RENTON, Wash., Oct. 29, 2010 — Microscan has announced a 3-megapixel-resolution configuration in the popular MINI Hawk series of compact direct part mark (DPM) imagers. The autofocus imager reads small DPM marks straight out of the box. Designed for reading small 2-D direct part marks, the instrument is used in the medical device and electronics manufacturing industries. Electronic components such as printed circuit boards typically have little space to add bar codes for traceability. Small 2-D data matrix codes are suitable for this type of application, but they require a product with enhanced DPM reading capabilities to capture critical data. The fully integrated design of the MINI Hawk makes it easy for electronics and other manufacturers and their suppliers to read these codes. Also available in high-speed and high-resolution configurations, the imager also can consistently read symbols that are damaged, distorted or otherwise challenging, with no set up or configuration required. For real-time dynamic autofocus, the user positions the symbol at the center of the field of view and pushes the EZ button, and the device automatically adjusts the focal distance and sets internal parameters to optimize the symbol. Symbols as large as 50.8-mm-square and as close as 25.4 mm can be read with diffractive field illumination and an optional right-angle mirror. The ultracompact form factor fits easily into tight spaces and is lightweight for mounting into robotic applications. The integrated lighting and autofocus facilitate integration into any industrial application. Via the proprietary X-Mode decoding technology for both 1- and 2-D bar codes, the device can accommodate any 1- or 2-D bar code track, trace and control application. The company has also released a new version of its X-Mode decode firmware. X-Mode technology provides decoding algorithms for 1- and 2-D codes with aggressive direct part mark reading capabilities, along with easy setup and deployment of imagers in any application. With this release, X-Mode adds improved decoding speed, as well as symbologies such as Aztec Code, Micro QR, Pharmacode and a variety of postal codes. Applications for the imager include automotive (dot peen marks on power-train components; laser marks on automotive electronic components), medical devices (laser marks on components), electronics (laser markings on printed circuit boards and flex circuits), and semiconductors (laser marks on packages and components). USB connectivity is available as an option.