Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Gadget Bag: Look! No Wires!
WiFi technology now lets you compose, shoot, review, send and share your photos free from physical tethers
So far, built-in WiFi technology has been confined to compact system cameras and smartphones. But for DSLR shooters who are craving the convenience of wireless control, WiFi SD cards may be the solution you're looking for.
These WiFi SD cards look and work just like other SD cards in that they save your images to the card as you shoot, and if you choose, you can use a card reader to retrieve your photos and videos. But these cards also have built-in WiFi capabilities that connect to your computer, tablet or smartphone while the card is still inserted in the camera from a distance, giving you the ability to view and transfer your files without touching the camera itself.
While this wireless capability is appealing to anyone who doesn't want to risk safety by running cords through a location site, the ability to both view and transfer files wirelessly from your workhorse camera is also a particular benefit for wildlife photographers working with camera traps, so that you aren't disturbing your setup or the peace of the environment. In a similar fashion, for underwater enthusiasts, transferring files wirelessly reduces the number of times you need to uncase your camera from the housing, thereby reducing the probability of flooding your gear.
The Flucard Pro (www.flu-card.com) shares assets between smartphones, tablets and computers, as well as other devices using Flucards. It uploads to a server to create more memory space on the card as well as back up your files, from which you can also share, organize and print your images. Estimated Street Price: $52 (8 GB).
WiFi Remotes & Viewers
The ability to trigger and control your camera from a distance is important for catching wildlife in their natural environment, setting up unique angles in tight or uncomfortable spaces, and gathering time-lapse images. For cameras not already WiFi-enabled, this is all possible with a corded trigger, but the freedom of physical mobility to set up a base camp, scout nearby locations, move between cameras or simply take in the neighboring scenery with all your camera controls in hand is a time-saving perk. Many wireless remote triggers use different wireless mediums and give different levels of remote control.
Compatible with over 300 different camera models, the Triggertrap 2.0 (triggertrap.com) smartphone app connects to an SLR camera using the Triggertrap WiFi-enabled dongle. Triggertrap then allows you to control settings, including basic shutter control, intervalometer with bulb ramping for sunrise and sunset time-lapse capture, Sensor Controls for shutter release based on sound and vibrations, and DistanceLapse for shutter release based on distance, perfect when driving, biking or boating. These controls, including time-lapse, may continue to run in the background when your phone is using another app or when it's locked to save battery power. When you're in a location without WiFi capabilities, the dongle connects to your smartphone via the device's Personal Hotspot mode. List Price: $31 (Dongle Kit); the app is free.
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