cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

5D Mark2 - Is it possible to take photos at intervals for several hours - like every 5 min for 12hr

Robert_Gaunt
Apprentice
 
1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

TCampbell
Elite

Yes.

 

You'll need to use something called an "intervalometer" (basically a timer that takes photos at intervals) -- the name makes it sound like this might be complicated, but it's fairly easy.

 

It is not a built-in feature of the camera... you'll need an accessory or software.

 

Canon's own accessory is called the TC80-N3   See:  http://cpn.canon-europe.com/content/product/accessories/tc-80n3.do

 

This is a cabled remote shutter release... but it has a built in timer that can take photos at intervals (hence "intervalometer").

 

There are NUMEROUS remote shutter releases with this capability.  You can just push the shutter button on the timer and use it as an extension of your on-camera shutter.  But it also has the capability to program three values:  The number of exposures you want, the duration that it should keep the shutter open for each exposure, and the amount of time to delay between taking exposures.    It also has a fourth setting which is just a single-shot self-timer count-down delay (much like the 2 second and 10 second self-timer feature built-in to your camera except with the remote you can program any amount of time.)  The device can be programmed for hours, minutes, and seconds... not just seconds.  e.g. if you wanted to tell it to take one photo per day for the next 30 days, you could do that.

 

There is also a software option.  There's an optional "firmware" called "Magic Lantern".  Before going further, I should mention that this is not Canon software nor is it supported by Canon.  The firmware does not install in the camera (it does not replace the factory firmware).  It loads onto a memory card, but the camera allows a memory card to be flagged as "bootable".  If the card is in the camera when you power it up, it will automatically load the additional firmware.  The firmware offers more control and features -- and one feature it has is a software based intervalometer.  

 

If you choose to go that route, DO READ THE INSTRUCTIONS CAREFULLY.  It is critically important that your camera have the exact version of firmware they required (niether any version newer nor older -- it must be exact.)  This is because in reality, the Magic Lantern firmware actually invokes the Canon firmware to perform functions.  It expects the Canon firmware to have specific functions loaded at very specific memory addresses and if your firmware is not a perfect match then the it will not be able to invoke the correct function and unpredictable things will happen.

 

That is to say if you're a technical person and are comfortable loading 3rd party firmware extensions not supported by Canon and that should anything go wrong absolutely nobody is responsible for it except you, then it is an option becasue Magic Lantern is free (it's particularly popular among videographers because most of it's features benefit that crowd but it has a few features that benefit the still-photography crowd.)

 

If, on the other hand, you're not comfortable extending your camera's firmware, then buy the cable remote with the integrated "intervalometer".  That method is safe and it is not possible to harm your camera using it.  If you buy the Canon brand, it is fully supported by Canon.

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da

View solution in original post

3 REPLIES 3

TCampbell
Elite

Yes.

 

You'll need to use something called an "intervalometer" (basically a timer that takes photos at intervals) -- the name makes it sound like this might be complicated, but it's fairly easy.

 

It is not a built-in feature of the camera... you'll need an accessory or software.

 

Canon's own accessory is called the TC80-N3   See:  http://cpn.canon-europe.com/content/product/accessories/tc-80n3.do

 

This is a cabled remote shutter release... but it has a built in timer that can take photos at intervals (hence "intervalometer").

 

There are NUMEROUS remote shutter releases with this capability.  You can just push the shutter button on the timer and use it as an extension of your on-camera shutter.  But it also has the capability to program three values:  The number of exposures you want, the duration that it should keep the shutter open for each exposure, and the amount of time to delay between taking exposures.    It also has a fourth setting which is just a single-shot self-timer count-down delay (much like the 2 second and 10 second self-timer feature built-in to your camera except with the remote you can program any amount of time.)  The device can be programmed for hours, minutes, and seconds... not just seconds.  e.g. if you wanted to tell it to take one photo per day for the next 30 days, you could do that.

 

There is also a software option.  There's an optional "firmware" called "Magic Lantern".  Before going further, I should mention that this is not Canon software nor is it supported by Canon.  The firmware does not install in the camera (it does not replace the factory firmware).  It loads onto a memory card, but the camera allows a memory card to be flagged as "bootable".  If the card is in the camera when you power it up, it will automatically load the additional firmware.  The firmware offers more control and features -- and one feature it has is a software based intervalometer.  

 

If you choose to go that route, DO READ THE INSTRUCTIONS CAREFULLY.  It is critically important that your camera have the exact version of firmware they required (niether any version newer nor older -- it must be exact.)  This is because in reality, the Magic Lantern firmware actually invokes the Canon firmware to perform functions.  It expects the Canon firmware to have specific functions loaded at very specific memory addresses and if your firmware is not a perfect match then the it will not be able to invoke the correct function and unpredictable things will happen.

 

That is to say if you're a technical person and are comfortable loading 3rd party firmware extensions not supported by Canon and that should anything go wrong absolutely nobody is responsible for it except you, then it is an option becasue Magic Lantern is free (it's particularly popular among videographers because most of it's features benefit that crowd but it has a few features that benefit the still-photography crowd.)

 

If, on the other hand, you're not comfortable extending your camera's firmware, then buy the cable remote with the integrated "intervalometer".  That method is safe and it is not possible to harm your camera using it.  If you buy the Canon brand, it is fully supported by Canon.

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da

Skirball
Authority

You can also tether your camera to your computer and use the Canon EOS Utility program that comes with your computer.  I think...  I haven't used it with that large of an interval, but I'd think it should work.  Of course, you have to make sure your computer doesn't shut off.

 

Or if you want, install Magic Lantern on your camera.

Robert_Gaunt
Apprentice
Thanks for the detailed reply, I'll probably go with the remote shutter release option.
Announcements

08/09/2022: New firmware version 1.2.0 is available for CR-N 300
08/09/2022: New firmware version 1.2.0 is available for CR-N 500
07/28/2022: New firmware version 1.2.1 is available for EOS-R3
07/21/2022: New firmware version 1.6.0 is available for EOS-R5
07/21/2022: New firmware version 1.6.0 is available for EOS-R6
07/21/2022: New firmware version 1.1.0 is available for EOS-R7
07/21/2022: New firmware version 1.1.0 is available for EOS-R10
07/14/2022: New firmware version 1.0.1 is available for CR-X300
07/01/2022: New firmware version 1.3.0 is available for PowerShot PICK
06/30/2022: Service Notice: EOS 70D: Error 70 or Error 80
06/10/2022: Service Notice:UPDATE: Canon Inkjet Printer continuous reboot loop or powering down
06/07/2022: New firmware version 1.3.2 is available for PowerShot G7 X Mark III
06/07/2022: New firmware version 1.0.3 is available for EOS M50 Mark II
05/31/2022: Did someone SAY Badges?
05/26/2022: New firmware version 1.0.5.1 is available for EOS-C500 Mark II
05/26/2022: New firmware version 1.0.3.1 is available for EOS-C300 Mark III
05/10/2022: Keep your Canon gear in optimal condition with a Canon Maintenance Service
05/05/2022: We are excited to announce that we have refreshed the ranking scale within the community!
04/26/2022: New firmware version 1.0.1.1 is available for EOS R5 C
03/23/2022: New firmware version 1.0.3.1 is available for EOS-C70
02/09/2022: Share Your Photos is back!
02/07/2022: New firmware version 1.6.1 is available for EOS-1DX Mark III
01/19/2022: READY FOR ANYTHING EOS-R5 C
01/13/2022: Community Update. We will be retiring the legacy profile avatars on 01/20/2022. Click this link to read more.
01/05/2022: Welcome to CES 2022!
12/7/2021: New firmware version 1.3.0 is available for Mount Adapter EF-EOS R 0.71x