Remote control of any Phase One from a tablet

While it is straightforward to connect a new Hasselblad X2D 100C to an iPad for viewing high res images, it’s a pain with older Phase One backs like the p65+. These older backs including the p45+ haven an excellent image quality that is even a decade after it’s introduction on par with much newer IQ backs. Unfortunately the old backs have only a small screen with a menu system from the 1980ies which is basically unusable. The biggest issue, however, comes by the Firewire connection that has been abandoned by Apple preventing older Mamiya/Phase One cameras from any LAN or WLAN access by Capture One. Nevertheless I tried  a Firewire dock as recommended by Phase One only to find out that it does not work with any current macOS.

So why not going back and using some contemporary computer?

What finally worked was a Mac mini from Ebay from late 2012 (100€). This unit still has firewire ports and works perfectly with Capture One 12 under Catalina. Bothe packages are in the archives (if not already pre-installed as on my Ebay purchase) . I tried to control the Mac mini remotely with VNC from the iPad but this was not an option as the connection was neither responsive nor did the screen scale correctly. There is however a better solution for the so called “headless use” of the Mac mini without any display and keyboard.

The installation needs of course display and keyboard at the start. Both devices need to be in the same WLAN with the same GHz band (in my case 2.4 GHz due to the mini). Any VPN and firewall should be set off before installation of the luna display app on both machines. We also need a small HDMI display port dongle from (50€) that connects the devices.

iPad screenshot connected to Mac mini using luna display app. All icons can be reached.
iPad screenshot connected to Mac mini with Capture One open.

But then we can remove keyboard and screen from the Mac Mini, while it is super nice to control now the Phase One  via original Capture One by a touch display. It works wireless and by USB connection between Mac Mini and iPad, while it should work with any Phase One camera. Best of all, even an iPhone with C1 Pilot will connect to Capture One on the Mac Mini.

The only drawback:  this current solution is not fully portable as the Mac mini needs 220 V. But luckily, there are 12V DC conversion kits in the high end audio market (120€).

Or you just use your big flash power unit that can output 110/220V…