I have been trying for quite some time to connect my Canon EOS 7D to my Samsung Galaxy SII (or GT-I9100 if you like), in order to import/copy photos and upload them to Facebook, Twitter, etc. Only the other day did I actually succeed.
There didn’t seem to be much information on how to do this, so I thought I would make a simple guide here.
While I’m using a Canon EOS 7D, this should work the same if you have a T2i/550D, T3i/600D, T4i/650D, 5D, 5D mark II or III, 50D, 60D, or whatever Canon DSLR it may be. (Edit: I have also found an identical solution for Nikon users, even if I haven’t tried it myself.)
Most importantly, your phone needs to support USB on-the-go. Sadly, not all Android phones do, but if it is in this list it should be fine.
Step one: The USB connection
To connect your phone you need a USB on-the-go (OTG) cable as well as the USB cable that came with your camera.
I believe a USB OTG cable is the same thing as a USB host cable – correct me if I’m wrong. It is essentially a cable with a USB micro connector at one end (which goes in your phone) and a standard size USB socket at the other (where you plug in your camera’s USB cable). For the record, mine is a third party cable that I got from Kjell & Company (a Swedish gadget chain).
When you connect your camera (make sure it’s on!) to your phone, a little USB symbol should show up at the top of the screen:
Step two: The app
I read somewhere that the default Android Gallery app could be used to browse and copy jpegs from a connected camera, but I never got that to work. I almost gave up in fact, but yesterday I had another go and found the answer.
I give you: The CR2-Thumbnailer app. (If you have a Nikon DSLR, see the NEF-Thumbnailer.)
The app costs something like $4 (27,50 SEK), so before you buy it you should try the demo version to check that it works as it should with your combination of phone and camera. (Nikon users: Demo version here.)
This app goes even further than just copying jpeg files from the camera. If you shoot raw, CR2-Thumbnailer can extract the jpeg image that is embedded inside the raw file. That way you don’t have to switch to raw+jpeg when you want to upload a photo with your mobile. Fantastic!
Apart from extracting jpeg files, the app can backup your raw files to the phone’s internal memory or any memory card you have in the phone.
When you connect your camera after installing the app, it should detect the camera and start up automatically:
Press the blue camera and navigate down to the folder containing all your images. In my case it is 7D/CF/DCIM/100EOS7D/.
This is the thumbnail view you should find:
If you tap an image, it will open in fullscreen. Tap it again and you will see some buttons at the bottom of the screen:
The button next to the save icon lets you share your image straight from inside the app. (For some reason though, Twitter doesn’t appear in the list of available sharing apps.)
If you tap the
i symbol, the app will show you the Exif info of your photo:
If you choose to save an image, you can choose which size you want to export: (You might need to enable this in the preferences first.)
In the thumbnail view you can toggle between two different modes, using the button at the top right hand corner. The second mode allows you to select several images at once to be saved as jpegs or raw files to your phone:
After selecting a few photos, tap the menu button to get the following options:
In this case,
Save means extracting the jpeg and saving it to the phone.
Backup will instead copy the whole raw file to the phone.
Thankfully you can choose to automatically save or backup to a specific folder, so you won’t get nagged for each and every photo.
Ever since I bought my Samsung Galaxy SII I have been wanting to use it for quick and on-the-go uploading of photos from my real camera. Now I have finally found the app that will let me do so.
CR2-Thumbnailer will be very handy when traveling. I have a 32 GB memory card in my phone, so I can leave the laptop at home and just use my phone to backup all the photos and share the odd one on Facebook if I like.
There are still some things that can be improved though. It would be great if the app could remember the last folder I viewed, as well as allow me to sort the photos from newest to oldest – that would save me a lot of scrolling.
On the whole though this setup works very well!