Leading drone and gimbal manufacturer, DJI, announced a new camera addition to their popular Osmo handheld gimbal line today: the DJI Osmo+. The DJI Osmo+ integrates the Zenmuse Z3 camera, until now only available for DJI Drones, to the Osmo line and brings with it optical zoom and adds the ability to shoot motion timelapse, all controllable through the DJI Go app (on both iOS & Android). DJI’s Osmo holds an interesting place in the gimbal market with a relatively low price point, when compared to DJI’s own Ronin and Freefly’s Movi system, and its integrated camera is tailored more to a prosumer crowd of shooters in my opinion. It seems clear that DJI is working to move its lowest cost gimbal into the professional arena with both the DJI Osmo+ and the Osmo RAW. Ideally as a professional filmmaker you would probably want the Zoom functionality of the new DJI Osmo+ with the image quality of the Zenmuse X5 and X5R cameras (See our in-depth quality comparison between the different Osmo cameras HERE). Key Features of the DJI Osmo+ Include: Video – 4K/30fps video and 1080p/120fps with improved sound capture. Stills – 12 megapixel stills in Adobe DNG RAW. Motion Timelapse – Osmo+ has a motion timelapse function. From DJI: “Mark where you want the camera movement to start and end, and tap ‘Start’ to create moving timelapses without additional specialist equipment.” Note: The DJI Osmo + camera is not designed to be mounted on current DJI Drones. For that, you’ll need the Zenmuse Z3.Read more
Microsoft is hardly known as a player in the video and film industry, but their Research division turned out some pretty spectacular image processing innovation before (incorporated into Bing Maps). Now they have found a way to make point-of-view / first-person video more watchable. An inherent problem of the typical GoPro strapped to your head is that humans do not move steadily – it’s our brains that make us think that we move smoothly, in fact there is a lot of shake (hence the need for handheld gimbals as pioneered by Freefly Systems with the MoVi). That means that our POV-GoPro shots almost NEVER look anything like the GoPro marketing department makes us think it would look like. In comes Microsoft with the demo of a yet-unpublished software that can not only de-shake these first person videos, but actually make them extremely smooth. In their demo video below, they demonstrate the different looks of the input material, the sped-up timelapse version of that (unbelievably shaky) and the Microsoft hyperlapse version after processing. The downside is that it only seems to work for sped-up (i.e. timelapse) versions of those point-of-view videos, not the realtime recordings, which would certainly be more useful in day-to-day use (I am actually currently personally deeply involved in a large first-person project that would greatly benefit just from that!). However, the results of Microsoft’s hyperlapses are nothing short of amazing: Using some kind of 3D camera path mapping, the route becomes much smoother and actually seems to reconstruct footage at the edges. They also show what normal stabilization looks like on that same footage, and it doesn’t come even remotely close. They are working on putting all of this goodness into a Windows app (yeah, I know … come on, it’s 2014, please give us a Mac app too!). Until then, head over to their Microsoft Research page where you can download the technical paper, supplemental material and a high-res video demo. From their site: We present a method for converting first-person videos, for example, captured with a helmet camera during activities such as rock climbing or bicycling, into hyper-lapse videos, i.e., time-lapse videos with a smoothly moving camera. At high speed-up rates, simple frame sub-sampling coupled with existing video stabilization methods does not work, because the erratic camera shake present in first-person videos is amplified by the speed-up. Scene Reconstruction Our algorithm first reconstructs the 3D input camera path as well as dense, per-frame proxy geometries. We then optimize a novel camera path for the output video (shown in red) that is smooth and passes near the input cameras while ensuring that the virtual camera looks in directions that can be rendered well from the input. Next, we compute geometric proxies for each input frame. These allow us to render the frames from the novel viewpoints on the optimized path. Proxy Geometry Stitched & Blended Finally, we generate the novel smoothed, time-lapse video by rendering, stitching, and blending appropriately selected source frames for each output frame. We present a number of results for challenging videos that cannot be processed using traditional techniques.Read more
Watch previous episodes of ON THE COUCH & ON THE GO by clicking here! Visit our Vimeo and YouTube playlists, and subscribe to the podcast on iTunes! Apologies for the delay in posting more episodes of ON THE COUCH until now, we had some technical problems with some of the recordings, but they are now sorted out. We pushed the less time critical episodes to the end, and there a few exciting ones coming over the next week or so. On this 10th episode of ON THE COUCH, I talked to Tabb Firchau from Freefly Systems about new things in the world of their famous brushless gimbals. It’s been one year since the fuminant debut of the MōVI M10 with Vincent Laforet’s spectacular launch film, which propelled handheld gimbals into the filmmaking world stratosphere – ever since then, they have infiltrated an incountable number of productions around the world. The big success of the MōVI introduction spurred a seemingly endless flurry of copycat systems from countless small and big manufacturers, with mixed results. I asked Tabb about this and what he thinks about the long-term success prospects of some of these companies. Tabb talked about Freefly’s new products – the now-shipping little brother of the M10, the M5, which is made for DSLR-sized cameras, the upcoming M15, the larger version for bigger cameras (such as the Alexa M), as well as innovation around their gimbals which makes them more versatile – for example a ring around the MōVI which makes hand-overs easier, or their plans to release a wheeled dolly-type version of the MōVI. MōVI M5 for smaller cameras like DSLRs started shipping at NAB We also had a chat about Freefly’s history and how they actually got to make make these gimbals in the first place. Freefly Systems’ sister film production company Freefly Cinema used to be their core business as they are all shooters who were looking to ways to move the camera – that’s when they founded Freefly Systems and they realized within 6 months that it had become a much bigger business than the production business. Watch the episode above to learn more about where Freefly came from, where they are now and where they might be headed! Next episode coming early next week … stay tuned to cinema5D.com. For all ON THE COUCH episodes so far, click here:Read more
We thank our sponsor B&H who has made cinema5D’s news coverage of IBC 2012 possible. Get your gear through B&H to support this platform: www.bhphotovideo.com The famous most affordable Sachtler tripod gets a bigger brother. What is this, a second Sachtler Ace? Indeed, this is an upgrade version for those who like the affordability of the first Sachtler Ace, but require some more features. Basically the advantages of the Ace L over the normal Ace (Ace M) are the following:Read more
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