For years now, it’s been unfortunate that Eye-Fi doesn’t make a Compact Flash (CF) version of their Eye-Fi camera cards for professional DSLR cameras that lack the consumer appropriate SD card slots.
However, the latest Eye-Fi cards do work with proper SD/CF adapters in CF based DSLR cameras, at least the set of items I have work fine:
Canon EOS 7D 18 MP CMOS Digital SLR Camera
Eye-Fi Pro X2 8 GB Class 6 SDHC Wireless Flash Memory Card EYE-FI-8PC
SD/SDHC/SDXC to High-Speed Extreme UDMA mode CF Type II Adapter support 16/32GB and over 64GB Sells for under $15.
I think the key to making this work is the adapter. Not all adapters are created equal, and this one appears to be pretty fast, and doesn’t block the WiFi signal. I’ve seen numerous comments from others saying the Eye-Fi won’t work in the Canon 7D, or other DSLRs that are CF based. Hopefully this clears up some confusion, especially when it comes to what’s needed in a Compact Flash Adapter.
The SDHC Eye-Fi card has a max speed of 6MB/s (48mbps), which is too slow for 1080p on the Canon 7D, but plenty fast for taking pictures (either not in burst mode, or for short bursts).
The Direct Mode of of the Eye-Fi works great, and is really easy to set up if you understand the basics of what an ad-hoc network is. Better yet, the Eye-Fi app is free for the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch.
Pictures transfer really fast over 802.11n between the Eye-Fi and your iOS device, but will also transfer just fine over 802.11b/g.
Images that get transferred show up in the Eye-Fi iOS app and in the “Camera Roll” photo album. The Eye-Fi app is multitask and push enabled, which means you can have images stream over to your iOS device automatically, and get little badge alerts when they arrive.
It gets better…
You can set up your social networks and photo services like Facebook and Flickr with your Eye-Fi account, so images can go directly from your camera to your iPhone and then over 3G be sent automatically to the sites you want. This also includes having them sent via FTP to your blog or website. All of this can also be manually or semiautomatically set up.
A nice companion app would be Adobe Photoshop Express, also free in iTunes. You can use this app to crop and apply all kinds of effects before uploading to wherever you’d like.
If you think about the workflow here for a second, it’s really pretty cool. Imagine being somewhere and having that perfect scene for a nice Facebook profile update. You can take the picture with your DSLR, transfer it quickly to your iPhone, crop and adjust the image, and then upload to Facebook over 3G, or pretty much anywhere with any number of apps and services.
This could also work well for client previews. Of course if there’s WiFi at the location, you don’t need to be in Direct Mode (the ad-hoc network) and can send the images even faster by going directly to the Internet from the camera where a client could be reviewing the shoot in progress.
I would imagine the other Eye-Fi X2 cards work as well, and that they work in the Canon 5D MKII as well has other DSLRs. I’ll be testing other CF cameras out as I get access to them. Meanwhile, the Eye-Fi X2 Pro is working well in other SDHC based cameras such as the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX5V and the Canon SD4000is.