View Full Version : New Startup promises to cut the cost of "motion capture" by 90 percent

07 July 2007, 01:23 PM
The Orange County Registry talks about how a new Santa Ana start-up aims to improve on motion capture technology.


07 July 2007, 04:38 PM
interesting. Seems like it has some obvious limitations. You can't use it "on set" for one. Curious what "translation" and calibration will do when you are using the human form rather than a predefined motion point " cloud".

07 July 2007, 04:59 PM
I know there are many companies looking toward cheap motion capture

Naturalpoint is show casing it's under 5,000 system at Sigraph and releasing it in August
There is another company that has a suit for under 25,000 but not the big exsoskeleton on the cheaper Gyro system. This one looks more like the Gypsy 18.

So they are coming out and coming out soon!

07 July 2007, 12:40 PM
I bumped randomly into these blokes at the airport last siggie. Not an endorsment but... hey... neat tech.

Demo movie here ( and here ( (xvid) ... it takes a while to get to "teh point".... that "you can wear it under normal clothes, in any location". But it does so in a sorta humorous way, which I like ;)


07 July 2007, 02:38 PM
I remember reading somewhere about some students doing motion capture by using only 3 cheap USB cams.

07 July 2007, 04:17 PM
i saw this before the problem with the system is tho that the whole body is realy jumpy its very noisy.

07 July 2007, 04:29 PM
I would love to have a cheap mo-cap option I could afford on my own.

08 August 2007, 03:37 PM
have a friend that used 2 cameras some LEDs and a darkened room to get pretty decent results. Its cheap but gets you enough data to work from.

08 August 2007, 03:45 PM
have a friend that used 2 cameras some LEDs and a darkened room to get pretty decent results. Its cheap but gets you enough data to work from.

I see you are a technical director, so I assume both you and your friend have a little more "know how" then I do. ;) Is it simple enough for the average user to set up and experiment with?

08 August 2007, 04:16 PM
I haven't had to do much motion capture work. I deal with more blue screens and compositing work, but I followed what he was doing incase it ever came in useful.
Well he was just learning and borrowed an extra camcorder from a friend. He set up both perpendicular to each other to catch the front and side.

To get a good recording he used first christmas lights taped up and extra bulbs blacked out then discussed using LEDs since they are much easier and don't limit the range of motion (but he got good results with it.) A blacklight and florescent strips would also discussed since that opens up motion but you would still be stuck to the area of the blacklight.

Combining them was just a matter of saving videos and mapping them to two polys in the 3d software. then eye balling and positioning the skeleton. I think he did every 10 frames or every distinct change of motion instead of trying to map every frame.
Its part art and part technical since you will need to decide which frames to key. and each limb will hit a position on different frames.

Thats as much as I remember about it. It's been years since he experimented with it.

08 August 2007, 04:24 PM
Ah, so it was more like using the footage for rotoscoping than anything else. But with the lights stuck to the body it gave a more clear position of the key joints and such. Keen idea.

I have thought of just putting someone in a black sweatshirt and pants and taping ping-pong balls to them. It's kinda "poor man's motion capture."

08 August 2007, 04:31 PM
I can't wait till Motion capture is affordable for everyone. Then we'll see what movies will be coming out.

I honestly don't see how this guy is making it cheaper. I mean if you think about it, it may be just as expensive. cutting cost by 90%?

90% of which system? Some systems cost 200,000+ so that would be around 20,000 dollars
but then there are 40,000 systems so cut that by 90% and you got $4,000 dollars. So I'm wondering which end of cheaper is he going for?

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