Finding the + in Vantage
Mark Finch, Vicon CTO
Vantage has been the standard bearer for motion capture cameras for five years now. Half a decade. That’s a lifetime in the technology world. In an industry in which everyone is relentlessly striving to find the next edge in performance, Vicon launched something in 2015 that was so powerful it’s still at the forefront of motion capture hardware in 2020. A team that delivered a camera that futureproof might be forgiven for patting itself on the back for a job well done and moving on to the next project. But that’s not how we work at Vicon.
RELENTLESS FORWARD PROGRESS
In the five years since we launched Vantage the world has changed, and the needs of our users have changed with it. Drones have moved from a field of investigation for futurists and the military into the mainstream. Robotics has advanced dramatically. Biomechanists are probing deeper and deeper into natural movement (and finding new applications for the aforementioned advances in robotics). Virtual reality, which has been ‘10 years from taking off’ for decades, is finally reaching a mass audience, thanks in part to trackingbased LBVR.
You don’t have to look further than the pages of this very magazine to see some of the incredible work being done using motion capture. From wearable robots at Epic Lab to simulated cities at Bell Innovation, to chasing down the white whale of finger capture with Framestore, the work our partners do is, frankly, inspiring.
So it’s up to Vicon to stay a couple of steps in front, pushing the frontiers of motion capture ahead of them so that our technology can enable our customers to keep doing their best work.
It’s that spirit of innovation that drives every advancement of our technology, including Vantage+.
MAKING THE BEST BETTER
In a nutshell, Vantage+ is a free update to every single Vantage camera that digs into the hardware’s untapped potential to broaden your options for capturing at high speeds.
Our existing windowing mode enables users to capture fast-moving subjects such as drones or athletes by reducing the camera’s field of view to focus its resources on capture speed.
If, however, you need to cover a large volume such as a warehouse or section of athletics track, you might want to prioritize maintaining your field of view.
With the new High Speed Mode offered by Vantage+ you can do that, boosting speeds while maintaining field of view by selectively reducing pixel count.
It’s up to you. We know that our customers are going to find applications for motion capture we haven’t even thought of yet, so there’s no point in us deciding what’s best for them. The best thing we can do is make the tools we build as flexible as possible and then help our users put it to work in a way that works for them.
MINING OUR HARDWARE’S CAPABILITIES
I’m incredibly proud that, five years after Vantage launched, we’re still finding untapped potential in its hardware. Our engineers have done amazing work – both in building a camera that powerful in the first place, and in continuing to find new ways to utilize that power.
On a personal level, it’s thrilling to be working with engineers who have the kind of drive, work ethic and curiosity that it takes to deliver these kinds of advancements.
As CTO of Vicon it’s also great to be able to provide this level of ongoing support to our partners for free. We’ve never been the sort of company that considers our job done when we ship. We know that we can help our customers do better work by listening to them, learning from them and improving our technology so that it can enable them to move forward. Development doesn’t stop when we ship, it’s an ongoing process.
That means, of course, that there are more exciting developments in the pipeline. There are always more exciting developments in the pipeline. But I’ll bite my lip and save those for another day.
In the meantime, I can’t wait to see what you do with the new possibilities offered by Vantage+.