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PostPosted: Tue Nov 09, 2010 11:44 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2009 10:57 am
Posts: 107
I've just installed the latest versions of iPi.

I created a calibration video using 4 PlayStation 3 cameras at 40 fps 640x480 compression best quality with no dropped frames.

VLC can open the video created without any problems on Win7-64 and can see al cameras.

The AVI video is in black and white, while I see color on the iPi capture display.

I also see 16 images in VLC, with the top row of 4 cameras being duplicated for the other 3 rows. The rows seem to get lighter than the original row.

When I try to open the video in ipi to finish the calibration, I see an error msg of:
----
Error

Cannot open video: incorrect video frame indexing. Please fix indexing or convert the video to uncompressed AVI.
---

Luckily with my RAID system, I can write un-compressed and that seems to open ok, but I'd like to be able to record smaller files?

Is there a workaround?


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 09, 2010 12:58 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 03, 2009 1:34 pm
Posts: 2411
Location: Los Angeles
Hi McWannabe,

With the RAW Bayer format, the sixteen panel black and white image you see in external players is normal. The player needs to understand how to combine the images properly. iPi DMC can do this, but VLC and Media Player Classic cannot.

Sorry, I'm not sure what the error you got means.

I do know that it's important to keep 'RAW' at the end of the filename; this tells iPi DMC about the format so it will give you the proper dialog box and open the file properly.

FYI, I'm using Recorder's compression at about 75% high quality. The files still look good and they are smaller. I haven't tested to see if slight compression has any effect for the 'jitters' yet. I don't think it does, but I need to find out for sure.

G.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 09, 2010 2:20 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2009 10:57 am
Posts: 107
Thanks Greenlaw - I'll try a slight compression at some point, but I did get it to work without any compression and did a calibrate and my first try at motion capture.

I'm going to have to dig thru the 'manual' and figure out how to get it back on track when it loses an arm - as that's what it did within a few frames.

I may have better luck tonight, as I've got a lot of sunlight coming in now. I'm afraid I don't have such a pristine background as yours, only one side has a green screen (mostly to block out a row of windows and possible reflections).

I'm also on a shiny hard wood floor, which could cause issues? I'll look at putting down a large black tarp to cover the area of interest.

I actually did screen grabs for colors using Jovian http://www.joviancolorpicker.com/ to set my hand, sleeve, hair, etc. exact colors, hoping that would help it to track.

Oh well, I had no illusions this would be a painless process. The calibration was painless and very quick (GTX 285 with 2GB). It seemed to have zero trouble tracking the led flashlight.

It would be worth it to me to create an outfit with a few leds, as that would seem the simplest way to get 100% tracking.

My cameras may also be a bit high. They are all around 7.5 feet up and in a large rectangle pointing slightly downwards.

But ... hopefully, with a few adjustments, I'll get this working.

Then, it's time to figure out MotionBuilder and all the FBX idiosyncrasies that go along with working in Lightwave.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 09, 2010 4:24 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 03, 2009 1:34 pm
Posts: 2411
Location: Los Angeles
McWannabe wrote:
Thanks Greenlaw - I'll try a slight compression at some point, but I did get it to work without any compression and did a calibrate and my first try at motion capture.

Yes, calibration in iPi DMC is very good now. It's fast (takes five to 10 minutes) and I get all green markers every time!
Quote:
I'm going to have to dig thru the 'manual' and figure out how to get it back on track when it loses an arm - as that's what it did within a few frames.

It's easy. Go to the 'bad' frame and make a note of the frame number. Then use fk or ik to correct the pose, and (this is optional) click Refit if you think it will help. Then click Track Backwards until you pass the frame where the motion started to go off. Go back the the manually adjusted frame and then click Track Forward for as far as you think you need to re-track the motion.
Quote:
I'm also on a shiny hard wood floor, which could cause issues? I'll look at putting down a large black tarp to cover the area of interest.

One of problems I had when I took the system to work last year was a very shiny floor. This created a mirror image of the action which totally confused the calibration and tracking processes. A matte surface for the floor would help. Maybe a blanket or a carpet? (I'm using green foam tiles I purchased from this source: Wondermat
Quote:
I actually did screen grabs for colors using Jovian http://www.joviancolorpicker.com/ to set my hand, sleeve, hair, etc. exact colors, hoping that would help it to track.

I'm not sure that's necessary. What I do is alternate between Analyze Actor and Refit Pose a few times. This combination seems to help tracking accuracy a lot.
Quote:
My cameras may also be a bit high. They are all around 7.5 feet up and in a large rectangle pointing slightly downwards.

My cameras are pretty high up, though not all are that high. I think a problem with having all the cameras up too high is that you may not get good a good reading of the feet. (Also, watch out for long pants cuffs. See my blog posts for details.)
Quote:
But ... hopefully, with a few adjustments, I'll get this working.

Good luck!
Quote:
Then, it's time to figure out MotionBuilder and all the FBX idiosyncrasies that go along with working in Lightwave.

Are you in the Lightwave Hardcore program? If so let me know in a private message; I have some info that may be helpful.

G.

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Artist/Partner - Little Green Dog | My Demo Reels (2013,) (2015,) (2017,) and (2019)
Image
Watch a one minute excerpt on Vimeo now!


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 09, 2010 11:05 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2009 10:57 am
Posts: 107
A few more observations.

Auto detect initial camera positions seemed to work, but when I tried to use my calibration, one of the figures from the scene (for one camera) that I was supposed to position after loading the calibration scene, was very, very small - and it was too small to adjust in size properly. So, I gave up on that.

I had an issue where I selected 3 ground points, and then told it to detect additional ones. The first time I did that, it seemed to return rather quickly (on an earlier calibration attempt).

On a later calibration attempt, telling it to detect more ground points seemed to perfectly draw in yellow the ground points I moved the wand over in a second, but then the moving circle that indicates the program was 'thinking' just kept going and going. After about 10 minutes I gave up (as I've got a fast video card and processor, the previous part of the calibration just took a few minutes).

Maybe some feedback to show that it is not hung but actually calculating and making some progress? Unsure if I actually needed any more ground point anyway. I could probably have just selected a few more myself.

BTW - putting down black fabric on a shiny wood floor to cut reflections is a bad idea. My 'legs' curled up into my chest immediately. Have to try again tomorrow.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 11, 2010 9:58 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2009 10:57 am
Posts: 107
I just had an issue where the legs were ok until they got down to the knees, then they went to the wrong feet (after a bit of dancing and turning around).

I'm wearing white socks.

I'd be quite willing to buy some colored socks so that I could have a right and a left sock in different colors, if that might help with this issue?

Sometimes, if I bend over forward, it seems to have problems putting the pelvis in the correct position, and this causes problems.

I've got the shirt length all the way to the left, but it still doesn't seem to go up far enough (where it would end at the top of my pants), maybe allow for more range for the shirt?

And, it seems to have problems with the knees sometimes, losing track of where they are so the skeleton knees go where they shouldn't.

I'd be quite willing to purchase a girls garter belts, or knee pads, or something that would make it easy to identify the knees?

My feeling is that anything we can buy for just a few dollars that can make the tracking easier and more reliable, is a good idea?

Garter belts or knee pads are available at Walmart for very little money.

Then again, I'm only running at 40 fps, maybe all these issues will clear up when I can run at 60 fps?

Here's a picture of my setup:

Image


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 16, 2010 9:49 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2009 10:57 am
Posts: 107
I've tried both 'best quality' and 'smallest file'.

I'm using 4 Playstation 3 cameras at 40 fps 640x480.

VLC from videoLan.org will play both files.

iPi Studio 1.1.0.110 gives an error of:

Cannot open video: incorrect video frame indexing. Please fix indexing or convert the video file to uncompressed AVI.

I can deal with an uncompressed stream for 4 cameras, but I've got 2 more coming and would like to address this as I'm don't want to get into a situation where I cannot record 6 cameras at 60 fps 640 x 480 (I also have a pciE 4 port USB card arriving, so I should be able to get 60 fps) uncompressed - which could very well be the case as that's a lot of MB/sec to record!!!!

Thanks!!!!

BTW - would it be possible to give a longer cookie duration for this message board? I ALWAYS have to log in again, even though I've set it to keep me logged in.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 16, 2010 10:52 am 

Joined: Mon Aug 03, 2009 1:34 pm
Posts: 2411
Location: Los Angeles
McWannabe wrote:
BTW - would it be possible to give a longer cookie duration for this message board? I ALWAYS have to log in again, even though I've set it to keep me logged in.


Yes, I feel the same way. I visit this forum often throughout the day, so I wish my account would stay logged in for at least a day before I have to log in again.

G.

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Greenlaw
Artist/Partner - Little Green Dog | My Demo Reels (2013,) (2015,) (2017,) and (2019)
Image
Watch a one minute excerpt on Vimeo now!


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