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VersaTrigger Laser Trap


The usual setup for a simple laser beam break trigger is to shine a continuous laser beam (usually a laser pointer) at a sensor, the sensor will then detect when something interrupts the beam (beam break) and trigger the camera or flash.


This method does provide results but those of you who have tried it have no doubt found that, as the laser beam is continuous, it needs to be positioned such that it does not appear in the final image (having to remove a red spot in Photoshop is okay in one or two images but soon becomes a pain).


Another problem is that ambient light often affects the laser sensor (sunlight is far worse), this means that even though the laser beam has been broken the sensor is still responding to light and our camera is not triggered.


The VersaTrigger Laser Trap is an advanced laser beam break camera trigger which overcomes all of these problems, features include:







The story behind the Laser Trap is that in 2018, among the many VersaTrigger systems we supplied, two were supplied to two photographers in America and Australia.  Both systems worked and both photographers sent us some images they had captured using the VersaTrigger, however, they both had suggestions as to how the VersaTrigger could be even better.


Well, here at VersaTrigger we like a challenge.


The first request was to improve the performance of the laser break function in bright ambient light conditions (direct sunlight was the benchmark here), the next request was for the laser beam to be disabled during a camera trigger so that the red spot did not appear in the image.


The VersaTrigger is an excellent general purpose high speed camera trigger which will function with sound, laser beam break and a multitude of other inputs, a re-design to incorporate these additional features would mean an increase in cost and leave us with a device which has bells and whistles but is just too expensive.


We decided to leave the VersaTrigger exactly as it is (if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it).


Now we started to look at a novel design specifically for laser beam break.

We contacted our two photographer friends (Andy and Brett), explained our idea and asked if they would be prepared to test our initial designs - they both said yes!


We believe that we have produced a rather good product in the Laser Trap, it detects a beam break (even in direct sunlight conditions) and disables the laser during camera trigger.  The laser is supplied with a 1 metre cable and the sensor with a 3 metre cable, this means that, with the cables fully laid out, it is possible to set up a 4 metre laser path.  We have had it working way beyond that but it does need care in aligning the laser/sensor at longer distances.


Strangely, the initial thought was that the Laser Trap would be ideal for wildlife, we have since supplied two Laser Traps to another photographer who has installed them on two zipwires at an amusement park, a person breaks the beam and a photograph is taken automatically.

Photograph courtesy of Andy Papadatos


Andy is studying the territorial behaviour of birds by staging different environments and seeing how the birds react.

Photographs courtesy of Brett Vercoe


Brett is a District Officer for a marine park in Australia, perform a search on the web and you will find some of his stunning underwater images of Australian marine wildlife.  Being a dedicated wildlife photographer he also has an interest in land-based wildlife.

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