Arsenal is a new attachment for your DSLR or mirrorless camera that suggests the best settings for your shot using artificial intelligence, while also enabling you to fully control your camera using a smart phone.
The recently announced Kickstarter campaign for the device reached its $50,000 goal in just 9 hours, and at the time of writing has surpassed $300,000.
Arsenal’s most basic functions look quite similar to the Pulse, which we covered back in 2015. It connects to your camera over USB and then with your Android or iOS device via wifi. You’ll be able to see a live preview on your phone, trigger the shutter, and set shutter speed/aperture/ISO.
The most interesting aspect of the new device is the use of machine learning algorithms to choose to the best settings for your photograph. According to the team behind Arsenal, the AI has been trained on millions of popular online photos. It can identify images similar to the subject that you are shooting and uses that as a base, then adjusting settings based on 18 parameters such as your lens and camera model, tripod vibration, hyperfocal distance, subject motion and more.
Arsenal can also assist with some photography techniques that would usually be performed in post. It can handle HDR and focus stacking, merging the multiple exposures in to a single RAW or JPG on your camera. It can also perform simulated long exposures by averaging the pixel values across multiple photos, and the app provides controls for managing time lapses.
Finally, the app will enable users to view the contents of their memory card in full resolution and share images via social networks.
From the sounds of that feature list, Arsenal will enable a photographer to simply point the camera in the right direction, while it takes care of the rest.
Arsenal’s Kickstarter campaign will run until June 22. A pledge of $150 will save you 40% off the expected retail price, and will get the device to you in January 2018, going by the estimated shipping time.