Dear All,

I was using Cannon S100 previously for mapping purpose with CHDK, 1/2000 shutter speed, IS turned off and focus set to Infinity but still get around 50% blurry image.

Now I will use Sony Nex 5n camera on Flatmap1 gimbal with 16mm stock fixed lens and IR triggered from APM for more ground coverage and quality image (hope so..)

Please share your Nex 5n camera setting (Auto or manual or shutter priority?) and any experiences, pros & cons using Nex 5n for mapping purpose.

Let me start from what I was reading from some forum (forgot the link):

Sony Nex 5 series  Camera Setting for Mapping:



  • More pixel compare with S100 = More ground coverage
  • Fixed lens 16mm = less blurry image result
  • ??


  • Heavier compare with S100
  • No GPS onboard
  • Nex 5n Time between shutter > 2 sec = S100 faster < 2 sec (if you need to fly really fast)
  • ??

I will update first page regularly that may be useful for others.

Many thanks in advance for your contribution.


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  • Interesting discussion, I really enjoyed this. Also quite surprising how different we all are.

    I use A5100 usually with Wide Heliar Voitg Lander lens. And shoot with the following params.

    UAV Speed 12 - 14 m/s

    Manual Focus set to infinity and taped

    Auto ISO

    Auto WB


    Speed 1/1000 for a cloudy day 1/1250 for sunny day

    Usual Flight Alti: 300m

    Results: Sometimes good but sometimes not so good focus. Any suggestions?


  • 300km


    I flew three laps with the camera mounted as normal. Then I flew three laps with the camera removed, but the equivalent weight of steel plates fitted flush to the wing. The average power required to fly with the steel was 15% less.

  • I flew a mission this morning with incredible success! I increased the IR trigger control distance to 15 meters with flight speed of 12m/s.  Looks like I got great overlay of entire area. Flight level of 333 feet, maximum allowed altitude in Canada for drones.  I also taped my focus ring in place (manual focus), this helped tremendously, all images are perfectly in focus and exposure worked great with these settings:

    Shutter priority - 2500

    auto iso

    auto f stop

    manual focus

    Now time to create the mosaic.

  • Please STOP spamming the threads with your product. I am well aware of it since you have been posting advertisements about the Seagull on numerous threads here and on RCGroups. For the a5100 I can trigger with a single 10 cent transistor, no need for your overpriced product. Manufacturers who actively participate in helping others are welcome, however you have contributed nothing in all your posts other than self-serving advertising.
    • Hi iskess,

      Please contact me directly about this amazing business proposal with a matching solution for 10 cent - I am really interested in hearing about this solution and would like to become a retailer/distributer of your solution..

      A contact form can be found on my website under the "Support" page

      Looking forward to hearing from you.

      Best regards

      Rone Scholz-Nielsen

  • Hi Darryl,

    I'm not on my computer so have to recap out of my head.

    Set the LOG_BITMASK that 12:CAMERA and 13:RC are enabled.

    In the flash logfile count the number of 'CAM' lines.
    You must subtract about 7 lines at the beginning not
    being an actual CAM trigger command.

    At the related RCOU pin you can check details about timing.
    I do this in Mission Planner.

    If you need more details I can add it this evening (Europe time).

    Wofgang R.

  • I just flew a mission with trigg_dist setting of 20 and got 165 images for a fairly large area.  I seem to have captured all areas of the mission this time. I unfortunately had to land after first take off because my HUD display went dark and didn't check focus again before re-launching second time so all images are blurry.

    How do I check the RCOUT log file?


  • Hello Wolfgang,

    After drawing your polygon and creating survey(grid) a new window pops up, going to "camera Config" you are given three different trigger methods to chose from

    Trigger method:




    Which method are you selecting? I'm assuming the distance one since you gave your settings for that.  I will try your settings this afternoon and see how it goes. I haven't been able to get the same amount of photos that the program tells me I should be getting, far from it in fact which leads me to believe that perhaps this flytron IR sensor is not fast enough to continuously trigger this camera....

  • I have skywalker 1900 with pixhawk using Sony NEX5 with 19mm sigma lens.

    So far after a few first test flights I have decent results with shutter priority set to 2500 and auto iso. In my experience with aerial imagery from aircraft, anything below 2000 and you will get blur in your photos.  

    I have tried both trigg_dist and digicam_control, the distance flight didn't go well, I only got a hand full of images from one survey flight. Digicam control seemed to work much better but I am still missing a couple areas from survey flights, any ideas why this is happening? I have overlap and sidelap set to 60% and it still misses photo locations. Speed was 12m/s and using flytron IR trigger. For my next flight i'll be setting overlap/sidelap to 80% and decrease flight speed to 10m/s.  I'll also try trig_dist again and set distance to around 20 meters per shot and see what that gets me.  

    What are people using for camera trigger settings and overlap? 

    Photo attached is settings using shutter priority 2500, auto iso, auto f stop, manual focus

    • I found the Flytron iR is slower than the cheap HobbyKing one. Ultimately you should either hack your camera shutter button or get an a5100.
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