For event, installation, and live AR broadcast workflows, managing large volumes of data from different protocols and technology vendors has proven to be a cumbersome task and the biggest impediment to workflow. work for creative and technical companies. To better manage data in response to production challenges, Stage Precision was born out of a partnership between members of bright! studios and creative director and software developer Michael Hantelmann. Stage Precision software bridges the virtual and digital worlds in live production environments by unifying all data in a single 3D space. Currently available in beta, Stage Precision allows teams to push data from all workflow devices into a centralized hub for increased usability and accessibility, with precise data synchronization powered by the proven range of capture cards in production of AJA.
Complex production environments often include multiple data sources for camera, performance, or object tracking coded in different protocols and stored in disparate locations. To handle this influx of data, Stage Precision software unifies all sources into a single 3D dataset that can be easily analyzed, controlled, and sent to a media server or real-time game engine, such as Unreal Engine. or Unity. During live productions, all data is recorded on a timeline and instantly available for playback or post-production, where crews can make adjustments and match any changes in content to camera or stage position. objective at the time of filming. To accompany the software, the company produces a Shield plugin for Unreal Engine that gives users increased control over AR broadcast workflows. The plugin removes all the complexities of shots and facilitates a drag-and-drop workflow in Unreal, providing native access to lenses, grading, and other production variables.
Stage Precision offers an extensive library of input and output connections that supports all position control and camera tracking data for industry-wide protocols and manufacturers including NCAM, Spidercam, Mo-Sys StarTracker, stYpe, Technocrane and TrackMen, among others. For position control support, it is compatible with real-time 3D tracking solutions such as PosiStageNet and BlackTrax, as well as OptiTrack for 3D and 2D tracking. Additionally, blob tracking can be done with arrays from multiple image sources. Sarah Cox, Business Development Technical Strategist at Neutral Human and Consultant for Stage Precision shared, “Camera tracking is currently in high demand for AR workflows in the broadcast and live event space, and we support protocols for industry-leading brands. We also support support a wide range of other industry input and output device connections, including audio, sensors, controllers and many more.
In addition to supporting a wide range of industry standard technologies, Stage Precision offers ProAV and broadcast customers a wide range of benefits. Cox continued, “Because our software treats data and shares it as a single source of truth with real-time engines, users no longer have to worry about making plans. We handle the ingress, egress, and configuration of connection profiles for all the different protocols, a process that traditionally requires scripting and coding. This increases accessibility when working with real-time engines and allows teams to focus more on the creative aspects of production. Our software further helps unify creative and technical pipelines, allowing artists and technologists to work within Unreal Engine to solve different parts of the puzzle and ultimately achieve a smoother production process.
For pinpoint accuracy, Stage Precision recommends customers use workstations equipped with AJA capture and output cards to synchronize protocol data and drive control devices and real-time motors for locking of frame and generation lock. Cox said: “The locking of our system is essential because it has to be precise. AJA cards allow customers to align data points from different vendors and protocols and move data within a frame in less than 0.1 milliseconds. They also receive frames for our lens calibration workflows and to read the embedded timecode. »
Stage Precision supports most AJA I/O cards, but has tested and recommends AJA Corvid 88, Corvid 44, Corvid 24, Corvid LHi, Corvid IP, KONA 5, KONA 4 and KONA 1. Cox added, “Our Customers rely on us heavily for recommendations when building their own hardware solutions, and we always recommend AJA as the “Rolls Royce” of I/O boards for their accuracy and economical price. As we are challenged with managing new protocols and more complex live event technologies coming to market, having the ability to offer our customers the most accurate data system with AJA is critical. powering the most accurate data synchronization.