June 25, 2012

Build your own camera follow focus controller

 Adi Soffer has used an Arduino as the driver for a interesting piece of photography hardware - the follow focus. This is necessary when filming a subject that is moving towards or away from the camera, and needs to be kept in focus at all times. In theory, the design is very simple - a servo turns the focus ring on the lens, for example:

What is most impressive is that Adi's design allows for several modes - including recording a pattern of focus control for later playback. And the results are quite effective, as shown in the following video:

Truly an amazing project, and a great application of using an Arduino. For more information including the design story, Arduino code and hardware description - visit Adi's project archive here. When building your own FF controller, it would be convenient to keep the physical size as small as possible. With this in mind, consider using our Freetronics LeoStick - one of the smallest Arduino-compatible boards on the market with onboard USB, RGB LED and piezo:

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