Introduction: Lapse Controller Mini (LCMini)
This little thing is a free open source DIY intervalomenter for timelapse photography based on the Teensy 3.2 board. This controller is fully functional and still new features are being added from time to time. You are also able to download the code and do your own modifications.
Lapse Controller Mini features
- Intervals can be defined in 0.1 second steps
- Easily operable with gloves
- Easy readable screen (from bright sunlight to black night)
- Detailed info of the timelapse status (remaining photos, remaining time, etc)
- Timelapse parameters can be updated while running
- Supports any camera where an standardized analog release cable is available
- 12hr operation, battery recharged via micro-USB
- Teensy 3.2 board (72 MHz Cortex-M4)
- 3.5mm stereo jack for camera connection
- 128x64 TFT Screen that auto turns-off for saving battery
- 2 switch buttons + nav button switch
- Rechargable Li-Ion 600mAH
- Internal buzzer
- On/off switch
- RTC (Real time clock)
- Custom designed 3d printed case
This tutorial assumes that you know basic electronic stuff
- How to solder electronic components
- How to 3d print (or how request a 3d print)
- Arduino IDE basics (how to compile, upload firmware, install Teensy for Arduino Ide)
Attached you will find everything you need to complete this project.
- Custom PCB - download Schematic/Board files
- Components list - download here
- 3d printed case - Cad design and LST files here
- Firmware - Arduino sketch here
Step 1: Preparing the 3d Case
After 3d parts are printed, it is required to complete its preparation before assembling LCMini. This includes:
- Install brass inserts for pcb screws - Use M2.5X3X3.5mm brass inserts. For this you don't need any fancy tool, just use a solder tip as shown in here
- Prepare buttons caps so they fit the case - Remove internal plastic of the button so you can fit the 3d printed spacer. This will give the button the exact height to fit the distance to pcb when assembled.
Step 2: Preparing the TFT Screen Pcb
The project consist of 2 pcb's. The first one is for the TFT Screen. Take in consideration that the pcb thickness is 0.8mm to exactly fit within the case.
Step 3: Preparing the Teensy Board
The teensy 3.2 board needs to be customized to our project before it is soldered in the main pcb. This includes:
- Solder the 32.768KHZ crystal oscillator to teensy board - Crystal does not have a defined polarity. See pictures to locate where to solder and visit this link for additional information.
- Solder the RTC battery - First, you need to disassembly the battery from the module. At this point, I have not yet found a direct supply for this battery. If anyone knows where to buy it please let me know. See pictures to find out how to disassembly the battery. Please note this component do have a polarity. Use a multimeter to find out the + & - connections. Positive goes to VBat and Negative to GND as indicated in the pictures.
- Cut jumper on Teensy 3.2 board [Optional] - If you do not cut the jumper, you will notice that when LCMini is connected through its micro-usb connector, it will turn on regardless of the position of the on/off switch. Still, in any case will charge its battery.
Step 4: Soldering Components to Main Pcb
Please follow the list of components and schematics attached. I strongly recommend you left teensy board to the end as it is the most expensive component.
Take in consideration that the pcb thickness is 1 mm to exactly fit within the case.
Components can be easily soldered as they are not too tiny. Just a little patience.
Step 5: Connecting Battery and Switch
- Battery - Notice polarity when soldering the battery. Any capacity will be ok as long as it fits within the case. I recommend between 450maH and 1000maH
- Switch - No polarity, just solder between A & B pads in the board to the switch. Use silicone to fix the cables and avoid a broke connection due to vibration.
Step 6: Assembling All Parts!
Time for assembling all parts. Please see video attached