in after FinishLynx is opened, then it will not appear. You must restart FinishLynx and the device will be listed as a COM port in the dropdown.

If the COM port still does not appear in the dropdown, check the Device Manager found in Control Panel and verify the USB adapter is listed and working properly. The COM port number should be listed beside it in parenthesis if it is working properly.

If the device is listed but has a small yield symbol next to it, there is a problem with the device or connection.

In this case, follow these steps:

  1. Plug the device into a different USB port
  2. Reinstall the driver for the USB adapter
  3. Plug in the USB adapter and let the Windows OS recognize the device (a pop-up window will display that the “device is installed and working properly”)

If the device is not listed in the Device Manager, then follow steps 2 and 3 above.

Another possible issue with the COM port listings in FinishLynx has developed due to changes in the technology. If the USB device is listed in Device Manager under Ports, then it is possible that a hidden setting may need to be changed in FinishLynx that was developed in version 8.5.

  1. Hold down Ctrl + Shift while in FinishLynx and go to File | Options
  2. A Hidden Settings window will open
  3. Click on the plus (+) sign next to SerialPort and select TypeMask
  4. Change the value to -1
  5. Close FinishLynx and restart to apply the new settings

+ \SerialPort\TypeMask now defaults to -1, which causes all types of COM ports to be listed.

Device Manager, USB Adapter

USB Adapter listing in Device Manager

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keywords:  USB Adapter, COM port, Device Manager, Capture Button, driver, hidden settings

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Why do I continue to get an “Error arming event” message even though the RadioLynx is connected and working fine?

Check the Camera Settings | Input tab, set Gun Sensor to None. This turns off the wired start connection. The wired start and wireless start are two separate connections in the system and are independent of each other.

Check that the RadioLynx is configured correctly. Open the Camera Settings | RadioLynx tab and be sure the selected item matches the physical connection of the RadioLynx receiver (C-Box, camera back, radio port etc).

If you need additional help, contact technical support. 

Keywords:  armed, error, arming, Radiolynx, gun sensor

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What is the most current version of FinishLynx and should I upgrade?

The most current release version is always posted on our web site and free to download and install from the FinishLynx Software page.  Before you upgrade to a new version, open up your current version of FinishLynx and go to Help | About and write down your serial number.  You will need to enter it again when you install the upgrade.

It is wise to stay updated with the most current release version so you don’t miss out on any new features that may improve your events or service quality. FinishLynx releases are usually done around November and December, so check the web site before the Indoor Season begins and then take a little time to play with new features so you have time to ask questions without being under pressure of a competition.

“It is better to be prepared for an opportunity and not have one than to have an opportunity and not be prepared.” ~ Whitney M Young Jr.

Keywords:  release, version, FinishLynx, download

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FieldLynx

Why can’t I connect to the Access Point (AP) with my FieldLynx device?

Each Access Point (AP) purchased from Lynx System Developers should be labeled with the pertinent information for your wireless setup. The IP address should be set in the 192.168.0.3x protocol. The SSID is typically set to “Lynx” and is the name you should see broadcast in the list of available networks. Each FieldLynx unit should have it’s own unique static IP in the same protocol as the AP.

  1. Ping the AP from one of the computers on the wired network
  2. Check the IP address of the FieldLynx device (192.168.0.3x)
  3. Search for available SSID “Lynx” with the wireless card
  4. Connect to the “Lynx” network

If some of the steps above are not working, you should have your equipment available and call technical support (+1 978-556-9780) so that they can help troubleshoot your equipment.  If the AP was purchased from another supplier and set up by the customer, please have the manual available because we may not be familiar with the AP you are using.

FieldLynx is now running on the Windows OS. FieldLynx technology may be updated by purchasing Netbooks. The Netbooks provide a stronger and more reliable wireless network card. Netbooks also add the option to run field events on a wired network and contain USB ports to add direct connections to field even displays and wind gauges.

Keywords:  FieldLynx, AP, Access Point, wireless, network

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FieldLynx fails to receive a wind reading despite the gauge being connected and working. How can I correct this?

If the Wind Gauge (WG) starts the countdown and takes a reading, check the following:

  1. Check the battery in the WG. A low battery may cause the failure. Try plugging the wind gauge into an AC source to determine if the device works with sufficient power.
  2. The USB to serial adapter may be the cause of the issue. On some Win7 computers the adapter will output commands but will not receive data. Try connecting the WG to the Camera C-Box or camera back serial connections.

If the countdown does not start on the WG, check your connections and setup in the Wind Options.

Keywords:  Wind gauge, reading

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Why isn’t my scoreboard displaying data?

This is typically due to the wrong scoreboard script, communication protocol or COM port in the Scoreboard Options. It may also be the result of a bad connection. Check the technical support guides for scoreboard specific set up guidelines.

For additional help, please contact technical support.

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Can I send data to my scoreboard over the Ethernet network?

Yes, this is possible with all displays but there is additional software (and sometimes equipment) required.  At a minimum, the Network COM Port (NCP) plug-in is required for the FinishLynx software. A SeriaLynx device may also be required.

The NCP plug-in adds additional selections of Network (connect), Network (Listen) and Network (UDP) to the serial port dropdown in the Option menus so that an IP address and port can be utilized to send to a display board.

The SeriaLynx is a piece of hardware that receives the Ethernet connection (wired or wireless) and converts the communication protocol from Ethernet (10baseT) to serial (RS232) so that displays with a serial connection can be utilized on the network also.

The method used will depend on the scoreboard manufacturer and the infrastructure at the facility.  To explain the options and setup in greater detail, we have a Technical Support Guide on the web site.

Keywords:  scoreboard, network, ethernet, NCP

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Why doesn’t the computer recognize the USB adapter (COM ports)?

Usually this is because the driver was not initially installed or an old driver was used when updating to a new operating system (OS). Confirm that you have the appropriate driver for your device and Windows OS and then install the driver. You may have to uninstall the old driver if it is installed on the computer.

You can find the current driver for the USB adapter we supply with FinishLynx packages on our web site (www.finishlynx.com).

Plug the device into a USB port after driver is installed and then let Windows recognize the device. Windows 7 OS will usually prompt with a bubble in the bottom right showing that the device installed successfully and display the COM port number assigned.

If you need to confirm the COM port number, this can be found in the Control Panel under Device Manager and listed under Ports.

Key words: USB, adapter, COM port, driver, Device Manager

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My USB adapter is installed, but the COM port isn’t listed in the dropdown.

COM port options are populated when FinishLynx is initially opened.  If the USB adapter is plugged in after FinishLynx is opened, then it will not appear. You must restart FinishLynx and the device will be listed as a COM port in the dropdown.

If the COM port still does not appear in the dropdown, check the Device Manager found in Control Panel and verify the USB adapter is listed and working properly. The COM port number should be listed beside it in parenthesis if it is working properly.

If the device is listed but has a small yield symbol next to it, there is a problem with the device or connection.

In this case, follow these steps:

  1. Plug the device into a different USB port
  2. Reinstall the driver for the USB adapter
  3. Plug in the USB adapter and let the Windows OS recognize the device (a pop-up window will display that the “device is installed and working properly”)

If the device is not listed in the Device Manager, then follow steps 2 and 3 above.

Another possible issue with the COM port listings in FinishLynx has developed due to changes in the technology. If the USB device is listed in Device Manager under Ports, then it is possible that a hidden setting may need to be changed in FinishLynx that was developed in version 8.5.

  1. Hold down Ctrl + Shift while in FinishLynx and go to File | Options
  2. A Hidden Settings window will open
  3. Click on the plus (+) sign next to SerialPort and select TypeMask
  4. Change the value to -1
  5. Close FinishLynx and restart to apply the new settings

+ \SerialPort\TypeMask now defaults to -1, which causes all types of COM ports to be listed.

Device Manager, USB Adapter

USB Adapter listing in Device Manager

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keywords:  USB Adapter, COM port, Device Manager, Capture Button, driver, hidden settings

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Accessories & Add-Ons

Why isn’t my RadioLynx working properly?

If you find that your RadioLynx isn’t working properly, there are a series of steps you can take to determine the cause. All you’ll need is an unfolded paperclip and this set of step by step instructions.

 

As always, please contact tech support with any additional questions.

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Can I repair the motor for my Remote Positioner at home?

Yes! We have a simple step-by-step guide to repair the motor at home. If your positioner motor is broken, Lynx will send you a replacement which you can repair in the comfort of your own home, at your own convenience. 

Get the directions here: Remote Positioner Motor – Home Repair Guide

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What do I need to use an RFID Chip System with FinishLynx?

There are a lot of RFID systems on the market and not all interface with FinishLynx.  Before you purchase an RFID system to interface with FinishLynx, confirm that it does work with our system.

All customers integrating a Chip System will need the LapTime plug-in for FinishLynx.  You can contact sales for a quote.

Some systems will interface with a serial connection while others will interface with an Ethernet connection.  If your RFID system requires an Ethernet connection, then you will also need the Network COM Port (NCP) plug-in for FinishLynx.  You can contact sales for a quote on the NCP plug-in.  Once the LapTime plug-in is installed with FinishLynx, you will be able to go into the LapTime options and set up the communication protocol for your system.

Please read the manufacturer’s technical manual to ensure that you set up the communication protocol correctly for their reader.  A thorough setup guide for the IPICO system can be located on the RFID product pages.

Keywords:  IPICO, AMB, BibLynx, Chronolec, Tag Heuer, WIGE, DAG

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FieldLynx fails to receive a wind reading despite the gauge being connected and working. How can I correct this?

If the Wind Gauge (WG) starts the countdown and takes a reading, check the following:

  1. Check the battery in the WG. A low battery may cause the failure. Try plugging the wind gauge into an AC source to determine if the device works with sufficient power.
  2. The USB to serial adapter may be the cause of the issue. On some Win7 computers the adapter will output commands but will not receive data. Try connecting the WG to the Camera C-Box or camera back serial connections.

If the countdown does not start on the WG, check your connections and setup in the Wind Options.

Keywords:  Wind gauge, reading

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Why isn’t my scoreboard displaying data?

This is typically due to the wrong scoreboard script, communication protocol or COM port in the Scoreboard Options. It may also be the result of a bad connection. Check the technical support guides for scoreboard specific set up guidelines.

For additional help, please contact technical support.

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Can I send data to my scoreboard over the Ethernet network?

Yes, this is possible with all displays but there is additional software (and sometimes equipment) required.  At a minimum, the Network COM Port (NCP) plug-in is required for the FinishLynx software. A SeriaLynx device may also be required.

The NCP plug-in adds additional selections of Network (connect), Network (Listen) and Network (UDP) to the serial port dropdown in the Option menus so that an IP address and port can be utilized to send to a display board.

The SeriaLynx is a piece of hardware that receives the Ethernet connection (wired or wireless) and converts the communication protocol from Ethernet (10baseT) to serial (RS232) so that displays with a serial connection can be utilized on the network also.

The method used will depend on the scoreboard manufacturer and the infrastructure at the facility.  To explain the options and setup in greater detail, we have a Technical Support Guide on the web site.

Keywords:  scoreboard, network, ethernet, NCP

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Why isn’t SeriaLynx sending data to the display board or receiving data from a wind gauge?

There are multiple components to the setup of a SeriaLynx in the FinishLynx system.  Check the following before reading the Technical Support Guide or contacting Technical Support:

  1. Make sure all wires are connected and secure
  2. Confirm that you can ping the SeriaLynx device (if wireless, ping the Access Point first and then ping the SeriaLynx)
  3. Check the Scoreboard (Wind) options in FinishLynx and make sure the correct IP address and port are selected

To get more in-depth information on the process, download and print the Technical Support Guide listed in the FinishLynx Support Files or consult the SeriaLynx product manual listed below.

Wind Gauge Network Connect setup

Scoreboard Network Connect setup

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SeriaLynx Product Manual
SeriaLynx Product Manual
WiBox_UG.pdf
Version: 1.0
1.4 MB
6718 Downloads
Details...

 

Contact Technical Support here

Keywords:  SeriaLynx, data, scoreboard, display, wind gauge

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Why does my IdentiLynx load to 32% and then produce “Error 202″?

Some versions of windows require added permissions to enable the IdentiLynx camera. To correct the issue of an IdentiLynx not loading, simply close FinishLynx and run the program as administrator by right-clicking and selecting “Run as administrator” as seen below.

If this does not correct your issue, please check that there are no conflicting IP addresses on your network and contact Lynx technical support if needed.202 Error IdentiLynx

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How do I export the video from IdentiLynx to post on the web?

FinishLynx can export the IdentiLynx (IDL) video as an .avi file. There are many new features added to the IDL functions so you may also want to read some of the release notes so that your IDL is used to its full potential.

View the PDF:

QSG - Export IdentiLynx Video to YouTube or File
QSG - Export IdentiLynx Video to YouTube or File
FAQ-Export-IdentiLynx-Video.pdf
504.8 KB
5911 Downloads
Details...

Steps to export video:

  1. Do not click in the IDL image or you will select a single pixel to export on each frame
  2.  If you want a specific area to export, you can left-click and hold, then drag a box around the image area you want exported
  3. Using the player controls at the top left of the image box, bring it to your start frame and select First and then drag it to your end frame and select End
  4. Go to Image | Export video
  5. View your IDL video in one of the media players to make sure you get the desired quality

Read the Release Notes on IDL features and discover the ability to add images (company logos) to the video frames or add a time stamp to each frame so you have a running time on the images as you play back the video.

Keywords: Identilynx, export, video, IDL

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Common Error Messages

Why do I get the message “Capture Button Serial Port Unavailable”?

“Capture button serial port unavailable; keyboard capture will be used.”

This common error message can appear when starting your FinishLynx software. If you get this message and you’re using Auto Capture  but not the Capture Button, then no further action is required. You can proceed to running your meet as planned.

If you are using the Capture Button and receive the message above, click here to learn what to do in that instance.

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Why am I getting a camera boot error?

Errors in booting cameras can be caused by a number of problems.  Most are solved by following these three (3) steps:

  1. Set static IP (192.168.0.5)
  2. DISABLE the wireless card
  3. Turn OFF the Firewall (and any Anti-virus software)

If the issue still persists:

Replace the Ethernet cables one at a time to eliminate the possibility of a bad cable or a bad connection.

If you’re using a multi-port switch, try different connection ports in case there is a loose connection or bad contact.

If this still does not resolve the booting error, then please contact technical support.

Capture Computer Static IP

FinishLynx computer LAN Static IP 192.168.0.5

Firewall Off - Windows 7

Firewall Off – Windows 7

 

Keywords:  boot error, loading camera, bad base IP address

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Why do I continue to get the message “Error Aligning a camera”?

When the camera has not booted and the operator clicks on the Red Stop Sign in the upper left corner to access alignment mode, FinishLynx will display this error message.  It signifies that there is no camera available.  Make sure that the camera has booted and the camera information line appears across the top of the FinishLynx screen before attempting to open the Alignment Mode.

The Hardware Control window should look similar to the image below before clicking on the Red Stop Sign to enter the alignment mode.

Hardware Control – Camera Booted

Keywords:  error, aligning, camera, boot

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Why does my IdentiLynx load to 32% and then produce “Error 202″?

Some versions of windows require added permissions to enable the IdentiLynx camera. To correct the issue of an IdentiLynx not loading, simply close FinishLynx and run the program as administrator by right-clicking and selecting “Run as administrator” as seen below.

If this does not correct your issue, please check that there are no conflicting IP addresses on your network and contact Lynx technical support if needed.202 Error IdentiLynx

Permalink.

Why do I continue to get an “Error arming event” message even though the RadioLynx is connected and working fine?

Check the Camera Settings | Input tab, set Gun Sensor to None. This turns off the wired start connection. The wired start and wireless start are two separate connections in the system and are independent of each other.

Check that the RadioLynx is configured correctly. Open the Camera Settings | RadioLynx tab and be sure the selected item matches the physical connection of the RadioLynx receiver (C-Box, camera back, radio port etc).

If you need additional help, contact technical support. 

Keywords:  armed, error, arming, Radiolynx, gun sensor

Permalink.

Other Common FAQs

How can I correct overexposed/underexposed FinishLynx images?

Overexposure which may be called “blown-out highlights” or “flared highlights” in photography discussions and may be due to brighter whites or reflective surfaces a bit like the White hip stickers with a black number imprinted on them. If there is overexposure in the image, then reducing the brightness value will help to even out the image exposure.

If your camera is focused properly, you are using AGC and the gain value is between 70 and 90 then you can adjust the Brightness under camera settings to reduce this overexposure.

  1. Go to Camera Settings | Parameters where you will find Brightness listed next to AGC Parameters (if you use manual gain this setting does not apply)
  2. Reduce the value in increments of 5 until you find a good image from trials of capturing images.
  3. Be aware that this will change as the sun moves so don’t forget about it.

Underexposure where detail is lost to shadows and may be called “crushed shadows” or “crushed blacks” in photography discussions. If there is underexposure in the image, then reducing the Gamma value will help to bring out some of the detail.

If your camera is focused properly and the gain value is between 70 and 90, then you can adjust the Gamma.

  1. Go to Camera Settings | Setup where you will find Gamma listed near the bottom (this will work when using AGC or Manual Gain).
  2. Make small adjustments in increments of .05 until you find a good image from trials of capturing images.
  3. Be aware that this will change as the sun moves so don’t forget about it.

To learn about additional factors that affect the quality of your FinishLynx images, click here.

 

Keywords: bright, dark, picture

Permalink.

Additional Resources

 

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