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Immersive Video Room Footage

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Caroline Graves
Immersive Video Room Footage
on May 21, 2014 at 2:32:20 pm

I am doing some R&D on an installation video room project.

The client wants video environments projected onto the 4 walls of a room - seamlessly.

I've proposed we generate the scenes in 3D and render out several videos to project on the walls or portions of wall, but he wants to explore using real location footage as well.

I feel like I've seen cameras capable of capturing video in all directions at NAB in Vegas - but am having trouble digging up information online.

My questions would be:
- what are our options - I've found the 360 Hero go pro mounts - are there other options? We wouldn't need sky or floor filmed - just material for the walls... we'd probably be looking to purchase footage clips rather than shoot too much ourselves, but a couple scenes we may want to shoot.

- is there a way to render a 360 video out for projection onto flat walls avoiding the walleye/rounded distortion of the wide angle lens?

I've tried to propose ways of hiding a seam between two adjacent videos, or making it less noticeable but my client's aim is to truly have an immersive environment and he feels that a seam or a change from wall to wall would break that illusion.

would love any lessons learned from anyone with experience with this type of project.


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Vince Becquiot
Re: Immersive Video Room Footage
on May 27, 2014 at 7:22:39 pm

Hi Caroline,

Most of what you will find prepackaged will likely have some wider lenses involved. Here's one company we've used in the past: http://ww2.ptgrey.com/spherical-vision

On the custom side, a 360 rig could be built on a custom round plate with more cameras and standard lenses, maybe someone who has one will chime in.

From there, you can create a 3D environment with a combination of PTGUI (http://www.ptgui.com/) and videoStitch (http://www.video-stitch.com/).

Vince Becquiot

Indigo Live | Kaptis Media

San Francisco Bay Area


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Mark Suszko
Re: Immersive Video Room Footage
on May 28, 2014 at 7:31:54 pm

I don't know very much about this area at all, but I follow it with interest. if i may make what is perhaps a stupid suggestion:

You could also go with a single camera and hemispherical reflector rig. They make an economical version for this that works with iPods and iPhone, and such a low-risk setup could be something you dabble with initially as proof-of-concept for your particular application, before you commit to much more work-intensive methods. In the hemispherical setup, you're working with multiple copies of just one identical file, but mapping different pars of it to each wall of the room. Because of how it was shot, there are no "seams" to worry about...if I understand it correctly. Obviously, a circular room would probably help limit distortion.

This experiment would only cost you 50 bucks to try:

http://photojojo.com/store/awesomeness/iphone-dot-pano-lens/

There are others, more high-end, obviously.


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Thomas Leong
Re: Immersive Video Room Footage
on Jun 2, 2014 at 3:52:02 am

Tough questions to answer and it would seem that no one here has the experience (self included).

For a distortion free image, it would seem that your objective should be a rectilinear image (or video). Examples are those projected at this multi-sensory Shanghai dining experience, called Ultraviolet -
http://uvbypp.cc/
or
http://www.finedininglovers.com/blog/out-of-the-blue/ultraviolet-paul-paire...

Rough calculations indicate that if each projector for each wall were 1024x768 pixels (XGA resolutions), you would need at least a 4K image or video. Google for '4K footage' and you'll get some hits for free footage. Generally, one feeds the projector at its native resolution, i.e. use XGA resolution images/video for XGA projectors. If projectors are at HD resolutions (1920x1080 minimum), you would need 6K-8K images/video. Anything less would result in soft/blurred images.

To render out what-we-call 'pre-split videos' from one large source, I'd recommend After Effects (Render Queue) which allows you to crop the large source into multiple files.

For playback, you may want to consider Dataton's Watchout (easy to learn), or AvStumpfl's Wings Platinum (both are Windows-based programs). There are Mac options but I'm not familiar with them.

To shoot your own, I think the 360Hero.com H3PRO7HD or H3PRO6N (discarding the upper camera) holders will cover the surfaces required with little distortion since the cameras are vertically mounted.

Any distortion can probably be corrected with either Autopano Video or Video-Stitch if they can be set to render a rectilinear video, then split with After Effects for multiple pre-split files.

Or modify the GoPro Hero3 cameras with distortion free lenses:

Modding GoPro for Interchangeable lenses -
http://nofilmschool.com/2013/12/back-bone-ribcage-gopro-hero3-plus-intercha...

Ragecam lens -
http://www.ebay.com/itm/181166584421?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEWAX%3AIT&_trksid=p...


Thomas Leong



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