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Best Time-Lapse Camera (15 Creative & Construction Time-Lapse Cameras)

Author
Last Update: August 29, 2022

You need the best time-lapse camera to shoot incredible time-lapse photography. Thankfully for you, we’ve compiled a concise list of creative and construction time-lapse cameras.

Image
73%
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III
It’s compact, rugged, and weather-sealed. The photo and video results are fantastic, and it has built-in time-lapse technology. 
$999.99
Badge

Time-lapse videos are a fantastic way to use photography in a creative way. You can create mesmerizing sequences of time passing at an increased rate. You can show the hustle and bustle of a city street over an hour. Or maybe you want to document a blooming flower. You can also record the progress of a construction site over time. There’s a wonderful world of possibilities with time-lapse photography.

Long exposure picture of man sitting on a zebra crossing
© Frankie Garcia

What is the Best Camera for Time-Lapse Photography?

The first section of our list has the best DSLR and mirrorless cameras for time-lapse photography. Then we have a section for dedicated time-lapse cameras. These options are ideal for construction time-lapse videos. And they offer a cheaper option than buying a proper camera just for time-lapse videos.

Check out our buyers’ guide at the bottom of the page if you need more information about time-lapse cameras. You’ll find all the information you need to pick the perfect time-lapse camera. It’s a complicated topic. But our guide makes it easy to understand.

our-top-choice
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III
Camera
  • Built-in interval timer
  • 30 fps of continuous shooting
  • Weather-sealed body for outdoor shooting
$999.99
best-for-beginners
Canon EOS Rebel SL3 (EOS 250D)
Camera
  • Excellent image quality for a beginner camera
  • Intervalometer built-in
  • Fantastic 4K video recording
$539.99
best-for-pros
Nikon D850
Camera
  • Incredible 45 MP image sensor
  • Brilliant dedicated time-lapse photography modes
  • Long battery life and dual card slots for long time-lapse projects
from $2,029.95
best-apsc-mirrorless
Sony a6600
Camera
  • Built-in image stabilization
  • compact and lightweight camera body
  • Class-leading AF system with subject tracking
$1,698.00
best-action
Olympus Tough TG-6
Camera
  • Shock and waterproof body makes it perfect for outdoor photography
  • Build-in time-lapse modes
  • 4K video with slow-motion options
$447.99
best-mirrorless-all-rounder
Panasonic Lumix S5
Camera
  • Incredible time-lapse features
  • 4K video at 60 fps
  • Built-in image stabilization
from $1,389.00
none
Sony a7 III
Camera
  • Wide ISO range including a low setting of 50 ISO
  • Pioneering AF system
  • AE Tracking Sensitivity mode with time-lapse shooting
from $1,576.99
best-apsc-dslr
Canon EOS 90D
Camera
  • Incredible 32.5 MP from an APS-C sensor
  • Long-lasting battery life
  • Weather-sealed body for outdoor photography
from $1,199.00
best-for-video
Panasonic Lumix G100
Camera
  • Excellent features for video and vlogging
  • Excellent choice of frame rates in video mode
  • time-lapse composition in-camera
$214.99
best-compact-choice
Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III
Camera
  • Powerful resolution from a small sensor
  • Time-lapse scene modes for easy setup
  • Excellent slow-motion video options
from $658.00
Time-Lapse image of the moon
© Jake Hills

15 Best Cameras for Time-Lapse Photography in Detail

Now we’ll look at the best cameras for time-lapse photography. Every camera in this list gives you the tools to create stunning time-lapse media. The first ten cameras are all-around cameras that include time-lapse features.

If you’re looking for a dedicated time-lapse camera, skip down the list. You’ll find those five camera options in a separate section.

1. Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III

Our Top Time-lapse Camera Choice

Image
Badge
Camera Type
Camera type Mirrorless BYMirrorless
Megapixels
The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
20 MP
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
Micro Four Thirds 4 3 1Micro Four Thirds
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
17.4 x 13 mm
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
30 fps
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
121
Pros
  • 50 MP High-Res Shot mode
  • 30 fps continuous shooting speed
  • Up to 6.5 stops of in-body stabilization with certain lenses
  • Excellent weather sealing
  • Articulating screen for angled shots
  • Excellent 4K Ultra HD and DCI video
Cons
  • Only 10 fps with AF tracking
  • Complicated Olympus menus
  • No headphone out
  • No video log profile for dynamic range or colors
  • An average battery life

The Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III is a fantastic Micro Four Thirds (MFT) camera. MFT Olympus cameras offer excellent performance in a compact package. And the E-M5 Mark III is their best mirrorless camera for time-lapse photography.

The MFT sensor is small, but it delivers on quality. It has a 20 MP resolution. And the built-in image stabilization reduces camera shake for sharp images. That’ll help your time-lapse video if there’s a strong wind when shooting. It also has a weather-sealed body, making it a suitable camera for outdoor photography in any weather.

The Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III has a dedicated time-lapse mode. And this mode uses the built-in intervalometer for perfectly timed sequences. The camera also puts the images together, making one smooth time-lapse video. You can then transfer it to another device as a complete video. And the Wi-Fi connectivity makes transferring media easy.

Video mode gives you equally excellent results. The video is 4K quality. And you get a continuous shooting speed of 30 fps in burst mode. And this mode uses an electronic shutter for silent shooting. You get excellent battery life, which is handy for long time-lapse sequences. And USB charging is always a bonus.

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$999.99
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2. Canon EOS Rebel SL3/250D

Best Time-lapse Camera for Beginners

Image
Badge
Camera Type
Camera type DSLR BYDSLR
Megapixels
The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
24 MP
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
APS C 1APS-C
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
22.3 x 14.9 mm
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
5 fps
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
9
Pros
  • Excellent value
  • Solid 4K video quality
  • Fully articulated screen is helpful for capturing video
  • Compact body for a DSLR
  • Insanely good battery life
Cons
  • 1.7x 4K crop factor
  • Only 9 autofocus points
  • Lacks in-body image stabilization
  • No USB charging
  • No weather sealing

The Canon EOS Rebel SL3 is one of the best entry-level time-lapse cameras. It’s an excellent DSLR camera for beginners. The Rebel SL3 delivers beautiful photos and videos. And the camera is full of features newbies will love, including a time-lapse mode.

The Canon EOS Rebel SL3 has an APS-C sensor. And it gives you an image resolution of 24.1 MP. That’s more than enough to inspire any beginner. And it’s a big step up from a smartphone camera. The low-light performance is excellent due to its wide ISO range. That’ll help you create a night-lapse video or time-lapse video in changing light.

This Canon camera has a built-in intervalometer. This allows you to set time intervals and automates the shutter button. Once you’ve set it up, you can leave it to shoot the sequence. You won’t need to touch it again until it’s done. The Rebel SL3 then puts the images together to make the video. You can watch it back on the LCD screen. There’s no need for post-processing.

As a beginner’s camera, it isn’t as durable as other time-lapse cameras. There’s no weather-sealing, so you need to take care while shooting outside. The autofocus system is simple but reliable. And it does have eye detection, which is a bonus for time-lapses with people. The battery gives you plenty of shots when fully charged. And it has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity.

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$539.99
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3. Nikon D850

Best Time-lapse Camera for Pros

from $2,029.95
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Image
Badge
Camera Type
Camera type DSLR BYDSLR
Megapixels
The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
45.7 MP
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
Full frame 2Full Frame
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
23.9 x 35.9 mm
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
7 fps
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
153
Pros
  • Fantastic overall image quality
  • Excellent 3D continuous AF tracking
  • Sharp 4K / 30p Ultra HD video
  • Long, 1,840-shot battery life
  • Durable, weather-sealed construction
Cons
  • No customizable shooting presets
  • Slow autofocus in Live View
  • Needs an expensive XQD card
  • Rolling shutter noticeable in 4K video
  • Slow 7 fps or 9 fps with an expensive battery grip

The Nikon D850 is one of the ultimate workhorse cameras. It’s a rugged DSLR camera. The photography performance is outstanding. The video specs aren’t far behind. And it has some hard-to-beat time-lapse video options. It isn’t cheap, but the D850 is a fantastic professional camera.

The Nikon D850 has a powerful full frame sensor. And the FX-format sensor gives you a whopping 45.7 MP resolution. It’s hard to beat image quality of that standard. The ISO range allows you to shoot in low-light situations. And it’s more than capable of night sky photography. You can make a brilliant night-lapse video.

The time-lapse modes are fantastic. You can shoot 4K time-lapse videos using the time-lapse movie mode. Or you can harness more power from the 45 MP sensor for 8K time-lapse footage. For this, you need to use the interval shooting mode. Both modes allow you to select moving exposure. It adjusts the aperture and shutter speed depending on the lighting conditions. This is called exposure smoothing.

The normal video recording is also excellent. You can record videos with 4K quality at 30 fps. The D850’s burst mode is slow at only 9 fps. But that won’t affect your time-lapse movies. The camera uses the Nikon F lens mount. That gives you an excellent array of interchangeable lenses to choose from. And the dual memory card slot is ideal for time-lapse shooters. All those frames can fill an SD card fast.

Here’s a video from Nikon to help you with your D850 time-lapse videos.

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from $2,029.95
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4. Sony a6600

Best APS-C Mirrorless Time-lapse Camera

$1,698.00
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Image
Badge
Camera Type
Camera type Mirrorless BYMirrorless
Megapixels
The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
24.2 MP
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
APS C 1APS-C
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
15.6 x 23.5 mm
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
11 fps
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
425
Pros
  • Small, lightweight camera
  • Astonishing autofocus
  • Terrific battery life
  • Silent shooting
  • 5-axis in-body image stabilization reduces camera shake
Cons
  • Rolling shutter during video shooting
  • Limited touchscreen controls
  • Slow buffer speeds
  • No pop-up flash
  • Controls can feel cramped for those with large hands

The Sony a6600 is a brilliant mid-range mirrorless camera. It’s one of their most popular models. And the interval shooting modes make it one of the best time-lapse cameras you can buy. The A6600 is an enthusiast camera. But the straightforward controls encourage beginners to give it a go.

The Sony a6600 is an APS-C mirrorless camera with a 24.2 MP sensor. The resolution isn’t groundbreaking like Sony’s full frame models. But you can expect excellent image quality. You get a wide ISO range for low light shooting. And the camera has 5-axis image stabilization. That reduces camera shake, keeping your time-lapse photos sharp.

For time-lapse photography, you need to find the Interval Shooting mode. The camera’s menu system is easy to navigate, so you’ll find it in no time. Then you can set your intervals and the total number of shots. The camera calculates the time this will take, which helps you plan your time-lapse. You can also set the shooting start time. This creates a delay between the click of the shutter and the first shot. This is to avoid camera shake when you press the shutter button.

The a6600 is packed full of other creative features. The 4K video quality is fantastic. You have an 11 fps burst mode for action. The autofocus system is top of its class, using 425 focus points for fast and accurate AF tracking. The Sony a6600 is also compact and lightweight. And you also have your pick of the Sony E lens mount series.

Check out our specs comparison between the Sony a6600 vs a6400 or vs the Sony a7 III for more context!

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$1,698.00
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5. Olympus Tough TG-6

Best Time-lapse Camera for Action

Image
Badge
Camera Type
Camera type Compact BYCompact
Megapixels
The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
12 MP
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
1 2.31/2.3”
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
6.17 x 4.55 mm
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
20 fps
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
25
Pros
  • RAW file shooting capabilities
  • Very strong and durable body
  • Waterproof to 50 ft (15.5 m)
  • Excellent macro shooting
  • Smooth 4K video recording
Cons
  • Only 12 MP image resolution
  • No fully manual controls
  • No touchscreen
  • Annoying notifications with Wi-Fi app

The Olympus Tough TG-6 is tough by name and tough by nature. Most Olympus cameras are durable. But the Tough TG-6 takes durability to the next level. It’s shockproof, crushproof, and waterproof. Combine that with a dedicated time-lapse mode, and you’ve got one of the best time-lapse cameras for all conditions.

The sensor resolution isn’t groundbreaking. But while you only get 12 MP, you won’t find many complaints about the final image. You also have built-in image stabilization. It counteracts camera shake, giving you more options with aperture and shutter speed. The low light performance is excellent.

The Tough TG-6 has an interval timer for time-lapse photography. The time-lapse mode gives you a frame limit of 299. And you can set the interval range from 1 second to 24 hours. That gives you incredible scope for creative time-lapse movies.

You can set time-lapse movie mode on or off. When turned on, the camera will create a time-lapse movie automatically. When it’s off, you need to export the still images and create the video in post-production.

The 4K video is brilliant for a compact action camera. And you get excellent slow-motion video options. The optical lens quality is very good. And the lens gives you an 8x zoom range. The battery has a long life, which is handy for long time-lapse projects. And the durability means time-lapse shooting is possible in any weather.

Check out this video to see a superb example of time-lapse with an Olympus Tough TG-6.

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$447.99
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6. Panasonic Lumix S5

Best All-Around Mirrorless Time-lapse Camera

from $1,389.00
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Image
Badge
Camera Type
Camera type Mirrorless BYMirrorless
Megapixels
The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
24.2 MP
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
Full frame 2Full Frame
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
23.8 x 35.6 mm
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
7 fps
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
225
Pros
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Image stabilization for camera shake
  • Dual memory card slots
  • Great 4K video capabilities
Cons
  • Slow-burst shooting
  • Short battery life
  • Poor autofocus within camera class
  • Limited L-mount lens range

The Panasonic Lumix S5 is the ultimate hybrid camera. The still photography is excellent. But the video production is just as good, if not better. It’s a professional camera for multimedia creators. And the price reflects that. The time-lapse features are the best you’ll find in any camera.

The Lumix S5 has a full frame sensor with a 24.2 MP resolution. The expanded ISO range is ideal for low-light conditions. The max setting is 204,800 ISO. And you have a low 50 ISO setting for incredible quality images.

The dedicated time-lapse mode is one of the best on the market. You can set a start time. This allows you to set up your camera in advance. And you don’t even have to be with the camera to start the sequence.

You also have settings for interval times and the maximum number of shots. Both settings max out at 9,999. That makes it ideal for long-duration time-lapse projects, like construction or plant growth.

The time-lapse features include exposure leveling. When you activate this mode, the camera will adjust the exposure settings during the time-lapse. You can set the camera to aperture or shutter priority mode. This allows you to lock one setting. Then the camera adjusts the others as conditions change.

The S5 also gives you excellent video options. 4K quality is fairly standard these days. But you don’t often see 4K shot at 60 fps. That’s what you get with the S5. You also get fabulous slow-motion options. Animators with love the stop-motion mode. The Panasonic Lumix is an incredible multimedia machine.

Check out this video to see what the Panasonic Lumix S5 can do with time-lapse.

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from $1,389.00
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7. Sony A7 III

Best Full Frame Mirrorless Time-lapse Camera

from $1,576.99
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Image
Badge
Camera Type
Camera type Mirrorless BYMirrorless
Megapixels
The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
24.2 MP
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
Full frame 2Full Frame
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
23.8 x 35.6 mm
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
10 fps
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
693
Pros
  • Quick and accurate 693-point AF
  • Lightweight for portability
  • Records stunning 4K video
  • Reduced image noise with high ISO sensitivity
Cons
  • Noise reduction can remove details
  • Front heavy with big lenses
  • Menu system is difficult to get used to
  • No built-in time-lapse function

Sony’s full frame mirrorless cameras are the best on the market. And the Sony A7 III is one of their most popular models. It’s not a budget camera. But the performance for photos and videos justifies the price. The interval shooting features make it one of the best time-lapse cameras for professionals.

The full frame sensor gives you a 24.2 MP resolution. That might not sound like much for a full frame sensor. But you’ll get stunning image quality. The ISO range is excellent. You get excellent low light performance with a high end of 204,800. But you also get a low level of ISO 50. That gives you incredible detail and color rendition.

The Sony A7 III has a dedicated time-lapse mode. You need to find the Interval Shooting section in the camera’s menu. Once you’re there, the time-lapse controls are easy to use. You can set the shooting start time. And you can select the total number of shots and the intervals between shots. The camera calculates the final length of your video.

One of the A7 III’s best time-lapse features is the AE Tracking Sensitivity. It allows the camera to adjust the exposure settings during your time-lapse. This exposure smoothing gives you perfectly exposed stills even in changeable lighting conditions.

The standard video mode is also outstanding. You can shoot 4K videos at 30 fps. And you get different frame rates to play with, including slow-motion options. The autofocus system is one of the best you’ll find. The Sony A7 III doesn’t have weather-sealing, so take care outdoors. You can go for the Sony A7 IV, which is weather-sealed. But it’ll stretch your budget even further.

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from $1,576.99
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8. Canon EOS 90D

Best APS-C Time-lapse Camera

from $1,199.00
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Image
Pros
  • Excellent 32.5 MP APS-C sensor
  • Decent frame rate of 10 fps
  • 4K / 30p Ultra HD video
  • Good, 1,300-shot battery life
  • Live View and Dual Pixel autofocus with eye detection
Cons
  • Unreliable autofocus when using the optical viewfinder
  • 4K video has a soft focus
  • No in-body image stabilization
  • Limited video codecs and frame rates

The Canon EOS 90D is a powerful APS-C DSLR camera. It produces professional-standard images and videos. And it’s packed with creative features. If you’re looking for a powerful DSLR, the EOS 90D might be the best time-lapse camera for you.

The sensor gives you an image resolution of 32.5 MP. That’s incredible image quality for an APS-C camera. That’s a number you’d expect to see from a full frame camera. The ISO range gives you more possibilities in low-light conditions. The video results are just as impressive. There’s 4K at 30 fps. And you can shoot slow-motion videos in Full HD.

Time-lapsers will be happy to know the 90D has a built-in intervalometer. It also gives you three scene modes, each with time-lapse presets. These allow you to set up quickly. But you can also use the custom time-lapse mode. You can set any time-lapse settings you want, and it gives you the final runtime of your video.

The autofocus system is very good. It uses 45 cross-type focus points for accurate locking and tracking. That’s ideal for time-lapse videos that include people. You can also use the Canon EOS 90D as a webcam with the EOS Utility app. Outdoor photographers will be pleased to know the 90D is weather-sealed.

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from $1,199.00
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9. Panasonic Lumix G100

Image
Badge
Camera Type
Camera type Mirrorless BYMirrorless
Megapixels
The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
20 MP
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
Micro Four Thirds 4 3 1Micro Four Thirds
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
17.3 x 13 mm
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
10 fps
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
49
Pros
  • Great performance for price bracket
  • Compact body
  • Articulating screen for different-angled shots and video
  • Fantastic video and vlogging features
Cons
  • Limited still photography options
  • 10-minute time limit for 4K video
  • Video cropped when shooting 4K
  • No headphone or USB ports

Panasonic has built its name on making incredible hybrid cameras. They put just as much focus on video and still photography. And the Panasonic Lumix G100 is no different. It’s ideal for video makers and vloggers. And you can see the time-lapse capabilities in this video.

The G100 has a Micro Four Thirds sensor with a 20.3 MP resolution. You can expect excellent image quality in your time-lapse footage. The MFT sensor means you get a compact camera. And you have a 5-axis image stabilization system squeezed in. That means you’re guaranteed sharp images.

The G100 has a built-in interval timer for time-lapse shooting. You get a good selection of interval and shooting options. And once the shooting is complete, you have the option to create a video in-camera. You can then export the media as one video file. Or you can select “no” and compile the footage using editing software.

You also get fantastic video quality. It’s 4K at 30 fps. Or you can shoot in Full HD at 60 fps for extra smooth footage. There’s also a stop-motion mode for animators. And there’s a dedicated selfie mode with the rotating screen. The Wi-Fi connectivity and USB charging are other positive features.

The Panasonic Lumix G100 is the perfect camera for multimedia creators and vloggers. And the easy interval shooting mode makes it one of the best time-lapse cameras too.

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$214.99
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10. The Canon PowerShot G7 X III

from $658.00
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Image
Badge
Camera Type
Camera type Compact BYCompact
Megapixels
The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
20 MP
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
1 11"
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
13.2 x 8.8 mm
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
30 fps
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
31
Pros
  • Fast continuous shooting speeds
  • A high dynamic range
  • Pocket-sized body
  • Flip-up rear LCD touchscreen
  • Live streaming compatible
  • Stylish design
Cons
  • Soft focus at wider focal lengths
  • No subject tracking in continuous shooting mode
  • No electronic viewfinder
  • Weak battery life for a compact
  • 10 minute 4K recording limit

The Canon PowerShot G7 X III is a point-and-shoot camera. While many point-and-shoot cameras are basic, the G7 X III is packed full of features. And that includes dedicated time-lapse features. It’s a convenient choice if you want a compact time-lapse camera.

The Canon PowerShot G7 X III has a small 1-inch sensor. But it gives you excellent image quality with a 20.2 MP resolution. It has a fixed lens with a 4.2x zoom range. And it has a bright maximum aperture of f/1.8. That gives you more options with ISO and shutter speed.

The dedicated time-lapse mode makes it the perfect compact camera for time-lapse shooting. The Canon gives you three scene modes for interval shooting. Each has pre-set time-lapse configurations. They’re handy if you’re new to time-lapse photography. But you can go to custom settings if you want more control.

You can record 4K video at 30 fps. And you get slow-motion in Full HD at 120 fps. There’s also 20 fps in continuous shooting mode. And there’s built-in Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity. It’s the best time-lapse camera if you want something compact.

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Large cranes on a construction site
© Danist Soh

Best Dedicated Time-Lapse Cameras

If you don’t need a DSLR or mirrorless, we’ll help you find a dedicated time-lapse camera. We’ve got five fantastic options for time-lapse videos. They’re specifically designed for time-lapse. And they’re ideal for construction site time-lapses.

1. Brinno BCC2000

Best Time-Lapse Camera for Construction Sites

Brinno BCC2000 Best Time-Lapse Camera and clamp product image

The Brinno BCC200o is the best time-lapse camera for construction sites. It’s the ideal option for long-term construction projects. It gives you Full HD (1080p) video quality. And the setup process is quick and easy. Just set the shot intervals and let it roll.

The weatherproof case is included when you buy the camera. And you get an industrial clamp to hold the camera in place. You can attach it to a pole, giving you a high vantage point for the video. And it keeps it out of harm’s way.

The battery life gives you up to a year of shooting. This does depend on the shooting intervals. But it gives you the option for long-term time-lapse shooting. It also doubles as a surveillance camera, giving you extra site security.

2. GoPro Hero 10

Best GoPro for Time-LapseGopro Hero 10 product image

The GoPro Hero 10 is the ultimate action camera. And while it’s not a dedicated time-lapse camera, it does make incredible time-lapse videos. You get 23 MP image quality. And you can convert the photos into 4K video quality for time-lapse footage.

The GoPro Hero 10 is small and compact, making it easy to carry around. And it’s a rugged piece of equipment. It can take knocks and shocks. And it’s completely waterproof. You can shoot outdoor time-lapse videos no matter the weather.

The GoPro also gives you other video options. You can shoot action videos with 5.3K quality. You have fantastic slow-motion video options. And you can livestream in Full HD. It’s a versatile little camera. And it’s an affordable choice if you need a dedicated time-lapse camera.

3. TECHNAXX TX-164

Best Time-Lapse Camera for Outdoors

Technaxx TX-164 camera product image

The Technaxx TX-164 is another dedicated time-lapse camera. It’s a durable camera that’s made for life outdoors. It’s ideal for long-duration time-lapse shoots. It’ll give you excellent time-lapse footage of a construction site. Or you can use it to document plant growth in a garden or orchard.

It doesn’t have the most powerful sensor. The image resolution is only 2 MP. But the TX-164 does give you excellent interval choices. You can have shot intervals anywhere from 3 seconds to 24 hours.

You can also record videos for interval shooting. You can select video lengths between 3 seconds and 2 minutes. They can also be compiled to make time-lapse footage.

The outer case is waterproof. It’ll operate outdoors in all conditions. And you get up to six months of battery life. That’s ideal for long projects. And it can also be used as a security camera.

4. Brinno Empower TLC2020

Brinno Empower TLC2020 and case product image

We have another dedicated time-lapse camera from Brinno. The Brinno Empower TLC2020 is a fantastic option for construction time-lapse footage. It gives you up to 82 days of shooting. And that’s at a rate of one frame every five minutes.

The sensor only has a 2 MP resolution. It can’t compete against DSLRs and mirrorless cameras. But it will give you a Full HD video. You have several time-lapse modes. There’s a dedicated time-lapse mode with different interval settings. And there’s a stop-motion feature for animators. You need to use the shutter manually for stop-motion. But the modes allow you to get creative.

The battery life gives you months of continuous shooting. And the weatherproof case keeps it safe in all conditions. You can fix the camera to a wall or pole. And the 118-degree viewing angle gives you an excellent shot of the scene. It’s enough to capture everything on site.

5. Rexing TL1

Rexing TL1 camera product photo

The Rexing TL1 is another time-lapse camera for long-duration shoots. Whether it’s building a barn or a tree growing, you’ll get fantastic time-lapse footage. The camera sits inside weather-resistant housing. You can use it outside, even during the winter months.

The camera sensor has a resolution of 2 MP. That isn’t the most powerful camera on the list. But the Rexing TL1 does give you Full HD video when the photos are merged. The camera lens gives you a 110-degree field of view. That’s a lovely wide angle, so you can capture more of the scene.

The battery life is excellent, giving you six months of time-lapse recording. You can also set a time and date for the camera to start the sequence. There’s a touch keypad for easy setup. And the tough outer case has a variety of mounting options.


Our Verdict

The Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III is our tops our list of the best time-lapse cameras. It has all the features a time-lapse photographer needs. And the results are hard to argue with.

The Brinno BCC2000 is the best dedicated time-lapse camera. It doesn’t have the wide functionality of the artistic cameras. But the Brinno BCC2000 serves a purpose and serves it well. It’s the best time-lapse camera for construction sites.

Image
73%
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III
It’s compact, rugged, and weather-sealed. The photo and video results are fantastic, and it has built-in time-lapse technology
$999.99
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Time-lapse photography is one of the closest things we have to changing time. That’s a bit dramatic. But it does give us an incredible effect. You can use it to document progress of a building project. Or you can document a sunrise or sunset with a stills camera.

It’ll give you amazing social media content. And there’s also money to be made from time-lapse photography. The first step is to get yourself the best time-lapse camera.

Man standing near a camera on a tripod on a mountain side at sunset
© Jamie Fenn

Time-Lapse Camera Buyer’s Guide

Time-lapse photography can be a tricky subject. It takes precision to create a perfect time-lapse video. You need a camera that’s up to the job. And the best time-lapse cameras have everything you need built-in. In this section, we’ll go into detail so you can make the right choice when buying a time-lapse camera.

Intervalometer

The best time-lapse cameras have a built-in intervalometer. This is a dedicated interval timer. And it allows you to set the intervals between shots on the camera. Once you set your interval time, the process is automated. The camera takes the shots at the designated times. And you’ll have a fantastic time-lapse video.

You can create time-lapse videos with any camera. But without an intervalometer, you have to take the shots manually. A manual time-lapse is tough to get right. And it involves pressing the shutter at each interval.

You can get an external interval timer if your camera doesn’t have one. You also have time-lapse apps for smartphones. And photopills.com has an excellent time-lapse calculator on their website. Their app is also available for Android and iOS.

Intervalometer on photopills.com
Intervalometer on photopills.com

Making a Time-Lapse Video

The best time-lapse cameras compile the images into a video in-camera. It’ll create a video from the time-lapse images. You’ll be able to view it on the camera’s screen. And you’ll be able to transfer it as a complete video file.

Some cameras don’t have the technology to create the video for you. If you’re in that position, you’ll need video editing software. You don’t need anything too fancy. You can use Adobe Lightroom or Photoshop to create time-lapse videos.

Using a Tripod

A tripod is essential for time-lapse photography. You don’t want your camera to move between time-lapse photos. The slightest movement and your video is ruined. A tripod keeps your camera in position, making sure each shot has the same composition.

Make Sure Your Camera can Shoot Outdoors

Some of the best time-lapse subjects are based outdoors. That means you need an outdoor time-lapse camera. You need a camera that can cope with the weather, so weather-sealed cameras are ideal for time-lapses.

This is especially important for long-duration time-lapse videos. The weather can change during the shooting time. And you need to know your camera can cope with the environmental changes.

Woman setting up a camera on a tripod on a cold beach
© Kameron Kincade

Which Canon Cameras Have Time-Lapse?

Canon is an excellent camera brand for time-lapse photographers. Many of their cameras have built-in intervalometers, making it easy to create fabulous time-lapses.

The Canon EOS Rebel SL3 has made our list. It’s an affordable option for beginners. And it has an intervalometer. The Canon EOS 90D also has time-lapse features. But it’s more advanced and has a heavier price tag.

Other Canon cameras for time-lapse include the EOS M6 Mark II, EOS 6D Mark II, and EOS RP. Canon gives you plenty to choose from.

Close up of hand using a Canon camera
© ShareGrid

Are GoPros Good For Time Lapse?

The answer is yes. While the GoPro is associated with action videos, the latest models make excellent time-lapse videos. It has an internal interval timer. And the quality is excellent. The GoPro Hero 10 has made our list. Check it out in the dedicated time-lapse camera section.

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