Macro video

Photography knowledge exchange.

Moderator: Scott Waters

Post Reply
User avatar
Joseph S.
Posts: 540
Joined: June 11th, 2010, 4:21 pm

Macro video

Post by Joseph S. » July 9th, 2014, 2:15 pm

Anyone get into this at all? Maybe not true macro but simply a camera good for close up things.

Alternately, has anyone heard of altering a Gopro to reduce the distance at which it needs to focus and magnify the image? Might screw on a macro lens work?

~Joseph See

User avatar
chrish
Posts: 3298
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 10:14 pm
Location: San Antonio, TX
Contact:

Re: Macro video

Post by chrish » July 10th, 2014, 4:06 am

Since most digital cameras take video and most digital cameras are capable of achieving some level of macro with or without a screw on close up lens, I can't see the advantage of trying to get a GoPro to go close up.

I shot this Pseudacris clarkii which was less than an inch long with a DSLR and a macro lens -

http://www.youtube.com/embed/1QiGGi6p72M

User avatar
Stohlgren
Posts: 603
Joined: November 6th, 2010, 9:59 am
Location: Athens, GA (Columbia, MO)

Re: Macro video

Post by Stohlgren » July 10th, 2014, 10:08 am

I've taken a few videos with my Sony A77, using both my macro lens and my telephoto. I need to work on my lighting setup for night time stuff, though.

Rattlesnakes mating
https://flic.kr/p/fKUyJD

Rattlesnake rattle
https://flic.kr/p/eVFCQU

Milk snake
https://flic.kr/p/f6TEWz

Oak toad
https://flic.kr/p/nqdzoy

Pinewoods treefrog
https://flic.kr/p/cbwnw5

User avatar
Tom Lott
Posts: 43
Joined: July 12th, 2010, 2:29 pm
Location: south-central Texas
Contact:

Re: Macro video

Post by Tom Lott » July 11th, 2014, 6:47 am

Stohlgren,

That's an impressive audio rendering as well on your Hyla femoralis video. Was that achieved using the integral mike on the DSLR or were you using an external mike? I'll have to investigate the audio possibilities available with these cameras - to "kill two birds with one stone," so to speak.

User avatar
chrish
Posts: 3298
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 10:14 pm
Location: San Antonio, TX
Contact:

Re: Macro video

Post by chrish » July 11th, 2014, 9:04 am

Tom,

Not sure about Kevin's specific situation in his recording, but I have recorded using my DSLR both with and without a microphone. On the two cameras I have used (two different Sony DSLRs similar to Kevin's) the microphones were pretty good.

The microphones on DSLRs are generally mono or stereo omnidirectional microphones. This means they pic up everything including the frog that is calling but also the other noise in the background. In many cases, that works fine but if you aren't close to the frog, the nearby species can drown out its call. I have to be careful of certain toads (A. speciosus and O. nebulifer in particular) because their calls are so loud that if there is one anywhere near your target species, they can totally drown out its call.
Also, any noise from behind the camera (i.e. you!) may also be picked up.

Another problem with onboard microphones is that they are very sensitive to wind noise noise. With a separate microphone you can use a windscreen. Some cameras have a "wind filter" on their onboard microphones, but this isn't as good as a physical filter like a windscreen because it can attentuate the call somewhat.

The other issue you can run into with the onboard microphones is that they will pick up the sound of the camera lens focusing if it happens to adjust the focus during the video.
This wobbly video (forgot my tripod) of this Green Toad picked this up. The periodic "thumping" sound you hear is the camera making tiny adjustments in the focus.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O070C03lD7Y (- does the "youtube" tag not work anymore?)

This was with an older 90mm macro lens. If you have a newer lens with SSM/HSM/USM, it tends not to make as much noise. But manual focusing is better with the onboard microphone.

User avatar
Stohlgren
Posts: 603
Joined: November 6th, 2010, 9:59 am
Location: Athens, GA (Columbia, MO)

Re: Macro video

Post by Stohlgren » July 12th, 2014, 2:27 pm

Tom Lott wrote:That's an impressive audio rendering as well on your Hyla femoralis video. Was that achieved using the integral mike on the DSLR or were you using an external mike?
The audio is just from the camera's built in mike. It does a pretty great job, especially when up close to the subject like the frog videos. As Chris mentioned, it does pick up sound from all around so it is essential to be quite while taking video. In the milk snake video I linked to above, you can hear my shoe squeak at the beginning. And this video of a little grass frog is an example of how the subject could easily be drowned out by a loud chorus (https://www.flickr.com/photos/kstohlgren/14635284751/). The video still works, but it would be better if you could isolate the individual's call.

I don't take much video, usually it is an afterthought (though I need to take more), but buying and carrying an external mike is not in the near future for me.

-Kevin

User avatar
Tom Lott
Posts: 43
Joined: July 12th, 2010, 2:29 pm
Location: south-central Texas
Contact:

Re: Macro video

Post by Tom Lott » July 13th, 2014, 9:26 am

Chris and Kevin - thanks for the responses. I think that most videos shot using the on-board mic of any DSLR would suffice for voucher purposes. The manual accompanying my Nikon D7100 is less than informative concerning the specs and quality of the audio it records, but most online reviews I have read have noted that if audio is a concern an add-on unidirectional mic is the way to go. And, as Chris mentioned, the amount of focusing noise picked by the integral mic seems to vary with the particular lens being used. I suppose I will have to learn by trial-and-error.

Post Reply