Best Intervalometer (For Canon, Nikon & Sony Cameras)

Using an intervalometer can be a great and cheap way to give you the remote control of your camera that you need for astrophotography, timelapse photography, self-portraits, and anything else.

We recommend the Pixel TW-283 as the best intervalometer, giving all the control you need for good value. There are different versions depending on your camera’s make and model.

We also suggest some alternative options for Canon, Nikon and Sony cameras and dig into how to use them to get the most from your camera.

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Preview
Best for Canon
Wireless Shutter Release Comaptible for Canon, Pixel TW-283 E3/N3 Wireless Remote Control Timer Shutter Release Cable Compatible for Canon EOS 1300D 1100D 760D 750D 5D IV III 1D 6D II 7D
Best for Nikon
Remote Shutter Release Compatible for Nikon, Wireless Shutter Release Timer Remote Control Pixel TW-283 DC0/DC2 Compatible for Nikon D5200 D5300 D7100 D850 D800 D750 D610
Best for Sony
Remote Control Compatible for Sony, Pixel Wireless Shutter Release Cable TW-283 S1/S2 Timer Remote Control Compatible for Sony Alpha A100 A350 A450 A550 A560 A9 A99 A77 A7RII A7
Make & Model
Pixel TW-283 E3/N3
Pixel TW-283
Pixel TW-283 S1/S2
Amazon Price
$49.99
$49.99
$49.99
Best for Canon
Preview
Wireless Shutter Release Comaptible for Canon, Pixel TW-283 E3/N3 Wireless Remote Control Timer Shutter Release Cable Compatible for Canon EOS 1300D 1100D 760D 750D 5D IV III 1D 6D II 7D
Make & Model
Pixel TW-283 E3/N3
Amazon Price
$49.99
Check availability
Best for Nikon
Preview
Remote Shutter Release Compatible for Nikon, Wireless Shutter Release Timer Remote Control Pixel TW-283 DC0/DC2 Compatible for Nikon D5200 D5300 D7100 D850 D800 D750 D610
Make & Model
Pixel TW-283
Amazon Price
$49.99
Check availability
Best for Sony
Preview
Remote Control Compatible for Sony, Pixel Wireless Shutter Release Cable TW-283 S1/S2 Timer Remote Control Compatible for Sony Alpha A100 A350 A450 A550 A560 A9 A99 A77 A7RII A7
Make & Model
Pixel TW-283 S1/S2
Amazon Price
$49.99
Check availability

Last update on 2021-12-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Best intervalometer for Canon, Nikon & Sony Cameras

Pixel TW-283 Intervalometer

pixel tw-283 intervalometer

The Pixel TW-283 is the best intervalometer giving you all you need in a programable remote release and timer for your Canon, Nikon or Sony Camera.

There are a number of different models that work for different cameras:

  • Canon: Compatible with Canon’s most popular DSLR and Mirrorless cameras like the 5D and 6D models.
  • Nikon: Compatible for most popular Nikon DSLRs like the D850 and D750, as well as the newer Nikon Mirrorless models the Z6 & Z6 II and Z7 & Z7 II.
  • Sony: For popular Sony Mirrorless cameras, like the A7S and A7RIV, etc.

You can also find the right model to work with Pentax, Fujifilm, Olympus and Panasonic cameras. Check the Amazon listing page to see all possible cameras you can use with each version.

It has a number of different modes, including:

  1. Single-Click Mode: This is for operating your camera remotely and taking one shot at a time. Note, pressing the button halfway on the transmitter works the same as a half press on your camera and will activate auto-focus.
  2. Continuous Mode: Holding the button down will continue to take shots until you release it. Great for trying to capture something fast moving and then pick out the best shot.
  3. Bulb Mode: This is to take longer exposures and is opertated by pressing the button to start and then again to stop.
  4. Delay Shooting Mode: Set at delay from pressing the shutter release button and program the number of shots to take. The delay can be anything from 1 to 59 seconds, and it can take up to 99 shots in this mode with your selected settings. This is what you’ll probably be using for astrophotography and timelapse photography, although you may also make use of the timer-schedule mode.
  5. Timer-Schedule Mode: Similar to the above, but enables you to program it to shoot with your programmed settings at a certain time. This way you can set your gear up and leave it to shoot without you having to phyiscally press the button.

What we like about the Pixel TW-283:

  1. Gives you all you need in an intervalometer or remote shutter release in terms of progamability.
  2. Menus are easy to navigate and program. Definitely easier to figure out that my Nikon’s internal intervalometer!
  3. Good battery life. Switches off on its own, so won’t drain itself down if accidentally switched on whilst in a bag.
  4. Can be used with a simple, direct wired connection. Just make sure you get the right cable with it when buying.
  5. Can also be used with a wireless remote connection. This is a 2.4GHz wireless control system and the manufacturer says it should work from over 80 meters away (although we haven’t tested it that far).
  6. One model can be used with multiple cameras as long as you have the correct adapter.
  7. Can set to different channels if someone else you are with is using the same intervalometer. This avoids any interference and can be handy if you are out shooting with a friend and they happen to have this same bit of kit.
  8. Works in the cold. Important for astrophotographers who are out in the night and have sometimes found limitations in their gear caused by low temperatures.

If there are any grumbles about this tool, it’s just that it can’t be turned off – instead, it shuts off on its own when not used for a while. This hasn’t proved a problem for me as the battery life has persisted for a long time despite this. Also, this can be a bonus as you don’t want any of your gear to drain its batteries by accidentally being knocked on in your camera bag.

It features two main components – a transmitter and a receiver. The receiver needs to be attached to the camera when using it wirelessly.

All in all, this is a great intervalometer that can be found for most cameras out there on the market. Check the buttons below for the most popular options.

Note that with some packages it is sold with multiple cables – for example, the DC0 for Nikon vs the DC0/DC2 for Nikon, or the S1 vs S2 for Sony. If you don’t need this you may be able to save yourself a little money by choosing the cheaper option as this is the only difference (just check which version is compatible with your camera model).


Intervalometers for Canon Cameras

There are some other good options for those with Canon cameras. See the three selected below.

Just check that the connection should be compatible with your specific Canon model:

Last update on 2021-12-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Intervalometers for Nikon Cameras

Other Nikon Camera intervalometer options are laid out below.

Just check that the connection should be compatible with your specific Nikon camera model:

Last update on 2021-12-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Intervalometers for Sony Cameras

Some alternative intervalometers for Sony cameras are shared here.

There are some other options that should all work great:

Last update on 2021-12-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Intervalometers & Astrophotography

astrophotography intervalometer

For astrophotography, an intervalometer is an essential part of your gear setup.

Your camera may have an internal intervalometer (see more on this below), but these are usually fairly hard to navigate compared to the best models recommended in this article. They also give you that remote control so you can click the shutter release button without putting vibrations through your camera and ruining your image from the very start.

The main reason why using an intervalometer is important for astrophotography is that a common technique for shooting the stars and deep-sky objects is to take multiple long-exposure pictures of the same composition in succession. You can then “stack” the photos in post-production and combine them to create one single (much better) image.

This is important since you are capturing images of faint objects in low light and you are limited in how long you can have your exposure time as after a certain amount of time the stars will start to trail and lose their sharpness.


Intervalometers & Time Lapse Photography

star trail time lapse

Intervalometers are also extremely useful for timelapse photography.

With this, you can either create an individual image, like that above of star trails or produce a video clip made up of multiple individual images.

The custom programmability from the intervalometer will enable either to be done.

You can even create astrophotography time-lapse clips. Here’s a great video from a friend of Skies & Scopes Michael Ver Spill (“Milky Way Mike”) on how he used an external intervalometer to do just this:


Intervalometer FAQs

What cameras have in-built intervalometers?

Many cameras have intervalometers in-built and you may prefer to take advantage of this over buying a new external piece of gear.

The best list I can find of cameras with built-in intervalometers is this on the Lonely Speck website. It is from this where we have got this info below and full credit to them for attempting to keep it up-to-date:

Canon cameras with in-built intervalometers

  • R5
  • R6
  • 7D Mark II
  • 1100D
  • 500D
  • 50D
  • 550D
  • 5DS/R
  • 5D Mark II
  • 5D Mark III
  • 5D Mark IV
  • 80D
  • 600D
  • 60D
  • 650D
  • 6D
  • 6D Mark II
  • 700D
  • 7D
  • EOS M

Nikon cameras with in-built intervalometers

  • D200
  • D300
  • D300s
  • D3
  • D3s
  • D3x
  • D4
  • D4s
  • D5000
  • D5100
  • D5200
  • D5300
  • D5500
  • D5600
  • D500
  • D600
  • D610
  • D700
  • D750
  • D780
  • D7000
  • D7100
  • D7200
  • D7500
  • D750
  • D800
  • D800E
  • D810
  • D810A
  • D850
  • Z6
  • Z6 II
  • Z7
  • Z7 II
  • Z5
  • Z50

Sony cameras with in-built intervalometers

  • NEX-5R
  • NEX-5T
  • NEX-6
  • a5000
  • a5100
  • a6000
  • a6100
  • a6300
  • a6400
  • a6500
  • a6600
  • a7
  • a7II
  • a7III
  • a7R
  • a7RII
  • a7RIII
  • a7RIV
  • a7S
  • a7SII
  • a7SIII
  • a9
  • a9II RX1
  • RX1R
  • RX1RII
  • RX100M3
  • RX100M4
  • RX100M5
  • RX100M7
  • ZV-1

Intervalometer vs remote shutter release?

The difference between an intervalometer and a remote shutter release is that an remote shutter release is literally just a handheld remote control for activating the shutter release button to take pictures.

They do not have the capacity to program the camera’s settings via the remote controller.

However, they are cheap and work great if you just want a simple wirelss remote to press the button without moving your camera.

Here are two example models for Nikon and Canon cameras:

Last update on 2021-12-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


How to use an intervalometer?

For the most part, it will be a matter of exploring the different modes and making it work for whatever photography you are doing.

As noted above, for astrophotography or time lapse photography you are most likely to be a timer-schedule or delay mode that allows you to program your desired settings for multiple captures and then letting it run.

Here’s a good general overview to using an intervalometer:


What are the Best Intervalometer Apps?

One other thing to consider is that there are smartphone apps that you can use to connect to your camera and have control like an intervalometer.

Some of the options are:

See also the Best Apps for Astrophotography for more suggestions.


Over to you – What’s the Best Intervalometer for Astrophotography?

Overall then, we recommend the Pixel TW-283 as the best intervalometer for Nikon, Sony, Canon and other cameras. It does all you need at a good value price and has multiple versions to work for pretty much any camera.

There are more budget options if you want to look at the alternatives listed above, or you could look into using your camera’s internal intervalometer (if it has one) or using one of the apps noted above and operating your DSLR or mirrorless camera from your smartphone.

We hope you found this useful. Let us know your favorite intervalometer in the comments below and check out our Astrophotography hub for more guides and cases studies.

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