One of AppleTell’s interesting finds at Macworld/iWorld 2013 was Sanho’s Cameramator, a remote, app-enabled DSLR controller. A few months and one minor legal tussle later, the device is finally available under the HyperDrive brand as the iUSBportCAMERA. Availability was announced in conjunction with the Wedding and Portrait Photographers International (WPPI) convention in Las Vegas last week.
Command and Control
The iUSBportCAMERA’s biggest feature is its second screen capabilities—plug it into your DSLR’s USB out and you can turn your iPad or iPhone into a massive live viewfinder. As you shoot photos, they’re instantly streamed to your device, so not only can you line up the perfect shot, but you get an immediate high-resolution preview. This can be useful if you’re sharing shots as you take them with someone who’s not directly behind the camera—like a director or a client—or if you’re shooting somewhere that may be inaccessible; think of the spectacular shots you could get attaching your camera to a unique position with a Gorilla pod and then remotely shooting from your iPad.
Most DSLRs support remote control via USB port, but the iUSBportCAMERA’s capability frees you from cables. Not only do you get a live preview, but you also get complete control over the camera’s settings, including ISO, aperture, and shutter speed. Focus control is also offered, and refocusing just requires a tap on the desired focus point. This combines the best of iOS photography with the power and flexibility of a DSLR.
Spec It Out
The iUSBportCamera creates its own WiFi network to which you connect to use the iUSBportCAMERA iOS app or iUSBportCAMERA Mac App to control the camera (as of 3/16/13 the Mac app is available as a temporary download, with details available here). Apps will also be available for Android and Windows, so virtually any device can become a remote camera controller.
The iUSBPortCAMERA features 4GB of internal storage to support continuous shooting (the onboard memory acts as a buffer while shots are being sent to your iDevice), and it can also be used for recording video up to 1080p (depending on your camera’s video capabilities). The onboard rechargeable battery is good for up to 8 hours of WiFi shooting, so you should be good to go for most of the day.
When it’s not connected to your camera, the iUSBPortCAMERA can act as a mobile WiFi device and USB Media Streamer. Although it doesn’t offer an internet connection, the device does create a WiFi network that can be used to connect up your iDevices, so you can play multiplayer games or share files. With its USB cable, you can even attach a USB drive and stream movies, share media, or swap files from supported apps on your iDevice.
The iUSBPortCAMERA details are available on the HyperShop site. The price is listed at $299.99, with availability in one to two weeks. If you previously purchased a Cameramator or were one of the Kickstarter backers, Sanho has posted a guide to updating your Cameramator’s firmware to work with the new iUSBPort app. An updated version of the iPad app, as well as the Android and Windows apps are also due in one week.