Experimenting with the GoPro Night Lapse Mode

For the last several nights, I’ve wanted to go outside and experiment some more with the GoPro Night Lapse mode to capture satellite trails, since I had so much fun watching them in Folsom when I was camping with RV Lady. However, night after night, it’s been too late when I look up the passes for the evening on Heaven’s Above, all the bright passes had already ended for the evening. I think it has something to do with being this far south, but it’s pretty rare to have a visible satellite pass after about 9:30pm, and they start shortly after 7pm. In Folsom the last passes were much closer to 10:30, and they’d start about 8:15.

Well, tonight I remembered in the nick of time to check Heaven’s Above, and I saw that the ISS was passing overhead, and for once, it wasn’t a “barely visible down on the horizon” pass, but up at a respectable 40+ degrees! The down side is that I only had about 5 minutes to prepare!

BEHOLD THE FIVE MINUTE PREP-TIME ISS PASS!

Click to Embiggen

The top to bottom trail, and the two at the bottom right are aircraft. The horizontal pass with small gaps is the ISS. This is a series of 12 images shot with a Hero 4 Silver in GoPro Night Lapse mode with ProTune turned on. 15 second exposures on Continuous mode, with an ISO limit of 200, GoPro color turned on and composited in Markus Enzweiler’s excellent StarStax.

Nighttime GoPro photography is fun! This is a 4 image stack using GoPro Night Lapse Mode, 10 second shutter, Continuous interval, ProTune on, 3000K White Balance, GoPro color, ISO limit of 400, Low Sharpness, and no Exposure Value (EV) Compensation.

StarStaX_G0030243-G0030246_lighten

 

The next 4 images are single shots with different settings for comparison.

GoPro Night Lapse Mode, 2 second shutter, ProTune on, 5500K White Balance, Flat color, ISO limit of 800, Low Sharpness, and no Exposure Value (EV) Compensation.
GoPro Night Lapse Mode, 2 second shutter, ProTune on, 5500K White Balance, Flat color, ISO limit of 800, Low Sharpness, and no Exposure Value (EV) Compensation.

 

GoPro Night Lapse Mode, 5 second shutter, ProTune on, 5500K White Balance, Flat color, ISO limit of 800, Low Sharpness, and no Exposure Value (EV) Compensation.
GoPro Night Lapse Mode, 5 second shutter, ProTune on, 5500K White Balance, Flat color, ISO limit of 800, Low Sharpness, and no Exposure Value (EV) Compensation.

 

GoPro Night Lapse Mode, 10 second shutter, ProTune on, 5500K White Balance, Flat color, ISO limit of 800, Low Sharpness, and no Exposure Value (EV) Compensation.
GoPro Night Lapse Mode, 10 second shutter, ProTune on, 5500K White Balance, Flat color, ISO limit of 800, Low Sharpness, and no Exposure Value (EV) Compensation.

This one is starting to get a little overexposed from the long shutter time.

GoPro Night Lapse Mode, 15 second shutter, ProTune on, 5500K White Balance, Flat color, ISO limit of 800, Low Sharpness, and no Exposure Value (EV) Compensation.
Single frame from GoPro Night Lapse Mode, 15 second shutter, ProTune on, 5500K White Balance, Flat color, ISO limit of 800, Low Sharpness, and no Exposure Value (EV) Compensation.

And finally, this is what you get if you just leave the shutter time to Automatic with a 3000K White Balance and GoPro Color…

Single frame from GoPro Night Lapse Mode, 15 second shutter, ProTune on, 5500K White Balance, Flat color, ISO limit of 800, Low Sharpness, and no Exposure Value (EV) Compensation.
Single frame from GoPro Night Lapse Mode, Automatic Shutter, ProTune on, 3000K White Balance, GoPro color, ISO limit of 800, Low Sharpness, and no Exposure Value (EV) Compensation.

I’m really starting to be amazed at the sheer breadth of capability that the GoPro has.