Thread: Bluetooth Camera Controller Prototype

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  1. #1 Bluetooth Camera Controller Prototype 
    Senior Member Zolac's Avatar
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    Sort of a re-post if you are also watching the other forum. But thought I'd share anyway.

    Recently got an early prototype Bluetooth camera controller working.



    My main goal was to just have this working with my Nucleus Nano, converting the run/stop from the controller to Bluetooth commands but I can certainly see this used in many other ways and I think it would be selfish and wasteful If I couldn’t have others using a system like this.

    I still need to further tweak the code, but it’s otherwise fully functional and can access all the same camera settings that are available on the mobile apps.

    This is at a point where I’d be more than happy to collaborate and work with the community to develop this further. To create a more usable end product.

    I know SmallRig have a codesign program I may pursue with further inquiry, maybe they’d be willing to create handle and do manufacturing, I can provide my code.

    Otherwise If anyone other there has some industrial design background and would like to work through creating an end product, please feel free to reach out.

    One needs to start considering how users would use something like this, so it can influence design decisions.

    Do we include a small oled display and input controls for configuring Bluetooth and camera control? Or no physical input/display at all and use additional WiFi functionality of the chip to let users configure through a smartphone interface?

    What is the best form factor? Build it into handle with a rechargeable battery? Make it a small box with simple power input and button?

    How many programmable buttons do we include? Include a scroll dial for incrementing camera settings? ( aperture, shutter, ISO, etc….)

    Lots of possible answers, would love to hear people's thoughts about a tool like this.
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  2. #2  
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    Hey Zolac, fantastic work! What protocol are you converting to bluetooth for the Nucleus? is it LANC?

    That's the one very simple thing I'd love to see. A tiny box that converted LANC signal to bluetooth

    Theo Ribeiro
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  3. #3  
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    Great initiative. As a Nano owner, I'm very interested.

    1. How does this interface with the Nano wheel, the USB port?
    2. I think my preferred form factor would be as a mount, or "shim" that could go between the wheel and whatever I wanted to mount it to, whether that is a handle or an external monitor or whatever. (Basically a "smart" version of the mount that comes with the Nano.)
    3. I'd prefer to do set-up from my phone where there is room for a pleasant interface, and keep the physical product as small and streamlined as possible.
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  4. #4  
    Great job Zolac!

    Since I am building car rig I would be super happy with something which could be used as a remote control similar to FIZ/remote units for Movi or Ronin 2. Aperture, ISO, Shutter speed/angle, start/stop, plus 2 custom buttons would be enough for me.
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  5. #5  
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    Nano owner here too. Just waiting for some genius like you to figure out REC solution and wireless LANC. following
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  6. #6  
    Senior Member shijan's Avatar
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    Seems really great idea for P4K users. Probably needs proper enclosure with through mounting point. Not sure what exact to suggest right now, but you can read my threads about some custom made stuff. I explained almost every step of very different DIY manufacture techniques and problems there:
    http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?21668
    http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?19574
    http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?20764
    http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?18858
    http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?21220

    First of all find someone with FDM 3D printer service for prototypes and test samples. If you find somewhere ready made proper sized enclosure box that fits your project, it will be faster and the less expensive way to do.

    For CNC machining i can suggest Aminimart or Lanparte factory. Lanparte seems faster and have more advanced machines so they can do more complicated stuff. You can also try to communicate with Camvate factory. They communicate fast but i don't have real collaboration experience with them, because price they offer higher price than others. Same time i can not recommend SmallRig as CNC service because they are too slow in communication, probably because too large company who interested mostly in its own stuff. Lanparte can do final product in a week or two, but from SmallRig you can only wait email response for a week and next they redirect you to other manager
    For me the main problem with CNC manufacture is that it needs 3D drawings made in something like Solidworks, Fusion 360 or other similar technical apps. CNC machines can not use models from common STL poligonal files (actually they can, but surface quality will be poor)
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  7. #7  
    Senior Member Zolac's Avatar
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    UPDATE. Project is complete! Nucleus Nano controller can now remotely start/stop recording.



    Will need some time to really think through how to make this become a viable end product. Will likely share some prototype designs and continue asking the community for feedback.

    Created a poll to gather some initial numbers, please respond if you are interested:
    http://www.strawpoll.me/17350673

    Goal is to keep the form factor is small as possible, using a web interface for initial pairing and for user configuration/customization.

    Stay tuned.
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  8. #8  
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    Here let me buy you a beer. How big is the footprint of the module so far if there is one? voted
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  9. #9  
    Senior Member shijan's Avatar
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    Here are some thoughts about form factors:

    Nucleus-Nano Start/Stop Trigger - makes cense only if form factor will be really tiny. But in reality i guess circuit design will not fit to TRS jack enclosure.

    Simple Controller ( 1 button ) (but with ability to connect external LANC Nucleus-Nano or any other controller i guess?) - this is the best form factor to start. One additional button don't take a lot of space. You will have some basic experience how to deal with buttons and overall it is not too complicated to build. Universal device, many P4K users be happy to see even if they don't have Nucleus-Nano.

    Advanced Controller ( Small display for timecode, multiple buttons, dials ) - this is complicated project that may take a lot of time. Needs a lot of ergonomics testing. Probably it should be able to connect to the handle. It may also make final product way more expensive.

    It may be usable if controller will be able to mount to the rod clamp or directly to some handle or cage with common 9mm distance between threaded holes. Something like this:




    Or mini remote panel something like Zacuto Control Grips

    Browser app interface sounds great.
    All my custom made accessories for BMMCC/BMMSC now available here https://lavky.com/radioproektor/
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  10. #10  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zolac View Post
    UPDATE. Project is complete! Nucleus Nano controller can now remotely start/stop recording.



    Will need some time to really think through how to make this become a viable end product. Will likely share some prototype designs and continue asking the community for feedback.

    Created a poll to gather some initial numbers, please respond if you are interested:
    http://www.strawpoll.me/17350673

    Goal is to keep the form factor is small as possible, using a web interface for initial pairing and for user configuration/customization.

    Stay tuned.
    W00T! Nice job, man.
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