How to take a time lapse with a Nikon D5100 Tutorial

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Nikon D5100 Interval Settings

For more organic information on how to take a time lapse read this.

FYI – This is an excerpt from the Nikon manual, how to shoot using interval timer.

  • Fabian

    is it actually possible to leave the camera on the window at night, set the timer to i.e. 6:00 in the morning, 999 pictures and on i.e. 40sec…would it start taking pictures at that time and, would it go into some standby modus?
    thanks in advance…

  • nfo

    @Fabian Yes its possible to start the interval mode on specific time and yes the camera will go into some sort of stand by …

    For good timelapse, you should disable the auto focus and use fixed exposure time && aperture, because of flickering..

  • http://youtu.be/tJaKfAgIt_Y Leonardo Tavaniello

    Hello! I’m trying to learn how to timelapse with my D5100. In my first attempt I’ve got the video that its showing as my website, so far I have to keep in mind that the Focus must be Manual to get always the same subject.
    Looking for other tips of how to do this I saw many comments saying that the WhiteBalance should be locked and also saw many people saying that left long exposures. The problem is that in my D5100 I can only use the Interval time Shooting with the “Auto” mode where I can’t change the WB or the exposure. Am I doing something wrong with my Nikon or it is the way it is?

    In the next few days I’ll try to timelapse the Lake itself, the view there is amazing and I’d like to do it right (or better) this time!

    Thank you!

    • http://www.PaulCottonFilms.com Pau Cotton

      It may because you had the LCD screen in live view. It doesn’t mention this anywhere in the instructions but the intervalometer mode isn’t accessible in live view. You can and should (in my opinion) shoot your timelapses in manual mode. Manual WB and Focus.

      • Rizzy

        Very good tip!
        I wondered why I couldn’t activate interval mode, either. Thank you very much!

    • Digo

      There is a mode that you hold the black/white square on the right corner of the camera and move the slide wheel ’till you get the exposure that you want, even in the auto mode (If I recall correctly).

  • http://irukandji.blogg.se/ Pernilla

    Call me stupid if you’d like, but I can’t for the life of me figure out how to make a video out of the pictures that comes from the interval-shooting.
    Please help?

    • http://www.PaulCottonFilms.com Pau Cotton

      If you’re a Mac user open it in Quicktime Pro and choose file/import image sequence. Just choose the first still image and it will automatically add all the other photos. It will prompt you for desired frame rate (29.97 is the norm). Then choose export from the file pull down menu and choose Quicktime/Apple ProRes to export the still frames as a movie. It’s a huge file but ProRes is great quality.

      • adamhadlock

        Paul, You were absolutely correct about this. and I did this happily every time I took a time lapse. Sadly, this is no longer an option in Lion. :( Have you found otherwise?

  • bill

    Can you use an electronic flash when taking time lapse photography?

  • http://www.firestormpyro.com Steve

    I need to take time lapse for 8 to 10 hours and then repeat it for a few days in a row. I need to know if I can have the images sent to a laptop or something that can hold all the data. Do you know if this can be done? If so, how can I do it?

    • Maz

      You can do the capture to a laptop with an Eye-Fi Pro card that is set to the automatic transfer mode.

  • http://www.carlsanders.co.uk carl

    Thanks, just threw it together, works a treat, now just need to get it into Photoshop and export and movie, thanks!

  • carlos

    you can stop the process of time lapse (interval timer shooting) once it has started to take pictures?
    in case you want to change the setup.

  • Val

    Hi,
    I have a Nikon D5100 that I am taking on a star tracking photo shoot this weekend. I have not used the bulb mode, and can’t seem to find it on my camera. I have gone through the user’s manual and online tutorials. When I set the camera to M mode, there is no “bulb” mode that comes on the LCD screen. What am I doing wrong? I have the ISO at 3200 with an f/stop of 1/22 .

    • admin79

      You’re almost there. Rotate the main command dial which sets your exposure, up into the multiple seconds range 10″ 15″ 30″ if you go past 30″ it turns to bulb.
      Good luck!

  • Lasse

    Hey.
    The other night when i tried to make a timelap my Nikon d5100 just turned off after only have taken about 90 pictures.
    I had set it to take 400 intervals.
    Its like is going in standby mode.

    Iso. 600
    10″

    What can i do ?

    Sorry for my English.

    • admin79

      Lasse, was the interval time long enough to compensate for the exposure time + time between exposures?

  • Ruth

    Hi guys. I also have a Nikon d5100. My friend is painting a mural on my kids wall next week and he wants a time lapse video of him doing it.
    I can’t figure out how to make a video from picture using windows vista on my laptop.
    Can anyone help.
    Also what ISO etc should I use to avoid blurring as he will be moving.

    Thanks a lot

  • Olga

    Hello,
    I am trying to learn the time lapse for when I have the camera on the tripod so that I wont have to touch the camera as it shoots shots. I followed the instructions above, yet I can’t get it to actually shoot pictures, it is still in “i” mode and does not go into Live view. I set the time lapse interval to start shooting after 10 seconds, at 10 second intervals and to shoot 15 photos, if I am correct that should trigger the camera to start shooting after 10 seconds, am I correct? So far I am unsuccessful. How do I get the camera to shoot time lapse pics?

    Thank you in advance!

  • kieran

    Hi I just bought a nikon d5100 and I’m trying to do a time lapse but the interval shooting mode is not available to use do I have to change setting to get this to work.

    Thanks

  • hunter

    How do you make a movie out of the pics if you’re a windows user?