howto: Make an Eyetap

nym | 07:58 AM


Interested in taking photos from your perspective? An eyetap is where the eye is both a display and a camera. Instead of putting the camera up to your eye to take a picture, you mount the camera over your eye, and take pictures when the opportunity strikes. Alex recently made one of these using the super cheap Philips Keychain Digital Camera (P4417S), and I got him to share with us how he did it!

philipskeychaincam.jpg1. Buy a Philips keychain camera ($14 at your local WalMart)
2. Pry it open!
3. Get a pair of old glasses, remove lenses.
4. Mount the camera board on the frame of your glasses (see picture). You can use two screws to do this, or alternately epoxy if you like the smell of toxic chemicals.
5. Connect power wires to the arm of the glasses.
6. Mount 1 AAA battery to same arm of the glasses.
7. Mount the MODEL LCD screen on a removable base. This will allow you to navigate the amazingly simple menu upon startup.
8. Remove annoying black expoxy from around the camera driver, the MR97310 CIF. With a little patience, you will be able to hook up to it, and interface with a windows based PC with a USB cable.

Ta Da! Instant way to capture those cherished moments like when you meet your blind dates for the first time! Added bonus, the eyetap (BCG 2.0), acts as a powerful birth control device. Perfect for the sex crazed teenagers in your home!

Update: thebaboon says this camera does not have an LCD, so not really an eyetap. Still a great project, and there's no reason one couldn't take the next step and add an LCD to it!

I'm not sure if this meets the definition of an eyetap, because I'm not sure if there's an LCD on the back or not. Certainly if it doesn't, this would be a good way to expand on the project because it's *way* cooler if one eye is seeing through the camera itself. Still at approximately $14, this is a really fun project. I've asked Alex for some clarification, and hopefully I'll get a response soon!

[ All of these photos were taken with the eyetap. If you have any questions, you can contact Alex at ninjaspidermonkey at gmail.com. Thanks Alex! ]


Could we get any pictures of the back of the eyetap?

I'm a little curious about the "Model LCD"

Posted by: Adam Wolf at July 17, 2006 09:10 AM

Hm. I was always under the impression that an 'eyetap' didn't block vision, but rather displayed its output to the eye, possibly with some modification or overlay. Wikipedia seems to support this definition. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eyetap Or does this 14 dollar camera have an LCD viewfinder on the back of the board?

Posted by: thedaniel at July 17, 2006 10:05 AM

dude- that is really cool. and sounds pretty easy

Posted by: jess at July 17, 2006 01:00 PM

My friend has one of these cameras. It doesn't have an lcd, just a popup lense for a view finder, so it's no eyetap. Either way it's still a cool project.

Posted by: thebaboon at July 17, 2006 04:57 PM

I once used one of these cameras and embedded it in a model airplane so I could get a movie from above. I love cheap, hackable products!

Posted by: Bryan Kennedy at July 18, 2006 06:46 AM

Ha, they issued me a pair of glasses exactly like that (minus the camera, of course) when I went to boot camp. Brings back memories. Rock teh BCGs.

Posted by: Ryan at July 19, 2006 08:39 PM

what's the point of the article? ducktape a camera to your face is simpler. either make an article about an actual eyetap, (useful specs, parts, .stl files, etc) or dont waste ppls time.

Posted by: wonders at February 26, 2007 12:53 PM

please i want all information about eyetap

Posted by: nabih at June 5, 2007 04:00 AM

how do you open the camera

Posted by: cole at December 1, 2007 12:10 PM

The directions above say "pry it open" (P). Other models may be able to be unscrewed (U), while others will have to be cut (C), etc

These abbreviations don't mean much on their own, but they're fun to put together into acronyms that can describe a deconstruction process, such as UPC, CPU... I know those acronyms are already taken, but whatevs- I said I'm having fun.

RoBo- SCA (Society for Creative Acronyms)

Posted by: robo at December 7, 2007 01:14 AM
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