A photoSentinel Mach II at night time

5 Free, Online Construction Time-lapse Tools

If you're doing long-term timelapse, there are several great online tools you can use for free, right from your workstation, that will give you an edge.

These can help cut down your workload, do complex calculations quick and easily, or help you create better and more beautiful construction time-lapse content.

We've collected five timelapse tools together for you; let's look at them one-by-one.

1. Pictureprep

What if you could get a rough idea of where you should place your camera on-site before making the physical site visit? Pictureprep makes it simple.

Put down a virtual camera and virtual subject onto the map, and you'll be able to see your camera's field-of-view, plus the direction of sunlight.

You can configure the virtual camera and lens' orientation, sensor size, focal length, aperture, and more.

An old General Electric voltage reader gauge

BONUS: Pictureprep helps you get a good sense of your camera's field-of-view, but if you really want to master the science of FOV calculation, check out Scantips FOV calculator article.

2. Panolapse

While you will need to pay for a license for commercial use, Panolapse is completely free for personal use, if you want to try before you buy.

Panolapse adds rotational panning to timelapse footage in post-production using perspective correction.

While you can add rotational panning in Adobe After Effects, it can involve a bit of fiddling and upskilling to get the results you want.

But Panolapse does the hard work for you. It's a dedicated tool for adding rotational panning, so it's super easy to get fantastic results in just a few clicks.

3. The Ultimate Project Planner

Want a comprehensive resource for planning your project? The Ultimate Project Planner is your all-in-one workbook for planning construction timelapse.

We designed it for photographers just like you, to set you up for success on your first major job.

An old General Electric voltage reader gauge

 The workbook will help you maximize your income, avoid common beginner mistakes, and use the best camera settings for professional results.

4. Solar Panel Tilt Calculator

If your long-term timelapse system uses solar power as its primary power-source, you will need to calculate your solar panel's optimal tilt angle for getting sunlight.

While the optimal tilt angle changes with the seasons, you will want to set your solar panel to the best angle for catching sunlight year round.

So, SolarSena has created a great calculator which lets you work out the best tilt angle for the entire year, at any set of coordinates. 

An old General Electric voltage reader gauge

Just enter your time zone, latitude, and longitude, and look at the output value for fixed solar panels.

5. Data Calculator

When planning your construction timelapse project, estimating your system's data usage will help you pick the best data plan and stay under budget.

We've seen photographers give this number a rough estimate, watch a month go by, and get hit by a huge data bill they weren't expecting.

So, we went ahead and created a data calculator to make it easy for photographers just like you to work out your usage - no nasty data bills.

Title Image - Calculating data useage for long-term construction timelapse

Input your project's shooting frequency, days of shooting, project duration, and so on, and get an estimate of monthly and total project data usage in two minutes.

Bigger and Better Resources

These free online construction timelapse tools are great for specific tasks, but what about really building up your skill-set?

We've created an entire long-term timelapse curriculum to help you master your craft, which you can access from the LEARN page.