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PostPosted: Tue Apr 06, 2010 1:08 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 03, 2009 1:34 pm
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Location: Los Angeles
Also, what was the resolution of your final video? Higher resolution doesn't necessarily mean more accurate tracking; in fact, it may adversely affect the performance of DMC. All DMC needs to see is motion, not fine detail, so it's more important that the video looks clean and is appropriately lit (i.e., no confusing shadows, good separation of limbs, etc.)

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 08, 2010 9:16 pm 

Joined: Fri Apr 02, 2010 6:51 pm
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Thanks a lot, Greenlaw!
I really appreciate all your suggestions! The best part is ....that you keep track of what is going on and answer people questions!
Many thanks again!


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 04, 2010 9:10 am 

Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2010 8:51 am
Posts: 1
Hi All

This might be a bit overkill but it will give excellent results, you will need a Mac and Apple Final Cut studio. Using 4 cameras record your scene from 4 fixed locations. Start all 4 cameras independently we will do synchronisation in Final Cut studio using Plural Eyes. Once you have recorded all the angles import your footage into Final Cut, use plural eyes to sync footage and set your In and Out points. Each camera will be above each other. Export each camera to a new quicktime movie. This will create synced files. Open up Apple Motion and create a 1024x240 project, drag and drop your cameras next to each other. Size the Video to fit. Export your video to an avi for it to be used in Windows.

High quality Video perfectly synced ready for motion capture.

Hope This helps


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 14, 2010 1:49 pm 
iPi Soft

Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2009 9:13 pm
Posts: 804
Albertdup wrote:
Hi All

This might be a bit overkill but it will give excellent results, you will need a Mac and Apple Final Cut studio. Using 4 cameras record your scene from 4 fixed locations. Start all 4 cameras independently we will do synchronisation in Final Cut studio using Plural Eyes. Once you have recorded all the angles import your footage into Final Cut, use plural eyes to sync footage and set your In and Out points. Each camera will be above each other. Export each camera to a new quicktime movie. This will create synced files. Open up Apple Motion and create a 1024x240 project, drag and drop your cameras next to each other. Size the Video to fit. Export your video to an avi for it to be used in Windows.

High quality Video perfectly synced ready for motion capture.

Hope This helps


Thanks for interesting idea!

Please note that recording with PS3 Eye cameras or webcams still have other advantages in addition to simplified synchronization. You can turn the screen of your laptop/desktop PC towards the capture area and see yourself on the screen while adjusting camera position and orientation. And your video will be self-contained (all cameras in one file).


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 25, 2010 6:11 pm 

Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2009 3:12 pm
Posts: 16
So am I correct in thinking that with the ps3 cam in monochrome mode I can capture using 4 cameras on a single dual core laptop with 2 usb buses at 60 fps? Is 60fps the max frame rate of Ipistudio or is it video dependent? (incoming video rate dictates capture rate)

thanks in advance!

Alex.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 26, 2010 3:59 am 

Joined: Mon Aug 03, 2009 1:34 pm
Posts: 2406
Location: Los Angeles
evp_uk wrote:
So am I correct in thinking that with the ps3 cam in monochrome mode I can capture using 4 cameras on a single dual core laptop with 2 usb buses at 60 fps? Is 60fps the max frame rate of Ipistudio or is it video dependent? (incoming video rate dictates capture rate)

thanks in advance!

Alex.

You can't capture monochrome PS3 in iPi Studio, and you wouldn't want to because DMC needs the color data for separating the background from the performer and also for tracking the performer's body parts.

With the dual core laptop you may be able to capture 640 x 480 at 30 fps, which is fine if your motions are not too quick. You need 60 fps to reduce motion blur and to get this frame rate you will need a quad core system and probably a very fast drive. Also, you need to be sure your laptop actually gives you two controllers for the cameras. If indeed you have two available USB controllers, you can use two cameras with each controller for a total of four. At this point, however, your bottleneck will probably be your capture drive. (This is where I gave up using a laptop for motion capture.)

FYI, I'm now using a quad core system with an internal SATA3 drive dedicated to video capture, and it easily captures 4 synchronized streams of 640 x 480 at 60 fps with no dropped frames. The best I could do with my old dual core laptop was 320 x 240 at 30fps with no dropped frames; I was still able to get good results with this, but it wasn't as precise as what I'm getting now with the quad core system.

It's a hassle to lug this bigger computer and keyboard from the studio to the shoot location and back again for tracking, but the improved calibration and motion capture quality I'm seeing now is definitely worth it. FYI, I still bring the laptop to the location; it's handy for video and music playback during capture to help keep multiple character performances synchronized.

G.

Edit: Yes, 60fps is the current max rate. So far it seems to be fast enough for the motions I'm doing. In a recent shoot, we had some some fairly fast arm movements (simulated guitar playing,) and I was a little surprised that DMC was able to track this. Unfortunately, DMC's Jitter Removal completely removes this subtle but significant motion, so I had to stop using Jitter Removal. Same was true for the harmonica and cowbell performances, which both featured small but important hand movements.

However, not using Jitter Removal has its own issues since Jitter Removal actually does a lot to help stabilize the feet. To solve this problem, I had to come up with a different solution for the feet using my 3D app, but I understand that the iPi team is looking into this problem.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 7:05 am 

Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2011 6:52 am
Posts: 1
For what it's worth, I've used a simple method for years to sync multiple cameras. Just fire off a photoflash in view of all the cameras.

In a video editing application, place each captured clip in its own track. Line them up so the photoflash happens at exactly the same time for all clips.

Trim the clips' heads and tails to match exactly. Save the clips. That's it!

From what I read here, you would then take the sync'd clips and put them into a new video project, with the project's frame size set to allow all the clips to go into ONE track, side by side, using a picture-in-picture or pan/crop type of effect. FCP has been mentioned; I do this with Sony's Vegas. Pretty much any video editing application would do as long as it allows you to set a custom frame size.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 10:55 am 

Joined: Mon Aug 03, 2009 1:34 pm
Posts: 2406
Location: Los Angeles
A very low tech variation that I've used at work for 'roto-capture' is to have the actor clap their hands at the beginning of the shoot. Then you have not only a visual but also an audio sync marker.

G.

Edit: That said, IMO, getting multiple standard video cameras to work with iPi Studio is way more work and expense than simply using four/six $30 'plug-and-play' PS3 Eye cameras that synchronize automatically and do not require image adjustments.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 9:32 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2011 9:14 am
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videobear wrote:
For what it's worth, I've used a simple method for years to sync multiple cameras. Just fire off a photoflash in view of all the cameras.

In a video editing application, place each captured clip in its own track. Line them up so the photoflash happens at exactly the same time for all clips. ...

As a longtime video editor I would like to add one small caveat here -- just remember that once in a while you will NOT see the flash on the video.

Best example I can give happened on a multi-camera wedding video I had to edit a few years ago. The camera operators gave me NOTHING to reference - no hand-claps, clapboards, or synch markers of any sort (can you say "Unclear on the concept"?). I looked for the flash from the wedding photographer's camera as a synch point. However, the flash duration being something like 1/10,000th of a second, one of the cameras (shooting at 29.97 fps) totally missed it - the flash event must have taken place during the camera's synch pulse. Fortunately, I was able to salvage the synch by locating a faint reflection of that flash on a shiny surface in the church (so, I was probably off by a fraction of a frame, which could not be noticed on the finished product.)

Weird stuff happens. I'm just saying.


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