How do you create a time-lapse on darktable?

Is it possible, or do you use another software in conjunction with DT?
Suppose you’ve taken a considerable number of still images on a tripod and want to create a time-lapse from that collection, how would you do it? Thanks!

It us not possible to create a timelaps using only darktable.

I’d edit the raw files in darktable, export each file, then use your favorite video editor or command line utility to actually create the time lapse.

If you’re comfortable on the command line, ffmpg is perfect for this: ffmpeg time-lapse · GitHub


There is timelapse-darktable/DTTimelapse at master · 3v1n0/timelapse-darktable · GitHub although I’ve never used it.

Personally, I’d use DT to process the stills, then use slowmoVideo Home · slowmoVideo/slowmoVideo Wiki · GitHub to do the actual time-lapse. (Although I’ve not used it for time-lapse, I’ve used slowmoVideo to process video files, and loved it.)

How do you create a time-lapse on darktable?

Darktable doesn’t have a time-lapse tool. I wrote some years ago a script to export selected images as a video. But I don’t really use this script, it is not flexible enough.

And here is a video I created with the help of dt some years ago:

Perhaps @devernay the natron guru can help here.

Thanks @paperdigits I’ll give #ffmpg a try!
Thank you @Karl & @Tobias for your input :slight_smile:

What do you mean with this code, and where do you plan to past it?

Very interesting! Many Lr user miss video feature in DT, any plans in the future?

I’d think video features are way out of scope for darktable.

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What would be recommend? Natron?

Depends on what you want to do, exactly. FFMPG will stitch all your images and output a movie. There are also many graphical editors, such as open shot and kdenlive.

What I would like to see indt is method to set the parameters of the first and last image and then interpolate between them.

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There is a darktable fork on github that adds a ui for these timelapse things. I am on my mobile and therefore don’t have the link at hand. Maybe you can find it with github forks view?

GitHub - theres/dt_timelapse: [Darktable]( plugin (lua script) for creating timelapse video is alua plugin that isn’t ready yet, the other I saw was called timelapse_darktable and hasn’t been touched in 3 years.

And there is this old issue:

The problem is still, that there is no method to manipulate iop parameters with Lua.
I think the deflickering option is now in dt:

Hey guys,

Who saw the abilities of LRTimelapse, knows, what DT, even with the de-flickering in the exposure, cannot do.

I would love to use LRTimelapse in the method it is meant (handshake with LR). I didn’t test yet, but afraid that the interpretation of DT when fed with LR-xmp-files will not always produce the results wanted.

Currently we cannot set several keyframes and edit those with interpolation between them. We can merely edit one and past it to all, which makes the fading light become constant…

timelapse-darktable seemed to do exactly that but even cannot install any more and way too outdated I am afraid.

Pitty Harry Durgin became quite inactive (understandably) behind his gallery. He would be the guy to figure it by tools :->> which I am not capable…

Anyone see a solution?!?



I had this problem a while ago when doing an eclipse timelapse and came up with a dirty script to do the work: (1.9 KB)
What I was trying to do was to simulate the light decay during the eclipse, so it’s kind of the opposite of what you what to accomplish. But maybe you can get some ideas from it. What the script does is:

  • look at the exposure of the picture (taken in auto exposure)
  • calculate the correction to apply in order to compensate for the camera’s exposure change
  • modify the parameter of the exposure module directly into a base.xmp file (not so simple, the numbers are encoded in a complex way, see encode_exposure file)
  • rename the base.xmp file and repeat for every picture

In this case I was also modifying the low-light module’s blending percentage, but the idea for that parameter is the same.
The script runs directly in bash (at least in Ubuntu’s flavor of it). Looking at it now it looks mostly gibberish (it was very clear back then!), but if you find it useful and need some help understanding it, just tell me.


I’m wanting to create my first timelapse using darktable so I googled and found this thread.
Searched a little more on the web and found this youtube clip which shows someone has extended darktable specifically for creating timelapses:

The comments in the video also contain the modified source code.
Would it be possible to include this in an upcoming update for darktable? It looks like most of the tough work is completed already.

You need someone who cares about the code. Just pushing it in doesn’t help. And I would really like to see this in dt too.

For the record, LR was never really a very good video editor. And I don’t believe it did anything for time lapse work. I would suggest VirtualDub, which is a FOSS video editor that will allow you to import a sequence of jpeg’s and output them as an .avi file. I used it recently for this (pointless) little project.

We are not looking for a video editor, that’s the last step.
What we do:

  • Shoot photos in raw
  • develop them in dt
  • export the files
  • create a video (Video Editor, Script, …)

The problem is if you have a time laps over a longer time and the light conditions change you can’t develop all photos the same. You will then edit some keyframes and interpolate the settings between them. To get the best results this needs to be done with the raw files and can’t be done in an video editor later.

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