What is intervalometer?
Intervalometer is a feature that can help photographer to control camera shutter at regular intervals. Intervalometer mode is usually used for time-lapse and long exposure photography.
Before we begin, here are some tips on how to start shooting time-lapse:
- Choose the subject to shoot, example: moving clouds or crowd.
- Place the camera on tripod/very stable surface and level it.
- Use Live View to focus precisely on the desirable subject, once you find the perfect focus leave the lens to MF to avoid automatic focus.
- Set the correct parameters. (shutter speed is really important in shooting time lapse).
- Set the interval: how many picture to take and how often.
- Press start, relax but always keep an eye of the situation.
- Finish the shooting, go back home and create the time-lapse video!
How to start
- Choose shooting mode: Intervalometer
- Adjusting Parameters, please choose Manual for the shooting mode.
- Set the shooting scheme including interval, number of shots, bulb duration, etc.
(See next picture for more details)
- After all is set, press “Start” to start shooting.
Shutter Ramping Off
- Shutter Ramping: Turn on/off the shutter ramping functions. (more details see next picture)
- Interval Time: the duration between one shutter release and the next shutter release.
- Counts by: You can choose between by number of shots or by time.
- No. of shots: It is to determine the total number of shots; starts from one (1) to infinite.
- Bulb duration: it is to determine how long the shutter open.
- Shooting Method: triggered by USB or Shutter cable.
Shutter Ramping On
- Shutter ramping: This allows you to capture properly-exposed time lapses, even during situations with gradually changing light levels, like a sunset or sunrise.
- Interval: the duration between one shutter release and the next shutter.
- Ramping segment: It is to facilitate users for more comprehensive choices in bulb duration. It can add up to 5 segments. (please see next picture for more details)
- -/+ button: Add/reduce ramping segment (max 5).
- Linear, Accelerated, Decelerated: This feature will determined the bulb duration progress from the initial bulb duration until the last bulb duration.
- No. of shots: It is to determine the total number of shots, it starts from one (1) to infinite.
- Initial Bulb duration: initial shutter speed time for the first shot.
- Last bulb duration: the shutter speed time for the last shot.
Note: If the first ramping segment last bulb duration is 5.0s, the second ramping segment first bulb duration will start at 5.0s, and so on and so forth until the 5th segment.
Frequently Ask Questions (FAQ)
1. How to calculate the intervals?
Depending upon the subject that you want to shoot, you will need to use different times and intervals. There is no golden rule to apply, but only suggestions dictated by common sense and experience that you may have carried out in the field.
In time-lapse, one frame is equivalent to a photograph. For a video of just 10 seconds, you will need 250 photographs. One minute of time-lapse takes approximately 1,500 shots. That said, it is also easy to calculate how long it takes to achieve the desired sequence.
Assuming you take 1 frame every 4 seconds, it will take 250 x 4 = 1000 seconds = 16.6 minutes to process our 10 seconds time-lapse video.
You may also refer to time lapse calculator: http://www.photopills.com/calculators/timelapse
To give you a feel on where to start here are some common scenes with possible intervals
- Moving traffic
- Fast moving clouds
- Drive lapse
- Clouds moving faster
- Moon and sun near horizon (or telephoto)
- Things photographed with a telephoto
- Clouds moving normally
- Clouds moving very slowly
- Moving shadows
- Night landscapes
- Sun across sky, no clouds (wide)
- Stars (15–60 seconds)
- Path of the sun on a clear day (around 30 seconds)
- Fast growing plants (ex vines) (90–120 seconds)
- Construction projects (5min–15min)
2. What is the basic parameter rules for time lapse?
It all depends on how much depth of field you want to achieve, and the shutter speed you want to set.
Setting the correct shutter speed is very important when you make a time-lapse. The higher the shutter speed (1/125 or higher), the lower the effect of fluidity in movement that will affect your subject in the final video.
A good rule is to set an exposure value a little below the value of half of the interval value between two clicks.
For example, if you shoot at an interval of 4” between each frame, you should adopt an exposure time of about 1.6”/2”. Do note that this rule is clearly not applicable should you wish to shoot one frame every 60 seconds in broad daylight. If people or moving objects appear in your scene, it is essential to make sure that the subjects in each frame are “fuzzy” (this does not mean out of focus). i.e. they should have a trail behind them.
Subjects too well defined would give it the look of that annoying “blink.” If you are shooting in broad daylight, and you cannot lengthen the time of exposure to acceptable levels – despite having lowered the value of ISO 100 and having set F16 as aperture value – then the only solution will be to use ND Filters.
3. What is shutter ramping for?
Shutter ramping is usually used to capture properly-exposed time lapses, even during situations with gradually changing light levels, like a sunset or sunrise. But unfortunately, we cannot provide you the exact parameter for every scene as every environment will need different parameters to adjust.
4. What is bulb duration for?
There are a lot of functions for bulb but the most important point is that it gives you a way to let you freely control the shutter time.
5. Why and when to use multiple segments?
The introduction of this concept is to facilitate the user for more comprehensive choices for the bulb duration. For example: if you want to shoot from dusk to starry night sky. At first you will need the bulb duration to change significantly but later you only need the bulb duration to change a little.
In this kind of situation, you can use two segments. First segment, you will set a big difference in the initial and last bulb duration. The second segment you can set it to a normal or less.
6. What is the difference between linear, accelerated and decelerated in ramping segment?
Linear: The bulb duration change in a linear pattern, example: 0.1s, 0.3s, 0.5s, 0.7s, 0.9s
Accelerated: For every shot, the bulb duration is increase, example: 0.1s, 0.2s, 0.35s, 0.55s, 0.8s.
Decelerated: The bulb duration becomes slower in every shot, example: 0.1s, 0.35s, 0.55s, 0.6s, 0.7s, 0.75s.
We have no particular recommendations for these features yet, but through this, you can make the shutter changes more comprehensive. Usually the linear pattern is used for common time-lapse photography.