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World’s First Broadcast Camera with Integrated Camera Tracking

World’s First Broadcast Camera with Integrated Camera Tracking

Cutting edge AR and VR technology manufacturer Mo-Sys, known for its many first-off innovations, and broadcast giant Grass Valley, known for its broad range of solutions for the broadcast industry including an award-winning line-up of cameras, are debuting a fully optimized solution by incorporating Mo-Sys’s industry-standard StarTracker tracking technology with Grass Valley’s LDX Series Cameras.

Marcel Koutstaal, vice president of cameras, Grass Valley, said, “Providing an integrated camera system to support live productions with augmented reality and virtual sets removes the complexity of such application and therefore it will improve the business model for augmented content in live productions.”

When making cutting-edge live augmented reality and virtual studio productions, the alignment between the camera and the tracking solution is vital. Any tolerance between these two elements will instantly break the fragile magic of virtual studio productions. Koutstaal continues, “By teaming up, we make sure that the magic continues and can steam ahead to the next level with this integrated solution.” Through the development of the new built-in StarTracker, Mo-Sys and Grass Valley have given the industry its first broadcast camera featuring integrated optical tracking.

Mo-Sys turned the industry on its ear with the advent of StarTracker by literally eliminating the "black art" formerly associated with camera tracking technology, thus single-handedly enhancing the industry’s acceptance of virtual studio solutions. Now, through its alliance with Grass Valley, another breakthrough is realized by putting tracking technology inside the camera. This significantly diminishes setup time and complexities by removing the need for bolt-ons and additional cables, as well as offset and weight considerations, making StarTracker ideal for SteadyCam and hand-held applications.

Michael Gleissler, Mo-Sys CEO said, “Mo-Sys is on a journey to simplify and innovate augmented reality and virtual studios. Through this collaboration with Grass Valley, a leading broadcast camera manufacturer, we continue our quest to make camera tracking systems simpler and more accessible than ever before.”

StarTracker is an optical camera tracking system that looks at identical retroreflective stickers (stars) that are randomly applied to studio ceilings or lighting grids. No additional structures are required. StarTracker provides unlimited freedom of movement while still ensuring accurate real-time position, rotation and lens data.

Grass Valley’s LDX 82/86/86N Series cameras have been adapted to include the StarTracker system. The LDX Series cameras combined with Grass Valley’s XF Transmission, consisting of the XCU (eXchangable Control Unit) Universe XF base stations and the XF Transmission Direct IP interface, provide power and synchronization internally to the StarTracker system. The camera tracking data goes directly into the XCU in the control room via the camera’s Hybrid fiber cable. From there, it can be interfaced over IP to the virtual studio system, such as Zero Density, an innovator in its own right by being the first to employ a gaming engine to its renderer, revolutionizing the efficiency, photo-realism and flexibility of augmented reality and virtual studio rendering systems. (9/17)

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