Can CAM_TRIGG_DIST be used with a camera operated by a PWM servo signal?

I've set up my GoPro Hero 3's shutter to be activated by a Picoswitch (PWM controlled relay) and it works well. The Picoswitch is wired to RC10 on the Pixhawk servo rail.

I'd like to use a survey grid to trigger the GoPro using CAM_TRIGG_DIST so that Pixhawk logs GPS data every time the GoPro is triggered to take a picture.

My questions are:

Can a camera that is operated by PWM be used with the CAM_TRIGG_DIST option selected in the Survey Grid window's camera options tab, or does CAM_TRIGG_DIST only work for cameras that are operated by relay? (I have CAM_TRIGG_TYPE set to 0 for Servo)

If I can use CAM_TRIGG_DIST, what should my settings be for CH7_OPT and RC10_FUNCTION?

If I can use CAM_TRIGG_DIST, (and I select that option in the camera options tab of the survey grid window), do I need to specify SERVO, PWM, and CYCLE TIME?

Any help would be much appreciated - I battling frustration hard on my 11th trip to the school yard to try and make this work...

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I have just spent the last week doing just this for mapping.

We use a GentLED cable into a Sony Alpha which does PWM triggering.

In your gimbal setup screen choose the output for triggering, and you can also have a manual trigger from the Tx by setting up camera trigger in parameters.

You can set CAM_TRIG_DIST in your missions but for testing I like to set it in the full parameter list.

If you pick a distance of a few meters you can test it by just walking around  with the copter and the shutter will trigger (if you have a GPS lock), so you don't have to be flying a mission in auto for it to work.

Thanks for the reply, Mike :)

That's great that CAM_TRIGG_DIST can be used with a servo operated trigger, and I like your testing method - I'll try that for sure.

Can you leave CH7_OPT set to 9 (for camera trigger), and RC10_FUNCTION set to 10 (for camera trigger) while using CAM_TRIGG_DIST? Or do one or both need to be set to 0? (for disabled / do nothing)

That's how I have it, so that I can trigger the camera from the Tx when I want to and it also triggers at CAM_TRIG_DIST.

That's great too. Thanks for the reply, Mike - I appreciate the help...

Have you successfully used CAM_TRIGG_DIST in conjunction with an auto waypoint Survey Grid? If so, did you have to set Servo, PWM, and/or Cycle Time, or are those settings in the Grid Window only required if you select the DO_REPEAT_SERVO option?

We use the survey grid function to do the waypoints, but as our runs can have more than 170 shots, using any DO_ command for the camera would make the waypoint file too large.

So we just have waypoints at the ends of our runs and the _DIST function does the rest.

On some runs we are looking to 80% overlap so a fast camera is a must.

So a waypoint file will have takeoff, DO_SET_CAM_TRIG_DIST, waypoints, RTL.

That's it.

Thanks, Randy. That's a good tip about using _DIST to ensure the waypoint file doesn't get too large...

Right on, Hugues. Thanks :)

Great post by the way.

I'm afraid I'm at an impass... I've made all the suggested changes (my parameters are set exactly the way you set out) and still no luck...


I'm thinking maybe my set-up (a hacked GoPro Hero 3) is the problem. While the GoPro is capable of shooting photos every 0.5seconds in it's time-lapse mode, it seams to cycle really slow when the camera is in photo mode and the shutter is triggered manually (this is my set up for the Picoswitch and the GoPro hack). Bummer. I'll keep investigating and post any updates here.

Mike, you're using a Sony Alpha...

Hugues, you're using a Sony NEX5...

I see that the Canon Powershot S100 or SX260 seem to be the most common cameras used. What do you guys think about using the Sony cameras over the Canon cameras?

1st step: make sure your camera is triggering - connect it directly to your Rx to make sure

2nd step: get manual triggering through the flight controller (CH7) working

3rd step: set _DIST and test, it should work.

Hi guys, I put attention to the various stages of the problem of Rick McEwen since i would try to perform a remote shuttering.

I'm trying to use gopro for the mission planner survay grid and would ask you if the picoswitch solution is compatible with the use of DO_CAM_TRIGG_DIST.

dear Rick McEwen, did you use DO_CAM_TRIGG_DIST correctly with the picoswitch?

thanck's a lot for any clarification.

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