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GOOD DIGITAL CAMERA FOR STOP MOTION


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#1 Brandon Romero

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Posted 02 April 2007 - 02:14 AM

I was looking to buy a digital camera to experiment in stop motion filming and I was wondering if anyone could point me in the right direction.

Thanks,
Brandon
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#2 Daniel Sheehy

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Posted 04 April 2007 - 05:37 AM

Pretty much any mid to high end DSLR is suitable to experiment with.

A couple of points to remember: auto white balance will fluctuate. You won't be able to see the difference between shots individually, but once in sequence it will most likely show up.

The other issue is the lifespan of the shutter on a DSLR isn't as high as a traditional SLR. This can become an issue on longer projects, where you may need to have several camera bodies on hand.
This page has some links to discussions of this issue:

http://www.stopmotio...htm#shutterlife

Tim Burtons' Corpse Bride used the Canon EOS-1D Mark II.

Edited by Daniel Sheehy, 04 April 2007 - 05:40 AM.

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#3 Francesco Bonomo

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Posted 04 April 2007 - 05:58 AM

Tim Burtons' Corpse Bride used the Canon EOS-1D Mark II.


with Nikon lenses, though :D
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#4 Troy Warr

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Posted 04 April 2007 - 06:11 AM

What's your budget and output format? What kind of project(s) are you planning to shoot?
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#5 Brandon Romero

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 12:15 AM

What's your budget and output format? What kind of project(s) are you planning to shoot?


Sorry for the delay of my reply. As far as my budget I can't spend over $1000.00 and, I know I probably should, but I don't understand what output format is please explain. I plan on shooting small shorts just to get my feet wet. I'm looking for a camera that will give me a good look but won't cost me a small fortune like the CANON EOS.

Brandon
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#6 Daniel Sheehy

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 02:55 AM

..what output format is please explain.

What are you going to do with the compiled frames? Are you going to master the finished product to DVD, tape or maybe film? ;)
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#7 Nate Downes

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 08:23 AM

Sorry for the delay of my reply. As far as my budget I can't spend over $1000.00 and, I know I probably should, but I don't understand what output format is please explain. I plan on shooting small shorts just to get my feet wet. I'm looking for a camera that will give me a good look but won't cost me a small fortune like the CANON EOS.

Brandon


Can't be done. For $1000 the most enduring DSLR is the Pentax K10D, and while it'll last for hundreds of thousands of shots, that still means that it will fail long before you're done with a feature.
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#8 Chris Keth

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 09:55 AM

Can't be done. For $1000 the most enduring DSLR is the Pentax K10D, and while it'll last for hundreds of thousands of shots, that still means that it will fail long before you're done with a feature.


The resolution that one really needs is quite a bit lower than even a low end DSLR nowadays. You could get a nice DSLR from a couple years ago for much less than a grand that has more than fine enough resolution to go to 1080 HD.

The other option would be to use a nice camera with a video out function and use something like framethief.
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#9 Nate Downes

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 10:24 AM

The resolution that one really needs is quite a bit lower than even a low end DSLR nowadays. You could get a nice DSLR from a couple years ago for much less than a grand that has more than fine enough resolution to go to 1080 HD.

The other option would be to use a nice camera with a video out function and use something like framethief.


Um, it's not the resolution, it's the durability. Even a top-end from 3 years ago couldn't handle the punishment of almost 150,000 shots. And you're proposing he use a used camera, which will have an even shorter life?
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#10 Chris Keth

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 10:48 AM

Um, it's not the resolution, it's the durability. Even a top-end from 3 years ago couldn't handle the punishment of almost 150,000 shots. And you're proposing he use a used camera, which will have an even shorter life?


Yes I am. At ebay prices he could get more than one camera from a couple years ago for the price of one current DSLR. I suppose I should ahve mentioned that important bit :). As fast as DSLRs have progressed, a used camera is likely to have very little wear on it.

Edited by Christopher D. Keth, 25 April 2007 - 10:49 AM.

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#11 Felipe Perez-Burchard

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 11:27 AM

The other option would be to use a nice camera with a video out function and use something like framethief.


Yes In fact most DSLR that I know off don't have this function (which seems to be the deal breaker for animators)it is a shame, but well, there is a mirror in front of the sensor... :)
If any one knows of one please let me know.

On "corpse bride" they attached a small lipstick or security camera to the viewfinder and had a tap through that (not sure of the quality).

best,
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#12 Brandon Romero

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 03:45 PM

What are you going to do with the compiled frames? Are you going to master the finished product to DVD, tape or maybe film? ;)


Most likely going to DVD. I was thinking about looking for a used camera but then I thought about the shutter life which kind of worried me. Buying a couple of used cameras might be a good way for me to go. Anyways I'm really not looking to shoot a stop motion feature anytime soon. I just have a few ideas for a couple of shorts and I want to experiment with stop motion. Thank you all for your comments, I've picked up alot of info.

Brandon
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#13 Patrick Cooper

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Posted 27 April 2007 - 08:38 AM

I'm sure you are aware of this from your research but there is another problem other than shutter life when using DSLR's for stop motion animation. And that is flicker. Each time you fire a frame, the aperture blades close down to the respective f stop setting for a fraction of a second and then open fully wide again. The problem is that the aperture blades don't close to precisely the same position each time, even though the f stop remains the same. In normal photography, this makes no difference when viewing individual images. However, when those same images are played back in rapid succession, you will see a flickering effect.

One possible solution is to use an older fully manual lens like a Takumar lens with an adapter. Pentax made a series of lenses called Takumar lenses which had an M42 screw thread mount. With some of these lenses at least, the aperture blades stay in the closed position continously at whatever f stop they are set to. So the correct procedure would be to focus with the aperture wide open and then close down to the appropriate f stop, and then do your all your shooting. There are some Takumar lenses that have an aperture pin that unfortunately sets the aperture wide open but there might be some way to disengage this pin. By the way, somewhere on the internet, Ive seen a photo taken with an old Zeiss M42 lens mounted to a Canon DSLR with an adapter and the image was really sharp and clear.
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#14 Nate Downes

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Posted 27 April 2007 - 09:16 AM

Yes I am. At ebay prices he could get more than one camera from a couple years ago for the price of one current DSLR. I suppose I should ahve mentioned that important bit :). As fast as DSLRs have progressed, a used camera is likely to have very little wear on it.


Yes, but even a new one can't do it. For Corpse bride they went through 3 cameras.
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#15 Patrick Cooper

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Posted 27 April 2007 - 10:41 AM

Hmmm...I wonder if one could use a medium format film camera with a digital back...cos film camera shutters seem to have a longer life. Unfortunately, digital backs cost a lot of $$$$.
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#16 Eden Lagaly-Faynot

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Posted 27 April 2007 - 11:00 AM

Hmmm...I wonder if one could use a medium format film camera with a digital back...cos film camera shutters seem to have a longer life. Unfortunately, digital backs cost a lot of $$$$.


Yes, specially with medium format system wich are mainly using leaf shutter, against traditionnal SLR's focal plane shutters.
Unfortunately digitals back are overexpensives...
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#17 Patrick Cooper

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Posted 27 April 2007 - 12:48 PM

Yes perhaps an electronic leaf shutter as compared to mechanical leaf shutters which don't seem to be quite as reliable in terms of consistent accuracy.
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