Remotely access the Alexa's menus and functionality with this product.
I spent a few weeks with a two-camera Alexaremote kit courtesy of the developer, Balint Seres. One of my goals as a DIT is to accomplish as much in the camera as I can. If there are exposure issues, get it on the lens. Color temperature problems? Fix it in white balance. I prefer to leave as little to chance as possible and have the images come on in their own looking as "right" as possible. For the past few years I've been achieving this by using this device -
The Arri RCU-4, which is essentially the interface side of the Alexa camera detached. It allows full remote camera control but it happens over a bulky, finicky, expensive proprietary cable. I've been building this cable into my BNC looms but it requires a bit of extra muscle from whoever is cabling and it's delicate so prone to connection related problems. Yet still despite the inconveniences, it's allowed me to work the way I want to work.
The Alexaremote accomplishes the same thing but over the air! (note the unit can also be "hardlined" to the camera with a simple ethernet cable)
Whereas with the RCU-4, one unit is required per camera, the Alexaremote can store and switch between up to 10 cameras! Switching between them is fast and seamless. Each camera requires it's own radio transceiver which plugs directly into the interface port which conveniently also provides power to the unit.
Getting the Alexaremote and the camera talking to each other is fairly simple and involves inputting the camera's IP Address into the unit. Note the Alexa will occasionally change its IP upon reboot so multiple addresses may need to be stored for a single camera.
The time I spent with the Alexaremote was positive. The setup was easy and unit responsive. It's construction is very solid so it should be able to take the inevitable beating. I was using it for hours on end with only two of the Sony NP type batteries and was surprised at how power efficient it is. In my experience the range was reliable 50-100 feet with it losing link more often at distances beyond that. I have heard of users putting higher gain antenna on the transceiver side to improve range. I was not able to test this myself.
Beyond access to the normal functionality of the Alexa, the remote has a unique Intervalometer feature that allows you to program timelapses and unusual increments into the camera.
The Alexaremote is available for purchase now. Balint Seres can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org