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Canon A650 IS remote control and RAW options

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Canon A650 IS remote control and RAW options
« on: 15 / March / 2008, 16:32:34 »
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I am needing to upgrade to a 12 MP digital camera to use to take RAW images by remote control from my helium balloon or telescopic mast.

I understand that this CHDK can upgrade a Canon A650 IS to take RAW images and be able to be controlled by GentLED controller via remote control.

Are they real RAW images?

Is it possible to use zoom via remote with this upgrade?

How easy is this to do (some of the forums seem complicated) and does it mean that there is only ever 4GB of card able to be used after formatting it to FATT16 or whatever it is... I normally use a 16GB card to stop having to pull the balloon in to change cards so it would be rather inconvenient!

Im really new to all this so any help would be much appreciated..

Steve
Aerial Photography Helium Balloon or Telescopic Mast
« Last Edit: 15 / March / 2008, 16:34:21 by stevieggg01 »

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Re: Canon A650 IS remote control and RAW options
« Reply #1 on: 15 / March / 2008, 23:57:54 »
I will reply with what I understand--I am new here and try to help answer the "easy" questions as my payback to the community...

Yes, the RAW photographs are really raw... However, they are ~10 bit (vs the 8 bit JPEG) and so you can pull some additional highlights and low-lights out of the shots (and whatnot). However, because this is a non-Canon supported raw, there is no "as shot" EXIF data with/in the file. So, you either have to live without EXIF data or shoot +JPEG to get the EXIF data (there is one or several DNG converters that can copy the JPEG EXIF to the DNG file--I think).

The 4GB card appears to be a hard limit at this time for "Dry OS" cameras. Canon requires FAT16 to boot (2-4GB maximum addressable range)--and DRY OS only allows CHDK to load using the "bootable card" method.

The other WindRiver type cameras have an alternate load technique that may not require the FAT16 file system (I am not 100% sure--since I have a Dry OS camera--A720IS--as is the A650IS) and you boot via the "FirmwareI Upgrade" method to load CHDK.

If you need >4GB, you might look at the specs. of some of the Non-Dry OS cameras to see if any meet your needs (12 MB might be hard to find):

For Developers - CHDK Wiki

The only alternative I can think of for the 4GB+ limit would be to look at something like the Eye-Fi Wireless cards... I don't know anything about them, but perhaps you can set up a corner reflector or use one of those long range WiFi devices to communicate with the Eye-Fi remotely...

Eye-Fi » Home

At $90-$100 it might be worth a "shot". ;)

Lastly, if you have not found the posts yet, search for Kite Aerial Photography... Pretty much the same things you are asking for and quite a bit of discussion on scripts.

Kite Aerial Photography (KAP) with CHDK Working Example        (one such thread)

-Bill


Re: Canon A650 IS remote control and RAW options
« Reply #2 on: 16 / March / 2008, 06:49:06 »
10 Bit not 16 bit?

Does the CHDK allow for zoom on the camera also?

Can you save JPG and RAW's alongside to get EXIF data?

steve

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Re: Canon A650 IS remote control and RAW options
« Reply #3 on: 16 / March / 2008, 09:33:39 »
10 Bit not 16 bit?

Does the CHDK allow for zoom on the camera also?

Can you save JPG and RAW's alongside to get EXIF data?

steve
10bit I think, this is as much as the sensor can give you :-(

As for RAW saving, you have the following options:
1- save RAW+JPG
2- save JPG only
3- save RAW only for the first photo in series (photo burst)

Also: noise reduction (dark frame): On/Off/Auto

The RAW filesize for A650IS is 14,9MB, jpegs (12Mpix) are ~2-8MB. RAW then can be converted to DNG file with EXIF data from JPG.
As for zoom via remote I have no idea, you can ask in the Scripts section/forum for a script that detects remote signal and performs zoom/shoot/whatever.
I'm not a pro photographer, but I hope this helps.


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Re: Canon A650 IS remote control and RAW options
« Reply #4 on: 16 / March / 2008, 10:38:43 »
To be clear, as OSO said, the sensor data is ~10 bit range (RAW file format may be 16 bit). Even the best dSLR's have only a ~14 bit maximum range (from what I have read)...

You would have to use exposure bracketing to get a wider dynamic range (supported by CHDK) for use with HDR photography (for example).

-Bill

Re: Canon A650 IS remote control and RAW options
« Reply #5 on: 16 / March / 2008, 13:39:53 »
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