How do photographers programatically take photos? For example, I would like to take a photo every minute for the next day.

  • Can every camera be configured to take photos at regular time intervals?
  • What about power supply, do you use socket power supply? My old camera only has batteries and batteries clearly aren't suitable for a long period of shooting.
  • What kind of hardware or software do you use to connect camera and all of its settings to the computer, that triggers photo capture.

3 Answers 3


Google for intervalometer and tethering

Not every cameras have an internal intervalometer; most higher-end camera have one (check user manuals).

For camera with no internal intervalometer, you can use an external intervalometer gadget, again, check that your camera support it, again, maybe not all camera support that either.

Depending on the photo frequency, a normal camera battery can last a couple hundred photos, so you could just swap in/out a fresh battery between shots.

Depending on the camera model you can plug in a camera grip that usually hold up more batteries so you can shoot more photos.

To store the images, you can use a regular (sd/sdhc) card and swap an empty one when one gets full and transfer the images to the computer.

If you camera support tethering; you can usually control the camera from a computer; again, not all cameras support tethering (usually supported in higher-end cameras).

For example, my camera, a Pentax K5 has a interval shooting feature, but does not support tethering; so if I wanted to do that, I would swap in/out card and batteries as needed.


The Pentax Optio 555 (an older digital model you can get pretty cheap secondhand nowadays) has interval shooting features that would satisfy what you're looking for and a DC power input port so you can plug in a socket adapter. There's also a data connection, though you should experiment before the main shoot day about whether or not you can use that at the same time as interval shooting, or if you'd even need to given the resolution you're shooting at (probably relatively low, if you're planning to stitch these into a video).


For Canons, I am going to suggest the answer of How to programme EOS utility to take n number of shots?

modified for this answer:

An Android App Called DSLR Controller (Beta) works really well with my Canon Gear. ... The app lets you program lots of settings like number of pictures, at how many seconds apart, aperture, shutter speed, iso, change settings by brightness after each photo, etc.

I used it for a time lapse of completing the patio in my backyard a few years back and it worked pretty well, to make a time laps of my buddies wedding head table, to get self photos where 10 seconds isn't enough time to get behind the camera, review my RAW images while I'm on the road some where and want to see it on a larger screen.

I would really recommend looking into it and see if it might work for your Canon Camera.

DSLR Controller (BETA) - it costs about $7.99 (CAD or USD, i forget)

Remote Release - A Test app before purchasing the DSLR Controller

  • \$\begingroup\$ I initially thought that you were using the app to take photos of yourself running circuits around your patio, but on re-reading I think you mean time lapse rather than time laps. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 19, 2016 at 20:17

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