Axis App Aims to Disrupt Timelapse Recording (Timelapse ACAP)

Author: Brian Rhodes, Published on Jan 16, 2014

Capturing timelapse images seems like a simple thing, but why is it so expensive? Especially useful for construction sites, timelapse allow a year's worth of dramatic progress to be seen very quickly. However, timelapse services typically cost thousands from speciality providers, leaving many security vendors wondering what's so difficult?

Mobile app developer EyeSpyFX has created an Axis ACAP application, simply called 'Timelapse ACAP' that both simplifies and greatly reduces the cost of timelapse. In this note, we take a closer look at the offering, examine its strengths and shortcomings, and compare it to alternatives.

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Comments (19)

A 1080p image at 300KB, once a day, comes out to about 109MB, or a 1/6 of what would fit on a CD. Once an hour would be about 2.6GB, or about half the space of a DVD.

Am I missing something here about image retention being an issue?

Hello Luis:

It confused us too. We asked the developer to comment on the '370 images' limitation. Here's the response:

"Yes its a storage restriction.

We started of with 288 images (24 hours at an image every 5 mins) Then we introduced the interval if one day, so we thought better have 365. (enough for one year)
Then we thought we better put a few extra days in so users have some grace to pick the movie up, especially if it started on a significant day one year ago…hence 370
But, all of the above not withstanding, essentially its a storage constraint on our servers."

Well I guess they want to keep their capital costs down. But as long as the users are able to easily enough copy off the video files once they are downloaded to the phone, I guess it's not much of a problem; the user would be responsible for archiving their own video.

It seems that they are hurting themselves. They might as well offer a longer term storage option at a higher price. It would still be a comparatively good deal. Otherwise, many users will have to reject this as too small an offering.

Even their base offer seems really cheap.

If I understand the proposition correctly, for $55 you get the two apps plus lifetime storage for any 370 frames? Almost sounds too good to be true, as long as it meets your specific needs. If you're able to download and store elsewhere, that's over two weeks worth of video if your interval time is one hour.

Even if the project lasts a year, it shouldn't take someone more than a few hours out of that year to download bi-weekly and do a little editing to pull it all together.

I'll repeat Luis' question. Am I missing something?

It appears as though it would scale easily to much larger (more lucrative) projects. Storage is cheap. I wonder if they plan on offering a solution that allows the user to provide their own storage.

With our average construction schedule being around 18 months, extended storage might be something that would make us give this serious consideration. Right now we do time lapse of our projects on the cheap - using iSpy running on an older server that would have otherwise been decommissioned. We just finished our first project and put together the time lapse and it looks great. However, we invested a lot of time and effort into the production and server maintenance, so it wasn't really all that "cheap". If we could pay around $99-$150 for a similar service that could handle extended project timelines, we would seriously consider it.

Axis (most) cameras will upload a photo to an FTP server whenever you want. Share the folder from the FTP server to a computer with Google Picasa (could be the same computer). Delete all unnecessary pictures (no work that day/ weather, etc). Click 'make timelapse' in Picasa. Bam, timelapse video. Take it a step further and upload a 'photo.jpg' to a seperate folder. Bam, live snapshot.

What format are the clips saved in? If it's a common fomat, an editor like VideoReDo shoud be able to join multiple shorter clips together into a longer one of the complete project.

I use VideoReDo often and it's a great editor. While it won't work with all codecs, there are also many converters that can re-encode video so it can be edited.

Hello Carl:

The clips are assembled by the app in the mobile device, and output in .mp4 format.

Brian,

Look at an editing program then. I use VideoReDo TV Suite and find it easy to seemlessly edit video, including stringing together multiple clips into one long clip. It can work with multiple "flavors" of MPEG2, MPEG4, h.264 and WMV codecs for both input and output files, transcode from one codec to another, repair stream errors and create both files and DVDs of the results.

I'm occasionally called upon to edit and author videos for work and a good video editing program, possibly along with transcoding/converting programs, simplify the process and produce professional results. VideoReDo and a few others can edit down to frame level, which would allow you to save multiple clips from the EyeSpyFX program and edit them together to cover as long a time frame as you want.

Many can even add special effects, titles and scene transitions, add audio and provide just about any other bell and whistle you would want.

VideoReDo - I use TVSuite H.264. It supports the most formats and has the most "bells and whistles".

Hello Carl. Thanks for the tip. I took a look at VideoReDo's website, and it looks like the ~$100 version edits Apple formats.

Brian,

That's the one I use. I downloaded the trial first and liked the program so I bought it. You can also check out Their Forum for "How To's", FAQ's and tips.

Hi Guys

This is my first time posting, but I was asked to time lapse a gig over here in Jersey Channel Islands UK.

I used an Axis P3346-VE and this software. Candylabs VideoVelocity

It was amazing easy to set up 11 days for 12 hours a day was 3.3GB and then I got a media guy who knows how to use iMove incredibly well to create this video.

Not bad for a less than $150us and first time trying.

Andrew, thanks for sharing. Pretty neat!

Which edition of their software did you use? It seems the Studio one can do the timelapse creation as well directly?

Hi John

I purchased the $59 IP camera version.

If I did a project like this again then I would probably buy the Stuido version.

I think it's so simple, you send the images to a ftp server, with a set schedule and ride the Time Lapse iMovie.
€ 0 cost. The server is owned and used for other things.
This is the result.

Time lapse six months, mountain refuge in Spain

[Note: Poster is from Sensera]

Sensera Systems (www.senserasystems.com) offers solar/wireless timelapse solutions with cloud service at half the cost of traditional construction/timelapse systems. These can be deployed and operated by on-site construction staff. The cameras have been recognized with multiple industry awards.

David.

I have created time lapse videos as other posters have described, sending the pictures to an FTP server on a set interval, then using free software to create it into a video.

What I like about this approach, is I can then delete any bad shots, add logo, music, etc... Also, it is free (assuming you have access to an FTP server) and much more customization.

(Samsung Camera showing the Boston 2015 snowstorm)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C1aUf449WRk

AngelCam.com also has a timelapse cloud app, which lets you create 3 videos for free. I have played with it a little.

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