As the reader of my blog knows, I tend towards the technical side of photography; hence I love posting about new technology. In the last post I mentioned the MaxStone IR trigger as a rather unique and cheap cross platform solution
In this post I wish to discuss another piece of (affordable) cross platform (Canon, Nikon & Sony) remote control technology, namely DslrDashboard (http://dslrdashboard.info/), which, like CamRanger, allows full control of a camera wirelessly. However, unlike CamRanger, which costs some $300, DslrDasboard achieves a similar result for less than $50.
The DslrDashboard is a free cross platform application for controlling Nikon and Canon DSLR cameras. It uses the PTP and PTP/IP protocol to communicate with the connected DSLR camera. It runs on Windows, Linux and Android platforms and the iPad/iPod version is available in the iTunes store for under $10.
An important disclaimer is that the DslrDashboard is still under development, however, from my experience with my Canon 5DIII and my Sony A6000, the product is stable enough for all users. Also, by experimenting with it, you are helping in DslrDashboard's development through your user feedback. Also, please consider a donation to the developer, for what is a fantastic photography tool.
To use DslrDashboard you need to create a wireless interface to your camera (unless it has one built in like my Sony A6000). The DslrDashboard website has all the details and the only cost is to buy a $35 TP-LINK TL-MR3040 from Amazon: http://goo.gl/bXKtMe
To allow DslrDashboard to communicate with your Canon or Nikon camera (for those with WiFi built in you do NOT need to buy the TP-Link 3040) you need to load OpenWRT into the TP-Link firmware. This is a pretty easy operation and well described on the DslrDashboard website or here: http://goo.gl/1fsBQL
Once you have connected the TP-Link to your camera, via a USB cable, and switched on the TP-Link 3040 modem, you can now connect to the TP-Link from your iPad, iPod or Android device etc.
Before using DslrDashboard I recommend reading the manual: http://goo.gl/scKKm1
Once you use DslrDashboard you may well change the way you capture images. There are so many benefits to using a wireless tethered solution, eg: camera placement relative to you; focus stacking; bracketing beyond the manufacturers limitations etc etc etc.
I will write about my DslrDashboard experiences in future posts and I’m sure the developer (Zoltan Hubal) has great plans for this cross-platform tool. According to your setup, for the princely sum of a few dollars to less than $50, you can turn your Nikon, Canon or Sony camera into a photographic capture power house; and of course its great fun as well!