I recently bought myself a nice Pentax K100D camera to complement my traditional film cameras.
Whilst taking some self portraits, I realised that I could benefit from a remote for the camera, rather than relying on the self-timer. There are two official choices:
1) A Pentax cable release that connects to the 2.5mm socket on the side of the camera
2) A wireless Pentax IR remote
Now The first option didn't really appeal as I'd need a reasonably long cable and there is the potential for it getting in shot. The second option was preferable but rather more pricey and would also require waiting a week or two for one to be ordered.
So what did I do? I spent �2 and created my own.
Note: Whilst I did this for a Pentax camera, it should work for any camera that has an IR receiver built in to it for a remote.
Step 1: Obtaining the Components
Now, the wireless remote is IR based, so my first thought was to create my own with a few spare components I had lying around. But then I thought I'd have to figure out the IR modulation that Pentax use. Not impossible, but more effort than I wanted to expend.
Then I realised that a universal remote control (intended to amalgamate all your TV and DVD remote controls into one device) would possibly work, since out of th ehundreds of supported TVs one is likely to have a similar IR code to the pentax remote.
Universal remotes can be found at any high street electrical store and usually cost around £15-£20 for a basic model. Now this was more than I wanted to spend as I might as well buy the official Pentax remote in that case. So, a quick trip to my local Poundland (That's a $1.90 dollar store to my American visitors) in my lunch break and I was equipped with:
1) An incredibly cheaply produced universal remote.
2) Some AAA batteries for the remote.