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Old April 9th, 2007, 12:22 PM   #1
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Timelapse Optimal Settings...

I'm toying around with some time lapse currently and would love to get some feedback.

What is the best timing for shooting a day go by outdoors? I tried a couple settings but it looked too jumpy, web cam-ish. What are the best timings for a smooth lapse.

I'm thinking 1 second record and then 3 minute wait. I tried 2 second record and 10 minute wait, but that was WAY too cruddy looking....
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Last edited by Marco Wagner; April 9th, 2007 at 12:58 PM.
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Old April 9th, 2007, 12:40 PM   #2
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To do timelapse truly right, you have to be recording 1 frame at a time, not 30.
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Old April 9th, 2007, 12:52 PM   #3
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Here is one I did with my Sony cam . It was shot 1/2 sec every 30seconds. I wish I could get a cam to do frames . this was a few hours sped up in post.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZYi0H_KAt0M
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Old April 9th, 2007, 12:52 PM   #4
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Gotcha, my camera will only automatically do .5 seconds min.. I supposed I could take a frame from each second captured... What would be the wait time, though...

I have:

63 Minute tape
VX2100
8 hour battery
or
HVR-A1U
6 hour battery
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Old April 9th, 2007, 12:56 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joey Atilano View Post
Here is one I did with my Sony cam . It was shot 1/2 sec every 30seconds. I wish I could get a cam to do frames . this was a few hours sped up in post.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZYi0H_KAt0M
Not bad at all. That's what I'm shooting for, maybe a tiny bit smoother if possible. I've done a similar cloud clip only I just had the camera recording the entire hour and speed it up like 5000% in post. I would rather do timelapse to get that cool effect you have. Thanks for sharing!
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Old April 9th, 2007, 01:05 PM   #6
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To do timelapse truly right, you have to be recording 1 frame at a time, not 30.
He could just frame cut it. Quite simple really.
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Old April 9th, 2007, 01:33 PM   #7
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I have a new HDV camcorder and In going to try pulling 1 frame every few seconds in vegas. The drawback is only 1 hour max.
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Old April 9th, 2007, 01:57 PM   #8
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With DV format camcorders, you can capture to a PC via FireWire with our Enosoft DV Processor - it has a time lapse function and there's no time limit on how long it can run in time lapse mode.

(For personal use, it's free.)
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Old April 9th, 2007, 01:57 PM   #9
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If you need to shoot timelapse for some short time, then i would go all time recording in LP mode, with 80min tape you can get plenty of rec time...

I was shooting timelapses for 2 years, the best way I found was to shoot with digidal photo camera and laptop. Just connect camera to the laptop, set interval and you'll get ultra high resolution video later on...
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Old April 9th, 2007, 01:59 PM   #10
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Hmmm, I'll give that a try Andzei!
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Old April 9th, 2007, 02:22 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andzei Matsukevits View Post
If you need to shoot timelapse for some short time, then i would go all time recording in LP mode, with 80min tape you can get plenty of rec time...

I was shooting timelapses for 2 years, the best way I found was to shoot with digidal photo camera and laptop. Just connect camera to the laptop, set interval and you'll get ultra high resolution video later on...
Yep, easily the best way to shoot timelapse is with a digital camera. There are many cameras on the market that have an intervalometer built in, so there's no need to hook it up to a lap-top or PDA.

We discussed this over on the HD*** forum
http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=89936

But for most shots simply frame cutting or speeding-up a very long shot are perfectly adequate. Here's a sequence I posted to explain this on another thread (this is an unedited sequence).

http://www.liamhall.net/LonBroll23.mov

Cheers,

Liam.
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Old April 9th, 2007, 02:23 PM   #12
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Thank you Liam!
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Old April 9th, 2007, 02:36 PM   #13
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If video, then shoot longer than .5

I've shot several time lapse scenes out in South Dakota and found that the longer you record for, the smoother the output. Yes, that means real-time sped up is best. But for longer durations, it's not practical sometimes. The above cloud timelapse is a nice scene, but it stutters through the motion and in my opinion, though nice, looks like a series of images played in rapid succession rather than clouds moving over time. Perhaps if it was sped up even more, or used some frame blending it would appear smoother. The smoother the motion, the more impressive the scene, imho.

The XL-1s that I shot on allowed you to record for up to 2 seconds every 30 secs. That's what I'd recommend, instead of the .5 sec. You get more of the clouds moving - which if it's not windy may not be as noticeable - and that should lend itself towards a smoother flow of time....

I'll see if I can dig up those timelapse so you can compare. You will wind up speeding it up quite a bit, and a program like After Effects w/ frame-blending turned on can help the intra-frame motion quite a bit better than Final Cut (or possible other NLEs).

I concur that the best way is to use a still camera. Many more options, though the workflow is different, and the resources may not be there...so if you just want to use your video camera - do it.

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Old April 9th, 2007, 07:53 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffrey Butler View Post
The XL-1s that I shot on allowed you to record for up to 2 seconds every 30 secs. That's what I'd recommend, instead of the .5 sec. You get more of the clouds moving - which if it's not windy may not be as noticeable - and that should lend itself towards a smoother flow of time....
.02
0.5 sec would definitely get you better results than 2sec. As has been pointed out above the only way to do it properly is to capture ONE frame at a time. the only parameter you want to adjust is the time between frames.

if your camera captures a minimum of 1 second (ie. 25 frames in PAL) then you can presumably still get useful results by slowing the (already time-lapsed) footage down by a factor of 25 in after effects or similar software.
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Old April 9th, 2007, 07:58 PM   #15
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Much appreciated, looks like testing testing one two three.
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