200-300 cameras synchronized triggering and access


I wanted to ask for oppinions about a hardwre / software solution (also beyond vvvv) that could be a good way to:

  • trigger and synchronize 200-300 cameras (fullHD, movie-grade) for foto and optimaly also high speed video

To achieve that kind of matrix bullet time camera movement effect…

Of course it is absolutely priority to have a setup that doesnt require much maintenance every time.

So many consumer-grade DSLR or camera systems might be not suitable alone because of the fact that you have to switch them on manualy.
I remember the EOS DSLRs could have been controlled quite nicely but it kind of is eventuelly too much already, also even for a high budget 300 EOSs DSLRs are a bit much.

Then most of the web-cam would have not good enough image quality to fit the movie-grade quality requirement.

I was thinking about lower level hardware implementations with multiple sensors that are connected to ARM boards. That would be a light weight solution but obviously the hardest way to do it.

Also the less heavy PCs involved the better.

What would you do?

What are the maximum amount of cameras per PC that you have experienced?

some ideas:

for triggering theres this hacked firmware for canon powershot cams (quality and price somewhere between a webcam and an slr)

it allows you to completely remote control the camera via usb and also have some functions to remote trigger multiple cameras.

some cameras (like my powershot g12) also have a plug for remote triggering already built in. if you connect a microcontroller (with wifi or ethernet) instead an externam button to trigger you could trigger all cameras via network.

for the way back you could use one of these sd cards with wifi built in. they also have some functionality to upload pictures/movies automatically to a network drive.

I think I’d go for network cameras. Easier to cable everything together with routers, and they usually have a small embedded system. About quality that may be an issue if you don t go the expensive way like Imagesource etc.

maybe industry cams could also do the job? i think about their capability to get triggered by an electrical signal. and there are models that can be connected via ethernet (no usb or wifi hazzle).
Maybe they already have a solution for your case.


Hey thanks for the nice input.

I found also another posibility and this would be
1 odroid xu-4 board that runs 4 ocams (5mp)

but remains a hard nut

We’ve got a few XU4 here and they are some pretty beasts, they can even do rendering with Blender.