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Just picked up a simple all in one Brinno TLC 200 Pro. I'm going to put it on a shelf looking out the window and pretty much forget it for 1 year. There is a setting where I can pick the hours to shoot. This will be challenging as daytime hours are constantly changing. I'll try and figure that out.

The more important question I have is: If I want the final video to be about 5 or 6 minutes what is the best interval between shots? I'll do 24fps final.

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    Don't just set it on a shelf -- attach it firmly so it doesn't move 6 months into your film. – Caleb Nov 11 '13 at 8:37
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That's some pretty simple math going on there...
5 (minutes of video)
* 60 (secs/minute)
* 24 (frames/sec)
= 7200 (frames total)

7200 (frames total) / 365 (days/year) = 19.7 frames/day

Simply rounded that's 20 frames per day

Another way to work it is to shoot 24fps and shoot one frame per hour, which would put your final film at 365 seconds (one per day) although a film alternating between dark & light that often for that long, is going to be pretty annoying to watch.

One interesting way to shoot those 20 frames at different times each day (so start at midnight on day 1 then shoot every 12 seconds for 20 frames, advancing the time of day you shoot the next 20 by 4 minutes each day.

That covers the whole 24 hours, you could mess around planning for dawn/dusk times (base your maths on whatever day 1 is then start an hour before dawn and time it end an hour after sunset which would make the math only slightly more complicated but might make for a better video. It's pretty easy to get sunrise/sunset times for your city online.

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It really depends on what you want the final result to look like. You could take one frame per hour for an entire year and at 24 fps you would end up with six minutes of footage. But that footage would include alternating night and day about every half second. For six long minutes. Lights on. Lights off. Lights on. lights off. You get the picture.

Since you are going to wind up with about one second of footage per day, I would try to take all the frames for each day in a very short period and begin the next day's frames at the same time the previous day's frames ended. You could start on Day 1 at just before sunrise and program it to take 20 frames at a six second interval over 2 minutes. The next day take the 20 frames beginning six seconds after the previous frames ended. At the end of the year your last frames would be taken a tad over 12 hours later in the day than your frames on day one were. Each minute of footage will reflect two hours of your year long day. Your shooting schedule would look something like this:

Day 1 - 20 frames at 6 second intervals beginning at 5:50 a.m.
Day 2 - 20 frames at 6 second intervals beginning at 5:52 a.m.
Day 3 - 20 frames at 6 second intervals beginning at 5:54 a.m.

And so on for the entire year. Day 6 would begin at 6 a.m. Day 36 would begin at 7 a.m. Day 186 would begin at noon. Day 365 would end 6 seconds before 6 p.m.

If you begin Day 1 on the date of the Winter solstice (December 21 for the Northern Hemisphere and June 21 for the Southern Hemisphere), sunrise will get progressively earlier each day along with your frames being progressively later during the times they are shot in the morning, so you would have a smooth progression of any shadows cast by the sun in your yard . By the time of the Summer solstice you would be shooting right around noon, and at the end of your year you would be shooting slightly later each evening as the sunset occurs slightly earlier in the evening.

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