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Faster than a speeding bullet

Camera creates the ultimate in slow-motion shots

(CNN) -- Today's technology makes computer animation tricks unnecessary in Hollywood action movies. A high-speed camera can capture real flying bullets in painstaking detail.

CNN's Bruce Burkhardt takes a look at a movie camera that can capture 12,000 frames per second. (August 19)

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Capable of shooting 12,000 frames per second, the Millisecond camera is five times faster than any system available and 30 times faster than any other camera capable of producing images of comparable quality. The faster the film moves, the slower the action appears.

Nathan Nebeker of Conniption Films developed the system, drawing upon camera technology used in scientific research, which produces a lot of data but not the best pictures.

"So a lot of it is just a refinement of a system that's much more smooth and production friendly," Nebeker said.

Instead of pulling film from one reel to another past a shutter the way most traditional cameras do, this camera uses a single strip of film (120 frames) and loops it around a drum that can spin up to 500 mph, or 12,000 frames per second.

That translates into the ability to capture a particular millisecond of action and slow it down on-screen, creating the ultimate in slow-motion sequences.




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