Video Booth Shooting
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Capturing a MOV Video File
A video booth is similar to a photo booth except instead of taking one or more stills pictures it captures a short video clip. Video booth shooting is available with all Canon DSLR cameras that support movie mode except for the Canon Digital Rebel T1i/EOS 500D.
The cameras can only capture video to the camera's memory card and so the camera must have a memory card with sufficient space in order to use the video booth mode (video files are automatically downloaded to the PC and deleted from the memory card after capture).
WARNING: If the camera's memory card is full the software will attempt to capture the video but will stall when it tries to download it to the PC. To avoid this problem please make sure there is plenty of free space on the memory card.
Please note: The camera must be set to photo mode not video mode.
Cameras with movie mode on the exposure mode dial should be set to P, Tv, Av or M.
Cameras that have a power switch with OFF, ON and MOVIE settings should be set to ON
Cameras with a photo/movie switch should be set to the photo setting
Capturing a Series of Still Photos to Create an Animated GIF
Video booth mode can also be used to capture a series of still photos which can be combined to create a short animated GIF that plays back in a continuous loop. The animated GIF isn't created directly by DSLR Remote Pro for Windows, instead it automatically calls a script to create the animated GIF. Please see this section for more details.
The video booth mode works in a similar way to photo booth mode. Users are presented with a ready screen with a live view display showing what the camera sees. When the user presses the start button a countdown screen is displayed together with countdown message. At the end of the countdown the capture screen is displayed together with a progress bar that shows how much time is remaining. After the video clip has been captured the processing screen is displayed and the movie file is automatically downloaded from the camera's memory card to the PC and then deleted from the memory card to make space for the next clip. After downloading the ready screen is displayed ready for the next video capture.
Video Booth Settings
The dialog below is displayed when "Video booth settings..." is selected from the File menu:
In order to use the video booth mode it must be enabled by selecting "Enable video in photo booth mode". Normally when you enter full screen photo booth mode (by typing Ctrl+F4) the photo booth ready screen will be displayed. If you wish to startup in video booth mode select the "Startup in video booth mode when selecting full screen photo booth" checkbox.
Select the "Hide live view during countdown and capture" to only display live view in the ready screen and avoid guests being distracted by the live view during video capture.
Select the "Display playback screen after capturing video" to allow users to play back the video and decide whether to accept it or reject it. The playback screen will be displayed until the user either accepts or rejects the video. When the video is rejected it is automatically deleted from the computer. When the "Start playback automatically" option is selected video playback will start automatically when the playback screen is displayed.
The playback screen will be displayed until either the user accepts or rejects the video or the timeout occurs. Use the "Playback screen timeout" setting to specify the length of the timeout and the "Timeout action:" dropdown to specify what happens when the timeout occurs.
Use the "Duration of captured video clip" setting to specify the duration of the video clip in seconds. This can be any value up to 1200 seconds (20 minutes). Please note that users can end the recording before it reaches the the preset duration by pressing the End key or "Stop video capture" touchscreen action.
Use the "Countdown before capturing video" setting to specify the length of the countdown before video capture starts. The countdown text is displayed during the countdown and is updated every second. The following tokens can be used:
@videoClipLength@ - the duration of the video clip in seconds
@videoCountdown@ - the number of seconds remaining before video capture starts
Use the "..." buttons after the font and font color displays to change the font and color of the countdown text.
The size and position of the video playback window can be set manually or set automatically by the program. If the height is set to 0 the program will automatically display the video playback at the same resolution as capture, or if this is to big to fit on the screen it will scale the size down to fit the screen. The video playback window is normally displayed at the top of the screen but can be moved down using the top offset setting if required. The video playback window left offset allows the horizontal position of the window to be specified. The default setting of -1 will center the video playback window on the screen.
Use the "..." buttons after the record/playback progress bar foreground and background color displays to change the colors of the progress bar displayed during recording and playback.
The size and position of the live view display uses the same settings as the stills photo booth and can be specified using the photo booth settings dialog. The various screens used by the video booth should be saved in the photo booth images folder which can also be specified using the photo booth settings dialog. Click on the "Photobooth Settings..." button to save the current video booth settings and display the photo booth settings dialog.
Select the "Enable green screening of live view images" option to shoot green screen videos. Then type Ctrl+G in full screen photo booth mode to adjust the green screen settings (please see the section on green screen shooting for more information). In full screen video booth mode the green screen background and overlay images are loaded from the photo boothimages folder. The background image should be named video_greenscreen_background.jpg or greenscreen_background.jpg and the overlay image should be named video_greenscreen_overlay.png or greenscreen_overlay.png. The software will look for video_greenscreen_background.jpg and video_greenscreen_overlay.png first and use these if available. If they are not available it will look forgreenscreen_background and greenscreen_overlay.png images.
Backgrounds and overlays can also be switched by saving a number of different profiles each using a different photo booth images folder containing different greenscreen_background.jpg and greenscreen_overlay.png images. The user can then select the different backgrounds using the profile shortcut keys. You can also switch green screen backgrounds and overlays by copying the new greenscreen_background.jpg and greenscreen_overlay.png images into the photo booth images folder while the booth is running.
Video booth mode can also be used to capture a series of still photos which can be combined to create an animated GIF which plays in a continuous loop. The animation can play the clip continuously, repeating from the start (e.g. frames 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 then frames 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 again) or it can play the clip forwards then backwards (e.g. frames 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 etc.).
The still frames are captured from the live view display and will be green screened if "Enable green screening of live view images" is selected. The size of saved photos will depend on the resolution of the live view images for the camera being used. Recent Canon DSLRs have a live view resolution of 960x640 pixels.
To enable this select the "Capture clip as a series of still frames (without sound)" option. Then select the number of frames to capture in the sequence. Setting the number of frames to between 5 and 10 works well for a 1 sec or 2 sec clip. A higher value will give a smoother animation but will result in a larger file size. A smaller value may cause the clip to appear as a series of jumps from frame to frame rather than as an animation.
The "Capture rate (frames/capture)" setting specifies how often the live view frames should be saved. The live view frame rate is approximately 12 frames/sec, but this may depend on the camera model and the speed of the computer. Setting the capture rate to 5 frames/capture will capture a frame approximately every 0.4 secs. The duration of the clip depends on the live view frame rate, the capture rate and the number of frames to capture e.g. with a live view frame rate of 12fps, capturing a total of 6 frames at a rate of one frame every 5 live view frames the clip would take 6 * 5 / 12 = 2.5 secs.
Select the "Display playback screen after capturing video" option to play back the clip after capture. The playback rate is specified as the time each frame is displayed in 1/100 sec e.g. setting this to 8 will play the clip back at approximately normal speed (approx 12fps), 16 will play it back in approximately half speed slow motion (approx 6 fps) etc.
Number of frames to capture=10, capture rate=5, playback rate=40. This will capture a clip lasting approximately 4 secs and play it back at normal speed
Number of frames to capture=10, capture rate=1, playback rate=40. This will capture a clip lasting approximately 1 sec and play it back in slow motion lasting about 4 secs
Number of frames to capture=10, capture rate=5, playback rate=10. This will capture a clip lasting approximately 4 sec and play it back at high speed lasting about 1 sec
Normally the clip is played back in the forward direction in a loop e.g. frame 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 1, 2, 3 etc.
Select the 'Forward/reverse "ping-pong" playback' option to play the clip forwards then backwards before repeating e.g. frame 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 9, 8, 7 etc.
If the user accepts the clip in the playback screen the captured live view images are saved as JPEG files together with an XML video booth summary file. The XML summary file contains the following information:
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
Images Displayed to the User
The following screen images are displayed to the user at different stages of the video capture:
video_ready.jpg - displayed when the video booth is ready to capture the next clip
video_countdown.jpg - displayed together with the countdown text during the countdown before capturing the clip
video_capture.jpg - displayed together with a progress bar while the video clip is being captured
video_processing.jpg - displayed after video capture while the movie file is being transferred to the PC
video_playback.jpg - displayed when playing back the video that has just been captured
video_playback_finished.jpg - optional screen image displayed after playback or after downloading the video if auto playback is not enabled
GIF_processing.jpg - optional screen displayed when creating animated GIFs in video mode
The images displayed to the user should be the same size or bigger than the computer's display. If the images are too small they will be expanded to fit with a black border and a small warning message will be displayed in the bottom left corner showing the image size and the display size.
Audio prompts can be added by placing a WAV sound file in the photo booth images folder and giving it the same name as prompt screen. For example to play a sound when the video booth is ready copy a WAV file named video_ready.wav into the photo booth images folder and it will be played when the video_ready.jpg image is displayed.
Once everything is setup simply run DSLR Remote Pro for Windows and press Ctrl+F4 to enter full screen mode and display the ready screen. If the "Startup in video booth mode when selecting full screen photo booth" is not set the window will start in photo booth mode. You can switch from photo booth mode to video booth mode by typing Ctrl+V and from video booth mode back to photo booth mode by typing Ctrl+P. In video booth mode press F7 to start the video capture sequence. The user can then press the "End" key to stop the recording or wait until it reaches the duration setting and stops automatically.
When the video playback screen is displayed the user can type P to play the video, A to accept it or X to reject it. Please see keyboard shortcuts for a complete list of keyboard shortcuts.
If "auto reconnect" is selected from the "Camera" menu the camera can be turned off when not in use and then turned it back on again to automatically restart photo booth operation. When the camera is turned off the camera_not_connected.jpg screen is displayed and when it is turned back on again the ready screen is displayed.
To exit full screen photo booth mode either press the Esc key or hold down the SHIFT key and press the left mouse button.