Sunday, August 12, 2012

Flowing water - Magic Lantern v2.3 firmware and timelapse in video mode

As I had the opportunity to download ML v2.3 version a little bit earlier than official release date and, while being on holidays, test one of its new features I am particularly interested in - low frame rate video mode. This could be really well suited for timelapse. And it really is! You can set up framerates down to 0.2 fps. Using such you can obtain results similar to setting intervalometer to release shutter to every 5 seconds. Combined with "low light" mode one can achieve shutter opening time almost equal to fps. For instance 0.9sec and 1fps. Such combination is really good for flowing water timelapse recordings. Below is the example I have realized with such setting. Original setting of video in camera was 25fps, so the resulting file is 25x faster. Slow shutter in "low light" mode gives great feel of flowing water.

This attempt to timelapse recording has many advantages:
- You avoid shutter and mirror mechanism wear
- no aperture caused differences flicker
- 100% silent operation
- low card storage space usage
- time saving of creating single images to video file since you have MOV file ready to put into movie edit timeline straight from the camera

There are cons as well:
- you cannot reframe the video in post without oversampling - loss of quality
- overall worse image quality - you receive compressed Full HD, not > 5K image like from EOS 600D which I use.