You’ve probably heard of cameras that can detect wavelengths of light that human eyes can’t, and also cameras that can detect heat in a scene, but have you ever heard of one that can capture sound? That’s right: scientists at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology have created a portable sound camera that’s sensitive to sound waves. Read more…
If you’ve ever shot with a Leica M rangefinder, you probably know how effective the camera can be for stealthy shooting. After all, there’s no mirror that needs to swing out of the way like there is in a DSLR, so the main sound you’ll hear is the soft click of the shutter curtain flapping open to expose the film or sensor.
It’s not just Leica aficionados that appreciate the silent shutter: did you know that the Leica M is held as the standard for silent photography in courtrooms across the United States? Read more…
Needing a way to test the speed of memory cards, Jaroslav of Crazy Lab realized that camera shutter sounds can do the trick. By recording the sound of his Canon 600D snapping away in continuous burst mode and then viewing them audio file, he was able to visualize the card’s speed and compare them against each other. He also learned some things about burst speed and ISO/format:
As you can see, the burst length is getting shorter with rising ISO. The time camera needs to write the buffer to the card is also significantly grown. The reason is the noise. On higher ISO settings we getting more noise in picture and noisy pictures are not good for compression. The RAW-File size (black picture shouted with closed lens cap) varies from 19MB @ ISO100 to 32MB @ ISO12800.
Also interesting is the comparsion of burst speed shooting in RAW versus JPEG. While the burst length with JPEG files is virtually infinite (with fast sd-card), the burst speed is slightly lower.
You don’t need anything fancy to do this experiement: Jaroslav used a webcam mic and the free audio program Audacity.
Canon made a splash earlier this month by announcing its first EF pancake lens, the Canon 40mm f/2.8 STM. If you’re considering this lens, one thing you should know is that the autofocus noise may interfere with your videos unless you use an external mic. In his review of the lens, photographer Dan Carr writes,
Here then is probably the biggest problem with this lens. With any other Canon lens, if you think the AF motor is making too much noise you can either switch to manual focus mode to disengage the focus motors or with Canons l-series lenses and their ultrasonic motors you simply just turn the focus ring manually yourself and it doesn’t engage the noise producing AF motor. Unfortunately though, the STM motor works in a different way [...] Even when you switch to manual focus mode, rotating the the focus ring engages the STM motor to move the lens elements as the whole thing is a focus by wire system. This means that there is absolutely no way for you to get a silent video. Whether you let the camera do the focusing, as with the new cameras like the 650D/T4i , or whether you do it yourself, you are going to get the background hum as demonstrated in my video
A couple weeks ago we shared an interesting video in which a speaker and Canon 5D Mark II’s frame rate were used to make water appear to be frozen in mid-air. This new video by YouTube user Brusspup takes the idea to the next level by making the water appear to travel upwards. He explains:
Fill a bucket full of water and place it about 5 feet off the ground. Place a subwoofer about 1 foot lower than the bucket. Run a plastic tube from the top bucket down in front of the subwoofer. Tape the tube to the front of the speaker. Then aim the end of the tube to an empty bucket on the floor. Get the water flowing from the top bucket. Now just generate a 24 hz sine wave and set your camera to 24 fps and watch the magic happen. Basically your cameras frame rate is synced up with the rate of the vibrations of the water so it appears to be frozen or still. Now if you play a 23 hz sine wave your frame rate will be off just a little compared to the sine wave causing the water to “move backward” or so as it appears. You can play a 25 hz sine wave and cause the water to move slowly forward.
This experiment has become quite a trend as of late — this particular video has been viewed over a million times in less than a week.
The Nero Multi Trigger is a nifty camera triggering device that can make your DSLR and external flash unit respond automatically to sight, sound, and motion. It has built in optical, audio, and laser sensors, allowing you to shoot everything from lightning flashes to balloon pops. There’s also an intervalometer for time-lapse photography. The device mounts to your DSLR’s hotshoe and is powered by a pair of AAA batteries. They cost $200 each and are available for both Nikon and Canon DSLRs from the NERO website.
Photographer Martin Klimas, whose porcelain figurine photos we shared yesterday, has a series of photographs that look like 3D Jackson Pollock paintings. He spent six months photographing portraits of sound by playing music through a speaker that’s crowned with paint. Klimas dials up the volume and then photographs the paint coming alive from vibrations caused by the sound waves. Read more…
We have a bit of a scoop for you today: there’s going to be a new Kickstarter-funded gadget announced on Thursday called the Triggertrap. It’s a pretty nifty universal camera trigger that can trigger your camera’s shutter with anything you can think of using a built-in intervalometer, a laser trigger, a sound sensor, and an Aux input that you can connect custom triggers to:
Think about it: You press your car horn, it takes a photo. Your phone rings, it takes a photo. The sun rises, it takes a photo. Anything is possible – and that’s why this camera trigger is so eminently hackable and exciting to experimental photographers all over the world!
There’s also a private sneak-peek of the Kickstarter video over on Vimeo. The password is TriggerTrap123. Read more…
Did you know that while cameras provide the things you see in movies, most of the sounds that you hear — aside from dialogue and music — are generated by Foley artists who reproduce everyday sounds with everyday things? Here’s an interesting behind-the-scenes glimpse into how award-winning Foley artist Gary Hecker “paints” sound over what’s captured with a camera.
Dentsu London, the same ad agency that recently experimented with iPad light-painting, was recently hired by Canon to create a commercial for the Canon Pixma line of printers. They decided to create super close-up and super slow-mo shots of paint dancing by using sound, and created a rig that spins around the paint super fast to create a sense of motion as they shoot at 5000 fps. As you’ll see from the video, this is a great idea for still photos as well.
The resulting commercial can be seen at the end of the video. It’s stunning.