Animation studio IKinema have unveiled a new type of motion capture, or mocap technology that uses commercially available virtual reality (VR) hardware that aims to make motion capture and body tracking accessible and affordable for everyone.
The new system, which IKinema have named Orion, uses a VR headset like a HTC Vive, motion controllers and three Vive trackers, which records the position of the headset, motion controllers and other devices, it creates a flexible motion-capture model. The same technology can be used for highly accurate body tracking to reproduce movements within a VR environment.
Previously, mocap technology required expensive technology such as sophisticated mocap cameras which meant that motion capture was out of reach for creative ventures working within a budget, who perhaps did not have the resources of large movie studios. The Orion system is being made available for an annual charge of $500 (USD).
Alexander Pechev, CEO at IKinema had this to say: “Here at IKinema we’re devoted to sharing creative technology with the widest range of individuals, industries and disciplines possible, while improving quality and keeping costs low. With the arrival of consumer-ready VR headsets – and particularly the tracking hardware that has followed – we saw an untapped opportunity to put quality animation and body tracking into the hands of creators everywhere. The result is Orion, which we are confident can serve sectors as diverse as immersive theatre, enterprise, training and retail marketing. It should equally provide game developers and animators with a powerful boost to their production pipeline.”
Daniel O’Brien, General Manager of HTC Vive added: “With Vive Tracker, we’re introducing a new toolset to both creators and consumers to build, monetise and enjoy more immersive VR experiences. IKinema’s Orion project is an effective implementation of the Tracker to enable high-end motion capture using Vive and the Vive eco-system. We see a huge runway for Tracker implementations that enable more creativity and production using VR hardware.”
You can watch the Orion system in action in the video below.
VRFocus will keep you up-to-date on Orion and VR use in Motion Capture.