The Panasonic GH4 has been one of the more popular camera trap builds in the last few months. With the excellent video capabilities, silent still picture feature and good lens selection, the camera may be the perfect camera trap camera. There are no modifications to the camera so the camera and lens can be purchased locally and the rest of the camera trap from TRLcam. The image below show a typical two camera setup with transit container. The two camera traps fit on one container.
The GH4 camera traps we build here are based on customer requirements. So, let me briefly describe some of the possible features.
Our GH4 controller board has inputs for an internal passive infrared motion detector, a wireless motion detector and an auxiliary input for other trigger devices. Many of the photographers will use the auxiliary input for a long range wireless remote that we build. The range is over two miles depending on terrain. The controller has two capture modes, still image and video. It has a bank of twelve switches that dictate how those two modes operate.
S1- S4 set the length of the video in the video mode and set the length of time the shutter button is activated in the still picture mode. In the video mode with S1 set ON the video will be 15 seconds long, S2 ON is 30 seconds, S3 ON is 45 seconds and S4 ON is 60 seconds. The switches add so if you have S1 and S3 in the ON position your video length will be 60 seconds. In the still picture mode the switches set the length of time the shutter button is activated. S1 is 1 second, S2 is 2 seconds, S3 is 3 seconds and S4 is four seconds. Just like in the video mode you can set multiple switches to the on position to get the time you desire.
S5 sets the operation mode. ON is still picture and OFF is video.
S6 is for a future function
S7 sets the controller for daytime operation only.
S8 sets the controller for night operation only If S7 and S8 are in the ON position then the controller will run 24/7.
S9 enables an output to control an external light source.
S10 turns on/off the wireless receiver for the remote passive infrared motion detector.
S11 turns on/off the internal passive infrared motion detector.
S12 is the master on/off switch for the camera controller.
There is also a option board that that can be plugged into the controller board that will turn the camera into a timelapse camera. The interval can be set for 30 seconds to 63 minutes in 30 second increments.
If you want to take still pictures at night, there is an option to operate three Nikon SB-28 or similar flash units. The SB-28 has a great sleep mode and will last weeks on four AA batteries. Our controller will wake the flash upon detected motion and activate it with the camera shutter.
The firmware in the controller was written by the geeks at TRLcam so if there is any parameter that needs to be changed to meet your requirements, we can make that happen.
The housing is weatherproof and has a 3/8″ aluminum plate fastened to the bottom with numerous 1/4″-20 tapped holes for your mounting. The housing color can be desert tan, OD green or black.
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