March 6th, 2016
Diane in Colorado asks:
I plan to shoot both photo and video for my real estate clients and am wondering what camera settings I should use when shooting glide cam video for a walk through style video? (meaning the lighting conditions will be changing from room to room) Also, what frame rate is typical for real estate videos? I shoot with a Nikon D810 and use a 20 mm prime lens for these types of shots.
Here are some rules of thumb:
- Frame rate: 24 FPS is probably the most popular rate to use because that is the frame rate that movies use and everyone is used to seeing that frame rate.
- Shutter speed: The rule of thumb is you set the shutter speed to two times the frame rate. So if you are shooting 24 FPS you use a shutter speed of 1/50th of a second.
- Aperture and ISO: Because, as you point out, the lighting changes as you move between rooms one strategy is to manually control the aperture and ISO (note Fred Light suggests a different strategy below). That is, set a brightness that is a compromise between the windows and the interior. Then leave it that way until the conditions change. You can always make cuts where the lighting changes significantly or where you want to expose for the view out the windows rather than the interior.
Since #3 above is a key part of making a good looking video walkthrough, and I don’t shoot walkthrough video, I thought I’d better consult the master of this subject (Fred Light). I did and here is the strategy that Fred uses:
I shoot with auto ISO… that helps adjust as you walk from lighter to darker areas…assuming you walk slowly enough so it adjusts evenly as you are walking. Of course, after 11 years of doing this you also kind of know where to go and where not to go, so I try and stay away from what I know will be trouble. Adjusting blinds also helps at times, cutting where it becomes a problem is another way around it. I can see where this is a problem when I’m shooting so it’s easy to then just shoot the same area from a different angle where the light is more favorable. I also shoot 4K which does help a lot in regards to being able to adjust and balance the light in post if there is an issue.. without too much degrading of the image.
There you have it! The words of the master of walkthrough video.