Desktop automated focus stacking setup

Have questions about the equipment used for macro- or micro- photography? Post those questions in this forum.

Moderators: Pau, rjlittlefield, ChrisR, Chris S.

elf
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Post by elf »

ChrisR wrote:
I can watch the stack being collected in realtime without risking touching the setup
Yeah but, no but, I mean, why would you want to alter camera settings mid-stack?
I'm still missing the point here. What's the point of "tethering"?
OK it saves taking out the card and reading the data to the PC, but is that all?

--
I have another Arduino board on its way that plugs directly into the back of a 2 line LCD (It's a prototype and not generally available yet).

You'll find a board that does that on ebay. Roboduino perhaps. WHat's special about the one you have coming?
Here's several reasons:
1. Shooting HDR macro images where you can bracket exposures.
2. Adjusting the exposure to compensate for the exposure change between magnifcations. I've seen this quite a bit when I'm stretching the DOF.
3. Verifying the images are acceptable on a large screen vs tiny Live View LCD.
4. Verifying first and last images are covering the desired DOF. I've had this problem more than once. :(

I don't know if the new board is really unique, but it is the same size as the LCD so should make for the smallest package. I expect the price to be about the same as a regular Arduino board.

Chris S.
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Post by Chris S. »

Elf, I'm very impressed with your engineering and execution.

If I may ask respectfully, do you find that your ability to make stitched panos is enough of an advantage to justify the complexity of the rig? On the upside, I definitely see how you can get higher pixel count images without parallax errors. And the images you've posted are super. But could you have gotten just as high-quality images without stitching and just used a higher-resolution camera, such as the Nikon D3X?

On the downside--besides the complexity of building such a rig, it appears to me that you are limited to fairly low levels of magnification, since higher levels generally come with smaller image circles, which limit the ability to move the camera around.

I'm probably wrong about much of this, and am asking for correction.

With very best regards,

--Chris

PaulFurman
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Post by PaulFurman »

elf wrote:A lot of the code examples I looked at for the Arduino were for animation and other camera movements like panning and moving along a rail. I think it would be kind of fun to do an animated macro video.
Here's an animated macro video I did recently:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C0r-HKzVpeg
Hand turned with a micrometer stage and obviously not stacked, it's intended as somewhat of a joke about DOF.

elf
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Post by elf »

Chris S. wrote:Elf, I'm very impressed with your engineering and execution.

If I may ask respectfully, do you find that your ability to make stitched panos is enough of an advantage to justify the complexity of the rig? On the upside, I definitely see how you can get higher pixel count images without parallax errors. And the images you've posted are super. But could you have gotten just as high-quality images without stitching and just used a higher-resolution camera, such as the Nikon D3X?
At $8000, the D3X body is far too expensive for a hobby. Even so, I can stitch to much higher resolutions than even the D3X. Of course, if I had a D3X, I'd still be stitching even higher :) The main reason for stitching is the amount of detail is tremendously larger for a given FOV. This won't always be visible in web images, but it definitely shows in prints.
Chris S. wrote: On the downside--besides the complexity of building such a rig, it appears to me that you are limited to fairly low levels of magnification, since higher levels generally come with smaller image circles, which limit the ability to move the camera around.

--Chris
See this thread for the response: http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/v ... php?t=8261

I actually shot this image before seeing your post here. I was curious to see what the image circle would be on the BD Plan 10. http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/v ... php?t=8379
Last edited by elf on Sun Oct 25, 2009 12:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

elf
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Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2007 12:10 pm

Post by elf »

PaulFurman wrote:
elf wrote:A lot of the code examples I looked at for the Arduino were for animation and other camera movements like panning and moving along a rail. I think it would be kind of fun to do an animated macro video.
Here's an animated macro video I did recently:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C0r-HKzVpeg
Hand turned with a micrometer stage and obviously not stacked, it's intended as somewhat of a joke about DOF.
Cute :roll: I'm waiting for Zerene Stacker to have a movie mode where an output image is added to the movie as each new frame is added to the stack.

elf
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Post by elf »

ChrisR wrote: BD lenses - I have some of those. Small rectangular LEDs slip easily into the annulus, but they aren't super bright. I'm on the lookout for the kind of xenon flash devices which are used in cell phones, but haven't seen any yet.
How about some of these? http://www.mouser.com/osramceramos/?utm ... =160548871

AndrewC
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Post by AndrewC »

elf wrote: ....
2. Adjusting the exposure to compensate for the exposure change between magnifcations. I've seen this quite a bit when I'm stretching the DOF.
....
I guess that is one of the advantages of moving the camera or subject rather than using "draw" ?

Andrew

elf
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Post by elf »

AndrewC wrote:
elf wrote: ....
2. Adjusting the exposure to compensate for the exposure change between magnifcations. I've seen this quite a bit when I'm stretching the DOF.
....
I guess that is one of the advantages of moving the camera or subject rather than using "draw" ?

Andrew
For single frame images it really doesn't make much difference as the stacking software adjusts the brightness as it does the stacking. For multi-frame images, it can be a bit of a hassle but it's usually pretty easy to adjust in the final image. It can be listed as a small advantage :)

Tesselator
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Post by Tesselator »

It looks like you're casting you're own aluminum parts. So all I wanna know is how many beers is that all total? :D

elf
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Post by elf »

Nope, no casting. The arms are all done with aluminum extrusions from http://www.8020.net/. They also have an ebay store that works well for small orders. Extrusions like these are probably available in every large city in the world. The rest of the aluminum pieces are milled from flat plate of various thicknesses.

I have a mini-mill and mini-lathe from Harbor Freight that have paid for themselfs many times by making all of the pieces for my projects.

ChrisR
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Post by ChrisR »

Extrusions like these are probably available in every large city in the world.
I know of NO suppliers in the UK who have a good range, and will sell small quantities!

By the way, where IS the entrance pupil on that 10x/0.25 objective?

elf
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Post by elf »

ChrisR wrote:
Extrusions like these are probably available in every large city in the world.
I know of NO suppliers in the UK who have a good range, and will sell small quantities!
That's odd. My original design was based on one built in Germany (http://www.erik-krause.de/index.htm?./panohead) so I would expect these extrusions to be really easy to find in the EU.
ChrisR wrote: By the way, where IS the entrance pupil on that 10x/0.25 objective?
I think it's at infinity, but I don't know if it's behind the camera or in front of it :)

AndrewC
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Post by AndrewC »

ChrisR wrote:
Extrusions like these are probably available in every large city in the world.
I know of NO suppliers in the UK who have a good range, and will sell small quantities!

...
http://www.worldofcnc.com/products.asp?recnumber=81

Aluminium profiles are much commoner on the continent. Us Brits prefer oak and granite and such like :)
rgds, Andrew

"Is that an accurate dictionary ? Charlie Eppes

Tesselator
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Post by Tesselator »

elf wrote:Nope, no casting. The arms are all done with aluminum extrusions from http://www.8020.net/. They also have an ebay store that works well for small orders. Extrusions like these are probably available in every large city in the world. The rest of the aluminum pieces are milled from flat plate of various thicknesses.

I have a mini-mill and mini-lathe from Harbor Freight that have paid for themselfs many times by making all of the pieces for my projects.
Thanks for the explanation. Yeah, I was referring to the milled levers and such. I thought those looked form cast and then worked. That you can get stock that think in news to me. I guessed the extensions though. :) I've cast some aluminum in the past and thought maybe you were doing the same.

DaveW
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Post by DaveW »

I think extrusions are usually only sold by the full length. I used to fetch the odd length years ago from our local Aalco

http://www.aalco.co.uk/nottingham/index.html

http://www.aalco.co.uk/locations/locations.html

If you put "Aluminium extrusions" or Aluminium Sections" into your browser and limit it to the UK there seem to be quite a few suppliers. Whether they will sell the odd length retail I do not know, but they often will if you collect it from their premises.

DaveW

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