Wireless FPV camera

  • I'm looking into setting up a wireless camera system to use with isadora.  The camera has to be worn by a dancer on stage around her chest.  We have been using an ipod with iwebcam installed.  I hate this solution because there are so many points of failure.  If I lose signal I get a horrible graphic of a sad face.  The feed lags and stutters.  It just isn't a good solution.  I've been looking into first person view systems that people use with r/c airplanes and that seems like a good alternative.  I don't need hd resolution.  The range of these things can go from 300 m to a couple km.  The only problem I see might come up is the transmitters get hot when they aren't flying through the air.  I guess I could install a heat sink and small fan.  Has anyone have experience with these systems and give me tips on where to start.  I also need a way to easily charge the battery packs.  The hobby chargers seem a bit complicated, but that might be my lack of experience in such things.  The dance company is an international company so I need to use a frequency that is legal everywhere.  I think 5.8ghz is my best bet.

  • You may want to review this thread if you haven't seen it.

    Unfortunately my suggestion (supercircuits.com) may not meet the requirement "I need to use a frequency that is legal everywhere."
    Best Wishes,

  • Thanks Mark.  I was thinking about something more like this if anyone has had experience with that kind of gear in a performance setting.  The transmitter is super small so the dancer can wear it and the range is about 500 meters.  I think the legality problem is the hardest part.  I just don't know enough about it and I'm not coming up with much when I google it.  Our season this fall has us going all over the place.  It looks like 2.4 ghz is the most widely legal with Italy having a max of 100mw, but I think the UK has a 10mw limit but we don't do the UK too often.  Mostly Italy, Germany, China and the US.  I'm surprised I haven't come across anyone who has used this kind of hardware in performance.   Maybe that is my first clue.

  • Dear RoccoD,

    Yes, I think it's a bit unusual -- I've not seen it very often either. We did this for a piece way back in 1998, using the transmitter I mentioned previously. It was quite a feat to for my collaborator Dawn Stoppiello to create a choreography that looked good on the dancer while simultaneously ensuring the live fed didn't look like "Blair Witch Project." Also, our performer Sandy Tillet was a big part of th story; she became quite a virtuoso at moving that camera around while she was dancing.
    You can see [a bit of the performance](http://vimeo.com/2325303) with the live camera starting at 3m23s  You can also see me 1) with a beard, and 2) performing, which I only did for two Troika Ranch pieces.
    Ok, enough nostalgia. ;-)
    Best Wishes,

  • RoccoD,

    Also, one thought regarding legality: you need to have the transmitter on long enough to 1) cause some interference that someone will notice and 2) for some kind of tracking truck to find your signal. If you were running a pirate radio station, then maybe you'd have something to worry about . But, for the duration of a performance, I think your chances of getting caught are relatively low.
    Best Wishes,

  • Probably less chance of getting caught if you don't have a beard. They are wise to that kind of thing these days.

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