Tuesday, February 24th, 2015 Posted by Jim Thacker

The Captury releases Captury Studio 1.0

German developer The Captury has released Captury Studio, a new GPU-accelerated markerless optical motion-capture system with a range of interesting capabilities – including the ability to capture animals.

The software builds on work carried out by the Graphics, Vision and Video group of leading computer science research body the Max Planck Institute for Informatics.

Track anything, anywhere, with any number of cameras
Unlike entry-to-mid-level solutions like iPi Motion Capture, Captury Studio isn’t designed to work with game sensors, instead permitting users to use any number and type of standard video cameras.

Frame rates and resolutions can vary between cameras, as can import format – the software supports many standard video file formats, including the R3D files generated by RED cameras.

According to The Captury, recording can be done anywhere – including outdoors or underwater – under any lighting conditions, providing there is sufficient colour contrast between the actor and the background.

The video above suggests that the software copes well with self-occlusion, and with varying illumination.

And while Captury Studio provides a “highly optimised” readymade body model for tracking human actors, if you generate a customised skeleton, you can track anything, including animals and machines.

Tailored for real production pipelines
Another notable feature of Captury Studio is the way it is tailored to real-world production pipelines.

The software includes semi-automatic tools for computing lens distortion parameters, synchronising cameras when capturing without a trigger signal, and colour calibrating witness cameras to match the principal camera.

If all else fails, you can also match-move manually: Captury Studio imports lens distortion parameters from 3D-Equalizer, SynthEyes and PFTrack

There are also a wider range of output formats than many markerless systems, including Alembic and OBJ sequences as well as the standard FBX and BVH.

We can’t find a detailed demo video online, but the screenshots on The Captury’s site suggest that setup is a straightforward four-step process, with a limited range of key parameters.

Pricing and availability
As you might expect given the feature set, Captury Studio isn’t cheap: to capture multiple actors or animals, you need the Ultimate edition, which costs €4,999 (around $5,660) – and that’s for a one-year node-locked licence.

However, if you only need to capture a single human actor, there is a €1,999/year ($2,620/year) Basic edition; and you can trial the software for 14 days for free.

Captury Studio is available for 64-bit Windows and Linux. It uses CUDA 2.0, so you need an Nvidia GPU.

Updated: The Captury tell us that a second product, Captury Live, is in development. Where Captury Studio processes motion data offline, Captury Live will be able to stream data live into MotionBuilder and similar tools.

Read more about Captury Studio on The Captury’s website