I’ve been playing around with Googles sketchup over the weekend and have created some components, one the RFM12B module and a basic camera hotshoe to scale. It’s been a great little exercise in learning both Alibre and Sketchup as I’ve been wanting to get some 3D modelling practice, I’m finding that it’s easier to create things in Alibre and then export them to Sketchup. Alibre does not support texture mappings in the drawing or export to POV, but Sketchup does it brilliantly, while on the other hand, Alibre’s3D modelling is very easy to use.
Currently the workflow is: Model in Alibre –> textures in Sketchup – > POV Rendering– > Eagle3D Components.
Keep an eye out for more to come. I’ve started a Stobit Collection in Googles 3D warehouse for use with this project and will be adding to it as I go. I’ll be putting the Eagle3D component files that I’ve created online shortly.
Jans Gentsch has made his compact version of the Strobit Triggr available to the community, his version, the Strobit M08 based on AVR design can be found here. Please note that there are a couple of things that need doing to the PCB, if you get a chance to implement Jans design, please post back any changes to me so I can make them available.
I’ve attached the Eagle-Design-Data as well as the source code. I haven’t found time to do anything on those since my post, so the are not in the best state. There are a few Problems with the board design:
Transmitter – There is a connection missing between the processor and NIRQ of the transmitter-module (the transmitter module doesn’t have a fifo, so that the nirq-line is needed to clock out the data). I just added a piece of loose wire during assembly.
Receiver – NIRQ isn’t connected as well, so I am constantly polling, not really a power saving design. however I am still running on the first set of batteries so it’s not like they are being drained empty immediatly.
IO-Board – Thr optocoupley was meant to sit on the bottom side but I got confused. It has to sit on top now.
Getting everything into the housing was a major challenge.
The source code has been developed using avr-gcc and the eclipse ide.
As it stands only the most basic function, tiggering, is working. The control flow will have to be reworked in order to add the rest of the functionality. And of course my “magic” trigger id should be changed.
Alle the best
You will need Eagle PCB to view/edit the schematics and PCB files, found here -http://www.cadsoft.de/
The firmware is written using winavr found here – http://winavr.sourceforge.net/
After a hectic and very hot Christmas (41DegC) I managed to get some development time and finished 2 prototype boards. My RFM12 header boards still have not arrived, caught up in the christmas mail I guess So I’ve had to resort to hand soldering some wires to the header in the meantime. (Murphys law suggests that as soon as I finish soldering these headers the breakout boards will arrive in the mail)
Tomorrow/Later tonight I will test both of them and see if I can get a remote trigger happening woohoo.
Sorry about the quality of the photos as they were taken with my phone
20/03/09 *UPDATE * This project now has a new home and is actively being developed on Google code project hosting http://code.google.com/p/strobit/
IMPORTANT This page is no longer being being maintained please go to the new project page.
Welcome to the Strobit Triggr Project, an open source hackable wireless trigger used in photography lighting by using low cost strobe units triggered remotely via RF. This was started while trying to find a cost effective and reliable solution to the commercial alternatives out there. At one end of the market is the Ebay or Cactus Trigger, which is low cost but rather unreliable. At the other end of the market there is the industry standard, Pocket Wizards, very reliable, but very expensive (i.e. way out of my price range).
What I wanted to do was to create an open platform that anyone can easily build for a low cost and then be expand upon by the community. The pair of prototypes I’ve built were a proof of concept that I can get a camera to trigger a strobe unit reliably at a low cost. From early tests it appears that I’ve succeeded in my goal, but further testing is required.
Project Status :
- Prototype successfully working in single master/slave configuration !
- (20/03/2009) Project now has a home at Google Code – http://code.google.com/p/strobit/
- Hardware Design
- Software Design
- User Interface
- Hardware Prototype
The strobit hardware design is covered by The TAPR Open Hardware License. Please see http://www.tapr.org/ohl.html for further details.
Downloads – Files associated with the project
Tests – Tests done so Far
In the Wild – Version of this trigger made by others
I’m toying with the idea of putting together a low cost kit for the enthusiast. i.e. PCB, pre-programmed PIC, etc. So we could all benefit with a bulk order of the components. If your interested please email me using the contact form the top menu or use the mailing list signup on the right to give me an indication of numbers interested. Once I finaliaze the design and get some idea of numbers I’ll get a better idea of price. At the moment it will only be available in kit form due to FCC and other Licensing regulations.
- Higher Sync Speed.
- Frequency Hopping.
- Forward Error Correction.
- Power management.
- UI to change settings, Channel etc.
- Save settings in Flash memory.