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Old August 23rd, 2006, 03:03 PM   #1
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Assembling time lapse video from SLR stills

If this topic has been covered before please tell me where the post is. I ran about 6 searches and coudn't find anything specifically on this, but I know I read an article or thread on this somewhere (maybe not this site).

Anyway, I'd like to assemble time lapse video from digital SLR stills, pretty self explanatory. I've already pieced together about a 1 second segment from frames taken every ten seconds for five minutes on a canon digital rebel. I shot in JPEG, 1536x1024 @72dpi. My biggest problem is that the quality of the picture is severely degraded from its original condition, and I'm pretty sure this is because FCP reformats the image to 480x640. How, and in what program should I reformat the image to get the crisp, clear frames that a DSLR allows? Obviously I'll have to stay within standard video resolution, but how do I avoid the "blur" that I'm seeing? (or is there a way to do all this in high def?)

To complicate the question, I'd also like to have all of this in anamorphic 16X9, as it'll be spliced in with DV and 8mm footage. Any hints on that?

And finally, is there some way to avoid painstakingly draging and dropping, and cutting each still down to one frame? Some magic keyboard shortcut that I'm missing?

I know this might be a basic question, but I'd appreciate the help.

thanks-
-Alex
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Old August 23rd, 2006, 03:25 PM   #2
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Your picture blur is a bug in FCP, but the blur only exists in the Timeline, and is usually only seen if you scale the image (including panning and zooming). If you export the clip you have assembled, and import it back it should look nice and clear. Its a nusance not being able to see what your stills look like, but you can rest asure they wll look fine in the end product.

As for more quickly assmebling the stills, what setting are you using for importing stills? The length of imported stills is determined under Final Cut Pro -> User Preferences... -> Editing -> Freeze/Still Duration:. The default is a length of 10 seconds, but that is adjustable to the frame level. Adjust this parameter before importing your stills.

If the stills are numbered sequentially, dragging them from the browser to the timeline will make them drop in order. Importing the stills in a folder is a little neater and you can still drag the folder from the browser to the timeline and get the same sequential ordering.

Mike.
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Old August 23rd, 2006, 03:32 PM   #3
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Thanks Mike-
I exported a quicktime file, but it still seemed kind of blurry and really pixelated to me. More so than with something captured with a camcorder. I put that window and played it next to something that was straight video, video seemed better. But it could just be me.
thanks again!
-Alex
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Old August 23rd, 2006, 04:13 PM   #4
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if you have the newest quicktime, you can simply drag and drop a folder of consecutively numbered files into the program and it will compile a video of it. Quicktime leaves it at taken resolution, so no sharpness problems. Then import it as you need and badabing. Easier than you thought, right? I've only done it once, but that's all I remember, it was easier than easy.
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