Modular Pi Cam

A Raspberry Pi based camera that can swap body parts and camera modules

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This started out as just me wanting to try round displays and the 5D directional pad... but as I worked on the project I realized the body could be modular eg. swap the camera module/front plate or back plate.

  • Another day out

    Jacob David C Cunningham5 days ago 0 comments

    I got some better shots

    I have some code in progress now, not sure if I'll get it done today/soon.

    Will address:

    - USB file transfer (no wifi network needed eg. sftp)

    - delete all camera/video files from menu choice

    - reset battery from menu choice (vs. current percentage check)

  • A camera is a camera...

    Jacob David C Cunningham04/14/2024 at 01:25 0 comments

    So I went out and used this thing as I normally would with any other camera (Nex 5n, A7 II or A7R III). I'm not a professional photographer, I just like going to the park and shooting macro.

    Can see I shot 72 images or tried to some failed.

    Today was spurred on by my investigation/comparison of two 16mm telephoto (blue ring) lenses to see if I got a bad batch (first one) or if this is how they are (bad bokeh/highlight at low aperture).

    As far as how many I consider good/came out... let's see.

    I also want to note, the auto light/color balance was not good sometimes... if I was looking towards the sun it would get so dark all the colors would be lost eg. green grass. Which I know that is a thing but still.

    First impressions of photos...

    F1.8 is pretty soft for some reason, 2.8 is good

    Bee midflight

    1.4 or that area blooming?

    Heron on a tree, I didn't have the reach sadly

    This one's cool

    This one's nice


    The issue is not as prominent here so I think this lens is better

    Last pic

    Here's a bonus video

    I shoot these blind (no live preview) because I have to figure out how to do that with the SPI display.

    I will say... I'm still generally unsatisfied with these photos, the quality specifically. I still have to get one of the "real lens" adapters and use a real camera lens to see if that helps but it may just be the sensor too. My specific use case is putting my photos on my 32" 1440P ultrawide monitor and the photos on there now are from 16MP, 24MP and 42MP cameras... and real glass so not fair but yeah.

  • Profesh

    Jacob David C Cunningham04/10/2024 at 00:48 0 comments

    Got some decent shots, only used the Arducam 8-50mm. I did buy a second 16mm telephoto lens to see if the crazy highlights are just how the lens are or if I got a bad one. That's still being shipped.

    I think these two were the best shot of the day though

    Full res links

    OMG... it's intercepting the links and embedding them

  • Redemption

    Jacob David C Cunningham04/03/2024 at 01:40 0 comments

    Sort of

    This time most of the pictures saved vs. almost none

    I have to add this file size check

    I almost thought when I got the field that it was broken, since I stopped a battery profiling test (takes hours eg. 8) but thankfully it was working still, had to get past a white screen, probably a white on white text to background situation.

    Got some cool shots though.

    The v3 ultrawide was disappointing, damn... at least stretched out, too much detail.

    Some pics from camera/lenses

    There's a weird w shape distortion with the wide, idk it's easier to tell when you have uniform lines

    The 16mm telephoto lens has some really nasty bright spots idk how to explain it, I'm not sure if the one I got is bad or this is just how it is... next time I have $50 to drop I'll get another one to test.

    This could be a cool pic if it didn't have the crazy background branches popping out of the blur

    I don't want to say it, but I think right now the 8-50mm arducam lens is the best lens I have for the HQ cam. The 16mm just has correct color vs. the 8-50mm (slight purple tint).

    This is also with the 16mm and I focused on the tree.

    Here's an 8-50mm shot in comparison

    The v3-standard was the best though I also hate to say since the HQ cam supposedly will have legit lenses.

    These trees are called "red buds"

    Cool macro vibes here v3 standard again

    Last frame from sunset timelapse which was bad since I had 25 mins left of light and each photo was taken every 5 mins ha.

  • Quick n' lazy stick webcam stand

    Jacob David C Cunningham03/30/2024 at 03:33 0 comments

    I was concerned this camera (orange) wouldn't be used much like the Pi Zero HQ cam with the v2 modular pi cam being the main camera I'm using now.

    I started doing the face capture in videos recently for code-heavy content.

    Simple V-shape design goes around a stick/tightens with a screw

    The stick I just taped to the back of my ultra wide monitor stand

    Initially I just used the ML Clip Cam on there

    Like this with the video output rotated via CSS

    Wow... the first attempt was completely wrong damn... I was not paying attention

    I used the diameter as a radius

    This works, it points (sags) downwards too

  • Light mode

    Jacob David C Cunningham03/29/2024 at 00:47 0 comments

    I just quickly inverted colors and menu sprites so I would have light mode, maybe will help in daylight since the LCD is pretty dim.

  • A bad day

    Jacob David C Cunningham03/27/2024 at 23:59 0 comments

    Bad code man... also I picked up a nail in my car tire at the park... great

    Really bad... almost none of the pictures saved... oh man

    I wonder what it is... I guess I should have tested it more

    21 photos failed out of 25 damn that's bad

    But I got some cool pics of the body on a a rock

    Oh man...

    The only thing that worked is the video mode

    I don't want to say it but I should not have gone out today damn

    I did notice that after the photo was taken the preivew was not resuming

    Here it is with a wide angle v3 module

    I am not joking when I say almost all the images fail... something is seriously wrong with this code, I made too many modifications at once.

    The ones that saved were bad. The red buds are coming out though. I took photos of that and those also failed lol damn.

    You can tell which lens took this (16mm), due to the nasty highlights

    The flat tire

    Working on a video though it's mostly external footage other than the onboard video that did save. Nothing crazy probably ugly panning 720p shots

  • Crop zoom pan and dynamic electronic aperture

    Jacob David C Cunningham03/27/2024 at 01:39 0 comments

    So many words...

    These little caps are cute for the v3 modules

    Will go out to the park tomorrow

    Video and pull request

    This code is still bad but it'll work for tomorrow, has camera detection and dynamic feature eg. text overlay with focus diopter value in the case of the v3 module

  • Lens Wrapper

    Jacob David C Cunningham03/26/2024 at 03:05 0 comments

    Not as fancy as I originally designed, just wanted to get it done, in total about 9-10 hrs to print the 3 parts (includes lens cap).

    I did start working on some code refactor/modification but that'll be tomorrow then to the park on Wednesday.

    I forgot this, did battery profiling/charge, the failed design gap is kind of cool

  • Guts

    Jacob David C Cunningham03/24/2024 at 03:40 0 comments

    I realized the switch was in the wrong place, so I had to crack it open and change that.

    So the switch is on the output between BMS out and DC in vs. between battery and BMS.

    Anyway I will work on the zoom code next then add in the camera detection/overlay then take it out sometime next week probably Wednesday least crappy day that I have off weather wise.

    Will have to work on Pelicam but I have to sit down and think for that one.

    The brief experience so far of changing from the 128x128 OLED to 240x320 LCD (portrait) showed how difficult it is to make a multi-hardware camera interface.

    Tomorrow I'll design the lens wrappers around the 16mm blue ring lens. I was thinking about adding an RFID to them so I could tell in code which lens was attached. Not something I'll do anytime soon.

    At the very least I'm going to see if there is a way to add notches to tell f-stop but probably won't be a thing... just use live preview out to check if image looks good.

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