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Looking for Slow Motion from a home video camera

DollFace

Standard Member
Hi there

Im looking to buy a new video camera. Im a filmmaker, but dont have the funds to buy a pro cam, so I'm looking to spend under £1,500.


The thing is i am really interested in slow motion. From the research i have been doing i see that Sony handicams seem to offer this as standard, but only for 3 secs at a time?!

Does anyone know if 'domestic' slo mo is coming? Should i hold out for a few more months/years?... the camera they do that has proper slo mo caperbilities seems to be 5 grand plus, so totally not an option.

Maybe i'm dreaming? Please help

Thanks
 

rogs

Well-known Member
Can't see variable frame rate cams (which is what you need for serious slo mo) coming down in price any time soon - so I think the only option for us poor people is to do it in software!

Using AVCHD footage, I found the results of slowing down sequences using Edius Neo editing software gave better results than I expected.
You can trial it free, and it shouldn't be difficult to find some sample HD footage online, so you can try for yourself and see if the results are acceptable.
 

Mr Cheese

Active Member
Alternatively you could try experimenting with a standard camcorder by filming using a higher electronic shutter speed. Slowing down the footage during editing should be less blurry. I've not tried this myself but the idea seems sound!!
 

Mysticpuma

Active Member
If it really is slow motion that interests you and you have a tight budget, have you considered this camera:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U3JfGw8YfeQ

Casio Exilim EX-FH100 Review

It may do what you need, but I don't think it records anywhere near HD quality in Slow-Motion mode.

Amazon.co.uk: ex-fh100

Alternatively there is this Casio model:

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/casio-exf1.shtml

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PiOJ7x0PDxs

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kr-GeRjuFKI

http://www.google.co.uk/products/ca...og_result&ct=result&resnum=3&ved=0CDYQ8wIwAg#

At prices though it looks like it may be worth a play with?

Cheers, MP
 
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siupakcat

Active Member
I bought the Sanyo Xacti HD2000. It's nowhere near a professional camera - and you are unlikely to find a "pro" camera with good slow mo at under £1500 - it's a handycam. It does however shoot full 1080p HD at 60fps. I have shot stuff on that setting then dropped it in a PAL 25fps editing timeline. You get good, detailed smooth slow mo (x2.4 slower) that way.

At the time I got it last year (for just over £300), it was the only consumer cam with full HD at 60fps - there may be others out there now. Consider matching it with a sub £1500 semi pro cam, and using it for slow mo/Bcam stuff. Also consider the Canon 7D or Eos 550D. They are still cameras which shoot excellent Full HD video, as well as 720p HD at 50 & 60fps which you could slow down and upscale to 1080p 25fps...
 

Bob++

Active Member
It all depends on how slo you want the mo to be? True slomo would need an expensive setup but shooting at the highest quality in AVHD and then slowing it down in edit is probably the only way you can do it with amatuer kit.
 

siupakcat

Active Member
Exactly - it depends how slow you want to go. You can get 60fps (x2.4 slower) at full HD or 720p with good, clean images. If you want to go slower...well to be honest you either go high end (Phantom, Red One etc) or consumer. The consumer ones are gimmicky. My Sanyo can do 240fps & up to 600fps, and I've never used that cos the results are a low-resolution, blocky mess. High End costs.

In professional film & TV, slowing footage down in post is never preferable to capturing more frames in-camera. Most editing systems' slowmotion effect can be compared to "step printing" film. So lets say you have 4 frames of film (or video) and you want to make it x2 slower - step printing would have it play as 1, 1, 2, 2, 3, 3, 4, 4. Even slower, and the effect is far from smooth.

There are plugins though that attempt to "build frames" for regular speed footage which is slowed down, eg it creates a new 1.5 frame by comparing frames 1 & 2, so in theory 1, 1.5, 2, 2.5 etc

Sometimes these effects look smooth. Other times they don't. My advice would be shoot as close to your desired frame rate as you can (at high quality, not low res), and then see if computer plugins can stretch the effect further.
 

axiomprime

Active Member
Can't you shoot at 50fps and morph between frames in post production? I had a go at this and had fairly good results apart from at the edge of the screen where the effect broke down.

It was time consuming too but I was using a bit of freeware on the mac.
 

siupakcat

Active Member
Yes, you can. As Bob & I said, it really depends how slow you want to go. I should also add "how you will deliver your work". If the main audience is internet, the picture doesn't have to be as robust as cinema. If you only want to be as 2-2.4x slower, then by all means, shoot native 50 0r 60fps, and drop it in a 25fps timeline. If you shoot 25fps but interlaced (ie 50i) not progressive, you can slow down in post and you do get real frames, but half the resolution.
 

axiomprime

Active Member
I thought you were on about those that just do a slow fade from one frame to the next. They can work great for some shots but only some shots.

The SkyHD ads from last year had some really nice slo-mo and I'm sure it wasn't shot that way. If I remember right there were clips from movies and TV shows that must've been slowed down in post production.

It was a lot better than anything I managed to do. I exported a bunch of frames from iMovie as jpegs, then morphed from one frame to the next in some free download, then fed them back into iMovie.

It was a more innocent time back then.
 

Bob++

Active Member
You just can't compare what the ad guys can do with a huge budget to make a 2 minute film, with what any amateur can do on a limited budget and with the kind of equipment that we can afford.

Two minutes is about 3000 frames, so it would take a very long time to stretch them by morphing one at a time. It would also be very tedious.
 

axiomprime

Active Member
You can morph any two frames into years of footage if you want so the finished number of frames is immaterial. It's the number of source frames that set the workload.

It's outside my capabilities but I'd say it's possible to make a tool that could do all of that for you.
 

axiomprime

Active Member
I've got a Samsung R10 and that has slo-mo. 250fps and 500fps although it looks like mobile phone footage from 10 years ago at 500fps. 250 is YouTube quality. I haven't got a clip on me right now but I'll get back to you with stats.

*edit* 250fps knock out 50 second clips at 416x240, 2440kbps that playback at 50fps so you can take them down to 25 without noticing. All the clips are just under 16mb so I'm guessing that's its own internal memory. Shame it won't do it straight onto the SD card. I'd pay good money for a fast card if it would give my unlimited slo-mo.
 
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