Photographers love the freedom and flexibility of creating images, but when the shooting environment becomes complex, the folks behind the lens need all the help they can get. Hyper's CameraMator, a wireless tethered photography device, lets you see and remotely control your shoot from a distance on an iPad, iPhone, Mac, or Android device.
Long in development as a Kickstarter project, CameraMator was released just in time for last week's Macworld/iWorld with a $299 price tag. The CameraMator device attaches to your DSLR's hotshoe or a tripod and the USB connection on your camera body (Canon and Nikon only). CameraMator uses Hyper's iUSBport technology to wirelessly connect your DSLR's USB ports with Wi-Fi mobile devices either via an existing Wi-Fi network or by creating its own network. When you shoot an image, the CameraMator sends the photo to your device, allowing you to review your shots on the larger screen. You can use it to share your photos and collaborate with remote colleagues and clients through the cloud.
The device works in conjunction with free apps for the Mac and iOS that are available on the Mac App Store and the iTunes store. The app features live viewing from the iPad or your Mac monitor, wireless camera control, instant image review, a 500-plus image buffer for continuous shooting, an intervalometer, HDR bracketing, a self timer, photo sharing to your laptop or iPad, and integration with Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom.
CameraMator competes with a similar device called CamRanger, which was released a few months ago and offers extensive control over your camera function via a free app from an iPad or iPhone. An OS X application is still in the works.
The bigger difference between the two is in the networking features. CamRanger ($300) works only in Ad Hoc mode. So you're using the device mainly as a camera controller, without additional Internet access.
CameraMator lets you maintain compatibility with an Internet network while you're using the device. Thus, if you're connected to CameraMator via Wi-Fi on your Mac, you can still use your Mac for other tasks such as sending email, or sharing images via DropBox. Thus, CamRanger's orientation is more of a remote control for the camera, while CameraMator has more flexible networking features.
Later this month, a new software update to CameraMator will feature multiple streams and the ability to send your images to multiple mobile devices at the same time.