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Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 15.05.2013 18:06
by Didix
Thanx Stas!

I did not intend to blame you - it was just beeing curious and of course - hope :)


Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 03.08.2013 15:54
by Guest
I read with great attention and interest this discussion.
Sorry, but a reflection. Cannot you as a developer have contact with Nikon to get an answer on this function, possibly taking into account this problem immediately, in future firmware, or a method to bypass. (Remenber the firmware can be patch:
Thank you

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 05.08.2013 15:00
by Stas Yatsenko
It's already fixed in the new Nikon lineup (D800 / D600 / D4 and everything that came out later). I don't see Nikon caring enough to spend resources patching old cameras.

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 08.08.2013 17:50
by clav0
Thank you for this information.
The Nikon D7100 is more recent than the (D800, D600, D4) do you have any information from Nikon.
The new firmware C1.01 on D7100 fixed this problem?
A question on the Nikon D7100, there is a function in the Release Mode Dial, Mup Mirror up (raise the mirror before taking photographs). I test this but Helicom Remote Windows 8 bug with this mode.

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 09.08.2013 14:31
by Stas Yatsenko
Remote doesn't work with Nikon cameras in Mup mode. You can achieve similar effect with exposure delay setting in the camera body menu.

Does D7100 turn live view off after taking a shot with Helicon Remote? If it does, then it probably uses the same firmware as D7000, not firmware from D600/D800. So we were wrong saying all recent cameras have this fixed.
We have no infromation from Nikon on this matter.

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 13.08.2013 19:11
by clav0
Test D90/D5000 Nikon, D7100 with Helicon Remote.
I performed the tests with:
- Helicon Remote 3.0.0 w;
- PC running Windows 7;
- Camera connect with USB cable;
- Personal macroscope equipped with a Trinamic motor;
- With Camera Exposure function delays fashion 1s
- Camera not mounted to view mirror.
View Photo

Interface: Image review = Disable, Live View Display = Fit and smooth, Activate Live View Upon Connecting Camera = no.
- Shooting:
Disable live view after finishing stack = Yes.
At Start Shooting, Live View OFF

1) Test with Shooting: Disable live view during shooting = no.
Sequence for each shoot with D90/D5000.
1 Mirror UP
3 Wait Xs (Trinamic Motor ON)
5 Mirror DOWN
6 Mirror UP
7 Wait 1s
8 Shoot
9 Mirror DOWN
Go To 1
End of sequence LV OFF, DOWN Mirror

Sequence for each shot With D7100.
1 Mirror UP
3 Wait Xs (Trinamic Motor ON)
5 Wait 1s
6 Shoot
7 Wait transfer picture
Go To 2
End of sequence LV OFF, DOWN Mirror
(Throughout the sequence of shoots, the mirror is UP)

2) Test with Shooting: Disable live view during shooting = Yes.
Sequence for each shoot With D90/ D7100 (ditto)
1 Wait Xs (Trinamic Motor ON)
2 Mirror UP
3 Wait 1s
4 Shoot
5 Mirror DOWN
6 Wait Image transfer
Go To 1
End of sequence LV OFF, DOWN Mirror

This suggests that the D7100 works like the D4, D600, D800.
I made another test with Mup according shoot the Nikon D7100 Camera.
With this fonction Helicon Remote Bug.
Bests Regard

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 14.08.2013 13:44
by Stas Yatsenko
That was the wrong scenario you've tested. In the case you've tested all Nikon cameras behave the same. The difference is when live view is ON when you're shooting. D800 does not flip mirror unnecessarily, D7000 does.

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 25.11.2014 23:10
by dwswager
Not sure why Helicon Remote does not support Mup mode on Nikons, all it would take is a 2nd shutter button press sent. First lifts the mirror, 2nd fires the shutter.

On my D810, Custom Setting d4 is "Exposure Delay Mode" which allows you to set a time delay up to 3 seconds between the time the mirror is raised and the firing of the shutter. Would this work with Helicon Remote?

On my D7100, "Exposure Delay Mode" is custom setting d10. Not sure if the D7000 has it.

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 26.11.2014 15:31
by Stas Yatsenko
Remote doesn't support Mup mode for 2 reasons:
1. It is impossible to detect whether Mup is enabled in the camera or not. This setting is not included in the remote control protocol.
2. It doesn't make any sense. Unlike Canon cameras, some of which can function with live view off the same way as with live view on, Nikon cameras require that live view is turned on for many critical operations (shooting, focus movement). And live view is essentially permanent mirror lock up. Bottom line - you should not worry about mirror lock up when using Helicon Remote with Nikon cameras. Just don't forget to turn it off in the body settings.

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 15.12.2014 20:31
by k88kramer
This is a real killer for using Helicon with the D810. I sold my D800 because I could not get rid of the effects of SHUTTER caused camera shake at higher magnifications. Note specifically SHUTTER and not MIRROR caused shake. The D810 does eliminate the problem with the EFCS (personally tested and verified) but this requires Mup with the 2 shutter activations, even in live view. EFCS does not work with Delayed Release Mode so no workaround there. This is no problem when working with manually controlled shutter releases. Just set Mup mode, enter live view and then use 2 shutter presses for each exposure. Nikon acknowledges that the first shutter press in this method does nothing in live view but is still required to make Mup consistent where ever it is used. I want to use Helicon Focus for "automated" focus stacking.

The only way to use Helicon for automated focus stacking without loss of untimate image quality would be to use EFCS. If a manual software setting "Require two activations for shutter release" were added this would solve the problem. Adding a user specified delay between the 2 releases would then separate the mirror and shutter activity as required. And this manual setting method would not require the software detection of Mup Mode. In addition as a specific manual setting it would give the user complete control over the shutter release and EFCS sequence.

Basically this would be implementing a software version of Delayed Release Mode for the D810. Lots of discussion on Nikon forums to push Nikon to implement this via a firmware in the camera, but who knows if and when they will. Helicon Focus could obviate the problem with the software workaround.

Helicon Focus and the D810 would then be the ultimate IQ focus stacking system. Could even be used stackshot!

This would be a big selling point for all D810 users.

This only applies to the D810 for now so please hold the comments from other camera model users.

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 17.12.2014 13:08
by Stas Yatsenko
I'm not sure because we don't have a D810, but I think this might be impossible because EFCS is not supported by the remote control part of the firmware. You can switch your D810 to Mup mode, connect it to Remote, turn live view on and take a shot. I assume you can tell whether EFCS worked or not. If the camera took an image and EFCS didn't work, I'm pretty sure there's nothing we can do.

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 18.12.2014 18:57
by k88kramer
There are 2 and only 2 requirements for EFCS. A menu entry (item d5) to set the EFCS to enable, and setting the Mup release mode. If these 2 settings are in place then 2 shutter release actions are required for an exposure and the EFCS will be used to start the exposure. Makes no difference if view finder or live view mode are being used.

So if Remote had a "require 2 consecutive shutter release actions for each exposure" option, the EFCS could be used if the camera was set up for it. Remote would not have to know anything about the EFCS or the Mup camera states. Coordination of the camera settings and Remote SW settings would be the operators responsibility. Just like all the other manual camera settings that are required like AF switches on the lens and camera. If the Remote also allowed a time delay selection ( such as 1, 3, or 5 seconds ) between the first and second automatic shutter releases the problem would be completely solved. This would result in the optimum image quality obtainable with a 35mm size DSLR and Remote with automatic focus stacking.

Steps would be:

1. Set the camera to use Mup and EFCS enabled manually by operator,
2. Turn on Live View on the camera,
3. Set up Remote with all exposure and stack parameters,
4. Execute automatic focus stack sequence.

For each exposure:

1. Remote focuses at the appropriate plane,
2. First shutter release (by Remote) to initiate the EFCS sequence with shutter closed,
3. Remote waits the number of seconds as set by the operator,
4. Second shutter release (by Remote),
5. D810 then opens the EFCS and completes the exposure.

Repeat 1 - 5 for each exposure in the stack. As far as Remote is concerned the only change is to allow a manual software setting to enable the 2 shutter release mode with a number of seconds between the 2 releases for each exposure.

Helicon Remote does not have to know the state of the camera. The operator would set the state of the camera for Mup and EFCS. And the operator would set Remote to use the double release for each exposure. There are many manual camera/Remote settings required to set up for an automatic stack. This would add an addition optional step by the operator.

All this is just a suggestion for when you do the next update to add the D810. I can continue to do these steps manually now. It works acceptably for stacks with small number of exposures. But if a large number is needed it can take all day with constant operator interaction. The purpose of remote control SW is operator convenience. It does nothing I can not do manually. My suggestion just adds the EFCS steps I use manually so that I could more conveniently do 200 exposure stacks without constant operator interaction.

I think it would be worthwhile to check when you do test the D810 with Remote.

Many D810 users are pinging Nikon to add the EFCS to the Exposure Delay Mode (d4). Whether Nikon does this or not is unknown. And it probably won't be for a long time. In the mean time this would be a great selling point for D810 users. It definitely would be for me.

As a side note, just implementing the "require 2 shutter released for each exposure" to Remote setup would allow the use of Mup on all Nikon cameras with Mup. Remote would not need any Mup state communications with the camera. This would be a nice addition for all macro and even landscape work with Nikon cameras with Remote.

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 22.12.2014 12:48
by Stas Yatsenko
There is no concept of "shutter release" in the Nikon's remote control protocol. There's only 1 command - "Take a picture". That's why it is impossible for Remote to shoot with a previous generation camera that has MLU enabled - it just rejects the shooting command because there was no support for MLU in the remote control part of the firmware. The new generation firmware (D800 / D810 / D600 / D4) is MLU-aware and seems to just ignore this setting because the camera shoots no matter if it's on or off. So, as I said, it will either work when you enable EFCS, enable MLU and press "Take picture" in Helicon Remote, or it won't work no matter what (unless the remote control protocol is extend specifically to support EFCS).

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 11.03.2015 15:16
by orac
this is an interesting subject, using my macro rail which controls the camera shutter (through a hacked cheapo wired remote) instead of calling commands on the camera I am able to use pretty much what ever setting a care to use, mirror up, live view, normal single shot, with settable settle time to allow shacking to stop before the final act of taking the shot.

is there not a way that, with the unfortunate situation of extra hardware, that helicon could control the shutter that way. say an additional USB lead going to an small PIC which can decode basic USB signals and control the camera that way. If you were to go that route it would be important to remember that Nikon require, even in manual focus mode for the focus activation (Half press of shutter button) on the shutter to be activated before the shutter release is activated. canon cameras do not care and will by pass the focus press if required.

Re: Remote focusing, mirror lockup

Posted: 13.03.2015 10:56
by Stas Yatsenko
We do not plan to add hardware control over camera. And as we use software control, we are limited by firmware in the camera.