Time Lapse on Xl1 - HOW?

greenspun.com : LUSENET : Shooting DV Films : One Thread

Just wondering the best way to do time lapse on XL1. Use remote add a timer? It will be a cityscape from 500 feet up of NYC. Please help Thanx



Ah yes, a time lapse question. There isn't a good way to do time lapse in camera, you just can't slow down the frame rate and the tape speed. (There is photo mode, which records one frame for six seconds, but the tape still runs at normal speed, so it's limited to an hour.)

However, I'm buying an XL1 just for doing time lapse. I have come up with two possible solutions, neither of which may work for your needs. My first solution is to record in real-time in frame movie mode (30 fps), then when dumping into my NLE (Premiere) capture every Nth frame. The DPS Spark Plus 2.0 drivers can do this, they say. This still limits you to an hour or so of consecutive recording, though.

My second solution (and not thoroughly researched) would work for nearly endless recordings, but adds to cost. The idea is to connect the XL1 to a laptop PC with IEEE 1394 capabilities, then run a program to capture frames to hard disk using the TWAIN API. (The capture program may have to be custom, but I've written this sort of thing before). Alternatively, there may be an NLE capable of capturing one frame every so many seconds.

Since I haven't yet tested these solutions, I can't promise they will work. But I'm convinced enough to go ahead and order an XL1 and cope with any technical problems as they arrise.

-- Ben Edwards (ben-edwards@worldnet.att.net), August 21, 1999.

Three possibilities: 1) Some NLE capture programs can grab still frames at intervals, for instance the Bravado DV2000 I used to use. 2) The "Snappy" analog framegrabber (about $100) can grab stills at intervals. Don't laugh, it can give you truly excellent quality and if you don't believe me look at snapp y resolution pattern captured live from a TRV900. The full frame is at http://www.bealecorner.com/trv900/respat/snappy/snap-trv.jpg 3) you can get a LANC controller to turn on and off the camera at preset intervals. Although you might need to program/make it yourself.

-- John Beale (beale@best.com), November 28, 1999.

If you have a VX 1000 you can shoot at intervals of 30 seconds or so and capture about 0.2 sec at a time. However, I found a better way - run the whole tape through, record up to 9 mins a time in Premiere, speed it up by x1000, make it as a movie, delete your origainal capture then keep going. Only snag is you have to match the separate movies you make together very carefully (so capture with a small overlap), otherwise this works well, especially with scudding clouds and traffic.

-- ashley bond (ashley@dealingwithit.freeserve.co.uk), March 12, 2001.

MotoDV (also part of EditDV) includes a time lapse capture mode. Make sure there's no tape in the XL1 and hook it up to your machine and you're ready to go. I've captured sunsets, sunrises, etc. Pretty cool. EditDV is nice software too. Go to


and talk to the people there. Don't bother emailing me.

-- R. Design (rapiddesign@yahoo.com), June 27, 2001.

Have you tried WinTVL? http://www.c3sys.demon.co.uk/tlv.htm

-- Jerry (jerryw@hotmail.com), June 30, 2001.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ