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10 PC projects: teach your camera new tricks

Add features and remotely control your camera

Adding features to your camera is much easier than you think, and it can make a real difference to your photography.

How to control your camera remotely

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time: 1 hr

Many cameras, even point-and-shoot models, can work with wireless remote controls, but camera makers charge a premium for such accessories. You can save cash by using any universal TV remote control with your remote-capable camera.

By coincidence, infrared command codes for certain electronics devices happen to overlap with the commands that trip your camera's shutter release. You simply need to work out which VCR, TV or other device matches your camera and set the universal remote to match.

It's worth looking online to see whether someone has done the hard work for you and established which consumer electronics have the same remote control codes as your camera model.

If you don't find help for your model, try scanning through the codes. Make sure the camera has a memory card and is set to receive infrared commands. A mode or menu setting is often involved.

As you go through the remote's options, verify that the camera stays awake and responsive. Our camera locked up once with a certain code, but was fine after we removed and reinserted the battery.

Push the remote buttons while attempting to control different electronics brands, and see if any fires the shutter.

Visit Photo Advisor for the latest reviews of digital photography and video hardware and software, cameras and accessories. PLUS: get tips and tricks to improve your photos

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