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Home / Tips and Tricks / The Afidus ATL-200 Time Lapse camera is amazing but frustrating – Review Geek

The Afidus ATL-200 Time Lapse camera is amazing but frustrating – Review Geek



Rating:
7/10
?

  • 1 – Absolute Hot Garbage
  • 2 – Sorta Lukewarm Garbage
  • 3 – Strongly defective design
  • 4 – Some advantages, many disadvantages
  • 5 – Acceptable imperfect
  • 6 – Good enough to put in the sale
  • 7 – Great but not the best in its class
  • 8 – Fantastic, with some footnotes
  • 9 – Shut up and grab my money [19659004] 1
    0 – Absolute design Nirvana

Price : $ 400

  The Afidus ATL-200 Time Lapse Camera.
Josh Hendrickson

Time-lapse videos of buildings being built or blooming flowers are incredible. However, a lot of recording time and editing software are required to make them. The Afidus ATL-200 Time Lapse camera is designed to make time-lapse video & # 39; s easier – and it is! But it could be better.

This is what we like

  • Makes editing time-lapse images together very easily
  • Huge range of options for each scenario
  • Weatherproof (IP65)

And what we do not [19659017] No view to watch the video
  • Terrible placement of microSD
  • Duration
  • What is a Time-Lapse camera?

    If you want to make time-lapse videos, you only need a DSLR and some video editing software. However, you have to do a lot of math and editing, make sure you mount your camera in a safe place and watch for rain when shooting outside.

    After you've set it up, the Afidus ATL-200 ($ 400 on this writing) solves many of these problems for you. The AA battery camera is weather-resistant (IP65) and specially designed for time-lapse video & # 39; s.

    You choose the frames per second, how often the camera should take photos and the desired type of recording, all in the Time-Lapse app (for iOS and Android ). It uses a microSD card for storage, so you can use one with as much space as you need. I have loaded a 128 GB card and have never approached it to complete it.

      The interval settings, image alignment tools, exposure and color settings, lens calibration and more in the Time Lapse app.
    The Time Lapse app has tons of settings and options (LEGO Batmobile review coming soon!).

    You also have many options! You can choose to take a photo every second, every minute, every 24 hours when motion is detected, and more! In the beginning I was overwhelmed by the number of options and the complete lack of instructions. To learn how to use the camera, I just tried different options and viewed the results, which was not pleasant.

    Since I started testing it, Afidus has updated the website with a user manual and suggestions about which settings to use based on how long you plan to record. These instructions are thorough, easy to understand and very useful. I wish I had had access to them from day one – they would have saved me a bit of trial and error.

    Competent time-lapse video with minimal effort

    Afidus invoices the ATL-200 as a mostly-and-forget-it-camera. Again, it is weather resistant (IP65 classification) and works on batteries. Once you've set it up, just start recording and the camera does the rest. You can check if the camera is recording by looking at the green LED at the top – it flashes approximately every six seconds.

    When you record a long video (for example, Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. & noon, with a one-minute interval) ), Afidus suggests that you look at the camera at least monthly. You should check it more often if it is outside during inclement weather. My testing generally followed with that guidance, although, given the cost of the camera (already $ 400 at the moment), I don't think I'd just leave it somewhere for a month!

    In two weeks I recorded a flower growing by taking a picture every 10 minutes. At the same time, I recorded a build of LEGO Hogwarts for several hours, with image intervals every two seconds. That process involved stopping the camera, moving to a new location, changing the settings as needed, and starting a new recording. I started the process with new batteries and replaced them about a week and a half later.

    If you have to move the camera like I did to switch between projects, the app has a great built-in alignment function. Take a photo of your time-lapse subject to use it. The next time you start the video, you can place the image on your current subject and align it.

      Three images side by side in the
    This alignment utility was the key to changing recording tasks during the day. [19659031] This came in handy because (as I quickly discovered) it is easy to bump into the camera without noticing it and ruining your framing.

    No display

    I liked the Afidus Time Lapse camera a lot. My sublime goal was to have a camera on which I could change a few settings, set and start recording. It does it all, but it has a few problems. Firstly, it cannot be ignored that the sensor in this camera is not as nice as a sensor that you would get in a smartphone, let alone a DSLR.

    Of course, it records in 1080P, but no matter how I changed the exposure, white balance, or anything else, the video never looked as nice as what I can get with my OnePlus phone. However, it is good enough for time-lapse video.

    What bothered me the most was the total lack of a built-in screen. To connect to the camera, you must turn it on and wait for it to start its own Wi-Fi network. Connect to this and start the app. Only then can you view the settings and recording options or view a live image of the camera.

    The camera also disconnects the WiFi connection as soon as you start recording. This makes sense because it must save the battery life. However, as long as you are recording, there is no way to control the image of the camera.

    This is clearly shown in the LEGO Hogwarts video below. At various points I skipped the camera a bit and this drew the studio lights into the frame. At another point, the camera decided that the focus was on the bags of LEGO bricks and not on the set itself, which was completely wrong.

    Doing the blurry LEGO mini figs doesn't look good at all. I only discovered these problems when it was much too late, of course. If the camera allowed you to watch the video without stopping the whole process, it would have prevented these errors.

    A few other disadvantages

    There were some other things that I found annoying but workable on the ATL-200. While the camera reduces the number of files and therefore the amount of time it takes to edit a video, you still have to do some work. Instead of thousands of photos that you drop in a timeline, you need to edit a series of video files together. You may also want to add music or titles.

    The number of files you have depends on how long you record. When a file reaches 512 MB, the camera automatically cuts the video and starts a new one (I received six files from a three-hour recording session). So you have to merge it into editing software, but it's still a lot easier to handle than thousands of photos.

    You may think that you can get your videos from the camera via the app, but that is not true. When you use the app to save the video on your tablet or phone, it goes to a strange location. I finally found them under document / primary on my Android phone.

    It is also impossible to transfer your files directly to the cloud – you must connect to the camera via the Wi-Fi network. They are many steps for what should be a simple process.

    Theoretically, the easier way to transfer your recordings would be to remove the microSD card. To get to the card, however, you have to remove the batteries, because it is against the lip of the battery cover. It was too tight for my fingers, so I had to use tweezers to get it in and out. Once I had picked up the card, I was able to transfer the data perfectly.

      The Afidus camera on its side with the batteries out, with the microSD card slot.
    I am not sure who thought this was a good placement for a microSD card, but it is not. Josh Hendrickson

    Fortunately, the camera has a microUSB port on its side. If you connect the ATL-200 to your PC or Mac and turn it on, it will appear as a mass storage drive.

    And thank goodness, because I don't want to mess with the microSD card now that it is back

    Is it worth the investment?

    Given all the above mentioned problems, you may be wondering if the ATL-200 is worth $ 400, and that is a difficult question to answer. You can certainly make time-lapse video & # 39; s with cheaper cameras & # 39; s, such as a $ 30 Wyze.

    For comparison, I tried to make a time-lapse video of a LEGO built with a Wyze Cam. The shortest image interval that I could choose was every three seconds, unlike the ATL-200 & # 39; s every second. I have noticed that the magic number for large LEGO build time-lapse video is two seconds. Unfortunately, the Wyze Cam time-lapse video missed too many steps and details, so the result was not so good.

    That is the magic of Afidus' camera in a nutshell. You can choose exactly the settings that you need for almost every scenario. You can even leave it outside in the rain and come back a week later. As long as nothing happens to confuse the camera, you will get a good video.

    It will be difficult to find another camera that offers these functions, so it depends on how much you need those options. If you regularly make time-lapse video & # 39; s for a YouTube channel or to follow your 3D printing attempts, this camera is for you.

    If the idea of ​​making a time-lapse video is a novelty, you may want to try a Wyze Cam first. If you like it and want to improve your time-lapse video, it might be time to bite the bullet.

    After using the camera for a while and tackling the annoyances, I am still glad I tried it. I even want to own one because it makes putting together LEGO sets very fun!

    Anyone can skip this camera – it's expensive and niche.

    This is what we like

    • Makes editing time-lapse images together very easy
    • Huge range of options for each scenario
    • Weatherproof (IP65)

    And what we don't

    • No display to check the video
    • Terrible placement of microSD
    • Expensive!


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