Controlling Sony camcorders with the Arduino

Arduino Photography & Video Technology

The Local Application Control Bus System (LANC) is the protocol used by Sony camcorders (and some other brands as well) that allows external accessories to control the camera remotely. On most cameras, you’ll find a LANC port next to your camera’s other IO jacks—it’s usually a 2.5mm headphone-style jack, or a 5 pin mini-DIN.

If you’re an Arduino fan, you can easily create your own custom devices that can interact with your camcorder using the LANC protocol, allowing you to control zoom and record functions from your own programs. Goose wrote about his own project and example Arduino source:

I found source code to do LANC control with the Arduino board. It was written quite well – it worked the first time out. I made a few changes though, specifically changing it from being controlled by a serial port to being controlled by a potentiometer. I plan to build my own zoom controller with it, using an Arduino Mini.

The original code comes from Brady Marks. Make sure to check out the README and other documentation inside the source zip file. Along with the Arduino source, there’s a bunch of LANC protocol documentation as well as some collected emails and mailing list discussion on the topic.

Zoomduino – Arduino Zoom Controller
SONY LANC Protocol Details
Brady Marks’ Arduino LANC Source

2 thoughts on “Controlling Sony camcorders with the Arduino

  1. Bingo says:

    An internet CCTV camera is the wave of the future for security. These types of Box Cameras allow you to spy on your own home or business with the help of a hidden camera. Access is generally via a wireless network and you will have the ability to view images and data from a remote location.

Comments are closed.

Discuss this article with the rest of the community on our Discord server!


Maker Faire Bay Area 2023 - Mare Island, CA

Escape to an island of imagination + innovation as Maker Faire Bay Area returns for its 15th iteration!

Buy Tickets today! SAVE 15% and lock-in your preferred date(s).