A Canon Lens Is Never Too Old To Be Useful: Soldering Magnifier Hack

Canon Lens

Got an old Canon lens catching dust and are you into DIY hacks? Then this is for you. This is some serious hardware hacking.

A guy going by [Ad_w00000] on Instructables made a soldering magnifier using a Canon SLR zoom lens, the FD 70-210mm f/4, and the Canon Extender FD 2X-B.

[Ad_w00000] says:

Soldering was becoming more difficult for me and magnifying glasses weren’t much help. I saw on the net that someone used a zoom lens from cctv camera and attached it to a webcam. I didn’t have a cctv zoom lens. But I did have an SLR zoom lens! I liked the idea that there is alot of space between the lens and object. Space to work on. So I started this project. Besides I have lots of goodies lying around in my office and its getting more cluttered and now I got to use them up!

The whole thing is pretty complex and involves for sure some skills. For the Canon part of things, [Ad_w00000] took the lens out of the FD 2X-B extender. This allows to take off or change the lens without hassle. A recycled laptop webcam was fitted into a hole drilled into a Canon rear lens cap. Lens cap and lens mounted on the adapter.

The Canon FD 70-210mm f/4, with extender and mounted webcam (image courtesy of [Ad_w00000])

Curious? See everything explained step by step by [Ad_w00000] at Instructables. The story was spotted by hackaday. More Canon hacks are listed here.

If you want to learn more about this Canon vintage lens, check the video below by Mark Holtze.

Canon develops groundbreaking image sensor, calls it eye of the future

Image Sensor Eos R

Canon published a technical article about the world’s first 1-megapixel SPAD image sensor. A groundbreaking image sensor and distance measurement sensor that will be the eyes of the future.

The advanced technology discussed in the Canon article is for applications involving augmented and virtual reality, ultra-high frames-per-second shooting speeds, robot automation, computer vision, and driverless vehicles. Here are some excerpts from the article:

Both SPAD and CMOS sensors make use of the fact that light is made up of particles. However, with CMOS sensors, each pixel measures the amount of light that reaches the pixel within a given time, whereas SPAD sensors measure each individual light particle (i.e., photon) that reaches the pixel. Each photon that enters the pixel immediately gets converted into an electric charge, and the electrons that result are eventually multiplied like an avalanche until they form a large signal charge that can be extracted.

[…] it was considered difficult to create a high-pixel-count SPAD sensor. On each pixel, the sensing site (surface area available for detecting incoming light as signals) was already small. Making the pixels smaller so that more pixels could be incorporated in the image sensor would cause the sensing sites to become even smaller, in turn resulting in very little light entering the sensor, which would also be a big problem.

[…] Canon incorporated a proprietary structural design that used technologies cultivated through production of commercial-use CMOS sensors. This design successfully kept the aperture rate at 100% regardless of the pixel size, making it possible to capture all light that entered without any leakage, even if the number of pixels was increased. The result was the achievement of an unprecedented 1,000,000-pixel SPAD sensor.

image © Canon
image © Canon

Canon sees many applications for their new and revolutionary image sensor:

In the fields of AR (augmented reality) and VR (virtual reality), which involve superimposing virtual images on top of real ones, being able to use the SPAD sensor to speedily obtain accurate three-dimensional spatial information enables more precise alignment of positions in real time. There are also high expectations for the application of SPAD sensors in solving one of the greatest challenges in designing driverless vehicles: the measurement of distances between a vehicle and the people and objects in its vicinity.

The article is very interesting and if you are into these technologies we recommend you give the article a try. The whole thing was spotted by Image Sensors World. More tech stuff is listed here.

Lens Focus Breathing Explained, And Why You Should Care

Focus Breathing

Lens focus breathing. Ever heard about? According to Wikipedia:

[Lens] Breathing refers to the shifting of angle of view of a lens when changing the focus. Some (often higher quality) lenses are designed to lessen the degree of this effect. Lens breathing does not prevent one from racking focus or following focus with this lens, but it lessens the desirability of any type of focus adjustment, since it noticeably changes the composition of the shot. This is not to be confused with the suction and expulsion of air from within the lens as its internal volume changes.

Want it easier? DPReview TV to the rescue:

This Seriously Skilled Guy Watercooled A Canon EOS R5, And Then Found A Better Solution

Canon Eos R5

Here is a incredibly cool Canon EOS R5 hack, performed by a very talented guy with solid engineering skills (take this as a warning: don’t do it at home).

The guys behind DIY Perks have disassembled a Canon EOS R5 and applied a water-cooling system to the camera’s motherboard. Unlimited 8K recording time is achieved, no more overheating. However, the water-cooling hack as neat as it is, is a gimmick. These guys did far better.

Since a water cooled EOS R5 would be rather impractically out in the field, DIY Perks came up with a better idea and did some serious thermal engineering. They custom-made a copper heat sink and applied it with thermal paste (not thermal tape) to the CPU and DRAM chips on the camera’s motherboard. In environments that are not too hot this allows for continuous video recording without impairing the handling of the EOS R5. A small fan can be applied to the back of the R5 when it is used in warmer places. A professional looking solution that works.

The video below shows all steps and is very interesting. Kudos to the guys at DIY Perks.

Canon EOS R5 reviews are listed here, for EOS R6 reviews see here. The EOS R5 is highly regarded as a stills camera. In particular, the EOS R5 autofocus system seems to be huge leap forwards. User manual are available for download for the EOS R5 and the EOS R6.

Canon EOS R5:

America: B&H Photo, Adorama, Amazon USA, Amazon CA, KEH Camera, Canon CA, Canon USA
Europe & UK: Amazon DE, Amazon UK, Wex Photo Video, Park Cameras, Canon DE, Canon UK

Click here to open the rest of the article

This Artificial Intelligence Powered Camera Describes What It Sees, With Its Own Voice (DIY project)

Artificial Intelligence

Machine learning algorithms are conquering the world. It’s not just now that they entered the photography domain.

This artificial intelligence application is a bit different from what comes in recent photo editing software. A Raspberry Pi is involved, along with a TensorFlow Lite object recognition software and Adafruit’s BrainCraft HAT machine learning system All together makes a very cool DIY project, described by Adafruit in an article.

[via DIY Photography]

Canon Mount Adapter EF-EOS R 0.71x Speedbooster Explained

EF-EOS R 0.71x

Here is a short video introducing the new Canon Mount Adapter EF-EOS R 0.71x, a speedbooster-like adpater to mount EF lenses on RF mount cameras. The Mount Adapter EF-EOS R 0.71x was announced along with the Canon EOS C70.

From Canon:

This adapter converts light transmission from full-frame to Super 35mm image format. It extends the angle of view and optical sensitivity, while seamlessly integrating with the camera’s optical corrections. mount adapter.

In addition to the flanges of the RF mount, four screws securely attach the adapter to the camera. Once mounted, the adapter maintains a similar angle of view of your full frame lenses on the Super 35mm sensor, while boosting the speed of the attached lens by an average of 1-stop. The adapter also carries all EF information through to the RF contacts, so on certain lenses, full DPAF and metadata will be available, working much as they do on a native EF mount.