Which FPS to use for shooting trains? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 06-17-2012, 09:37 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi all, I have a Canon HF100 that I use for shooting trains (fast and slow) in all light conditions. My question is should I use 60i or PF30 to shoot trains? I've searched quite a bit and I can't seem to find an answer that fits my question. Thanks a lot and have a nice day!
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post #2 of 7 Old 06-18-2012, 04:26 AM
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Hi. I also shoot videos of trains. I have a Sony SR11 and an FX7. To answer your question, I can only tell you what I do. I shoot in 60i, with the SR11 1920x1280, and the FX7 at 1440x720. Both Cams shoot wonderful videos with great picture quality (and sound quality). What counts with anything moving is the frame rate; the faster the better. I can easily increase that with the FX7 (which I do when shooting moving trains), but cannot with the SR11. Either camcorder as they are does a great job producing a clear picture, excellent color, with minimal blurring (except on the very fast stuff with a static shot). As to 30p, I have no experience with that.

As a side, I edit my videos, burn them to DVD and sell them at local shows. I enjoy the creative aspect of it all, as well as the positive reviews I get from my customers. What do you shoot, and where do you shoot?
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post #3 of 7 Old 06-18-2012, 09:51 AM
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I don't know the answer to your question. I believe that it will be subjective and may depend on conditions, especially on the illumination level.

Some considerations:

1) Motion Blur - for objects moving across the frame MOTION BLUR = VELOCITY X EXPOSURE TIME ('Shutter Speed')

2) Desireable Motion Blur In displaying video, I have seen statements that a degree of motion blur results in a more attractive video............search for discussions of this issue or experiment.... Short exposure times result in 'choppy videos' considered less attractive or less natural. Your eye also smears rapidly moving objects.

3) Exposure Time or Shutter Speed - MANUAL EXPOSURE CONTROL - you can set the shutter speed. AUTO EXPOSURE CONTROL - the camera selects shutter speed based on its programming. With AUTO EXPOSURE CONTROL the shutter speed is usually difficult to predict or determine. Suggest testing it under various illumination levels. I believe that most lower priced video cameras only have AUTO EXPOSURE CONTROL. Specs or descriptions of how the AUTO works are hard to find. Probably the AUTO in many cameras selects faster shutter speeds when the illumination levels are high.

4) Jello Effect - because the entire frame is not read out at the same time there is a delay as the sensor lines are scanned. This results in distortions of rapidly moving objects, for example, a golf club will be bent. Suggest testing for this effect. Search Jello Effect, Rolling Shutter, Canon HF100 + Jello Effect + Youtube

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ayLECr2E2N0

The above effects will vary with 60p or 30i.
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post #4 of 7 Old 06-18-2012, 11:11 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks you all for the replies so far. I currently use 60i, but other railfans have suggested PF30 to me. I really have no way to test PF30 vs. 60i until my big trip next weekend.


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Originally Posted by Railfan View Post

What do you shoot, and where do you shoot?
I shoot BNSF, UP, steam engines, and every once in a while, Amtrak. I mostly shoot in the LA to Santa Barbara area. I'm heading to Tehachapi next weekend, which is why I'm preparing all my camera stuff (cleaned all my DSLR equipment, bought a new tripod).
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post #5 of 7 Old 06-18-2012, 11:31 AM - Thread Starter
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Also, my camera does 60i, not 60p. I've been reading up on the HF100 and it cannot do 1920x1080p60. It can do 1920x1080p24, 1920x1080p30, & 1920x1080i60. Just wanted to let you guys know that, it might help you with your suggestions but I'm not sure.
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post #6 of 7 Old 06-19-2012, 10:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EMDX90 View Post

Also, my camera does 60i, not 60p. I've been reading up on the HF100 and it cannot do 1920x1080p60. It can do 1920x1080p24, 1920x1080p30, & 1920x1080i60. Just wanted to let you guys know that, it might help you with your suggestions but I'm not sure.
The HF100 cannot do native 30p or 24p. It can do PF30 (which is 30PsF) and PF24 (which is 24-over-60i with pulldown).

With 60i you have twice more images, but you need to deinterlace correctly. With PF30 you can edit as if your footage were progressive, so it may be simpler. Or not, depending on your NLE. Do not use PF24 at all.
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post #7 of 7 Old 06-20-2012, 03:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EMDX90 View Post

Thanks you all for the replies so far. I currently use 60i, but other railfans have suggested PF30 to me. I really have no way to test PF30 vs. 60i until my big trip next weekend.
I shoot BNSF, UP, steam engines, and every once in a while, Amtrak. I mostly shoot in the LA to Santa Barbara area. I'm heading to Tehachapi next weekend, which is why I'm preparing all my camera stuff (cleaned all my DSLR equipment, bought a new tripod).

Thanks for your reply to my question. I also shoot BNSF, UP, and Amtrak, as well as any steam that happens to be operating in the area. I shoot mainly in the Great Lakes region, although I have shot in Wyoming and Nebraska. So far I have produced five video programs; one along the upper Mississippi River, one across the northern half of Illinois (both of these were shot in HD), one in Nebraska at Crawford Hill, and one of the BNSF "race track" in Chicago (with old cam, SD). I also shot and edited a short program of the Owosso Steam Celebration a couple years ago featuring the Daylight 4449. For your information, 1920x1080i60 makes a nice video. I used both Pinnacle and Power Director, and on occasion, Nero, to edit and produce my videos.
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