Video standards

Updated: April 19, 2023

The video capture API includes constants that specify the video capture video standard properties.



Indicate capture_get_frame should return immediately (usually with an EINTR error) when CAPTURE_PROPERTY_UNBLOCK is set.

Normally this would be used to watch for device-specific events. Verify that CAPTURE_PROPERTY_UNBLOCK is supported before using the flag.


Set the video standard.

Refer to Video standard macros.

Read/Write const char *


When written, unblock any active capture_get_frame call; if not blocked in this function, cause the next capture_get_frame call to return immediately.

Usually EINTR would be returned, or ESRCH if the capture driver is known to be in an unrecoverable state.

Write uint32_t (0, or a device-specific value)


Use auto-detection to get the video standard.

Read/Write const char *


Return the current detected video standard.

Refer to Video standard macros.

Read const char *


Video standard can't be detected; either there's no input, or the video signal is lost.


Detected standard is not known.


The video standard macros are common for CAPTURE_PROPERTY_NORM and CAPTURE_PROPERTY_CURRENT_NORM.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_NTSC_4_43 "NTSC_4_43"

A pseudo-color system that transmits NTSC encoding (not a broadcast format)


PAL format that uses 525 lines and 59.94 fields per second; this video standard is used in Brazil.


PAL format using 625 lines and 50 fields per second with various signal characteristics and color encodings.


PAL format with narrow bandwidth that's used in Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_PAL_60 "PAL_60"

Multi-system PAL support that uses 525 lines and 60 fields per second (not a broadcast format)


Video standard used mainly in France.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_CEA_640X480P_60HZ "640x480p@60"

VIC Format 1, based on CEA-861-E specification.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_CEA_720X480P_60HZ "720x480p@60"

VIC Format 2, based on CEA-861-E specification.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_CEA_1280X720P_60HZ "1280x720p@60"

VIC Format 4, based on CEA-861-E specification.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_CEA_1920X1080I_60HZ "1920x1080i@60"

VIC Format 5, based on CEA-861-E specification.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_CEA_720X480I_60HZ "720x480i@60"

VIC Format 6, based on CEA-861-E specification.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_CEA_1920X1080P_60HZ "1920x1080p@60"

VIC Format 16, based on CEA-861-E specification.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_CEA_720X576P_50HZ "720x576p@50"

VIC Format 17, based on CEA-861-E specification.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_CEA_1920X1080P_50HZ "1920x1080p@50"

VIC Format 20, based on CEA-861-E specification.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_CEA_720X576I_50HZ "720x576i@50"

VIC Format 21, based on CEA-861-E specification.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_CEA_1920X1080P_24HZ "1920x1080p@24"

VIC Format 32, based on CEA-861-E specification.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_CEA_1920X1080P_25HZ "1920x1080p@25"

VIC Format 33, based on CEA-861-E specification.

#define CAPTURE_NORM_CEA_1920X1080P_30HZ "1920x1080p@30"

VIC Format 34, based on CEA-861-E specification.