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Thread: Wireless remotes. Clone or genuine?

  1. #1
    can't remember Tannin's Avatar
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    Wireless remotes. Clone or genuine?

    The genuine article: http://www.digitalcamerawarehouse.com.au/prod21.htm

    $35 plus $11 freight = $46.00

    The cheap clone: http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/IR-Remote...item33907eace7

    $5.89, free postage = $5.89

    As members may know, I'm not shy about mortgaging the cat to buy the best if the best really is better than the second-best. On the other hand, I hate being gouged just because some company thinks I can be gouged. I'm not having a go at Digital Camera Warehouse here: their $35 price for the Canon remote is very reasonable. You'd battle to find one for much less. But genuine Canon accessories are usually always mega-expensive. Canon cameras and lenses are, when you consider the quality, very decently priced. But they charge like wounded rhinos for accessories.

    Now I'd like a reliable remote that gives no trouble. Could a $5.89 thing possibly do the job? On the other hand, given the usual Canon mark-up on accessories, anything they sell for only $35 couldn't cost then more than about $5 in the first place.

    What to do? Pay $46 for the Canon one? Or $5.89 for one from Pheobe-G2009 on Ebay?

    I have bought from Phoebe-G2009 before - things like lens caps and hoods and so on. In fact I ordered two off-camera flash chords and a CF card case from Pheobe-G just five minutes ago. Good range including some stuff that's hard to find, very cheap prices, prompt delivery, goods always as advertised. Happy to deal with Pheobe-G2009 at any time. But is a $5.89 control going to be OK?
    Tony

    It's a poor sort of memory that only works backwards.

  2. #2
    Way Down Yonder in the Paw Paw Patch jim's Avatar
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    It wasn't an infrared one, but I bought a Chinese wireless remote for my camera. A Phottix I think. It worked perfectly for six months, then stopped. The second hand Nikon I bought to replace it is still going strong 4 years and 2 cameras later.

    So there's that, maybe.

  3. #3
    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    One thing I highly recommend against is not to go with IR remotes.
    Granted they may work well in many situations, but there are many where they don't, or you may not be in the right position to get it to work!

    Get a decent quality radio (RF) wireless remote.
    Plenty exist on ebay which are all basically copies of each other. But watch out for the types of batteries they each use in the two components.

    I have two phottix branded wireless remotes. The original worked fine, but sometimes it wouldn't which invariably turns out that the battery is dead.
    OK on the transmitter as they use AAAs, easy to get and usually have some spares in the car anyhow.
    But the battery that committed suicide more often, was the receiver unit's CR2 type, which requires a trip to Nanaland in a chartered jet, on the third Monday in August, every other leap year, once the Elephant breeding season was over ... or something silly like that. Yeah, try to get a CR2 type battery in the middle of nowhere!

    My Phottixes both work perfectly from the day I got them, some 10 years or so now.

    I like the Plato model better only for its form factor. That was the second remote.
    My original Phottix(cant' remember the name) but the one with the odd CR2 battery, the transmitter uses an aerial/antenna and while mine hasn't broken, it's easy to see how one would break.
    The only other tip I'll offer is(and the reason I still keep the older dumb battery Phottix) is that the receiver unit will work via cable even without the battery installed .. ie. it works as a cabled remote.

    The Plato model isn't far behind, in that the transmitter works via cable(eg. if one set of AAAs dies), but the transmitter has to have working batteries and be on to work as a cabled remote.

    I had the IR remote for the D70s as my first ever remote. But using it in practise made me realise just how compromised the design and IR system was.

    if not for a couple of design fails on the Aputure RF products, I'd recommend them, but I say stay away.

    I'd say something like THIS EBAY RF REMOTE LISTING would do the job too.
    It's not a direct copy of the Phottix Plato, but it's very close.

    ps. the only times I've found that the RF remotes wouldn't get a response from the cameras(both D300 and D800E) is when I connect them to the camera while the camera is still on. That is, I now remember to turn off camera before I connect the cable to the camera.
    That doesn't mean that if I do connect them with the camera on, that they don't work .. just that those rare times when they wouldn't, turns out to be that I connected with the camera still on.

    Hope that helps.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by jim View Post
    It wasn't an infrared one, but I bought a Chinese wireless remote for my camera. A Phottix I think. It worked perfectly for six months, then stopped. The second hand Nikon I bought to replace it is still going strong 4 years and 2 cameras later.

    So there's that, maybe.
    What model camera?

    I'm betting, with 99.99% certainty that the remote probably still worked, but that the cable stopped communicating due to fatigue.
    Same issue with one cable on mine, they sent me a replacement. That was for the Plato model.

    The older, earlier model had a fixed cable design on the receiver module, and I hated that. So I butchered my receiver, hacked the cabling and installed a 2.5mm 3 pole port to accept an appropriate cable. Much better in terms of design to start with, and all the cabled I now have a compatible.

    So even with my butchering attempt on the reciever, apart from the stupid Nikon 10 pin port cable design both mine work .. in fact all Nikon remote cable designs are pretty much as stupid as they get!

    Canon got smart(with respect to the users persepective) but silly with respect to their own purposes .. they generally tend to use the 3 pole 2.5mm audio plug type .. which are pretty much ubiquitous in the audio and electronics world.
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
    {Nikon} -> 50/1.2 : 500/8(CPU'd) : 105/2.8VR Micro : 180/2.8ais : 105mm f/1.8ais : 24mm/2ais
    {Sigma}; ->10-20/4-5.6 : 50/1.4 : 12-24/4.5-5.6II : 150-600mm|S
    {Tamron}; -> 17-50/2.8 : 28-75/2.8 : 70-200/2.8 : 300/2.8 SP MF : 24-70/2.8VC

    {Yongnuo}; -> YN35/2N : YN50/1.8N


  4. #4
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    Cheers Lads.

    Arthur, a couple of questions for you. One reason I thought the IR one would be good is that the radio ones seem to require plugging into the remote socket on the camera body. I have a fetish about not opening the little rubber covers in the field.

    My main (well, at present only) intended use is for landscapes, often in wet places. Small streams in dripping wet rainforest, that kind of thing. Up to now I've just used the timer release, I thought a little IR gadget would be easier. Should I risk $5.86 on the off-chance that it's useful?

  5. #5
    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tannin View Post
    Cheers Lads.

    Arthur, a couple of questions for you. One reason I thought the IR one would be good is that the radio ones seem to require plugging into the remote socket on the camera body. I have a fetish about not opening the little rubber covers in the field.

    .... Should I risk $5.86 on the off-chance that it's useful?
    Aha! didn't know this about the Canon remote port. Totally understand.
    But on the other hand, the Nikon 10 pin port is also behind a rubber cover, so has to be 'exposed' to the elements when in use .. and my main use for it is for my bluetooth dongle to connect the GPS.
    D800E has been used from day one in this manner close to 100% of the time.
    D300 maybe 98% of it's life in that manner. Rain, hail(once) and shine ... 45°C in the dusty red centre type shine.

    Note that the D800E 10 pin port did fall in on itself a couple of years ago, but that was due to typical bad Nikon craftsmanship .. not the accessories used.

    But of that rubber seal is opened and reveals more than just the remote port, eg another sensitive electrical port of some type .. then I'd be weary of it too.
    if the rubber cover only reveals the remote port, I'd be inclined to not worry about it being exposed.

    IR remotes do work well in dark places .. just not very good for 'looking into a sunset' tho!
    Do your IR capable Canon bodies have an IR port on the rear as a minimum or both front and rear? Makes a difference too. Front facing only makes for a very annoying experience(ie. as in the D70 used to be).

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    Tony, I use these and they work like a charm! They come with the C3 cable that I suspect your 5D IV and 7D II would need. They are a tad more than what you were looking at above in regards of cost, but they offer you every option you could ever need.

    ---update---

    Forget my suggestion, I just read your post about your aversion to opening the rubber flap on the sides of your bodies.
    Last edited by Plays With Light; 16-08-2017 at 11:19pm.

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    Front only, Arthur. But that's probably OK for my intended usage.

    To my shame, I can't tell you which other ports are opened when you undo the rubber covers. Most semi-pro Canons have had two rubber covers, split vertically such that, in theory, you only have to open one or the other to reach what you are looking for. In practice, of course, you have to open both because you always open the wrong one first. Recent models have different covers and four or five connectors under there, lord only knows what for. The only one I ever use is the USB port for first-time setup of a new camera, and again every once in a long while to synchronise the clocks.

    Sometimes people who know me say I have a particular talent for remembering obscure detail. This is not true. What I actually have is a gift for ignoring anything I'm not interested in, thus leaving both brain cells free for stuff that matters. As a result, I have no idea what all those other sockets in my various cameras are for. Yes, I've read all the manuals, and whatever functions these other things perform, they are ones that did not strike me at the time as useful or interesting, and were as instantly and permanently forgotten as a girlfriend's birthday.

    In short, I am (a) ignorant re connections under the rubber covers, and (b) single.

  8. #8
    http://steveaxford.smugmug.com/
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    I use a Sony camera mostly, so slightly different, but I always use an IR remote for my macro, focus stacks. You do have to wave the remote in front of the camera, but it works perfectly well and I have yet to replace the batteries. I do have a Sony version as well, but Catherine uses that as it has video controls as well and she needs that.
    I also use several Canon cameras for time lapse with intervalometers. The Canon versions cost $150 and the other brand ones about $35. Needless to say I use the others. Of about 7 that I have bought, I have had 2 break. The rest work well in very nasty conditions and I would not bother with the Canon versions, though I do think they are a bit better.
    Another bit of equipment that I save on is tripod plates. Arca-Swiss plates cost about $50 from the USA and $5 from China. I prefer the Chinese versions as they don't just have an Allen key screw.

  9. #9
    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Something you could try:
    Most IR television remotes have a lot of buttons nowadays. The chances are that one of the buttons may send the same IR signal(just set of IR frequency flashes) which may correspond to that of the Canon signal.

    I say this from experience too tho, and still have that cheapy aftermarket remote too. The only problem is finding the button that sends that correct signal!
    The $1 remote I bought, off a table of junk being sold, does have about '1.5million buttons' tho, and sure enough one of those buttons did activate the shutter on the D70s.
    The size of that remote is pretty much impractical to carry around in your pocket, but for testing purposes at home, just to see how it works for 'ya could be real.

    I never liked that need to be forward of the camera for front only IR ports, and I also toyed with a small toy mirror mounted via rubber bands on the lens so that I could operate the IR remote from behind the camera.
    It worked, but again was stupidly impractical.

    Re the connections under the rubber cover. If it's only the remote port, I'd say you will be safe even in a heavy downpour as the port will be jammed with the remotes cable.
    If there is any other port, like a USB connection or whatever .. you'd be best advised to be weary tho.


    I just had a look at some specs re the 5D mk IV(if this is what you're using)
    it has a single front mounted remote port that looks to be well insulated against the environment once a well designed plug is fitted.
    If that's your primary camera, I wouldn't worry about moisture ingress.
    It also has the Wifi remote ability common with modern cameras nowadays.
    I'd recommend against this feature primarily due to the ability for Wifi to kill batteries in quick time! .. and I'm sure you're still anti smartphone philosophy precludes that feature too anyhow.

    if the above is accurate, then I'd recommend the wired up RF remote for that one.

    For the 7DII It looks like the rubber cover exposes a few other ports at once!
    Exposed empty ports .. I'd say dodgy.

  10. #10
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    Cheers Arthur. Depending on circumstances and the mood of the day, it could be 5D IV, 5D II, or 1D IV. I can't see any particular reason to use either of the 7Ds for this sort of task, and the 1 Series models don't seem to be listed on the compatibility charts for the Canon IR remote, so possibly Canon expect you to use something more sophisticated if you are prepared to shell out for a 1 Series body.

    I like the 5Ds for low light because of their full frame sensors, of course. On the other hand, the 1D IV is my go-to camera when conditions are really bad because the weather sealing is so good. (I remember one occasion in Darwin during the wet season when the humidity was around 300% (You have read the proper textbooks and don't think it is possible for humidity to go over 100%? You haven't been in Darwin during the wet season.) and downpours frequent when the 7D - which is pretty well sealed by most ordinary standards - clagged out and the 1D IV just carried on working all day as per usual. I didn't even attempt to use the 5D II or the 50D, this day was out of their league.)

    I have gone with Steve's method and ordered an IR remote from Pheobe-G to try out. It it works for me, it's tiny, neat, saves opening the camera, and saves fiddling about with messy cabling. If not, I just wasted the price of a coffee. Given that I don't drink coffee, I can probably afford the extravagance. At that point, I'll come back to this thread and re-read the posts above before deciding on my next move.

    My thanks to all who replied. Very helpful.

  11. #11
    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tannin View Post
    I have gone with Steve's method and ordered an IR remote from Pheobe-G to try out.

    My thanks to all who replied. Very helpful.
    I've bought about five or six remotes from Phoebe-G, both plugged and IR, and they have all been spot-on.
    Cheers
    Kev

    D600 : D7200 and too much stuff to list

  12. #12
    Ausphotography Regular J.davis's Avatar
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    I have an eBay IR remote, has been used on several Nikon cameras over the years. Still going strong @ less than $5.
    Regards
    John
    Nikon D750, Sigma 105mm OS Macro, Tokina 16-28 F2.8, Sigma 24-105 Art, Sigma 150-600C,
    Benro Tripod and Monopod with Arca plates


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    Ausphotography Regular Hawthy's Avatar
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    Another vote for the eBay IR remote. Under $5 (including postage) five years ago. Never had a problem with it.
    Andrew




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