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camtrapperdoa

Homebrew build with Reconyx specs?

7 posts in this topic

Hi there fellow trappers, this is my first post on here. I have been pondering about this for a while now. Is it possible to do a build that functions somewhat like a Reconyx hyperfire pro?

The specific functions I would be looking for are: 

1. It must be able to fire three to five photos in succession.

2. It must do so rapidly (preferably within a second).

3. It should be able to have a delay after taking photos (e.g. 3 minute delay before sensor is active again)

Other important functions could be sensor and flash range.

 

Let me provide some background:

The Reconyx cameras that are in use right now are being used for scientific research here in the tropical forests of Suriname (So the parts would have to be shipped to Suriname but that's another matter). It is important that we don't miss the animals when they walk in front of the cameras. That's why the five pics in rapid succession. I don't know if the control boards are able to do this, so any input is welcome. Reconyx is the top brand concerning camera traps, in the speed of captures as well as photo quality. However, the reasons I am looking into homebrews are:

- Reconyx is very expensive

- The quality of photos shot by homebrews seems to surpass that available through commercial cameras (at least to my eye)

 

Is it possible to achieve any of these things with homebrews, and do you think it would be worth the venture?

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The only way you are going to get that many pics that fast is with a DSLR build. The pictures will be incredible (magazine print quality) but it's not going to save you  any money, that's for sure!!!

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Just tried it with the only build I have in the house, a Sony S40 with a CritterGetter Micro board. Set the camera on burst mode (it then takes three photos in succession) and it worked just fine -- I've never tried that before. Although I didn't time it, the three photos take more than a second (probably about 2-21/2 seconds). The CritterGetter is no longer available, but it might work just as well with other boards.

But, there's a catch -- Night photos wouldn't be possible since the S40 turns the flash off in burst mode  and most other point-and-shoots would probably do the same.

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5 hours ago, Woody Meristem said:

Although I didn't time it, the three photos take more than a second (probably about 2-21/2 seconds). 

I would possibly be able to try because the stated speed of Reconyx's under 1 second often disappoints.

5 hours ago, Woody Meristem said:

But, there's a catch -- Night photos wouldn't be possible since the S40 turns the flash off in burst mode  and most other point-and-shoots would probably do the same.

That would be a problem...:sad: Does anyone know of a camera that keeps the flash on?

7 hours ago, johnnydeerhunter said:

The only way you are going to get that many pics that fast is with a DSLR build. The pictures will be incredible (magazine print quality) but it's not going to save you  any money, that's for sure!!!

They would be the most amazing pictures indeed! Alas, not in the budget:D

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I remember reading a couple years ago where a Reconyx was strapped to the same tree a sony s-600 homebrew was strapped to. the pic count was close with the homebrew having the slight edge. The ultra fast trigger speed of the Reconyx often is too fast ....triggering a picture before the subject is centered. This is where the burst is nice.. I feel the homerew sensors(HPWA) are superior and sense the subject sooner and the slower trigger speed of the homebrew captures the subject at just the right time thus really not needing the burst.   (trigger speed is highly overrated IMO) The night time burst does give the edge to the Reconyx though as this really isn't possible with the homebrews...if thats what you want. I don't have any experience with the DSLRs....but I'm wondering if one couldn't be built for a comparable price to the ultra expensive Reconyx?  I need the DSLR guys to chime in here.

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I see. thanks for the info zaj! I would definitely like to try one or a few builds to see how they compare to the Reconyx. If only I could bypass the night-burst limitation somehow. You see, burst is also useful for individual recognition. If a jaguar walks past the camera, it helps to have five pics to use for coat pattern recognition instead of one, because he may not be in a favorable position for recognition in some pics. What's the cooldown time like on homebrews? So if the camera is not set to burst mode, but is set to arm again once it has taken a photo.

Okay just spitballing here...I suppose it wouldn't be possible to set the camera to burst mode in daytime, but normal mode at night? And how about if an external flash is used?

If a DSLR build is possible for a comparable price, that would be interesting. However, the camouflage would have to be good, meaning it should not look like there's an expensive camera inside. Otherwise, theft would become a common problem.

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1 hour ago, camtrapperdoa said:

I see. thanks for the info zaj! I would definitely like to try one or a few builds to see how they compare to the Reconyx. If only I could bypass the night-burst limitation somehow. You see, burst is also useful for individual recognition. If a jaguar walks past the camera, it helps to have five pics to use for coat pattern recognition instead of one, because he may not be in a favorable position for recognition in some pics. What's the cooldown time like on homebrews? So if the camera is not set to burst mode, but is set to arm again once it has taken a photo.

Okay just spitballing here...I suppose it wouldn't be possible to set the camera to burst mode in daytime, but normal mode at night? And how about if an external flash is used?

If a DSLR build is possible for a comparable price, that would be interesting. However, the camouflage would have to be good, meaning it should not look like there's an expensive camera inside. Otherwise, theft would become a common problem.

I really have never had the need for the burst mode  but I am pretty sure that a homebrew could burst in the day and not at night. I"m guessing that 1 good colored night pic would be more valuble than a burst with 5 black and whites....but I could be wrong.. Refresh times on homebrews can be programmed  to match the camera and slave flash. Most of the homebrew control boards have dip switches to adjust this.(as well as chip programming )The main problem with the excellent Reconyx and DSLR cams is the investment is at risk in the field!   keep us posted

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