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Fun with a Canon AE-1


It seems that +5V like they come from USB are good to enough to get this camera working. No need so far for 6V batteries. Power is also available on the flex PCB when the bottom case is opened (see below). Case is GND btw.


I was looking for an electrical signal that is fired before the shutter opens. The solenoid of the shutter release mechanism seems to be an easy option here. It should be read by an Arduino.

This is what I came up with:

  • Power (red+white): red: +5V, white: GND
  • “Trigger” (green+white): green: +5V, white: open collector (?), signal

Output directly at the solenoid: … this shoes a bad, bad overshoot at switch off. Better protect the inputs of the Arduino. Hopefully 150kΩ in series together with the input clipping diodes will do the job. Signal looks much more friendly now:

This is how it's wired up;

A super-simple sketch to see if this works:

void setup() {
  pinMode( 8,INPUT );
void loop() {
  if (digitalRead(8)==LOW) {

Well, you can “see” that it works with a slow-motion video: Here, the back is opened up such that one can see the shutter curtains operating.

  • Wikipedia on the camera: first microprocessor SLR camera with more than 1 million pieces sold
  • that said just google it and you'll find every kind of documnetation and repair guides
projects/electronics/canonae-1.txt · Dernière modification: 2017/05/25 22:41 par magnustron