Her green plastic watering can
For her fake chinese rubber plant
In fake plastic earth.
That she bought from a rubber man
In a town full of rubber plants
Just to get rid of itself.
And it wears her out, it wears her out
It wears her out, it wears her out.
- Radiohead – Fake Plastic Trees
This blog post has nothing to do with the band Radiohead. The only reason I mention them here, is because they talk about fake chinese rubber plants. I would like to talk about fake chinese remote controls. And how useful they are.
It all started when I met a guy who showed me how he had built a remote by himself for his Canon digital camera. All it needed was a cellphone handsfree type cable and jack, a couple of touch-sensitive switches and something to hold everything together. It was cool, simple and the engineer in me really woke up (or was it the gadget freak in me?). But I didn’t want a wired remote. I wanted a wireless remote. I searched the net with no luck. I did find a site with detailed instructions on how to build a wireless remote for the Nikon D70s, but then I have a Canon 350D. I searched quite a bit, and in the process, my desire to own a remote overtook my curiosity to build one. The real Canon remote costs $20 and that is a ridiculous amount for something that consists of an IC, L.E.D and a few switches. I knew the Chinese would be upto something, and I did a search on Ebay to find this. It’s called OMG! SR-1 Universal Infrared Remote for Canon and Nikon SLR / D-SLR and costs $0.99. That’s about Forty indian rupees! But the catch – shipping costs $10.95. But it still worked out cheap for me – for $11 I would be getting a remote shipped to India. Cool!
I recieved the remote yesterday, and it works great. It has two modes (only for Canon) – instant shutter release and shutter release after 2 seconds. Any photographer would tell you that having a remote is pretty useful when shooting long exposure and macro. The 2 seconds delay is great when the photographer also wants to be in the photograph. All he has to do is mount the camera on a tripod, stand in front of it and use the remote
But that’s not it. This remote also features a tiny ultrabright L.E.D that can be used as a flashlight. And it comes with a small mirror that can be easily mounted on the lens. IR rays are reflected off shiny surfaces, so this is when you want to use the remote from behind the camera (the IR reciever is in front of the camera…duh!). If you thought that’s all it has, you are wrong. It also comes with a cool strap attaching thingy, which allows you to have it fixed to your camera strap always. Now that is what I called innovation. Innovation + Made in China = UBER GADGET! Will try to post pictures sometime.