With time-lapse video, you get to see accelerated motion in real time! Here at Studio52, we use the best techniques and equipment to capture long-term duration processes and then display them in a short period.
Time-lapse videos display the entire project or process from start to finish in just a few minutes — exactly why it’s one of the best video tools you can use for marketing and promotion. We have created world-class timelapse videos for brands such as Expo 2020, Meraas, Damac, and many more!
We like to think that we know what we’re talking about when it comes to these and today we want to outlay what you should look for in cameras for time-lapse videos.
How To Choose The Best Time-Lapse Camera For Video And Construction
If you’ve decided to set up a time-lapse monitoring system on your construction site, you’re probably wondering what’s the right camera.
Not all cameras are the same, and you should look into your needs and the different manufacturers on the market. Here are some of the most important factors to think about.
How long do you need your camera to be on and recording? Time-lapse videos are the perfect way to showcase your construction projects from start to finish, so if you’re shooting for months on end you should look into batteries. Some worthy questions to think about:
- How long do they last, and how long should they be charged for?
- Does the manufacturer include solar charging accessories for interrupted work?
The better the frame rate of your camera, the smoother quality video you’ll get. The usual timelapse standard is 30 frames per second, but if you’re shooting plenty of motion you should consider a higher fps camera. These intervals matter, since long intervals between frames, may result in your video looking like a collection of photos, rather than video.
Compression plays an essential part in prolonged shootings, as you’ll have to store a huge number of pictures in the camera’s internal memory. If you have good enough compression, the pictures will take up less space in your camera and the hard drive.
Night or Day
Now here’s an important one. Most time-lapse videos will include nighttime images. If you’re shooting in the dark, your camera should have great low-light performance specs. Otherwise, you’re risking that your night parts look poorer than daytime ones. Usually, this is seen when night pictures look somewhat grainy in comparison to day pictures.
4k or HD?
This one is fairly simple, the higher the resolution, the more detail the video will show. If you’re looking for an HD, 1080 is the universal standard. 4k is a preferred option for time-lapse since it has the perfect balance between details and image size. You can also allow yourself to zoom in and leverage a variety of close-up scenes with 4k.
Size and Weight
If you’re shooting shorter sequences and the camera is supposed to be stationary (like on a tripod) you would want a lighter camera option. From the experience in Studio52, we know that construction time-lapse shootings often take months or even years, and are shot both during night and day.
Equipment reliability also plays a major part and maintenance should be easy. Here we also have to account for the overall costs, so let’s take what you can get in all three budget areas: low-cost, medium-cost, and high-quality.
Brinno brings a time-lapse solution available to anyone. But is it good from a commercial marketing standpoint? Let’s look at the factors we’ve mentioned above.
The FPS frame rate from this one is at the required minimum of 30fps. Not bad a start, but data storage and compression just aren’t on par. You’ll get a low data storage of 32 GB which won’t be enough for a long-lasting recording. Night vision is okay on this one, but the video resolution at 720p-1080p just isn’t something you’d want for a business time-lapse.
This beginner’s time-lapse camera marks a great starting point for time-lapse photography. Our verdict: You don’t want to use it for commercial purposes.
Brinno Empower TLC2020
Brinno has made an effort to manufacture a construction time-lapse camera that’s high-end, but budget-friendly.
The frame rates stand at the standard 30 fps, but you’ll get a high-quality 1080 p video. Compression is also ideal and the internal memory sits at 128GB, with long shooting durability. It has nice night vision capacity and the night pictures don’t strike too differently from daytime ones.
This mountable camera seems to be made for construction time-lapse videos, but you’ll have to invest in the weatherproof casing. Our verdict: An option to go with for construction time-lapse.
GoPro is the standard for high-quality images and video. This one ticks all of the boxes for construction time-lapse photography.
This one shoots 60 fps for a 5K video quality and up to 120 fps for 4K, making this an above-standard high-end solution. This one is waterproof, however, low-light video won’t be that great, but still, you should see no visible difference.
All in all, at its price range GoPro is an unsurpassed king of time-lapse videos. Our verdict: Great solution, but you’ll have some issues with the battery life of 2 to 3 hours.
Time-lapse videos are the best marketing tools to showcase your construction project and business overall. That being said, you don’t want the job to be done poorly. With a great range of options, you can choose a lot of cameras for the job.
Nevertheless, if you want to achieve a great video with a professional script and voice-over, you should always turn to pros. Here at Studio52, we’ve created timelapse videos for many satisfied clients, so you can turn to us with a guarantee of quality delivery.