X-ray computer tomography is a powerful method for nondestructive investigations in many fields. Three-dimensional images of internal structure are reconstructed from a sequence of two-dimensional projections. The polychromatic high density photon flux of modern synchrotron light sources offer hard X-ray imaging with spatio-temporal resolution up to the micrometer and micrometers range. Existing indirect X-ray image detection systems can be adapted for fast image acquisition by high-speed visible-light cameras. In this paper, we present a platform for custom high-speed CMOS cameras with embedded field-programmable gate array (FPGA) processing. This modular system is characterized by a high-throughput PCI Express (PCIe) interface and efficient communication blocks. It has been used to develop a novel architecture for a self-event trigger that increases the effective image frame rate and reduces the amount of received data. Thanks to a low-noise design, high frame rates in the kilohertz range, and high-throughput data transfer, this camera is well suited for ultrafast synchrotron-based X-ray radiography and tomography. The camera setup is accomplished by high-throughput Linux drivers and a seamless integration in our GPU computing framework.