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View Full Version : Native Camera Trackingi n Lightwave.. Would this be something you could use?



robertoortiz
03-07-2019, 05:40 AM
This is a question for those who do VFX in Lightwave,
Would a camera tracking capability be useful for your workflow?
If so, how would you implement it?
Tell us,
-R

Imageshoppe
03-07-2019, 01:07 PM
This is a question for those who do VFX in Lightwave,
Would a camera tracking capability be useful for your workflow?
If so, how would you implement it?
Tell us,
-R

I would not be in favor of Newtek resources being used to develop a "native" 3D tracker. It would be very basic, and would require so many versions/iterations to get up to the quality and feature set of any of the other common trackers. So many more important things for Newtek to concentrate on! And if developed by a third party... how many sets could they sell unless it competed on an even footing with any other third party tracker?

I'm a VFX generalist, but tracking has always been one of my more favorite things to do. To me, an old school guy from the locked off camera world in the photo-chemical days, well it's just a very magical thing that truly was impossible/impractical to do not that long ago. I think the first automated track I ever did was with some primitive 3D tracker that was part of 3D Studio in the early days, a very picky process with rigorous rules. I used Icarus for many early projects, even some feature shots and simple photogrammetry in "Are We There Yet?". I think it became PFTrack eventually.

Pretty much every shot I've ever done for feature film or commercial work required tracking, and I've always found Syntheyes to be up to the challenge. Russ Anderson gets my 120 bucks every year for whatever new little improvement he comes up with. But if that price is too steep, well, there are many ways to 3D track today, some of them free.

Regards,

MonroePoteet
03-09-2019, 08:22 AM
I agree that LWDG shouldn't invest time in live footage camera tracking software. LW being able to *import* camera data from other applications would be fine, but the complexities of general "match moving" is a completely separate development process and problem space.

SynthEyes (as mentioned) is a wonderful tool. I, too, send in my annual subscription even though I only use it very occasionally. It does not just camera tracking, but object tracking, face tracking and directly exports Lightwave scene files. If the shot is even reasonably clear so the AutoTrack can find spots to track, it sometimes only takes a few minutes to produce a LW scene file for use.

Here's the YouTube website where Russ Anderson posts his innumerable tutorials on using SynthEyes:

https://www.youtube.com/user/SynthEyesHQ/videos?pbjreload=10

A brief survey of his tutorials I think would show the richness of SynthEyes capabilities, and IMO, the amount of investment LWDG would have to make to build such a capability native to LW.

mTp

vncnt
03-09-2019, 09:45 AM
I agree with both.
SynthEyes is inexpensive and it does a great job.
The technique has matured and doesn't need frequent updates - I'm still using v1311.

Tracking is a specialized task and the result must be perfect to be convincing.
It's going to be difficult to beat SynthEyes.

JohnMarchant
03-09-2019, 02:12 PM
Well i think we could all find a use for it. However im not sure NT/LWG3D sholud take people off of other more pressing things to implment it.

pinkmouse
03-10-2019, 01:44 AM
Indeed, too many other things need sorting first.

kyuzo
03-10-2019, 06:55 AM
Like many other's my immediate thought was also 'syntheyes'.
I'm just starting to dig into it, but it clearly it has tremendous power to solve and track. No point in Newtek re-inventing the wheel, when Russ is doing such a fantastic job, and making it available for a great price.

OlaHaldor
03-11-2019, 05:26 AM
Let's say tracking is the big feature of LW2020. Would I buy an upgrade because of it? No. I have SynthEyes and Nuke, and Fusion is free for everyone. Hard to beat the price of zero.

Don't bother competing against the other, well established trackers. Spend your time developing tools, features, updates and fixes for what you do good. 3D.

lardbros
03-11-2019, 07:09 AM
Let's say tracking is the big feature of LW2020. Would I buy an upgrade because of it? No. I have SynthEyes and Nuke, and Fusion is free for everyone. Hard to beat the price of zero.

Don't bother competing against the other, well established trackers. Spend your time developing tools, features, updates and fixes for what you do good. 3D.

Tracking isn't free in Fusion, but yeah, totally agree... I'm not fussed by having camera tracking in LW. Would rather Newtek focussed their efforts on more important things like sub-pixel displacement and distributed rendering etc.

Philbert
03-11-2019, 11:51 AM
I would totally use it constantly if they did include it. I actually have a copy of Mocha Pro which has a very nice tracker. The down side is that the it has no way of setting the ground plane so you can export an FBX and load it into LightWave and the camera moves around just fine, however it is facing the wrong direction with no way to accurately correct it. I've tried Blender's tracker and that's a pain the three butt to use plus not very accurate. I like Voodoo tracker and it works great with LW but you can't use it commercially.

Imageshoppe
03-11-2019, 02:51 PM
I would totally use it constantly if they did include it. I actually have a copy of Mocha Pro which has a very nice tracker. The down side is that the it has no way of setting the ground plane so you can export an FBX and load it into LightWave and the camera moves around just fine, however it is facing the wrong direction with no way to accurately correct it. I've tried Blender's tracker and that's a pain the three butt to use plus not very accurate. I like Voodoo tracker and it works great with LW but you can't use it commercially.

The key assumption to your usage of a LW3D based tracker is that it would actually work at a level comparable to any of the other multi-version mature options. I've been around long enough to be very skeptical about that...

Many, many things you can track with a single button click in Syntheyes. When that one-button approach fails there are all the tools in the world in that kit to get to the bottom of the problem. See the thread on the drone footage over Manhattan Kansas for context on a situation like that...

Regards,