My 5DmkII plugged into my Xoom

I am for the most part an Apple guy…why? Well the iPhone imho was the first of the proper smart phones (prior to that with Symbian etc, they  never fulfilled their potential for me) and no, this is not fanboy talk. Am far from an Apple fanboy. I have not time for “Apple is god” or “Android forever” or mine is better than yours, that should have been left behind in the playground before you hit puberty! It’s pretty obvious Apple re-invented the smart phone with the iPhone and I am also well aware of its shortcomings. All you need to do is look at the competition to see how much the iPhone has influenced everything. The Apple app store still remains unbeaten and that is what lifts it above the competition, for now, but hardware wise the Android challengers are really up there and better in many ways – my new Samsung Galaxy S2 for my business phone is fantastic! Recently I got a couple of Android devices and am starting to really dig them, especially the freedom they offer you. One of them, the Motorola Xoom tablet, a pretty good tablet but today I just tried the first really interesting app for it. DSLR CONTROLLER.

It’s still very new, glitchy as it is in BETA stage but with my USB host adaptor and a standard mini USB to USB lead, I can plug in my Canon DSLR and have total control over the stills mode on the tablet. Very nice. It also doesn’t kill the LCD screen when you plug it in, as it’s USB not HDMI or composite.

It’s not perfect as I said, and it currently does not support video recording. If you hit record whilst in the app the screen freezes until you stop recording, but we should have this fixed in updates. The image coming though is only around 15 FPS, but when we get the video part working it will be a nice easy way for someone else to see what you are recording without having to have a monitor with HDMI passthrough. It does work pretty well in stills mode though!

There is only a limited number of Android devices it supports, this will of course grow.

It currently costs £5.20 from the Android store. If you try to find it in the market place on an unsupported device it will not show up! My Samsung Galaxy II for example has old firmware and am waiting for Orange to upgrade to 2.3.4 so I can use it on my phone.

These are its current features (again, this will grow):


DSLR.BOT for your ipod touch, iphone or ipad is fantastic. Get the IR lead for it for $18 plus shipping and you can do cool things like auto record in video mode, so it stops and starts every 12 minutes giving you near continuous recording.

In stills mode it’s useful for me as I can have control over timelapse. Control the intervals and also fine tune HDR from within the app. Strap it to your tripod and run the lead so it sits in front of the camera IR receiver, and away you go. They are promising interval ramping but no sign of it yet. Of course tying up your iphone for timelapse is a pain so I have installed it on my touch and it works fine. Once the ramping is implemented it will be a much better app, but even now, especially with the neat auto record for video, it’s a pretty good app.

Comments

  1. DSLR Bot looks very interesting. Price point is unbeatable. Can’t wait to try it out!

    1. Dovelyn Richmond says:

      does this work with Nikon cameras as well?

      1. Philip Bloom says:

        check their page Dovelyn. I don’t know.

  2. Eli says:

    Does the DSLR Bot essentially do everything that the Opteka remote can do?

    1. Philip Bloom says:

      yep i believe so. if you just want what the opteka remote does then use the opteka remote!

  3. Florian says:

    Another interesting way to control your DSLR is with a Nintendo DS:
    http://www.hdrlabs.com/occ/index.html

  4. Julien says:

    Woaw great thing here! I’d like to try time lapse with a 7D on a trek. Getting rid of catering is not an option… So replacing a laptop with
    my phone might be awesome! I’ll try it soon.

  5. Hamish says:

    wow! even more reason to buy a galaxy s2!!

    1. Harrie says:

      Lol… you almost had me ! You are sarcastic right ?

  6. James B says:

    Hmm , have an iPad but maybe reason enough to get a Galaxy. Still surprised this functionality doesn’t seem available for the ipad(allowing its use as an external monitor). Would be a killer app!

    1. Something ‘similar’ does exist! DSLR Camera remote by onOne Software (http://www.ononesoftware.com/products/dslr-camera-remote/).

      1. Jason Brooks says:

        There also exists a frankly SUPERB stand-alone hardware equivalent of the DSLR-bot, which I recently purchased for an forcibly-separated-from-camera shoot, and have been very happy with. (Although I’m in a completely dependent professional relationship with my MBP, I don’t yet own any hardware or software that is prefaced with an “i” ;-)

        It’s called the P-Clix, and is available here:

        https://www.pclix.com/shopping/default.asp

        Paul, the designer, is an incredibly helpful guy who offered to Skype with me prior to my purchase (it was a very rushed order, as I didn’t find out until a few days beforehard that I wouldn’t be allowed into the room during the shoot [long story, suffice to say it was filming a psychotherapy session]). He answered all my questions and outlined the best solution, which was in fact to use a fibreoptic splitter cable to control a 5D Acam and a 7D Bcam from the same controller unit (I could afford to lose 2 seconds every 12 minutes over an hour session).

        I thoroughly recommend checking it out if you need the shooting flexibility.

        Peas,

        jason

    2. Harrie says:

      You don’t have a laptop ? Software comes with your camera.

      1. Philip Bloom says:

        the point is, which i feel you have missed, is you can plug your phone or tablet directly in and use that. much smaller and more convenient than a laptop.

  7. Concerning DSLR controller, i think Eos utility(from canon) is doing the same thing for free, plus the video recording option, isn’t it ? Practical for focusing.

    What is the “zoom control” option of the dslr controller as we do not have motorized zoom ?

    A+

    1. Philip Bloom says:

      yes eos utility does same thing, point is you can plug your tablet/ phone in with this not your computer. with regards to zoom control maybe it says on their site. i haven’t used it or know what it is.

  8. Stuart Dennis says:

    This would be super wonderful if they could get it working on HTC…good to see decent broadcast/video apps appearing on Android, was getting a bit tired of having what I consider to be *slightly* better hardware and OS but with an inferior app selection.

  9. Steffa says:

    Wait til the android update for playbook which I have seen working and is pukka! This will distort the xoom, htc flyers and iPad war completely!