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Advice on shooting light trails with a Sony PXW Z150

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Anna Little
Advice on shooting light trails with a Sony PXW Z150
on Apr 6, 2019 at 6:24:23 pm

Hello
I've been asked to shoot light trails with my Sony PXW Z150. I've found loads of info online for shooting light trails with DSLRs, but nothing with my video camera.
Can anyone tell me how I can record this effect please?
Thank you, Anna


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Blaise Douros
Re: Advice on shooting light trails with a Sony PXW Z150
on Apr 8, 2019 at 4:30:48 pm

Set up your S&Q mode to shoot at 1 or 2 frames per second, and have a shutter speed that matches: for 1 fps, you should have a 1 second or 1/2 second shutter. This camera won't let you shoot at slower framerates (and likely the shutter speed will be maxed at 1 second), but this should yield a pretty good timelapse/light trail effect. Remember that you'll need to shoot 24 seconds of 1 fps to get 1 second of final footage.


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Anna Little
Re: Advice on shooting light trails with a Sony PXW Z150
on Apr 10, 2019 at 8:24:00 am

Thank you Blaise, very much.
Are there any other settings I should know? I am in Europe and shoot normally in Pal - 1080/25p.
Do I need to adjust anything else? Before I got your response I looked around online and there seems to be so many options related to S&Q.
Thanks, Anna


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Blaise Douros
Re: Advice on shooting light trails with a Sony PXW Z150
on Apr 10, 2019 at 4:27:20 pm

The only change would be that it's 25 seconds at 1 fps to make one second of video. You'll do fine! Your best bet is to shoot some test footage, which is as easy as pointing your camera outside your window. With such a slow shutter, you'll need to make adjustments to your aperture and iso/gain settings to make for a correct exposure, but that's no different than any other shooting situation. Shoot a test tonight, and let us know how it goes!


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Anna Little
Re: Advice on shooting light trails with a Sony PXW Z150
on Apr 14, 2019 at 1:01:13 pm

Dear Blaine
I wanted to drop a line to say a massive thank you for your advice. It worked beautifully - thank you.
I also appreciate your kind words: "you'll do fine" gave me heaps of reassurance.
Anna


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Blaise Douros
Re: Advice on shooting light trails with a Sony PXW Z150
on Apr 15, 2019 at 3:59:49 pm

Glad to help, and would love to see your results, if you can share!


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Anna Little
Re: Advice on shooting light trails with a Sony PXW Z150
on Apr 18, 2019 at 7:27:34 am

It looked great. I shot at 1fps with a 1 shutter speed. Where's best place to share it? File is quite large....


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Blaise Douros
Re: Advice on shooting light trails with a Sony PXW Z150
on Apr 18, 2019 at 4:59:31 pm

YouTube or Vimeo? Don't go to any trouble, I was just curious :)


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Anna Little
Re: Advice on shooting light trails with a Sony PXW Z150
on Jul 4, 2019 at 5:11:41 pm

Finally I can show you the timelapse that I shot following your excellent advice.
Last night the awards ceremony showed the film that I shot about a winner of an Ashden award.
At 00:54" you will see the night time traffic timelapse from Canary Wharf in London and it looks great:
https://www.ashden.org/winners/highview-power
I spent so much time worrying about how to shoot this timelapse - and all that's used is 2 seconds of footage. Isn't filmmaking amazing!!!!


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