Okii MC1 Professional USB Controller for Canon Released

Okii Systems MC1 USB Controller

In our previous article we posted some preview information about a new controller designed for professional use that was going to be announced soon.

Today Okii Systems has officially announced the new MC1 USB Controller. Below we post the press release, our impressions and a video showing the prototype we have tested.

Okii Systems Releases New MC1 USB Mini Controller

Apex, NC, November 21, 2011 – Okii Systems is pleased to announce the new MC1 USB Mini Controller. The MC1 is a wired USB remote designed for Canon EOS Digital SLR cameras with video capability. Similar to the EOS Utility on a computer, the MC1 uses Canon’s USB protocol to allow control of a wide range of abilities, but without the limitations and bulk of being tethered to a computer. When mounted near a rig handle, it provides easy access to camera functions such as video start/stop, digital zoom, and settings changes. The use of USB rather than infrared insures reliable operation regardless of the remote or cable orientation, and makes it possible to use the MC1 at longer distances (e.g., on a crane or boom) with non-powered USB extension cables. An optional automatic recording restart feature is included, which can stop and restart video recording at 11-minute intervals for long film sequences, or can act as a fail safe.

The MC1 is approximately 3″ x 1.5″ x .75″ and weighs 3.4 ounces. It connects to the camera with a standard mini-B to A USB cable (the same cable used to connect a Canon EOS camera to a computer). Three 1/4″-20 mounting points on the top and sides are provided to secure the MC1 to a rig or handle.

Canon EOS Compatibility:

Features:

  • Initiates video start/stop, image capture, digital zoom, autofocus, and live view
  • Controls ISO, aperture, and shutter speed
  • Optional 11-minute automatic recording restart
  • Does not interfere with HDMI output for external monitors or electronic viewfinders
  • Uses standard mini-B to A USB cables to connect to the camera
  • Non-powered USB extension cables extend range to 25+ meters
  • 30+ hour battery life on two AAA alkaline batteries
  • Also compatible with AAA lithium and rechargeable batteries
  • Three ¼”-20 threaded mounting points on the top and sides
  • Constructed of CNC milled 6061 aluminum
  • Approx. 3″ x 1.5″ x .75″ dimensions and 3.4 oz (96 g) total weight with included batteries
  • Made in the USA

*****

Okii Systems specializes in custom software and embedded systems applications for the photography and film industry. The newly released MC1 follows the widely anticipated Okii USB Focus Controller that debuted in early 2011. The success of the USB Focus Controller prompted the company to expand its product line. More innovative products are anticipated in 2012.

For additional information please visit www.okii.net and the MC1 product page at http://www.okii.net/product_p/mc1.htm.

 OUR IMPRESSIONS

As mentioned in our previous post, we have been beta-testing this controller for some months.

This controller is compact and very strong, not cheap construction at all. Build quality is excellent. It is extremely easy to use, with a very nice and smart set of features.

According to the manufacturer it was designed for professional use on rig supports, but it can perfectly be used as a traditional remote to control the basic functions of your camera from the distance when mounted on a crane, slider, tripod or any support. When using non-powered USB extension cables you can control your camera from more than 65 feet away, which is extremely useful.

It can be mounted on almost every rig since it has three standard 1/4″-20 mounting holes, making it very versatile. This allows it to be mounted next to your handle and control your camera from there. You can press any button while holding your rig, it is about as fast as you can get. For a fast and easy mounting on your rig or handle, you can use the “Function Micro Clamp“.

It has four operation modes that can be switched with the push of a button. A very smart implementation allows you to disable the modes you don’t want or need to use, that can of course be reset and enabled again.

As shown in the picture, it has a dedicated red button to start/stop video recording, and to take pictures. Two buttons allows you to change settings on each mode, and another button lets you switch between modes and power the controller on/off.

The controller has a red LED that turns on when the camera is recording video, and a multi-color LED to tell you what mode is the controller working on.

A unique feature of this controller is Automatic Recording Restart. When you enable this feature, the controller will automatically start a new video clip when the camera reaches 11 minutes of video recording, so you don’t have your camera stopping every time it reaches the 4GB file size limit. Very handy!

This is a professional, very well designed and useful device. We can recommend it with confidence.

Please visit the product page at the manufacturer website or check the User Guide for full details of features and specifications.

VIDEO

UPDATE: Below we include an excellent video review and tutorial made by Gray Jones, showing and explaining the Okii FC1 USB and Okii MC1 USB controllers:

 PICTURES

Some extra pictures of the Okii MC1:

Okii Systems MC1

Okii Systems MC1

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