arduino wifi time-lapse camera

hello everyone,

I am trying to build a cheap arduino controlled time-lapse camera system. parts I chose so far are;

camera; OV7670
wifi; ESP8266
board; nano

here is an amazing instructable on how to use the wifi module; WiFi temp logger. Unfortunately I can't find a simple and well written instructions on how to connect the camera module mentioned above. I don't need to save the file on the board, I just need it uploaded to a web page, cloud etc.

the picture will be taken 2 times a day with 10hr delay in between (one morning, one afternoon). here is the closest example I can find on instructables to what I want to accomplish, although this is over bluetooth and a different camera module.
1. arduino time-lapse camera
2. image capturing bird feeder

thank you for your help. this is very important for me, I am very new in the field and don't have much experience. I am sure many other people will find such an instructable useful as these modules are extremely cheap.
love & peace

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abrar.burk1 year ago

hey akin! i am exactly in the same boat as you. my requirement is to build a really low cost home surveillance camera which would send pictures to a mobile app whenever the bell is rung. so far i have figured out very basic stuff.

On the esp8266 front, i have finally understood how to send sensor data to the internet ( im quite a beginner, mind you )

On the ov7670 front, i have figure how to send camera data through serial to the pc. However i am not able to see this data, i just know it is being sent because the tutorial said so ( lol ) https://github.com/eranws/ov7670-no-ram-arduino-uno/blob/master/ov7670_no_ram_arduino_uno/ov7670_no_ram_arduino_uno.ino

i cant for the life of me, figure out how to put together these two little things that i have accomplished and finally achieve what i am looking for. say even if i do manage to get the esp to send image data to the internet, where will it show up as an image! do i have to make a separate application for it? a website? aghhr! frustrating!

anyway, since i see that someone has exactly the same requirement as me, i shall keep updating as and when i make any meaningful progress, and please do let me know if you have a breakthough as well.

Akin Yildiz (author)  abrar.burk7 months ago

it's very frustrating. the fact that a $5 arduino camera module still doesn't exist boggles my mind :( keep updating here please, thank you.!!

caitlinsdad2 years ago

Look through this http://makezine.com/projects/crittergram-capture-cam/

Akin Yildiz (author)  caitlinsdad2 years ago

thank you for your reply. this is a new article for me that I haven't seen yet, and is very helpful. BUT the camera they use is not an OV7670 module. they are using a 4 pin ttl camera. OV7670 has 18 pins on it. and the code is much more complicated, but is possible from what I see. just can't find a simplified version of a how-to on it, simple enough for my level.

Akin Yildiz (author)  Akin Yildiz2 years ago

this is the closest thing I can find, but it is too complicated for my level, even people there are agreeing that it is harder to use, but they seem to have figured it out, just nothing I need is documented. here; arduino forum


You do get what you paid for...it does seem pretty advanced, maybe why image processing projects are usually done with a raspberry pi and pi cam.

Akin Yildiz (author)  caitlinsdad2 years ago

sadly, you are correct. I have found that article too, by far the most helpful but like you agree, it is advanced, way over my level. I am aware of the raspi, it is the easiest to do BUT the board itself is very large, I will be using a nano board, which is 4th of the size, maybe smaller.


thank you so much for your help either way. the first person to do a camera project with the parts I have listed above will invent/put together the cheapest MCU camera robot on the planet. it will be under $20, with an MCU, wifi and camera. somebody eventually is going to do it. it's just that my project is kind of time-sensitive, and very strictly budgeted...

Do you really need another MCU? Is the one on the ESP8266 inadequate?

Akin Yildiz (author)  Michael Chan2 years ago

check these out, this may be the solution to everything;



the problem is that there is no cheap/simple camera module out there still...

Hi, have you figure out how to do it?

Camera prices had been dropping a lot after 1 year but still total cost are a little more than $20. But I still want to make it as low as possible. Maybe use my PC usb camera with esp8266?

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