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Iris Explorer S2

Product number: IRLAB-S2-V5
Only some items on stock - order quickly!

Iris Explorer Set

Manufacturer and product

The Iris Explorer is the result of many years of development by the manufacturer Irislab. He started development in 2003 and set himself the goal of developing the best possible equipment for iris photography using a single-lens reflex camera. He now supplies the Iris Explorer product, which can be used with a standard Canon EOS camera.

Product properties

  • Integrated Canon quality lens
  • 100% controlled lighting environment 1
  • two-stage LED lighting concept 2
  • Lighting can be switched on either on both or just on one side
  • compact and mobile solution
1 Due to the device concept, no ambient light can get between the lens and the eye - only the controlled LED light. This means that the light frequencies are defined by the manufacturer's LEDs and reflections from ambient light sources are also avoided.

2 And this is how it works: after switching on the Iris Explorer using the buttons on the side, the LEDs light up at an intensity that allows focusing and previewing. The Iris explorer only generates a brief flash for the recording when the shutter release button is fully pressed.

How to use it

Taking high quality photos with this specialized device requires practice in the beginning! Given that the manufacturer states which settings work best with the Iriscope (see below), you have a solid base and after a few attempts you can continuously improve the quality. It is recommended to capture the same object with slightly different settings (e.g. different shutter speeds) in order to understand its effect on the image brightness. Furthermore, it is important to keep the camera stable in order to generate the sharpest possible image, since a variation in the distance to the object can generate a non-focused and therefore blurred image.

Recording with the Iris Explorer

Iris Explorer module structure

The Iris Explorer S2 set includes the following components:

  • Iris Explorer lighting unit : LED lighting module can be switched on using two buttons on the side of the unit and triggered by the camera's flash synchronization contacts. It creates an elliptical cone of light for lateral and even eye lighting. The module is battery operated (built-in replaceable standard 9V battery)
  • Canon 60 mm macro lens : Quality lens for best results and compatibility with the supported Canon EOS camera models.
  • Extension Macro Tube : Extension ring that is mounted between the camera housing and lens and increases the distance between the camera sensor and the end of the lens. This makes it technically possible to focus closer to the object (iris).

Sample recordings

In the pictures above you can see some photos taken by the manufacturer for light and dark irises. We carried out our own test recording with a demo device in compliance with the manufacturer's recommendations for camera settings. We connected a Canon EOS 60D to the Iris Explorer and photographed the most difficult type of iris to be captured (dark brown) - then cut off the area around the iris (black).

Image of dark irises with the Iris Explorer

Below you can see a detail from the picture above:

Image of dark irises with the Iris Explorer

System requirements

You need a compatible Canon EOS camera to operate the Iris Explorer - the following models are supported:

  • Canon EOS 90D or 60D
  • Canon EOS 850D or 800D

Scope of delivery

  • Iris Explorer Module
  • Robust transport case
  • Allen key for changing the battery
  • A camera is not part of the scope of delivery
  • Manufacturer's guarantee: 12 months from the date of purchase

Packaging of the Iris Explorer

Technical support

In the following chapters you will find manufacturer information and video instructions for the correct operation of the Iris Explorer. Please read them carefully for best results.

Assembling the Iris Explorer

The three modules of the Iris Explorer are delivered already assembled. You only need to connect the Iris Explorer to your camera housing and its flash control cable to the flash synchronization contact of the camera (see picture below).

Connecting the flash cable from the Iris Explorer to the camera

After assembly, the device will look like the one shown below:

Iris Explorer mounted on the camera

Camera settings

You only have to operate your camera in manual recording mode (set mode selection dial to "M"). Then please refer to your camera instructions to ensure that the camera settings are first set up as below.

Camera settings Iris Explorer S2

When making fine adjustments to the white balance, please set the following values:

Camera settings Iris Explorer S2

Depending on the iris color, the manufacturer also recommends adjusting the main settings for shutter speed / aperture / ISO according to the following table. If you are unsure, start with a test shot with the setting “medium” (you should also use this as the standard setting) and then modify the shutter speed / aperture gradually until you are satisfied with the brightness result.

Iris color Shutter speed Blende ISO value
very bright (blue / gray) 1/80 F5-F6 800
medium (blue / mixed / light brown 1/80 F4-F5 800
dark brown 1/60 F2,8 - F4 800

Battery change

If the LED on the Iris Explorer is flashing, it is a sign that you need to change the battery. A 2 mm hex key is included in the product, which is used to change the battery. You need a standard 9V block battery. The following manufacturer's video demonstrates a battery change.

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