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Etharooni designed this wonderful intervalometer to help him take awesome photos with his camera. He writes:

Entry-level Nikon DSLRs don’t have many built in features that the higher-end cameras do, like an interval timer, for instance. It’s an exceedingly useful feature. If you want to take star trails, time lapse, repetitive self-timer shooting, or whatever, an intervalometer is really important.

Another feature that Nikon seems to have forgotten about for us lower-class photographers, is a built in, physical, connected cable release. If that existed, this project wouldn’t be that spectacular. What they do have, though, is an infrared sensor for taking photos with a remote. So, logically, I took advantage of that for the project.

He has a nice write-up about the project, including schematic, Gerber files, source code, and even a list of things to change for version 2.

  • Olivier

    Nikon actually sales a software to do interval shots: Nikon Capture

    • Matt Mets

      Certainly, and there are also hardware modules that can be purchased to do the same thing, but it’s much more fun to make your own :-).

  • etharooni

    Thanks for writing about this! It was a fun project.

    • Matt Mets

      Thanks for sharing it!

  • japroach

    Very nice. I set up a similar board but have yet to finish the code for it.

    Some features that wouldn’t be too difficult to implement: trigger on sound level, light level, prox sensor, etc.. Although the lag is far to much to catch say, a balloon popping.

    • Matt Mets

      A trigger for an external flash would also be nice, to get some fun strobe effects.

    • etharooni

      Yeah, there’s actually a header on the far right that allows photos to be taken with external circuitry. I found that, with manual focus, it takes a little less than 300ms for the camera to snap a picture.

  • Anonymous

    Is it a trick of the light, or do the leads on the AVR (microcontroller) look like they are painted on? I keep looking, and they continue to look completely flat.

    • etharooni

      Heh. Nope. I just used a big ol’ piece of paper to bounce a flash off of, and it does weird things with light.

  • Jon

    Makes me want to get a start on one for my Canon XSi…right now all I have is a bulky calculator to do this!

  • Senny Homes

    Nikon DSLRs don’t have many built in features that the higher-end cameras do, like an interval timer, for instance.

     Camera Nikon