This month’s Products section is dedicated to new product introductions revealed during SIGGRAPH 2009 in New Orleans.
Di-O-Matic, a developer of 3D character animation software and plug-in tools, unveiled Voice-O-Matic Version 3 (3ds Max edition) software, designed to meet the needs of 3D character animators who require an easy-to-use, lip synchronization plug-in for Autodesk 3ds Max. Version 3 includes improved lip-sync quality, improved compatibility with 3ds Max 2010, new presets and settings, and 64-bit support for Autodesk 3ds Max 9, 3ds Max 2008, 3ds Max 2009, and 3ds Max 2010. 3D animation artists benefit from automatic phoneme matching features and manual tools for achieving customized results. Voice-O-Matic synchronizes pre-recorded audio to virtually any 3D character set up, including morph target and bones-based character rigs. Voice-O-Matic v3 (3ds Max edition) is now available. Pricing for a full commercial version, with floating licensing options and one-year premium support, is $349.
Xsens unveiled Xsens MVN, a camera-less, full-body motion-capture solution suitable for use both indoors and outdoors. Designed to deliver clean, smooth data and save users post-processing time, the inertial motion-capture system has been adopted by such film and game companies as Sony Pictures Imageworks, Industrial Light & Magic, Double Negative Visual Effects, EA, and Sony Computer Entertainment. The company also previewed an add-on developed to provide absolute drift-free motion-capture data that is well suited for multi-person motion capture.
Fusion 3D SDK
Eyeon Software previewed its Fusion 6.0 Software Developer’s Kit and Learning Edition, tool sets for facilities, developers, students, and transitioning artists. The SDK enables developers to take advantage of the new 3D and GPU shader capabilities in Fusion 6. The new Learning Edition of Fusion 6 ensures that students and transitioning artists can keep up with the latest compositing technologies. Released in June, Fusion 6.0 offers VFX artists improved performance, full stereoscopic 3D support, Region of Interest/Domain of Definition (RoI/DoD), interface refinements, expanded 2D and 3D tool sets, user interface enhancements, and more.
Eyeon Software; www.eyeonline.com
Blue Newt Software demonstrated for the first time the BlueSprocket rendering engine inside its PixelTransit image generator. The BlueSprocket engine brings high-dynamic range, deferred lighting, and a post-processing pipeline to the real-time simulation market. The BlueSprocket engine is currently deployed in the scalable PixelTransit image generator, enabling customers to work in real-world lighting conditions both day or night. Lighting is performed in conjunction with effects, such as tonemapping and bloom. BlueSprocket uses hardware synchronization and shaders to provide simulation customers high rendering quality and high performance.
Blue Newt Software; www.blue-newt.com
HD 3D LCD
JVC has launched a full-HD, 3D LCD monitor that measures just 1.5 inches thick and employs the company’s high-quality 3D visual engine. The new GD-463D10 delivers flicker-free 3D imagery using the Xpol polarizing filter method and battery-free, passive-type circular polarizing filter glasses. JVC’s 3D decoder circuit translates images into the optimal Xpol display format. The GD-463D10, developed to meet content producer requirements, not only provides a rich 3D visual environment, but also is well suited as an enterprise-use 3D monitor in fields that rely heavily on simulation, including scientific research and medical education.
3D Printing in Stainless Steel
Shapeways unveiled a new way for 3D modelers to bring their designs to life with 3D printing. Shapeways’ new technique deposits stainless-steel powder in a thin layer, combining it with a binding material, until the form is created layer by layer. When complete, it is infused with bronze and cured in an oven. After cooling, the models can be left in the steel finish or tumbled for a polished look. Shapeways’ users can also have designs 3D printed in metal, the material specifications of which differ greatly from polymers.
Built for Speed
Boxx Technologies, maker of high-performance computing systems for VFX, postproduction, graphic design, and advanced visualization, announced that its GoBoxx and RTX, like the 3DBoxx 8500 workstation, are now powered by the latest Intel Xeon processor series. The RTX workstation, engineered for high-res motion media workflows, supports DI tasks, image manipulation, and input/output of compressed and uncompressed HD, 2k, 4k, 2k stereo, and motion media files. The GoBoxx mobile workstation is available with the Intel Xeon 3500 processor series or an Intel Core i7 desktop processor.
Boxx Technologies; www.boxxtech.com
Handheld Virtual Camera
InterSense, provider of precision motion technology, has enhanced its flagship VCam system for game developers and film, episodic, and commercial production professionals, with a handheld, high-definition tracked display, accentuating cinematic realism. VCam also has been updated with improved software, offering greater flexibility and interface options in support of Autodesk’s MotionBuilder 2009 and 2010. The company also previewed during SIGGRAPH 2009 its VCam Lite, a cost-effective alternative to the original VCam system that can be integrated into optical motion-capture environments. The VCam Lite will combine the VCam’s patented motion-tracking technology and virtual production software into a precision, inertial-ultrasonic system with an intuitive user interface. An alternate version of the VCam Lite will be offered with InterSense’s InertiaCube technology, for use on large optical mocap stages.