I have a survey project where I need to record not only the location, but the direction (bearing and angle of elevation/depression) that the camera was pointing at the time the picture was taken. Accuracy is not critical. +/- 10 degrees would do.
I would prefer not to have to buy a new camera.
I don't need another GPS. I need to use a handheld GPS to get to each photo spot anyway, and integrating the GPS info with the photos is an easy ExifTool script.
I don't want external cables. This is an all weather project in bushy terrain; cables catch on things, and require open port covers. Similarly I don't want 'big lumpy things' like FotoMapr. (Which also has GPS that I don't need.)
The ideal solution would be a device the size of a pair of stacked nickels that would attach to the camera's hot shoe. The device would have 3 axis so that I could get compass direction and elevation angle. It would record these along with a time stamp at the time the picture was taken. Calibration to turn raw data to true north, true elevation would happen at data merge time. The device would have a mini-USB port for calibration and data retrieval.
If it requires power, I'd like it to get it from the hot shoe, but battery is acceptable. The unit should have a cost under $100
I originally asked this over at the Photography exchange. They suggested I try here.
Rebuttal to Answer # 1
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It's a bad solution:
- It does not record dip, but just uses a 3 axis magnetometer to correct for tilted camera angles.
- It has cables, and requires open ports on the camera.
- It sticks out. It will catch on brush.
- It's a GPS. I don't need to pay for another GPS.
The 3 axis compass is a single chip under 1 cm square. It retails on a 1 inch printed circuit board for $10 quantity 1. It should be possible to make one that would in essence be a bump on the flash shoe.
If it can't get a time sync from the camera, it would also need to have a clock chip. If it has a USB port, then it gets clock reset whenever attached to the computer. The computer could also use the amount of drift to apply a linear correction to the time stamp. So now our chip count is up to 4: Memory, USB controller, 3 axis magetometer, clock.