time-lapse video recorder
Jason K. Potter
potterj at tcimet.net
Wed Mar 4 20:18:16 EST 1998
A little more information on the Snappy video digitizer.
It is sold by Play Inc. (and Minolta) and costs approximately
$99 to $150, depending on which version you get. It connects to the parallel port
of your computer, so it doesn't require installing a board in your computer. It
comes with controlling software and allows capturing video from a video camera,
VCR or regular television at resolutions up to about 1500 X 1200 (if you have the
RAM). It uses multiple sampling to extract information from more than one frame
(if the image is a still one) and produce resolution that appears better than that
seen on the TV screen. Shareware software is available from the Web (Snapcap
being one) that allows capturing a frame at a time every second up to on an hourly
or longer schedule. Shareware and freeware is also available on the Web to
convert these frames to a Quicktime or AVI video. It has been a relatively
inexpensive way for me to film time-lapse videos of Fastplant growth and response
to stimuli, snails cleaning the bottom and glass of an aquarium, blue-green algae
crawling across the glass of a slide or aquarium face, crystal growth on a slide
under the microscope, etc. Another approach I have used is a video capture board
(MIRO DC1) with Adobe Premiere capture and editing software to do the same thing.
It is more flexible, but I found it much harder to set up and get going due to
problems with RAM, IRQ conflicts, etc.
The third method mentioned is a graphics board (not the only one
available) that is made by ATI called the "All-In-Wonder" that allows both video
input and output as well as mpeg coding to cram more video into scarce disk
storage. I haven't used it, but it sounds promising. Another approach is the
Matrox Rainbow Runner add-on board for the Matrox Mystique graphics card. You can
find information about any of these by searching the net using these names.
Hope this helps.
Haslett High School, Haslett, MI
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