Christmas Video

Sullivan wrote on 12/27/2004, 12:50 PM
Just for fun, I shot this on Christmas Day. While I'd be the first to say that there's nothing more boring than another guy's home movies, everyone that sees this has a nice laugh. It's 1:35 TRT.

Shot with a Panasonic DVX100A with +6dB video gain. It's hard to tell from the WMV version, but gain-up noise wasn't noticeable even in full DV quality. I made no attempt to add light, but I did turn on all the existing lights I could. Focus and Iris are locked through each of the four shots. I think iris was about f9.6. Post was in Vegas 5.0. I assembled the music with the new Acid 5.0 release although I didn't really use any non-4.0 features with this project.


Jay Gladwell wrote on 12/27/2004, 12:55 PM
That was fun! Thanks for sharing it! Well done!

randy-stewart wrote on 12/27/2004, 12:59 PM
Ha! That was great! Liked the look of the DVX-100A. Great job with the music too.
p@mast3rs wrote on 12/27/2004, 1:09 PM
Nicely done. Was this done with time laspe recording?
Liam_Vegas wrote on 12/27/2004, 1:22 PM
Very good.... both funny and disturbing at the same time :-)
Sullivan wrote on 12/27/2004, 2:10 PM
>Was this done with time laspe recording?

Yes. I set the DVX100A to record for 1/2 second every 15 seconds. These are the minimum settings for "interval recording". What I expected was to get exactly 15 frames recorded each 15 seconds. Although I didn't count the frames to be sure, the time-code indicated that this is not exactly what's happening. The actual number of frames recorded seems to vary a bit.

I expected to load this into Vegas as a single clip, speed it up 15X, and have one clean frame every 15 seconds. However, even if you did have exactly 15 frames per capture, it's not quite that easy as Vegas will only speed a clip up by a maximum of 4X. I tried adjusting the playback speed with Media Properties and then also using control-drag to speed it up further, but these are just two wasy to adjust the same setting. Later I wondered if I could have speeded it up 4X with media properties and another 4X with a velocity envelope.

Anyway, I speeded up all the clips by 4X and rendered out to .AVI. Then I loaded those AVIs into a fresh timeline and speded them up again various amounts "to taste".

I got what I wanted, but I'm left wondering if there would be a more precise way to get exactly one and only one frame per 15 second interval.

The other thing I did notice is that there can be some recording errors on the boundary between the clips. Every once in a while I would see those 16x16 pixel dropouts.

rextilleon wrote on 12/27/2004, 2:52 PM
Thats was so very entertaining---------kind of summed up XMAS !

Peeks wrote on 12/27/2004, 7:18 PM
Good job!Ü
melbatoast wrote on 12/27/2004, 7:27 PM
cool mark, you even had santa claus in the video..the white bearded guy :)

but was cool and disturbing too...consumption and time....sped up///raises some philisophical questions. good work darn it, wish i thought of it.
stepfour wrote on 12/27/2004, 8:20 PM
Nice piece. Fun to watch and very cool.
andtwo wrote on 12/27/2004, 9:11 PM
really cool i like how u used the time lapse recording i wish u could do that with mini dv :(
scissorfighter wrote on 12/28/2004, 5:20 AM
Nice. I remember when I was small enough to fit in a cardboard box! Where did you get the music?
Sullivan wrote on 12/28/2004, 6:50 AM
>i wish u could do that with mini dv

But I did do it with mini-DV! You can too. Just use Vegas to speed it up.

>Where did you get the music?

I put it together in ACID. I used loops from Discrete Drums, Hydrophonic Hip-Hop, and Orchestral 3: Cinematic
RalphM wrote on 12/28/2004, 10:17 AM
Enjoyed it - suspect it was played out just that way in millions of households around the world.

Only the dog seems disconnected from the frantic pace around him. Do you suppose he has figured out the meaning of it all?

DavidY wrote on 12/28/2004, 10:32 AM
That was great. Do most Mini DV cameras have time lapse built in. I have a DCR-HC30.

Sullivan wrote on 12/28/2004, 12:15 PM
I don't think the HC30 has a time-lapse mode. But you can still do it, maybe even better. Just shoot normally and speed up your footage in Vegas. As I described above, you can only speed up by 4X so you may have to make multiple passes. Too bad you can't do 5X since there's no other combination of integer factors that yield 30x.
Catwell wrote on 12/28/2004, 12:23 PM
Regarding a way to get just one frame out of each half second. Scenalyzer Live allows the capture of one frame of video out of X number of frames. I've played with this for capturing from interval recording and it works great. Be sure to start the capture in the middle of a 15 frame section because the # frames does vary. However, the average of 15 frames seems to hold well enough.
SonicClang wrote on 12/28/2004, 12:46 PM
I've had to do the exact same thing before when I wanted to do time lapse. I have these exotic trees growing in my house called Monkey Pod Rain Trees. At night their leaves fold up tightly and the trees look really small. When the sun comes out in the morning you can almost watch the leaves wake up and spread open. In 15 minutes the trees look really big. So one morning I set up my camcorder and taped them waking up. When I put it in Vegas I could only go so fast, so I had to render it down and import that video back into Vegas and speed it up again. It turned out pretty cool... but I don't know what ever happened to it.

Anyway, cool video. I'm actually working on my Christmas video right now! :D Well, it's rendering right now, I worked on it last night.
SonicClang wrote on 12/28/2004, 12:50 PM
Catwell, how is that scene analyzer any different than Vidcap that comes bundled with Vegas? Using firewire you can anable scene detection and each scene gets written to its own .avi file. What does scene analyzer do that Vidcap doesn't?
scissorfighter wrote on 12/28/2004, 1:05 PM
You can speed up a clip up to 12x in vegas, with a combination of a 300% velocity envelope and a 4.00 playback rate set on the clip properties.

As mentioned above, scenalyzer will do it too, and is a great program for capturing DV in general, as well as timelapse. Things it can do that vidcap won't include:

various file types (Type1 DV, WAV, Canopus DV, etc)
optical scene detection
more picture export options
max capture settings (file size, length) (available in vidcap but not intuitive)

try it yourself and see!
Catwell wrote on 12/28/2004, 1:31 PM
Scenealyzer has a function called time lapse capturing. It will capture 1 frame out of every N frames. You can set N to be whatever you like. This means that during the capture process you create your time lapse video without having to do anything more in Vegas. You only capture what you need saving disk space as well.

I normally use Vidcap because it is right there within Vegas, but when I need to do something different then I use Scenalyzer. It is a great program when you need it.
SonicClang wrote on 12/28/2004, 1:53 PM
Got it. I now understand the differences between the two programs. I think I'll download it and play around with it a little bit.
Grazie wrote on 12/28/2004, 2:11 PM
Simply wonderful. And . . . wonderfully simple. Thank you for sharing. Nice Christmas pressie for us Forum members. G
L25 wrote on 12/28/2004, 7:32 PM
That was great, nice job with the music. I know there is interval recording on my sony (is that the same thing you used?). I have never used it because I heard it put a lot of wear on the camera?

Sullivan wrote on 12/28/2004, 7:56 PM
Yes, "Interval Recording" is the same as the feature I used on my Panasonic camera.

I can see the argument that it puts a lot of wear on the tape mechanism. It has to start and stop every 15 seconds. As discussed above, you can always shoot in real time and speed up the clip in other ways. There is an advantage to this, in that you can experiment with different speed-up factors after the fact. The big disadvantage is that you are limited to an hour of real-time (because the tapes are 1 hour) and thus maybe 20 second or less of finished video.

Actually, most of the time-lapse work I have done in the past (not the Christmas Video), I did with a digital still camera (Nikon D1X) and brought the frames into Vegas as TGA stills.