Audio production, MS paint, Call of Duty, etc


Postby plae57 on 02/27/2016, 6:49 pm

I have been compositing with After Effects for about 10 years, and went crazy a few years back when they introduced their 3d tracker. I immediately understood the problem with After Effects when dealing with 3d. After Effects can't. Ok, it can, but it is 2.5d. So I recently moved to Fusion for another compositing option with a full 3d environment (and was affordable).

Sadly Fusion does not come with a integrated 3d camera tracker so I started investigating my options because with out that, I had no need to move to Fusion. Well after looking at multiple software packages and scripts and plugins, I settled on SynthEyes. The price was $499.00 for the pro version and $299.00 for the beginner version. I bought the pro version so I can say I am a pro to all my friends that don't know the truth, that I am just an old guy having a blast with the Atlanta indie film community.

The price put it right in the middle of the pack as far as cost goes. But when looking at features and ease of use, well for me, SynthEyes blew away the competition. I have tested about 10 different video situations, and on all but one, the Automatic process combined with their clean up process all gave me track with a HIPX under .9, some as low as .43. If I go back in and do some manual cleanup, I can generally shave another .1 or .2 off that. Bottom line VERY respectable solutions on all but one of my tests. Note, every test was with an image sequence not a video file.

Now, the one that got away... The one that didn't work failed miserably in both SynthEyes and After Effects. It was a drone shot of the drone flying about 10ft off the ground traveling straight forward really fast. I am thinking that it may be untrackable.

A lot of the video I work with is from my Phantom. And while it has a compensating lens, there is still quite a bit of lens distortion. SynthEyes has a built in Lens process that will clean up the distortion for you. Again there is a automatic process, which works great, and a manual process that is literally as simple as drawing lines. The difference in lens compensation between the automatic and manual process was not significant enough for me to do the manual process. As a bonus, for Fusion users (maybe others, I don't know), when you export the solution, it builds the Fusion comp, with all the correct nodes, a point cloud, and a custom node that handles all the lens compensation, and a projector with your footage, all wrapped up ready to do that 3d magic. You could not ask for more.

I am sitting here trying to think of something I did not like. There are a ton of tutorials available, there manual is so detailed it takes up 600+ pages (so that is something I will never read). Installing it was simple. Oh, the Demo version sucks. I did not like that. It is 100% functional in every way except it only saves the first 5 frames, and the last frame. Apparently that is to show you that it can get the track, and in the end it is still locked in. So you kind of see it work, and kind of can't see it work at the same time (but obviously it showed me enough to invest $499). Also they stress really strongly that any project you save with the demo version will never work in the full version.

It can export the solution to virtually compositing software and 3d application made including After Effects (heck in many cases you get o choose the version to export to). Here is the list if you're intereted:

I am sure I will someday swear at SynthEyes about something. But right now, I am very impressed with the functionality, simplicity, accuracy, and cost (ok, not so much cost). If you really want to get into 3d VFX that require a 3d camera tracker, match move, and even a planar tracker, then I would encourage you to look at SynthEyes.

Last, other than a new customer, I have no relationship to SynthEyes. I am just really impressed with the software and the company, and I wanted to share my review.
Posts: 574
Joined: 08/4/2014, 4:12 am

Re: SynthEyes

Postby Farmfield on 02/28/2016, 6:33 am

Over the last year, I've had a lot of contact with tracking genius and a VFX icon Matt Merkovich, he's an awesome dude. Here's his breakdown on the work he did on Minority Report recreated with SynthEyes - the original tracking was done in the precursor to the software.

*** Demos, RnD & tests: ***
Posts: 2284
Joined: 06/8/2014, 1:44 pm
Location: Sweden

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