HDMI monitors can run anywhere from $160 to $1000 depending on what you need and what you have for a budget. The Nexus 7 tablet comes in at $200 for the 8 GB model and $250 for the 16 GB model. Add to that the $8.99  DSLR Controller app, and a $3 USB OTG cable and you can use the 1280×800 IPS display on the Nexus 7 to monitor and control your Canon camera through the usb port.

The nice thing about using this method is that the screen on the camera stays on while using the monitor. It also has the added bonus of giving you full control of camera functions from the touch screen interface which could be handy for jib operators.

After testing out the APP on the Canon t2i with magic lantern, Canon 7d, and 5d mark III, I can say that it works pretty well with the Nexus 7 tablet. There were some strange issues with the Canon 7d. I actually had to reboot the tablet before it would work with the 7d, but I think that might have been caused by changing between cameras.

The DSLR Controller is still in beta, so don’t expect it to work perfectly, but overall it was a good experience. I think if you’re willing to learn the program and sort out the controls it can make a very handy monitor slash controller for your camera. But it’s not quit as simple as plugging in a monitor cable and turning it on. Keep that in mind if you plan to use this on a project with time constraints.

 If you’re interested in finding out more about the Nexus 7, check out this earlier post.

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