Computer-based shutter speed tester
This project began when I realised that, once you started to fiddle with older cameras, shutter speed became an issue.
I looked at the various inexpensive ways of approaching the problem but each had some issues. So I first looked at an electronic timer. It worked and just as I was getting into its final stages I discovered the High Speed Photography site where the use of the parallel port on a computer was suggested for HSP work. Then I discovered some work by a very smart person that used the Intel chips structured to give a software timing system.
Now we are able to use the parallel port of a PC to do basic timing with, what appears to be, a high level of accuracy. It can also be used for sophisticated control of HSP activities.
Note:It will run only on computers with Intel Pentium chips.
Having built this shutter testing system, I have published it here with:
You can download all of the construction and use materials as a PDF file.
If you have problems or comments please communicate via the contact form.
What does it do?
Using an easily accessible set of parts, it lets you test a shutter by placing the sensor at the focal plane of the camera with a decent light source at the front.
It reads out the actual time representing the sensors view of the shutter opening.
It presents the shutter speed against the current logarithmic system or the older systems. It also gives a margin of accuracy. All of the thinking here came from Thomas Tomosy’s material in the Appendicies of Volume 1 of Camera Maintenance and Repair.
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