Sunday, December 29, 2013

GBTimelapse: Support for the Canon 70D

Canon finally released version 2.13 of their EOS camera SDK (Software Development Kit).

With the new kit, we can finally offer support for the Canon 70D camera body.

You can download GBTimelapse EOS version 3.9.31 here.

If you already own a GBTimelapse license, just install the new release -  there's no need to activate a new serial number.

DIY GBTimelapse/eMotimo Aperture Ramping Assembly

Since we introduced GBTimelapse' breakthrough aperture ramping capability (See Eliminate flicker with Aperture Ramping), many people have been asking for a parts list to make their own assembly.

First of all, you need a "de-clicked" lens with an iris gear like this Rokinon 24mm f/1.5 Cine Lens

and of course a stepper like this this Berkey focus motor with a rail mount and worm gear reducer.

Here's the other parts you need to attach the stepper to an eMotimo TB3

A,  15mm single Rod Clamp

Some 15 mm rod, 2pcs Black Aluminum Alloy 15mm Rod - 15cm 6 Inch

A plate to hold the clamp and rod, Desmond 5.5-Inch 140mm 140 QR Lens Plate Quick Release Arca Swiss Compatible PC-140 DPC140

A clamp to hold the camera,  Desmond DAC-02 60mm Arca Clamp

A plate for the camera, Desmond P-70 70mm QR Lens Plate Arca Compatible Dual Dovetail and D-Ring P70 DP-70 

Modify the long plate by drilling a 1/4" diameter clearance hole

and then use a 1" 1/4-20 bolt to attach the long plate to the camera clamp through the underside of the eMotimo bracket.

Monday, November 11, 2013

"Adrift" by Simon Christen scores 1.7 million views on Vimeo

Congratulations to Simon Christen on 1.7 million views and 16k+ likes for his gorgeous time-lapse "Adrift."

Whether or not you've also spent countless hours alone on mountain tops trying to get a great shot, you'll appreciate the lengths he went to in order to get this amazing footage. On Adrift's vimeo page Simon writes: The weather conditions have to be just right for the fog to glide over the hills and under the bridge. I developed a system for trying to guess when to make the drive out to shoot, which involved checking the weather forecast, satellite images and webcams multiple times a day. For about 2 years, if the weather looked promising, I would set my alarm to 5am, recheck the webcams, and then set off on the 45-minute drive to the Marin Headlands.

Simon is one of many cinematographers who use GBDeflicker in post-production workflow. He wrote to us recently: The post processing on Adrift was extremely time consuming and I used a lot of different tools to get to the final product. In one of my last stages I used GBDeflicker to take care of the last little flicker fixes. I have found it to work really well.

Here a link to Adrift on Vimeo. We look forward to seeing what Simon does next!

Send us your stories and videos - we're always looking for awesome work to feature.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Golden light in "Midnight Sun" by Joe Capra

For "Midnight Sun", Joe Capra traveled around Iceland shooting time-lapse for an arduous 17 days - which from his description didn't involve much sleep - and in the process captured over 38,000 images. The work has beautiful sequences of the arctic summer's golden light. We're excited to see that "Midnight Sun" is a Vimeo Staff Pick and has passed 2 million views. For another project, Joe shot time-lapse on location in Rio for a major electronics manufacturer. A compilation video from his trip titled "Rio" features spectacular time-lapse of the cityscape.

Joe uses GBDeflicker in his post-production workflow. According to Joe, "I use GBDeflicker on everything! Well, not EVERY shot, but I have used it on everything I have shot that needed de-flickering. It was used on shots in Midnight Sun and also my new Rio video. It is definitely a must have tool for any time-lapse shooter."

Send us your stories and videos - we're always looking for awesome work to feature.

Sunday, August 04, 2013

New Feature: Eliminate flicker with Aperture Ramping

We're pleased to announce a major new feature in GBTimelapse called Aperture Ramping. This feature is for more advanced users, and yields stunning results. If you already own GBTimelapse, just download and install this new release. If you don't own it yet, please download and run the free trial.

Eliminate flicker with Aperture Ramping in GBTimelapse:

The best way totally eliminate time-lapse flicker is to use a manual lens. That’s right, forget the automatic Canon EF lenses and use a manual focus and manual iris “cine” lens with an iris ring gear. Then as the light changes, GBTimelapse can smoothly ramp the aperture using a stepper motor to drive the iris ring gear.

The first three clips in this demo video were shot this way - bulb ramping PLUS aperture ramping. A Zeiss Distagon T* 2.8/15 with the Duclos Lens Cine-Mod was used for the first three sunset clips.

The Lens:

Here are two possible lens choices. On the left is a Rokinon/Samyang 24mm cine lens and on the right is a much higher quality Zeiss Distagon T* 2.8/15 . Both lenses are “de-clicked” and have iris ring gears. The Zeiss/Duclos is actually a Nikon lens with Canon mount. 

The Stepper:

You can use just about any stepper with an industry standard 32 pitch (0.8 mod) drive gear. One choice is to use a Berkey focus motor with a rail mount and worm gear reducer.

Add Movement:

GBTimelapse is designed to send aperture stepper commands to an Arduino based device. The first such compatible device is the eMotimo TB3 (both orange and black models). At left is a stepper mounted on a 15-mm rail attached to an eMotimo TB3.

The aperture stepper wiring connects to the eMotimo “aux step motor”.

Gears engaged!

Here’s a close up showing the stepper drive gear engaged with a Rokinon lens on a 5D Mk II.

The Full Setup:

The setup is completed by connecting the camera shutter and PC/flash to the eMotimo camera and “i/o port” connectors. Two USB cables connect the camera and eMotimo to the computer running GBTimelapse.

Here's a short video clip showing the stepper motor in action...

Sunday, April 28, 2013

GBDeflicker Plugin - Using Two Layers Fixed Severe Flicker

GBDeflicker can't fix all flicker problems... however, with special techniques many of the most serious flicker problems can be fixed.

In this post, I'll show you how working with multiple layers fixed a severe flicker problem. The "key-frame shift method" is also a successful tool, and you can learn more about that one here.

A customer was having trouble de-flickering a time-lapse video and asked me have a look. His clip had some serious flickering of a kind I hadn't seen before. It was shot using a Nikon D7000 and Tokina 11-16mm f2.8 lens. Apparently, the lens iris was not operating smoothly, causing significant differences in exposure between frames and leading to a great deal of aperture flicker.

The flickering was so severe, GBDeflicker applied with its default settings couldn't fix it. But, I was able to get a good result by de-flickering the sky and foreground separately, and combining them together using a layer mask.

Watch this demo to see how I did it.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

GBTimelapse - Support for the Canon 6D and Windows 8

Canon finally released version 2.12 of their EOS camera SDK (Software Development Kit).

With the new kit, we can finally offer support for the Canon 6D camera body, and for GBTimelapse on Windows 8 desktop.

You can download GBTimelapse EOS version 3.8.23 here.

If you already own a GBTimelapse license, just install the new release -  there's no need to activate a new serial number.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

New feature: GBTimelapse Pan/Tilt Control

eMotimo TB3
The new release of GBTimelapse (version 3.8 and above) enables control of an eMotimo TB3 pan/tilt. Instead of using the TB3 'shoot-move-shoot' method, GBTimelapse controls the camera settings and tells the TB3 when to move. If you already own GBT 3.x, just download this new release.

With GBTimelapse in control of the eMotimo, the software's AutoRamp feature gives you fantastic, high end time-lapse results like the examples below. The second and third clips show the TB3 in action.

AutoRamp isn't just for a Holy Grail shot (sunrises and sunsets that span huge exposure changes). Panning 180 degrees can require two stops or more change in exposure. GBTimelapse AutoRamp can automatically adjust the camera settings and bulb time to maintain a perfect exposure through the pan range.

With the camera shutter and PC/Flash cables connected to the TB3, you can use bulb durations as short as 33 milliseconds allowing full daylight-to-Milky Way time-lapse with only a 4-stop filter.

It's a simple matter to install the GBTimelapse firmware in the TB3. Just use the included GBUploadFirmware program to quickly switch between GBT and the original TB3 firmware.

Other benefits...
  • Set your start and end points while watching live-view on the computer screen.
  • Save your pan/tilt move in the project file to repeat again some other day.
  • Change your pan/tilt end point in real-time during time-lapse capture.
  • Watch your time-lapse as a movie preview while it is being captured.

GBTimelapse's new pan/tilt feature also works with the eMotimo TB3-Black and Directed Perception PTU-D46.

The PTU-D46 is an industrial strength unit that costs a bit more.