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single frame animation

Discussion in 'Camcorders, Action Cams & Video Editing Forum' started by annabel12, Apr 1, 2002.

  1. annabel12

    annabel12
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    Does anyone know of a cheap camcorder that allows single or double frame by frame shooting foir animation? Prefer an analogue machine ideally. I want to make an animated film sthis summer but my old ony wont do single frame. My budget is £350 max for a camera, any more than that and its cheaper to work in Super 8 film as I have all the equipment anyway with a single frame film camera.
     
  2. Mr.D

    Mr.D
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    Its unlikely you will find an analogue camera that will give you consistently accurate single frame exposure. It will most likely disengage the tape heads if you leave it in pause for any length of time and its unlikely you will have accurate enough control to lineup the tape again without making a crash edit and knackering previous frames.

    If I were you I'd look into a PC based system with a camera recording to a harddrive. Its been a while but there should be a couple out there ( I know chroma-color used to do one based on an amiga donkeys ago). This should give you pretty good ( broadcast or near enough) quality.

    The other option is to shoot on a 35mm slr and scan each photograph. Could work out expensive though you could use a digital stills camera.

    Alternatively save a bit and do it on 16mm. I shot an 8 minute animation on a bolex ( 2 the first camera broke!) for about 200quid including developing and transfer to betaSP ( begged rank for a favour) ( rest of the film sets etc cost another 2grande though). If you do this try and get a pin-registered bolex as the normal one slip on frames occasionally.

    I have to say if I was going to make a film these days I'd look for a digital solution. You could in theory do the lot from writing the script to onlining and dubbing mixing on a single PC of suitable spec.
     
  3. JefUK

    JefUK
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    Keep your existing analogue camera and buy/install on your PC Pinnacle DC10+.

    Take short shots of each scene you want (a few frames of each), and capture the video onto the PC.

    You then have two options of making the animation:

    1- adjust the length of each clip to the length required and render.

    or

    2 - capture stills using the Studio 7 software (with the DC10+ package) and then incorporate these stills and render.

    The first method is quicker, the second method will give exactly the same picture for each animation "frame"

    Sounds difficult but actually quite easy.
     
  4. goldenfleece

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    That sounds a cool idea but wont it pleace enormous strain on the heads if the camera is always doing short shots and remains in pause for hours at a time? Its an 11 year old Sony and I dont want it to die on me half way through. It can shoot about 8 frames I think on a double press of standby/pause, but I am worried the heads will expire.
     
  5. Mr.D

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    Well you could hook your camera up to a capture card on a PC and capture each frame you want onto the computer's HD. This way all you are using is the camera CCD rather than the tape mechanism.

    Effectively what you 've made is a PC based rostrum camera. If you are doing 3d animation you might have to worry about how far the camera is going to be from the PC.

    S-video connection would be best but composite might be OK depending on your subject matter.
     
  6. goldenfleece

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    Thanks for that info. What might the min spec be for a video capture card. I only have an AMD 500 machine with a 10GB hard drive and built in 3d graphics chip which is not fantastic.

    Does the Pinnacle video capture card allow single or double frame capture I wonder or would I need a top of the range card. Actually I have no available PCI slots at all, only USB ports, so that may be an issue as well.

    I guess if I bought some old 8mm cheap analogue camcorders off Ebay for £20 a peice collectively they might see me through for the more traditional animation method. My 11 year old S8mm sony has seen one hell of a kicking as well and is still perfect, so maybe it is up to the job after all. Just bought a superb wide-angle lens for it with a setting down to 0.5...amazing results on test shots. Can get in an entire "film set" for my animation with the camera nice and close so no tripping over cables and crushing remotes, etc.
     
  7. JefUK

    JefUK
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    Goldenfleece

    When shooting each animation frame you could record several seconds of each, and stop (not pause) the transport between each. The animation "frames" would be be reduced in length to whatever length you want with Studio 7. Your final animation will have to repeat the same video frame, say 5, times otherwise the video will last no time at all.

    It would work and not be much harder on the camera than shooting normal video.

    Unfortunately, your PC is not capable of supporting Studio 7, you will need a spare PCI slot and loads (30Gb min) of disc space.

    The best way might be to use a still digital camera and use a video editing program to turn these into an animated video. Perhaps with one of the smaller editing packages, like Ulead etc.
     
  8. Mr.D

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    Personally it would drive me nuts if I had to shoot a couple of seconds of each frame and then edit it down: way too time consuming and it would mean you'd have to spend tme editing your material before you could actually view the animation. Not exactly ideal for tweaking.
     
  9. Henky

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    I have also tried animating using an analogue camcorder but it wasn't all that successful. I was using a VHS-C camcorder (JVC), and the thing had the facility of 1/4 sec frames, which to be honest is useless. I then tried converting my analogue onto digital using Pinnacle software and a small digitalising device. The problem was that the twenty or thirty seconds of animation I had, would be compressed to five seconds. After all my efforts the heads screw up and thats the end of the camera. I'm now going to try a super 8 cine camera with hopefully better results. I have never worked with cine but far prefer the results of real film anyway. And if you ask me digital film making is below the league of real film making. STICK WITH TRADITION! You can create something that is perhaps crudely made but shows personality and individualism.
     
  10. Mr.D

    Mr.D
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    sigh.... someone advocating using film over "digital" and they've never done either.....
    Go shoot something on a 16mm bolex that isn't pin registered and think about whether traditional is all that great.

    The camera is unimportant . Buy a cheap analogue capture card , plug any old analogue camera into it and do frame grabs. Rename all your image files into sequential numbers and pull it in as a frame sequence in a suitable editing or image manipulation package.

    You can even do this with a digital still camera , just forget that its a stills camera.

    Hell you can do this with a 35mm slr and scan the resulting neg.
     

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