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bcc optical stabilizer

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Michael Kocan
bcc optical stabilizer
on Jan 10, 2011 at 10:19:16 pm

I am using the bcc optical stabilizer (6.0) in AE for a short 15 sec. clip. I am wondering why I cant stabilize and smooth at the same time? Do I have to apply the filter twice? When I go into mode and click stabilize, it looks nice and stable, but not too smooth. So when I go to smooth, it looks nice and smooth, but not stable.

Can anyone please tell me what I am doing wrong and what I should be doing?


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peter mcauley
Re: bcc optical stabilizer
on Jan 11, 2011 at 2:16:04 pm

Hi Michael,

The BCC Optical Stabilizer can be used in two ways, as you have mentioned.

One is to generate a total camera lock-down of the scene. To achieve this effect, after image analysis is complete we set the Mode pop-up to Stabilize and then set the Stabilize pop-up to Translation + Rotation + Zoom. Then we select a reference from around which to lock the shot. The software will automatically scale the image to fit the frame. The autoscale feature can be disabled by unchecking the Auto Scale option in the Post Processing group.

The other way to use the filter is to smooth the camera jitter / shake. To do this, after image analysis is complete we set the Mode pop-up to Smooth. Then we set the Stabilize to suit - typically Translation + Rotation + Zoom is the most likely choice here. Then we set the smoothing range - generally speaking, a higher value in the Smoothing Range will yield a smoother overall result but it's footage dependent so you'll need to experiment with that. Same thing here with regard to the Auto Scale - it's on by default but if you don't want to use it, you can disable it by unchecking the option in the Post Processing group.

The Corner 1 and Corner 2 point pickers enable you to select only a portion of the frame for image analysis - there are cases where this option is invaluable but for the most part you can leave it at the default, full frame setting.

And finally, if you are using auto scale to fill the frame then you have the option to improve the image quality by selecting the image scale algorithm of your choice - if you are working with a noisy clip and need a smoother result then set the Quality pop-up to Magic Smooth or if you need a sharper result then try Magic Sharp. The default setting of Fast works well for most shots but I'd suggest trying them all so see what looks best. And again, this option is footage dependent so you'll have to experiment to see what works best for the shot that you are working on.

I hope this helps,



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