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Optical Illusion Freezes Water In Place [Video]

This clever optical illusion uses sound frequency and a digital camera to “freeze” water in time and space.

YouTube user MrBibio explains the hack:

Creating the illusion of a static flow of water using sound. Of course this isn’t my idea and plenty more refined examples already exist.

I tried this same experiment years ago but using a strobe light, but it’s harsh on the eyes after a while and hard to video successfully. It only dawned on me shortly before making this that for video purposes, no strobe light is required. This is because the frame rate and shutter of the camera is doing a similar job to the strobe.

The speaker-as-frequency-generator model is definitely easier on the eyes than similar experiments that rely on high-speed strobes.

[via Geeks Are Sexy]

Jason Fitzpatrick is warranty-voiding DIYer and all around geek. When he's not documenting mods and hacks he's doing his best to make sure a generation of college students graduate knowing they should put their pants on one leg at a time and go on to greatness, just like Bruce Dickinson. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 04/13/12

Comments (4)

  1. PortableAnswers

    So the camera and speaker are doing this trick and in reality the water is running normal?

  2. r

    …no, it’s magic water.

  3. Jer

    I have some magic water! It’s in my cup right now! When it runs out – I’ll get more from the water cooler.

  4. Jer

    Camera = Strobe (but only when viewing the recording).

    If you have a camera you can plug into a monitor showing what the camera sees in real time – you’ll see the effect. (but, only with magic water… :)

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