Remote Web Cams

Spycams were used to photography the world’s largest land predators – Polar bears for a new BBC special – Polar Bear: Spy on the Ice. John Downer Productions has created a wide variety of wireless spycams to photograph wildlife. His latest explored the icy Arctic islands of Svalbard in Norway.

They were no match for the curious bears.

Blizzard Cam, designed to resist temperatures below minus 30 degrees C., was remotely operated over a distance of 1 km. Driftcam’s are triggered by detecting infrared heat, and could detect a polar bear from a distance of 50 metres. Iceberg Cam was designed to blend seamlessly amongst the ice flows. It’s powerful thrusters produced enough speed to keep up with swimming bears. Iceberg cam was decked out with 2 cameras for above and below water filming. Snowball Cam had no visible moving parts but was able to roll across most terrains, even up hill.

One by one, they were all smashed to smithereens – at $100,000 a pop.

The Eye-Fi SD Card and the ShutterSnitch app, available on the App store for $15.99, allow wireless tethered operation. Photos can be zoomed, rated and shared or uploaded to Flickr.

The ShutterSnitch app supports wireless SD memory cards from Eye-Fi, but can accept pictures from any camera transmitter that’s capable of an FTP transfer, which includes all past and current Canon and Nikon WiFi transmitters. Ron Gabraith explains how to configure a Canon WiFi unit to connect to a network. Here’s an iPad Photographer’s Workflow.

Wireless remote camera controls include Canon’s WFT-E4 II for the 5D Mark II with support for 802.11a, remote camera control via WiFi and viewing of images. Nikon’s WT-4a WiFi adapter works with a D3, D700 and D300 for WiFi remote operation (with optional Camera Control 2 software) and image transfer (with FTP software). onOne Software’s DSLR Camera Remote HD, for Canon/Nikon, uses WiFi for remote control and viewing on Apple’s iPad.

An iPad/iPod can control your camera from virtually anywhere in the world if you plug your USB-equipped camera into a laptop (or tablet) equipped with a 3G/4G card.

Clearwire’s mobile router, the $149 WiFi/WiMAX Puck offers WiMAX backhaul for a flat $5/day, $20/week or $50/month. No contract. Transferring one 8GB SD card of photos or video through AT&T or Verizon’s cellular networks would bump you past your monthly allotment. Day one. That’s why all cellular carriers suck.

Breeze Systems has a variety of remote capture products for Canon and Nikon cameras. You operate the camera via the USB connection.

Wireless camera triggers (normally used to fire strobes) include the 344MHz version of the Phottix Atlas, a PocketWizard-compatible with a range over 500 feet.

The ContourGPS helmet camera ($350) lets you shoot in HD and use your smartphone as a viewfinder through Bluetooth while tracking on a map (video).

Nomad Innovations has a self-contained embedded WiMAX newsgathering solution for live broadcasts from the field. No truck.

Posted by Sam Churchill on .

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