Introduction: Wireless Tethered Shooting With Any DSLR Camera V2!

Picture of Wireless Tethered Shooting With Any DSLR Camera V2!

---This tutorial is compatible with the TP-Link router mr3040 V1 and V2.x! But if your router has the hardware version V2.x you should follow the improved version here: https://www.instructables.com/id/Wireless-tethered-... ---


--- this is a upgraded and better version of my first tutorial called "wireless tethered shooting with any DSLR camera. ---

Newer DSLR Cameras allow you to shoot tethered wirelessly over your wifi lan. Unfortunately most cameras don't support this tecnology. BUT! There is a solution! You can make use of cheap credit card sized, wifi routers to build your own system for less than 50$!

First of all, a special thanks goes to Michael, the programmer of "VirtualHere". He made special changes to his software to make this project possible.

Ok guys, here it comes.. its just to have my butt backed up.. :)

Disclaimer: While following precisely every step should be quite easy and nothing should go wrong, there still is the possibility that something doesnt work out... (for example, router battery dies on you while you are flashing the firmware). In any case, the router is recoverable via advanced techniques that will not be discussed here. If those techniques are too complicated for you then you most likely bricked and lost your router. In any case I am not responsible for any kind of damage caused to things or persons by this project.

Step 1: Description, What You Need...

This project aims to give wireless compatibility to any camera. The project is easy to follow and requires about 10 minutes to complete. Just pay attentio to the version of your hardware (version 1.0 or 2.x) and be sure to download and flash the correct firmware. At some point in this tutorial you will be asked to skip one step based on how you want your system to be set up. Option A is the easier one and will create a wireless access point. This option is useful if you shoot on location and/or use a laptop or a PC with a wireless adapter. Option B will connect to an existing wifi network. This is useful if you shoot only indoors in your studio and have an existing wifi network you want to connect to. This second option is a little bit more difficult as it requires you to edit the configuration files in order to be able to connect to your existing network. You will need to tell the system the name of your Wifi network (SSID) the encryption method and the password.

Here is the list of what you need:

- ANY DSLR Camera (or normal camera) that supports tethered shooting via USB cable (basically every DSLR camera around will do it)

- TP-Link MR3040 (if version 2.0 or above is better) costs around 50$

- lan cable for initial setup (one is included in the MR3040)

- A PC that will be your "client" for showing the pictures

Step 2: Setting Up the PC

Picture of Setting Up the PC

There is not much to do on the PC!

All you have to do is download the VirtualHere client from this page:

https://www.virtualhere.com/usb_client_software

Download the client that works best for your system!

if in the previous step you decided that you will go for option B then you will also need WinSCP. (or a similar program for other Operating systems). You can download it here:

http://winscp.net/eng/download.php

This is it! Lets go to the next step!

Step 3: Changing From the Original Firmware to the OpenWRT Firmware

Picture of Changing From the Original Firmware to the OpenWRT Firmware

When you get your router you have to replace the firmware with OpenWRT. If you already have a Openwrt build on your router from previous projects then you can skip to the end of this step.

First we need to flash it with a special firmware that is sort of a intermediate firmware. It is used to bypass the TP-Link firmware check. So all we have to do is download the file and flash it! here we go:

If you have a V1.0 router then you need this file:

http://downloads.openwrt.org/barrier_breaker/14.07...

If you have a V2.0 or above version then you need this one:

http://downloads.openwrt.org/barrier_breaker/14.07...

Notice the ending "factory.bin". This means that this image is meant to be flashed as long as you still are on the original firmware. Before you keep going, double check that you downloaded the proper firmware version for your router. (v1 or v2)

Now, after downloading disable your wifi adapter to avoid IP conflicts, and connect your TP-Link MR3040 router to your PC via the lan cable that came with it. Open the browser and go to the page http://192.168.0.1 and login using the default username and password (admin/admin). Now go to the firmware update page, hit "browse" and select the firmware you just downloaded and flash it!

after about a minute the flashing process is finished and you can access your router at the address http://192.168.1.1 (note that the IP address changed!)

Now its time to decide if you want your router to act as an Access Point or if it should join an existing network.

If you want it as access point then just go to the next step, if you want it to join an existing network then skip the next step and go directly to step 5!

Step 4: Installing the Custom Firmware for AccessPoint Operation Mode (Option A)

Seems you want your router to act as an access point! This is the easy solution!

First of all, download the custom firmware from here:

V1.0: http://www.mad-sharky.com/openwrt-mr3040-v1-APmode-sysupgrade.bin

V2.x: http://www.mad-sharky.com/openwrt-mr3040-v2-APmode...

Now in the top menu of your router's interface click on "system" and go to the backup and restore page. From there you can flash the new firmware.

ATTENTION:you must uncheck the "preserve settings" check, else the flashing process will not overwrite the system settings with the new ones stored in the image. The new image does not have a user interface so once flashed it is not so easy to restore.

If you have done as described above then you have completed this step and can go directly to step 6!

Currently your wifi acts as an access point called "wifi photo" and the password to access it is "password".

Your ethernet port has a fixed IP address: 192.168.0.200 and if for any reason the wifi does not work, then you can access your router via ethernet cable by assigning to your network card a fixed ip address that matches the router's one.

Ok,at this point you can reenable your wireless adapter on your pc and go to step 6 as step 5 is not needed for you!

Step 5: Installing the Custom Firmware for Joining an Existing Wifi Network (Option B)

Seems you want your router to join an existing network! This solution is a little bit more difficult but we will do it together! :)

First of all, download the custom firmware from here:

V1.0: http://www.mad-sharky.com/openwrt-mr3040-v1-JNmod...

V2.x: http://www.mad-sharky.com/openwrt-mr3040-v2-JNmod...

Now in the top menu of your router's interface click on "system" and go to the backup and restore page. From there you can flash the new firmware.

ATTENTION: you must uncheck the "preserve settings" check, else the flashing process will not overwrite the system settings with the new ones stored in the image. The new image does not have a user interface so once flashed it is not so easy to restore.

Now we need to access the router in order to change its settings. First of all you need to assign a fixed IP address to your ethernet card. assign the ip address 192.168.5.10, subnetmask 255.255.255.0 and gateway 192.168.5.1. If you do not know how to do this, you can google "change ip address YOUR_OPERATING_SYSTEM" and you will find a ton of tutorials to follow.

Once done you need to open up WinSCP and enter as address "192.168.5.1" and chose "SCP" as protocol. Type "root" as username and hit connect. When prompted for password type "password".

Now you are connected to your router's internal storage! Go up a few folders till you are on the main root folder. Now enter the /etc/ folder and then /config/. rightclick the "wireless" file and hit edit.

Here you must define the name of your existing wifi network (SSID), encryption type and your wifi password. Possible values for the encryption field are:

wep for WEP,

psk for WPA-PSK,

psk2 for WPA2-PSK.

Once done save, and let winSCP upload the file. Turn the router off and back on and if oyu have done all correctly then your router is now connected to your existing wifi network.

At this point you can reenable your wireless adapter on your pc and go on to the next step.

Step 6: How to Use It

Its really easy to use! Just turn the router on, hook up your camera and start the virtualhere client on your pc!

Virtualhere will automatically detect the router within seconds. if it doesnt, then you need to add the IP address manually! Right click in virtual here and hit "add address". If you are in AP mode then the address to add is "192.168.5.1:7575", if you are in Join Network mode then you must look for the proper IP address in your main router's connected devices list.

When your router and camera get detected, right click on the device and hit "use device". the first time it will install the drivers.

Now it is as if your camera was connected directly to your PC and you can use it with your favorite software!

Enjoy!

Step 7: Change Firmware

If you uploaded the wrong firmware or simply want to change then you need to upload the new firmware by using winSCP. Open winSCP and enter the ip address of the tplink. Select SCP as protocol and type root as username.

Hit connect and when prompted type "password" as password.

once connected upload the firmware you have to the /tmp folder.

At this point you need a little program called putty. download it from here and run it:

http://www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~sgtatham/putty/...

enter the IP address of the router and hit connect. As user type root when prompted and "password" as password.

when done, copy and paste this into putty:

cd /tmp

sysupgrade -v -n FILENAME.bin

(-n deletes all settings. if you need to preserve the settings remove this)

Replace FILENAME withthe actual name of the file you uploaded. This will start the flashing process. Once done your desired firmware will be flashed.

Comments

lvalics (author)2015-02-09

I have succeed to do it with a 7D Mark II, working like a charm. I got some issues as well, I choose to use AP and then when I connect to camera I got other wireless disabled, so I cannot use in same time Internet, but I can live with it.

Also I cannot connect any more via browser to web admin, but I can use SSH (not tried yet).
So, well done!!

sharkyenergy (author)lvalics2015-02-09

Hello! nice to see that somebody made it! :) in order to include the virtualhere server i had to remove the user interface. no workaround on that unfortunately.. as for your wifi problem you have 2 options: you go for the Join Netwrok mode instead of AP, that way you wil be on the same network and wont lose internet, OR buy a 10 euro wireless n (NOTE: if it is wireless N its faster..) nano wifi adapter and add it to your laptop. since this AP uses a unusual ip address (192.168.5.1) you will be able to join this network with one adapter and the other network with the other adapter.. its also convenient that when you put the router away you can put the nano wifi adapter into the usb slot so it wont get lost.. :) I am using this one (ebay) and it works great: WU710N mini wireless n usb adapter realtek RTL8188C made by comfast

Was the tutorial clear? did you have any difficulty at some point?

Ciao

Igor

lvalics (author)sharkyenergy2015-02-09

I can live with no internet when I shooting :-) I shoot or navigate? cannot be both ... Very clear the tutorial for me, but I am IT guys as well.

sharkyenergy (author)lvalics2015-02-10

hello lvalics! just a info: i am working on a firmware upgrade that lets you switch between AP mode and join network mode using the hardware switch on the side. the third position will let you update the join network settings via usb or upgrade your firmware via USB. Both without the need of using SSH :) so keep an eye on this over the weekend! :)

lvalics (author)sharkyenergy2015-02-11

OK, tx

sharkyenergy (author)lvalics2015-02-14

Done! you can find the link to the new version in the introduction! (first step)

I highly sugest updating! ;) For any question just ask!

lvalics (author)sharkyenergy2015-02-14

What steps if I want to upgrade the actual one, considering that I do not have control panel now.

sharkyenergy (author)lvalics2015-02-15

download the image file from the other tutorial (the sysupgrade one) and the follow the last step of this tutorial! if you need help just ask

sharkyenergy (author)lvalics2015-02-09

Ok thanks for your feedback! lets see what other less techy guys think.. :)

sharkyenergy (author)lvalics2015-02-09

also: if you go into the settings of camera raw and select "transfer only jpg files" then you have very quickly your full screen preview and can download the raw files later when you go over to the editing process..

lvalics (author)sharkyenergy2015-02-09

Yes, I know, I can get only the JPG, but is great you mentioned for other people. I tried to get RAW as well and import into LR directly and apply my default settings. On JPG I have some small quality lose.

JennaiP (author)2017-09-18

Is there a way to do this without having a laptop or PC with me? I shoot on location (real estate) and don't want to lug a computer with me.

NegovanV (author)2017-03-12

Hey man :)

I have read your tutorial, and it is awesome! Thank you very much!!! I have flashed openwrt on my MR3040 (i have v2.1), but I need that wifi usb hub feature from your tutorial, and all your download links are dead :'( can you please send me your custom firmware on mail, or reupload files on dropbox (or something)?

Many thanks in advance

Negovan

MiguelP124 (author)NegovanV2017-03-14

were you able to download the mad-sharky files (v1 for me)?

MiguelP124 (author)2017-03-14

The Mad-sharky links are dead... anywhere else?

UlyssesX (author)2017-02-14

I take back my last comment, I got all working, thank you

UlyssesD

UlyssesX (author)2017-02-12

I had openwrt -ar71xx and I flashed openart -AP mode, now I cant connect to the router or access the system through 192.168.1.1 to see what happened, any help out there ??

FlorianW9 (author)2016-08-15

something went wrong ...

i can´t reach the router by using the IP in my browser. I even can´t reset it. It appears as wifi but when conntected to my pc i´m not able to get to the userinterface.

Seamusd3 (author)2015-09-26

This is too cool... Just one question: Are there *any* alternatives to the TP-Link wireless router? By that I mean something smaller; maybe the size of a USB-WiFi dongle thing-y.

KaganP (author)2015-05-28

colinek333 (author)2015-04-30

All works great!
Many thanks

colinek333 (author)2015-04-29

Thank you. I hope it will help because I really like this project. Will let you know.

colinek333 (author)2015-04-27

Hi. First of all great article. Thanks for this,

I have done all steps (option A) and have some issue. I can see wifi photo network, i can connect to it but then nothing happen...

VirtualHere can see my router. Any idea what can I do to fix it?

sharkyenergy (author)colinek3332015-04-28

Hello!

have you seen that there is version 3 of this tutorial? its in the very first post.. its much better than this one!

It hapens that virtualhere does not detect the router. in that case all you have to do is to manually add the ip address of the router in the virtualhere software.

try it out and let me knwo.. thanks

colinek333 (author)sharkyenergy2015-04-28

Hi.
Thank you for reply. I am not sure how to add ip in the virtualhere software. When click in vitrualhere windows there in no add ip option...Any screenshot will be helpful. Thanks in advance.

sharkyenergy (author)colinek3332015-04-29

open up virtualhere, rightclick on "USB Hubs" and select "Specify Hubs"

In there add the ip address of the Access Point followed by :7575.

for example: 192.168.5.1:7575

(this is described in step 6) :)

let me know

pjfsdias (author)2015-02-23

question: will it work with an iPad or iPhone?

using the wifi system, or only works with the software that you give?

sharkyenergy (author)pjfsdias2015-02-24

nope, does not work. This router behaves as if the camera was directly connected to the PC. (you can connect anything instead of the camera and it will still be as if it was connected to the pc)

Connecting the camera to the phone wouldnt bring you much.. :) but there are other commercial products/projects out there that allow you to do this.((for example dslrcontroller, dslrdashboard etc..))

pjfsdias (author)sharkyenergy2015-02-24

are you so is no way I can use the wireless tethered with an iphone application the same way i connect to the computer?

sharkyenergy (author)pjfsdias2015-02-25

yes you can but not with this project... you need dslrcontroller or dslrdashboard.

they use the same hardware but a different software.

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