If you’re someone who wants to record incredible time lapse videos of sunsets, growing plants, and moving shadows, then the Canon 800D is an excellent option for you. With its 24.2 megapixels APS-C CMOS sensor and DIGIC 7 processor with ISO 100-25600, you can be sure to record the clearest and professional-grade time-lapse videos.
These features help you capture everything, from the most intricate moments of a cocoon hatching into a butterfly, to the broad sun rising from the horizon. Since time-lapse photography has grown in popularity, you can now attempt to add your own touch to the videos.
The Canon 800D comes with a quick control screen to change shooting settings and lets you configure a manual mode on your own. Here you can experiment with as many permutations for your time-lapse videos as you like. Each video will be unique to your own style and specification.
The 800D also comes with an exposure compensation mode with +/-5 stops (although the viewfinder scale is still +/-2 stops). This helps you figure out the amount of light you want in your images and your videos. The exposure settings also help you stabilize the final product by balancing out the brightness with the ISO levels.
Additionally, this camera has a movie crop setting, which lets you edit your videos right on the device. So, you don’t necessarily have to export the video and edit on a professional editor. Here are 5 tips on using the Canon 800D for time-lapse photography.
Use Manual Mode
Using the manual mode is highly advised for time-lapse photography as it helps you avoid flickering. Since time-lapse photography is time-intensive, and you have to capture lengthy videos, using the auto mode can change settings in the middle of recording.
When it does so, the camera flickers, and the ISO, aperture, and focus can change abruptly. This causes the final video to come out inconsistent. It also makes the video break at several points.
For example, if you’re recording the period between sunset to nightfall, and you use the auto mode, the camera will try to keep up with the changing environment and lighting and will change settings accordingly. This will cause flickering at several moments, whenever the camera thinks it needs to reconfigure the settings to capture the most light.
However, this will leave your video with several pauses and flickers. By using the manual mode, your ISO, aperture, shutter speed, and focus remain consistent and will not need changing, so the video will come out seamlessly.
With the Canon 800D, you get full HD movie recording with manual control and selectable frame rates. Additionally, the 7.7cm (3.0″) 3:2 Clear View LCD comes with 1,040k dots, which allow you to clearly view your final time-lapse video and manually alter it as per your liking.
As mentioned above, this camera comes with full manual control, so you don’t have to worry about any kind of flickering or pausing in your videos, either.
Pick The RAW Format
Time-lapse photography generally requires lots of pictures and lengthy videos, and you may think that shooting the images in JPEG mode will save space on your memory card or drive, but you should remain cautious about this decision.
It is always preferred if you shoot in RAW images. This means all the image data will be saved for your use. RAW files are generally heavier but also store lots of data that you can use to your liking.
For example, if you choose to go with the JPEG mode, your images may come out the way the camera wants it. They may be smaller in size, but they will also be smaller in quality and will contain less data for you to alter and edit.
With JPEGs, you can’t really do much with the images. However, with RAW files, you will be able to access much more room for editing, scraping, and layering on images. With RAW files, the time-lapse video will also come out exactly the way you want it to.
The Canon 800D has many different image recording formats including, JPEG, RAW, RAW + JPEG. So, you can have either JPEG, RAW, or both at the same time. And with its many memory card options (SD, SDHC, and SDXC), you don’t have to worry about these files taking up too much space.
In case you run out of space, you can use its output interfaces (HDMI, USB 2.0, composite video/audio) to export your files onto an external device and continue recording.
Don’t Move The Camera
Moving the camera is never a good idea. When you’re doing time-lapse photography, you should always remember to stay consistent in whatever you’re recording. It is only then that you will end up with a video that is seamless and without interruptions.
Moving the camera also disturbs the framing for your video, and the end result will not be pleasing to the eye of the viewer. Thus, always set your camera on a tripod or a steady surface when recording for a time-lapse video.
If you’re recording a travel time lapse, you may have to set your camera on the dashboard so that the lens captures the road and the sky. However, you have to make sure that the camera is locked in place and does not move. Otherwise, the orientation of the frame will become unstable.
The symmetry of the road and the sky may become tilted, and half of your time-lapse may end up drastically different. In fact, moving the camera can also cause the sensors to lose focus, which is even more hazardous to the video. So, always remember to set the camera in such a way that it doesn’t move.
With the Canon 800D, you get a built-in optical image stabilizer, so you don’t have to think twice about the camera moving or the images tilting abnormally. It also comes with the Eye-Fi connected functions compatibility, which lets you stay connected to its input. You will be able to see the video as its recording on a screen.
Locking focus essentially means that you set your camera’s focus in a position that it only focuses on the subject and nothing else. The best way to do so is by using the manual focus option.
This way, you can make sure that your subject is fully in focus, although you have to make sure that the camera isn’t moving. Another way is to use the subject tracking option in your autofocus settings. This will help in locking the focus only on the subject, even as the camera and the subject moves.
For example, suppose you’re recording the growth of a plant. In that case, you may have to use manual focus because the plant is always positioned in one place and doesn’t move away. Additionally, you will also have to make sure that the camera is positioned on a tripod and isn’t moving. On the other hand, if you’re recording a moving subject like a shadow on a sundial, then you may have to choose the subject tracking option in order to lock focus.
The Canon 800D comes with several AF functions. These features include AF illuminator and flash +/- compensation. Additionally, the viewfinder comes with the AE lock and AF-in-focus features, which help you lock focus on any subject you are tracking. There is also an AF lock present in the camera, which you can access through the manual settings. All these functions will give you the most extraordinary time-lapse video you could ask for.
Fully Charge Your Batteries
Fully charged batteries are essential for time-lapse photography. Time-lapse is a format that compels you to take as many pictures as you can and record longer videos for future compression.
Hence, you have to have your camera fully charged so that the time-lapse video comes out consistent. If your camera is not charged, you may have to take several breaks and record at odd intervals, which will translate into the video becoming irregular.
For example, if you’re recording the sunset and your battery runs out in the middle of recording, then your time-lapse will remain incomplete. If this happens, you may have to wait an entire day to start recording again. The best way to avoid such mishaps is to fully charge your battery and to carry some extra batteries.
Carrying extra batteries is like making sure you have a backup option in case one battery runs out. This way, you can record lengthier videos and take more burst shots for your time lapse video.
The Canon 800D comes with a manufacturer-specific LP-E8 lithium-ion battery. This is a rechargeable and removable battery that you can use time and again. This battery also comes individually packed if you want to buy more of them. However, with only one of these batteries, you can record hours worth of videos and capture hundreds of photographs for your time lapse.