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Sony HVR-A1 and HDR-HC Series
Sony's latest single-CMOS additions to their HDV camcorder line.


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Old July 6th, 2006, 12:24 PM   #1
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Time Lapse Information

Hello,
This is my first post. Lots of real smart people here. Anyway I have a project that requires "time lapse" HD video shot over a 3-6 month period. I have never shot time lapse before.

The subject will be grapevines at a wine vineyard. I will have a tripod in place & it will be there for the duration. I will be using my HC1 & I will not leave it on location like the tripod. I plan on shooting footage every 5-7 days very close to the same time every time.

I looked in the manual on page 54 and the HC1 can only shoot "Interval Photo Recording" on the "Memory Stick Duo". I need to shoot HDV, not stills. I will be spending about 4-6 hours each shoot & am planning to set up the HC1 for that length of time.

My question is "How much footage should I gather for the 4-6 hour interval? Every hour or every 1/2 hour, 15 minutes or what?

Any quality advice about Time Lapse in general that I should know will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks
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HDR-HC1
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Old July 6th, 2006, 07:40 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Palco
...
I looked in the manual on page 54 and the HC1 can only shoot "Interval Photo Recording" on the "Memory Stick Duo". I need to shoot HDV, not stills.
Stills are using the full surface area of the sensor at 1920x1440. Why not just crop the images in post to HD spec? That way, you'll have some verticle room to adjust for those moments when the camera is slightly off due moving on and off the tripod.

Also, place a reflective marker on a wire rod or stake into the ground to use a reference point. Have this show up in the area below the crop mark of your final piece. You can import the images as a sequence into AE and use a tracker against the marker.

Spend a few minutes testing this out, shoot some time laspe photo's at highest quality. Remove and replace the camera a few times to see how far you'll be off.
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Old July 7th, 2006, 07:18 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply.
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HDR-HC1
"Y" Wide Angle Conversion Lens
521PRO LANC Controller
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Old July 7th, 2006, 11:03 PM   #4
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Can you tell us what you would like the the end product to look like? For example, how long do you want the final clip to be (or to put that another way, how fast do you want time to pass in the final footage)?

Recording for 5 hour chunks at weekly intervals is going to look a bit ... odd, perhaps?

Usually, timelapse involves shooting frame by frame at, say, 10 second intervals continuously (i.e., 24 hours a day) for as long as is needed to capture the process you are interested in. At 10sec intervals, 1 second of the final footage represents 30fps x 10sec = 300sec = 5 minutes of real-world time. A 3-minute clip would represent 3 x 60 x 5 = 900 min = 15 hours of real time.

Like Peter said, shooting stills to the memorystick will give higher raw 'footage' than shooting HDV to tape.
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Old July 8th, 2006, 04:00 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graham Hickling
Can you tell us what you would like the the end product to look like? For example, how long do you want the final clip to be (or to put that another way, how fast do you want time to pass in the final footage)?

Recording for 5 hour chunks at weekly intervals is going to look a bit ... odd, perhaps?

Usually, timelapse involves shooting frame by frame at, say, 10 second intervals continuously (i.e., 24 hours a day) for as long as is needed to capture the process you are interested in. At 10sec intervals, 1 second of the final footage represents 30fps x 10sec = 300sec = 5 minutes of real-world time. A 3-minute clip would represent 3 x 60 x 5 = 900 min = 15 hours of real time.

Like Peter said, shooting stills to the memorystick will give higher raw 'footage' than shooting HDV to tape.
Thank you for your reply. I appreciate your effort and advice. So you asked:

how fast do you want time to pass in the final footage)?

First off this project is in the brainstorming phase at present, so nothing is firmed up at this point of time. For now I would like to capture for 6 months or more, grapevines in a vineyard doing their thing...I don't know how many vines will be shot but I know it will not be just one vine...I do not want the time lapse to be, for example, like one rose or flower growing then opening etc in 10 seconds or so.

I don't want the time lapse to be "jumpy". Is that possible? In other words I want a 60 second (maybe more maybe less) time lapse of grapevines sprouting new growth to vegatative growth to fruitation and then to dormant stage without being "jumpy". Again, I am in the brainstorming mode so nothing is set in stone. I hope this sheds some light on what I want.

Recording for 5 hour chunks at weekly intervals is going to look a bit ... odd, perhaps?

What was said: "I will be spending about 4-6 hours each shoot & am planning to set up the HC1 for that length of time."

I said "To Set Up" not record. Then I asked: My question is "How much footage should I gather for the 4-6 hour interval? Every hour or every 1/2 hour, 15 minutes or what?

So I am asking how much footage should I "Gather" (or record). Meaning should I shoot X number of seconds or minutes every hour or 1/2 hour or 15 minutes or what. Hope this is less ambiguous.

I also said:"I have never shot time lapse before." I have no experience and I need advice from experienced shooters or producers who have knowledge and or perhaps have done professional time lapse segments if possible. Thanks.
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Old July 9th, 2006, 12:44 AM   #6
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You seemed irritated that no-one directly answered your questions to your liking. We can read, and gave you some advice. This is a common sense approach, and requires a little math.

I have not done time laspe. I suggest that you post this question in a general forum as it's not relative to the HC1, but more of technique that can be handled by a great number of cameras. (Personally, I would shoot this using a good quality still camera and leave it there for the duration. Always shooting mid-day with the sun directly overhead when it moves slowest). There are a variety of cheap cameras that can shoot beyond the resolution you need for HDV, and would be more suitable for this than the HC1. Then it becomes a post issue.

Since you are early in this, I would suggest rolling up your sleeves and doing some tests. Then you can come back here and enlighten us on your findings.
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