Based in Vancouver, Canada, The Capture Lab is the world's largest motion-capture facility. Since 1996 it has contributed motion capture, digital doubles, facial animation, and virtual camera services to more than 225 high-end animation, video game, and visual effects productions around the world. Recent projects include Electronic Arts' award-winning first-person shooter game Battlefield 4, 20th Century Fox's Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters, and EA SPORTS' FIFA 15.
Thanks to Vicon's Blade 2.6 motion capture software, The Capture Lab has more than doubled the size of its motion capture volume, creating the largest entertainment capture stage in the world. The increased functionality of the new software allows The Capture Lab to deploy 132 Vicon cameras, covering a massive 50'x130'x15' volume, through one aggregated system.
"The new link aggregation feature was a huge win for us this year," explains Brad Oleksy, Director of Studio Operations at The Capture Lab. "The ability to run everything on one system has greatly increased the accuracy of timecode sync, camera calibration, and the resulting animation. We no longer need to merge three separate systems together. Blade's volume visualization tool was also essential to the creation of the massive shoot volume. It enables us to ensure accurate camera coverage information without the need for iterative testing; a huge time saver for our team."
"The familiar, user-friendly interface has facilitated the adoption of the new Blade software at The Capture Lab," says Jeremy McCarron, Director of Strategy. "The Axiom engine has improved our real-time display and increased our pre-visualization capabilities, allowing directors to see the animation, characters, props and set pieces 'in camera' and focus on achieving their creative vision instead of wondering if they got the shot."
Vicon's Blade software enables effective production pipelines and workflow efficiencies, with solid real-time performance, and integrates seamlessly with Vicon's T-Series and Bonita camera ranges. For fast-turnaround material, Blade's QuickPost feature allows users to automate the post processing workflow, including reconstruction, labelling, and occlusion fixing and solving - reducing the need for time-intensive manual clean up. Its HSL API enables The Capture Lab to customize the software to its specific needs.
According to McCarron, The Capture Lab opted for Vicon based on its accuracy and stability: "Vicon's motion capture system is robust enough to stand up to the rigors of production," he explains. "With the sheer volume of data that we capture and process, we rely on the cameras, software and hardware to perform together flawlessly every time. Downtime isn't an option, and Vicon's system keeps us up and running."
"We need to focus on production and getting amazing animation into our customers' hands, so the on-going support Vicon offers is invaluable," concludes McCarron. "Whether loaning us equipment during routine maintenance, consulting on pipeline efficiencies, or collaborating on new technologies, Vicon has been an important part of The Capture Lab's success."