Slow Motion Videos

Written by Jared Vincenti
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Slow motion is used to describe a piece of video in which the objects on screen move more slowly than they do in real life. It is often used as a special effect in movies, and it also has some practical applications. Slow motion is created when video footage of a natural motion is played back at a slower frame rate than it was captured at.

How Slow Motion Works

Slow motion can be created in one of two ways. Low-resolution slow motion, which is usually blurry and indistinct, is when footage captured at normal speed is played back at a reduced rate. High-resolution slow motion, which keeps the same sharp picture quality as normal footage, appears when you capture film at an accelerated rate, and then play it back at normal speed.

Film speed can be changed manually on film cameras, and most digital cameras have an option that simulates film speed. Even though digital video cameras do not use film or "frames," changing the settings can accelerate or reduce the rate at which the digital camera captures images. The end result is that the film is played more slowly than it was captured.

Slow motion video was used for a few years in Major League Baseball, to sort out unclear calls of "safe" or "out." This use was discontinued, though, but other uses have been found. One of the more interesting applications has been the development of motion analysis technology, whereby athletes can examine slow motion footage of themselves and spot potential errors in their form.


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