A low-cost, high-performance video-based binocular eye tracker for psychophysical research
We describe a high-performance, pupil-based binocular eye tracker that approaches the performance of a well-established commercial system, but at a fraction of the cost. The eye tracker is built from standard hardware components, and its software (written in Visual C++) can be easily implemented. Because of its fast and simple linear calibration scheme, the eye tracker performs best in the central 10 degrees of the visual field. The eye tracker possesses a number of useful features: (1) automated calibration simultaneously in both eyes while subjects fixate four fixation points sequentially on a computer screen, (2) automated real-time continuous analysis of measurement noise, (3) automated blink detection, (4) and real-time analysis of pupil centration artifacts. This last feature is critical because it is known that pupil diameter changes can be erroneously registered by pupil-based trackers as a change in eye position. We evaluated the performance of our system against that of a well-established commercial system using simultaneous measurements in 10 participants. We propose our low-cost eye tracker as a promising resource for studies of binocular eye movements.