I am a member of the Capital Area Soaring Association and the Academy of Model Aeronautics. I love flying RC planes, gliders & helicopters.
I was struggling with getting close to the birds visiting my feeders. I can't afford to spend thousands of dollars on high-end telephoto lenses, but I really wanted to get some close-up shots of the birds in Northern Virginia. We have lots of different varieties, but the goldfinches have really made themselves at home this year.
My Nikon D200 camera worked very well, but my smaller lens was limiting the distance I could set up. I needed to find a way that I could trigger the camera remotely and stay hidden in the house. After some research, I found a great alternative in the Oppilas RW-221 wireless remote control.
This remote connects into the 10-pin socket on the camera and is controlled through the wireless remote control.
This article will discuss the pros and cons of using this inexpensive but very useful tool.
Out of the Box
The box came in a padded envelope from China. It was well protected, but the package did take more than a week to arrive.
The box came with the receiver, transmitter, connecting cable, and instructions.
Installing the Batteries
The instructions clearly state that four AAA batteries were included in the box, but there were no batteries to be found. It isn't a big deal as I had some extras, but they shouldn't advertise it if they weren't going to follow through.
Two AAA batteries are installed in the remote transmitter and two are installed in the receiver that is mounted to the camera.
How to Use the Wireless Remote
Using the wireless remote couldn't be easier.
- Insert the receiver into the hot shoe on the camera
- Plug the 10-pin connector into the body of the camera
- Turn on the Camera and dial in your settings. There are no special settings needed for this remote.
- Press and hold the on/off button on the receiver for about two seconds. The red light will start to flash when it is on.
- Choose the mode on the transmitter. (We'll discuss the modes in a minute.)
- Walk away from the camera and push the button to take the shot.
It is that easy! To turn it off, simply press and hold the on/off button on the receiver again.
How to Change Modes
The transmitter has four different modes that can be chosen using the slide selector.
- One-Shot: In this mode, press and release the button to have the camera take one picture.
- Continuous Shooting: Hold down the transmitter button and the camera will continue to take pictures until you release it.
- Bulb Mode: Push the button once, and it begins the shot. Push it again, and it closes the shot. This is great for those long exposure pictures. Of course, the camera setting needs to be changed to bulb mode as well.
- Timer Mode: Push the button and the camera will shoot the picture in about five seconds.
Note: If you have auto-focus selected on your lens, you can press the transmitter button half-way to focus on the subject.
How to Change Channels
Inside the battery compartment of both the transmitter and receiver, there is a four channel selector. As long as both have the same selections, the unit will communicate.
I did not have any problems with the out-of-the-box setting, but if you are getting interference, then this is a nice option to use.
- The instructions are not very good. Besides the grammatical errors, it specifies that there are four AAA batteries included in the package, but that was not accurate.
- The receiver mechanism may interfere with the onboard pop-up flash. I resolved this by moving the receiver to the edge of the hot shoe. It does not need to be secured in the hot shoe, but I do recommend you configure it to minimize swinging (that might scare the birds).
- Very inexpensive
- Works very well
- Allows you to get closer to your subject than otherwise possible
- Setting the autofocus by pressing the button half-way down is a fantastic option. Be aware of where the focus point is, though. You may not have the control needed to focus on the bird's eyes.
- The wireless remote is also a great option for minimizing the shake caused by depressing the shutter button.
By itself, this is a great tool for getting closer to birds than would otherwise be possible. However, you can couple this with an inexpensive tethering system and make adjustments to the camera from a distance.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
inna on January 14, 2019:
will this remote work for a canon EOS 7D?
Colin Griffiths on April 07, 2017:
When i first got the wireless remote it worked very well, but now i've just tried to use it again after about 5 months and the reciever isn't working it just doesn't light up although i've put new batteries in but just wont respond,the transmitter works fine and lights up on all 4 functions. As i dont have the address of the sender, is there anything i can do to rectify this problem.PS the control is for a Canon EOS.
Eword Media Unit from Nairobi, Kenya on September 06, 2016:
Incisive hub, keep it up Ginny