Digital Camera control software?

  1. Pengwuino

    Pengwuino 7,118
    Gold Member

    So I'm taking a bunch of pics at regular intervals to show my class how this borax/glue slime slowly collapse and spread. This happens over the course of a few minutes and it gave me an idea. Is there any software out there that you could hook up your digital camera to and have the software take pictures with at a regular interval?

    I highly doubt cameras were ever built with the ability to have such control handed over through the usual ports that you use to download pics off the camera. My only experience is with astronomy cameras, which obviously were built to have total control taken by a computer. The interwebs have amazed me before though.... anyone ever heard of anything like that?

    DISCUSS!!!!

    P.S. If anyone tells me to use a webcam, I will eat your soul.
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2011
  2. jcsd
  3. russ_watters

    Staff: Mentor

    Am I going to have to explain the difference between hardware and software to you?
     
  4. Pengwuino

    Pengwuino 7,118
    Gold Member

    Re: Dig Camera control software?

    Doh! no one saw that...

    Wait, it's pretty clear what I meant :P
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2011
  5. You want an intervalometer.

    If you want to actually get into the camera's firmware, there's CHDK (Canon Hack Development Kit) for Canon cameras. I'm unaware of anything for other brands.
     
  6. Pengwuino

    Pengwuino 7,118
    Gold Member

    oooo that's pretty cool! I have an HP though :( The camera for losers. That's pretty sweet though.
     
  7. robphy

    robphy 4,416
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    Does your camera have a time-lapse mode?

    Can your camera record a video? You can process the video later [with, e.g., Virtualdub] to change the playback rate or else selectively keep frames.

    You can try to build a remote shutter. Although the following describes a Canon camera, something similar may work for other cameras.
    http://www.instructables.com/id/Remote-shutter-trigger-for-Canon-Cameras/
    (I built my own for a Casio camera... by interfacing to a USB cable. The next step would be to somehow connect it to a PC and control it with software.)

    http://www.lucidscience.com/pro-camera trigger hack-1.aspx (HP)

    http://www.philohome.com/remote990/remote990.htm (using LEGO-NXT)
     
  8. Dembadon

    Dembadon 662
    Gold Member

    I did this very thing for a "home experiment".

    You can just video record your object and capture the frames at the desired interval. The software robphy mentioned is free!
     
  9. AlephZero

    AlephZero 7,298
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    My (old and cheap) Nikon has an interval timer built in (from 30 sec to 30 min between shots, maximum 1800 shots), though you need an external power supply to use it reliably.
     
  10. Canon SLR's don't have a build in intervalometer, but they are all completely controlable by an extern computer, which includes an intervalometer. So whenever you can set up your laptop you're in business.
     
  11. Nikon has a range of software for pc control over the camera. I am sure Nikon capture does what you want
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share a link to this question via email, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?