Time-lapse Camera Shootout - Brinno vs CCTV vs Titan 3
In Skyshot, we do a lot of long-term time-lapse, mostly for building construction projects last several years. Recently, we are conducting a time-lapse camera shootout to compare the image quality coming out from 3 devices that we carry.
Titan Lite which is fitted with a HIK Vision 4K CCTV camera
Titan 3 with a Canon 800D DSLR Camera.
The only thing they have in common is that they can all be weatherproofed for long-term time-lapse filming. We use all 3 systems here for our work, including the Brinno for certain applications only. Today, we will also discuss some of the pros and cons of each system, so you can make a more informed decision on the system to use.
Let’s look at these 3 cameras, and how they compare.
HDCAM - Brinno
The Brinno BCC2000 is a 1080P camera. It is pretty simple to use because it has limited settings to play with. It can take photos but you won’t be able to have them because it renders the time-lapse video for you, in a form of an AVI file. Yes, the archaic video format is almost 30 years old. This Brinno packs in a ton of batteries, 18 AA batteries to be exact. That should last at least 3 months.
Titan Lite - 4K CCTV
The Titan Lite, as we call it, is a HIK Vision 4K CCTV camera, which we customised with a 4G router, solar panel, and batteries. For this test, we set it to shoot 8-megapixel photos, large enough for us to create a 4K video in post-production. The camera comes with live view software. There is also third-party software like Evercam that will allow you to have added features like photo download, rendering time-lapse, switch to CCTV mode, facial recognition, and so on.
Titan 3 - DSLR
Lastly, the Titan 3 Time-lapse Camera is for high-end productions. It allows you to use a variety of DSLR or mirrorless cameras. Whether it is Sony, Canon, or Nikon cameras, it will work as long as you have the right battery adapter. The advanced model, Titan3 remote, also comes with software that allows you to remotely control the camera settings & live view. Using WiFi or a 4G sim card, you can set your images to automatically upload to a data cloud, like google drive.
For both the outdoor and indoor shootout, we keep some of the perimeters the same for all 3 cameras.
- Shooting Interval: 5 seconds
- Auto ISO
- Auto White Balance
- Similar Field of View
The image quality settings are based on what the camera can offer. The videos are all not color graded in post-production.
Which Time-lapse Camera is Best for You
It’s pretty obvious that the Canon DSLR produces the best image. It has the best color balance, dynamic range, and sharpness with less amount of distortion. The difference is even more obvious for the night scene. There are so much more details on the highlights and the least amount of noise in the shadow area.
Now that u have seen the image quality coming out from these 3 systems, let’s talk about you, the user. Here are our recommendations on the time-lapse system best suited for you. Remember, we are talking about long-term time-lapse here, lasting months or years. So the decision-making process is important.
Brinno – if you have a budget and the image quality is not super important. You may also lose footage because there are no remote monitoring options. And the battery may run out too. So you have to simply bet on the system to work.
Titan Lite is the camera for you if you need a time-lapse camera that can also function as a CCTV. In case of a security or safety breach. It captures video footage too, which is a real bonus for some applications.
Titan 3 - If you need broadcast quality images. All modern DSLR cameras will provide at least 6K of resolution. The biggest advantage is that you can zoom into the image at least 6 times without losing details. With the remote monitoring function, we simply check google drive daily to make sure that the images are updated regularly.
I hope this shootout video is useful info for you. Do contact us if you need help with time-apse filming or drone filming and we are more than happy to assist.