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Nikon D3200 and WU-1a wireless mobile adapter demo (video)

Nikon D3200 WU-1a wireless mobile adapter demo

This video demonstrates how the Nikon D3200 works with the WU-1a wireless mobile adapter ($59). I am surprised that I could not find any demo videos in English, but you will get the idea. For now the WU-1a adapter will work only with the D3200 and only on Android devices, the iPhone app is coming later this year. At that point it is not clear if Nikon will add WU-1a support to existing DSLR models.

Here are the two main features of the WU-1a wireless mobile adapter as described on nikon.com:

1. Function for transferring data to smart devices (Android) over a wireless connection
Images captured by the D3200, or already saved to a memory card inserted in the D3200, can be transferred to a smart device over a wireless connection. Transferred images can be viewed in the smart device display, or uploaded to a blog or social networking site to share beautiful photographs with a broader audience.

2. Remote shooting from a smart device (Android)
The camera's live view display is shown in the smart device screen, enabling remote control over shooting. The live view display shown in the smart device screen always shows the current view through the lens mounted on the camera (live view display), allowing users to accurately frame and predict results with remote control over shooting. Basic information, including the camera's battery indicator, whether or not an AC adapter is connected, and number of exposures remaining, as well as shooting information such as shutter speed, aperture setting, and focus points is displayed in the smart device screen.

 

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  • cb

    interesting, if one needs that…

    • karl

      Nobody will buy it. People buying a D3200 do not want another gadget to stick out of the camera body. Nikon should have kept the hardware inside the body and sell this as a new “groundbreaking feature” that no other DSLR offers..

      • Andrew

        Nobody? I don’t see this as a feature that will be used as often as a flash, but being able to remotely trigger your camera is pretty nifty if you have a tripod and want to take group pictures or simply include yourself in the picture. This is an awesome feature. This thing is so small it will easily fit in your camera bag – which most people have anyway to carry their cameras in. The more stuff you cram into a camera, the bigger it gets and/or the more costly it becomes.

        • karl
          • yrsued

            Infrared means LINE OF SIGHT!!

            I have used the ML-1, ML-2 and ML-2 over the last 18 years, Not going back to that technology!!

            In my work, where I place remote cameras downrange at Major National and World Pistol, Rifle and Shotgun matches, a remote is a MUST!! Nope, don’t want to be downrange with bullets flying your way!!

            This is a totally cool feature!! I wouldn’t mind throwing a D3200 downrange, if it takes a bullet?? I’ll get one very cool shot I guess!!

            • karl

              how many D3200 owners will be pro shooters that are after this one specific feature ? 1-2 % ?
              Thats still “nobody”.
              This feature is clearly aimed at amateurs(1), and that’s why it should have been implemented in the camera body in the first place.

              (1) “Transferred images can be viewed in the smart device display, or uploaded to a blog or social networking site to share beautiful photographs with a broader audience.”

            • http://Www.novumlucis.com Dr SCSI

              @Karl, although I agree that Nikon should implement this feature in camera, the problem lies in the licensing of the wifi in multiple countries. Just like the WT-4 and WT-5, their are different models for different markets. If Nikon were to implement the feature in camera, then the wifi capability would have to be licensed for all markets globally, a much more expensive endeavor. If they were to build five versions of each camera they implement wifi in, then they couldn’t redirect their production on the fly to markets which demand it. Finally, let us not forget the importance of the accessories market for Nikon vendors. The margin on the camera is very small, where the accessories can be 400%. This is Nikon’s way of throwing the retailers a bone. I only wish Nikon would standardize on the interface and keep it the same for many generations and interoperable between camera models. I bought the WT-5a for my D4, but I don’t like the fact that I can’t use it with the D800, for example!!!

            • karl

              @Dr SCSI, there are dirt cheap ($3-$7) wifi adapters on the market that work worldwide – all you have to do is choose your country in the driver settings, and the frequencies of wifi channels are adjusted accordingly, so I don’t think this would be much of a problem.

          • jadekub

            agreed…

          • 103David

            karl, lighten up a bit. I’m sure what you mean is that YOU don’t need this type of remote. Kindly refrain from trying to tell me what I need, okay? Attempted punditry always annoying, in this case, obnoxious.
            Infrared remotes are low-energy impulses which translate to not only a very short range, but as the ambient visable/infrared light gets brighter, the range gets even shorter, and the already inherent lack of reliability becomes even worse. I’ve actually never been able to find any kind of IR remote that boasted an entirely acceptable level of reliable performance. If Nikon wants to improve the technology, let them do it.

      • Ken Elliott

        I would buy it. I do remote shooting right now using wireless USB and a laptop. This would let me use a tablet and upload it. I imagine news shooters would really like it. Sports shooters can clamp their camera in interesting places without the need to be behind the camera.

        A buddy of mine was approached after taking a video of a “police action”. They asked him to delete it. He told them “too late – it’s already on the Internet.” He said they looked sad, and left him alone. He’ll have one of these for sure.

        • karl

          and how do you imagine those sport shooters would actually FRAME their pictures ? Will this mobile app control a motor driven tripod head as well ?

          • Gard

            Eh, planning ahead and stuff like that. And peeking through the finder when positioning the camera. People have done that for as long as motor drives have existed. If you google it, or better yet, duckduckgo it, you’ll find that there is even a Wikipedia article about it https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Remote_camera

            • karl

              how do you plan ahead interesting moments in a sport event ? Do you have 50 cameras covering everything that might get interesting ?

            • D4 owner

              Karl Havent you ever see photos from a basket ball game? Guess where SI shooters clamp there cameras?

        • vertigo

          Now that’s useful. I hate people who demand I delete photos. I would like to transmit photos elsewhere, but it would be far better if I could make the camera hide photos on deletion instead of actually deleting them. This would be a great firmware hack, along with focus assist tools.

          Then when people say delete that, you could show them the screen and delete it. Then un-delete them later. The standard for deletion is it usually ends up in a recycling bin on computers, anyway, to avoid mistakes. Make recycling bin a special setting in the camera.

          But that being said, I would not want a wireless transmitter installed permanently in the camera.

  • peter

    looks like a useless toy

    • yrsued

      maybe to you, but not to me.

      • bp

        he assume all things he can’t use as useless.

  • hq

    When is my D800 shipping? (Feb 7 @ 3am, B&H)

    Seriously, given the range and transfer rate, this is a toy at best. I’m sure some will find creative uses of this little device. Overall, I’m very impressed, because it’s this kinda of technology (and hopefully price-point) that is needed to propagate into higher-end models (while improving range and transfer rate).

    • Foolishcfo

      Same here. My grip is now shipping but no body to attach it to. Has anyone received a D800 in the past week? I know the D800E’s have been arriving but its been awful quite on the D800 front. The D3200 is such a yawner.

      • Vie303

        I’ve ordered my from Amazon on Feb 7th. Nothing yet from Amazon. 3 weeks ago, I went to Ritz and made an order. Today, I got an email from Ritz stating it’s shipped and has a tracking number. Awesome.

    • Amazon

      Hi,

      This is Amazon customer support. Unfortunately, because you are behaving like a big girl and crying over your wait for the D800, in a completely unrelated thread, we won’t be sending you the camera after all. Please dry your eyes and get on with your miserable life.

      Thanks,

      Amazon Customer Support

      • Sports

        +10

      • Foolishcfo

        Must be spam. I didn’t order from Amazon.

        And -10 to Sport.

    • Pablo

      This really s&$ks for people that ore order so early.
      I walked in to Cameta here in NY and they told me theyll have one for me in two days!
      And they did, this was a week after release date.

  • Bob

    I like the remote shooting part. Why is it useful?

    I do a lot of very low shot and high shots, where I cannot see the LCD or in the Optical viewfinder. If Nikon gave an articulating screen, it wouldnt matter, but this seems like a good alternative.

    It would be nice to have something like this on my D800.

  • AJ

    Looks “neat”. Hope it leads to something useful.

  • RXG

    Would it be possible to make this unit work on any older DSLR (D300s, for example) with a simple firmware upgrade? I think this would be extremely handy and it opens up huge possibilities if other apps can be developed to utilize the WU-1A.

    • David

      If it is a simple ad-hoc network linked to a PTP interface through the USB socket then there should be no reason why not. Obviously if they said that it could be used by any camera that supports USB then there would be a stampede for it.

      I was thinking of rolling my own with gphoto on a Raspberry Pi. Board, wireless adapter, short USB cable, battery pack. Shouldn’t cost more than about £40 and would give complete web based shooting. Add servo powered pan and tilt controls … :)

      • David

        Actually, add in a GSM modem or MiFi and you could have a ‘place anywhere’ camera, remote controllable from anywhere.

  • http://www,greenfieldphotography.co.uk Jonathan

    People find use for lots of gadgets like this- I find it irritating that low end camera’s get gadgets that should be standard throw away ‘if we need it we’ll use it, but if we don’t we won’t’ on higher end camera’s. Why doesn’t the D800 have GPS built in? My smart phone has and it’s tiny! It’s like going to a £150 a night hotel and finding you have to pay for WiFi!! Some things should just be basic elements of any camera release and the fact you can get potentially useful functions on a low end camera that are denied on higher end camera’s just stinks of Canon doing their 7D vs 5DmII thang!

  • Backstein

    For me this WU-1A thing looks like a last minute “we need more features” marketingdecision. It looks so immature and not well craftet

  • phr3dly

    I have no idea what the dude in that video was saying, but I like the cut of his jib.

    Now on to the WOO-WOO-one-aaaaayyyyy

    Obviously this is targeted at the consumer market, because there seems to be very little control over they camera. Though equally obviously, that would have been a trivial addition for them to make; they merely chose not to for marketing reasons. In fact, I wager it’s a limitation solely of the software on the android device. A clever coder could likely overcome that.

    One bummer about this — from the video at least it seems that you must use the camera as an AP, which of course means that you need to disconnect from whatever other AP you’re using. Sort of a pain in the neck. I’d like, for example, to be able to configure the WOO-WOO-one-aaaaayyyyy to connect to my home wifi network.

  • Fishnose

    This would be INCREDIBLY useful on a D800 in the studio for instance. An Android 10″ tablet in the hands of producer, AD or customer, looking at images as they get captured. Wireless. Sending a jpg to the device is plenty good enough. The RAW can stay on the camera.

    Or the photographer can be somewhere else than behind the camera, adjusting flags/reflectors/soft boxes/whatever, fire off a test shot with a wireless remote and check the result in hand, adjust again etc, without running back and forth, over and over. Dang.

    Forget facebook, blogs and shit. People who don’t see the real uses just aren’t thinking.

  • Fred

    The video could do with some CC on the Chinese me thinks…

  • Sports

    This is one NICE feature.
    Too bad the thing is sticking out from the side, but who cares since you’ll use it only occasionally.
    Better control, and a drop of sheer coolness!
    And the ability to adjust focus from a safe distance when you’re remotely taking THAT photo of the attacking bear.
    … I won’t count on it for my D300, of course, but definitely for my D400 :-) … if it isn’t built in.

  • Robyn

    Nice, but not for me.

    When is my D800 shipping? (Feb 7 @ 9am, B&H)

    • Dixie

      Carthago delenda est, Where is my D800! Etc etc.

      Who cares! Keep your whining to D800 threads!

  • LArryC

    This is a fairly lame marketing attempt by Nikon to address the increasing popularity of the much more seamless iPhone instagram/iCloud web posting solutions. You don’t need a $50 easily broken off plug in device to remotely trigger a picture of you and your friends.

  • Jim

    The clip was the evidence: Download last forever! For 20 RAWs you’ll need an AC plug because batteries will run empty on cam and cell – hours later… hahaha
    But probably the target group won’t shoot RAW anyway – JPG small is more than sufficient for facebook

    • Merv

      I vaguely recall that the ‘default’ setting for most consumer level cameras out of the box was JPEG normal instead of JPEG Fine or Large.

  • http://rob-1.fr/2012/04/nikon-d3200-28mm-f1-8g/ robin
  • Mark-Eric

    How is this toy only $59 and the WT-5a is almost $800? Wow!

    • jadekub

      lol…..

  • Damian

    You guys do know about http://www.eye.fi/right? They have had these cards out for a few years now and they don’t stick out the side of the camera. Even though you can’t control the cameras focusing or trigger the shutter it does upload the pics to a PC, the web or a mobile device.

  • Sean

    I don’t understand the amount of negativity. It’s not meant to be a professional solution. $60 to add a major function to a $700 camera is totally fair. Three of these equals one D4 battery. It’s obviously not going to duplicate the function of the WT-5A, but technology is tricking down and this is proof of that.

    The only competator is the EyeFi, of which I own 4. The EyeFi costs $50 (it was $99 when I got it!), does not control the camera in any way, has a range of about 6 feet, and only recently did they make it able to transfer over an adhoc connection (without an external access point to connect to). The WU-1A is $60, has camera control with a streaming preview, and functions in adhoc mode. Time will tell what kind of range it gets, but considering it’s an external attachment, I’m hopeful. It certainly can’t be any worse.

    What can you do with a remote-controlled 24mp camera? Well, if I have to give you ideas, you probably don’t need one :)

  • BoB

    Great as a toy or for limited applications. But overall, just a yawn. I prefer my 500′ cable release.

  • http://www.nikonbaby.com Nikon Baby

    The best semi-pro crop frame body ever !

  • Q

    If it not working on any other new device I see it as very poor engineering. A detachable screen on the d800 would be very nice. But a transmitter is a acceptable solution for that . And also very very interesting that do the android app before iphone. I think this the beginning on future path. But there is do really big problems for it to be successful. Nikon lens system does not have support for motor zoom. But I assume that the autofocus system easily can be adopted to motor controlled manual focus.

  • Sahaja

    They should have built this into the camera like Samsung

  • Mat

    Wooohooo. …….. Jessops called my d800 is on the way. And got confirmation email today with tracking number. Can’t wait.

    WOOOOHOOOO……..,,,,!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Dixie

      And how that is related with D3200 and it’s wireless features? Or do you just think that you’re such an interesting person that we all are just dying to know the status of your order or what….?

    • barneydog7

      im’e with you mat Mine, came today YaaaaHoooooo……………..

  • Dedi

    I wonder about 2 things:
    1. Will missing features like bracketing be possible with the (default) remote software?

    2. And how likely will there be custom apps (will there be an API or is it something that would have to be “hacked”?), which will probably have features that are missing on the camera itself.

  • Fly Moon

    Why there is no iOS App is beyond me!!

  • vertigo

    This should not be in camera. I do not want a wireless camera. It’s just a way for people to spy on you.

  • Gideon D

    Looks very handy and an important part of how we are starting to use cameras. I love the way the iPhone can instantly upload and share for that instant feedback, it now seems ponderous to be going via a PC first with my Nikons, a bit like how I used to wait for film to process- great for artistic photography, slow for visual communication.

    What makes this a fail though is having it stuck out the whole time, with the vulnerable door open. If you could mount it like a flash that would be a bit better, but Samsung are on the right track building it in. Unbelievable really that Nikon still hasn’t built this and GPS into their cameras. You could always switch them off if power is a concern.

    If this woke with all recent Nikons with firmware updates I might be interested though.

  • http://www.bemedia.no Bjorn Erik

    So what if this is a feature the newbies does’nt care about? Its a fun thing for us to play around with, but the rest of the lot will be buying this camera for its megapixels and iso-capabilitys(compared to d3100). As a remote for group photos etc it’ll do fine for the beginners.

    If I did’nt already have a DX-body as a back up, I’d consider this.. or rather, to be honest, I’d wait and see if they don’t introduce something similar on the D400(?) whenver they’re bringing that out.

    What I’m trying to say is that I like the general idea of what Nikon are doing with this technology. I know a lot of professionals got their mouths all watery when the D4 and WT5 was announced. This is a scaled down sort of system with probably a tenth of the range, but I’ll spare my critizism for this time and give Nikon a pat on the back for moving in the right direction.

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