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Can anyone give me a rundown on the effectiveness of the various mocap solutions for iClone?

Posted By jarretttowe 5 days ago
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Can anyone give me a rundown on the effectiveness of the various mocap...

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jarretttowe
jarretttowe
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I have some money I can spend on mocap, but I want to make sure that it is spent effectively.
Can someone show me the way? I don't have an iphone capable of the face app. I DO have a high-performance laptop with a webcam. I DO have a Kinect 1 and a Kinect 2 sitting unused in my house.
I am hoping someone can enlighten me on which solutions are the most complete and cost effective.
Thank you!
jarretttowe
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Ok...it looks like 79$ gets me body capture with my kinect 2.
99$ gets me hand capture with a leap controller.
Is there an economical way to do facial capture?
Kelleytoons
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Good, easy, cheap.  Pick any two.

The good cheap way is to do it by hand, but it's not easy.  The cheap easy way you've already found (those two plugins) but it won't be any good.

I can tell you LOTS of good easy ways but they aren't cheap.  Sorry.



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jarretttowe
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Well, I didn't say cheap lol. I said I wanted to be cost effective.
It looks like there are only two games in town for facial capture in iclone -- faceware and the live face software for iphone x series.
I think using the leap and kinect gets me into the mocap game for the lowest cost, and it is easy as you said. It would let me learn, most of all, and plan a logical upgrade path as I understand which suits/software are best for mocap.
What is the cheapest good and easy suit system?
Thank you for your advice!
Kelleytoons
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I only said that because I've been ALL through that.  I think I've bought just about every mocap solution there has been for iClone.  I started off with the RL Kinect plugin -- worthless.  I then went to Brekel's -- acceptable for upper body movement (as long as you stay facing the Kinect) but worthless for legs or any movement where the arms cross the body.  I *finally* went to iPisoft, for the only Kinect solution that actually DOES work, but it requires at least two Kinects and a subscription (I *think* they finally came up with a purchase price version last year).  I was so invested in this I bought four or five Kinects when they stopped making them (still new and in their boxes, along with the components to hook to the PC -- I will eBay these someday when I think of it).

But it's a LOT of work -- just capturing it requires a very specific setup (the cameras have to be aimed just right, you can't have too big or too small an area, the lighting has to be just so, the calibration is a PITA, you need two PCs to run it because you can only run one Kinect per PC so you network them together) and then cleaning up afterwards takes a lot of work.  I got to where I dreaded capture.

So I investigated other solutions and... let's just say I ended up with the Perception Neuron suit (but without the Motion Live plugin, which you don't need) and I think it's perfect (if I were starting again from scratch I'd also look at the Rokoko suit -- when I look for a second suit that will be what I try first, as I want two suits for interactions).  It's around 1.5k and just works -- all my zombie stuff was done with that (so you can look and see) and I did that in less than 30 minutes with no cleanup.  I also use Leap for finger motion -- that works well and IS relatively inexpensive.

For face capture I have both Facegen and Live Face, and I can tell you that Live Face works better.  Knowing what I know now, I'd buy the iPhone XR and Live face, as the cheapest facial capture system (under 1K for a superb system).  My iPhone X works great with it, too, but with the XR going for only $750 it's a great way to go.  Again, all my zombie stuff was done with Live Face (I don't even use Facegen anymore, although I spent around 1.5k for it.  Sigh).

With all that I have I finally feel I can rest easy when it comes to mocap (although, as I said, I'm going to get ONE more suit so I can do two people at the same time.  There are times when nothing else will do).



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jarretttowe
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Now THAT was an awesome post. That spells it out for me quite well. The Rokoko suit will be do-able in the near future. The Leap is so cheap it is a no-brainer. The iphone solution is probably going to happen soon too. Thanks so much for breaking it all down for me.
Kelleytoons
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I'm glad my pain could be of help -- jk, but I wouldn't want anyone to go through what I have done in the last three years trying to find a good solution.

The good news is this stuff DOES work and does so tremendously, so it was worth all my effort to get it right.  I just wish I could have skipped some of the process.



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jarretttowe
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It looks like the suit you have is around 1500$ while the rokoko is about 2500$. I think I would probably have to go with the 1500$ unit, since that extra $1000 would pay for the facial system lol.
Kelleytoons
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The PN works fine -- the only reason I want to explore the Rokoko is that it IS a suit (and thus a bit easier to put on, although now I'm pretty quick with putting the PN on.  I wrote elsewhere but the first time I did was about like the first time I ever put on a condom -- WAY too much trouble and almost made me forget the whole enterprise.  Except I didn't and I'm glad I didn't).  I can now get the PN on in about five minutes but the first time was like 40.  Sigh.

I would also, however, recommend getting the magnetic case.  All of these capture suits with magnetic sensors can have issues with magnetization.  With the case I haven't had any issues but others have reported issues without it.  Just a FYI.



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kungphu
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I can vouch for KT’s info. I went the same route. Kinect (which was worthless), Berkeley which was barely useable. Instead of paying the iPSoft premium I went first gen PN and got one of their first suits. Not perfect but very usable. I went with the iclone plunging since it really helped with my workflow. I can record live movements real-time in iclone as the actors move around the screen. So I make sure character don’t bump into each other and can stage simple fight scenes easily. I have a PN pro suit as well and the motion leap plug for fingers. I’ve used it a handful of times so can’t give a thorough review of it, however I have another 48hr film festival this weekend and will be putting the PN Pro with leap fingers workflow through its proper paces. I also have FaceWare and Liveface or whateve the iPhone is called. Both have their strengths, but if you have an iPhone... liveface is a no brianer. FaceWare is a PiTA to get switched over to a new computer. The iPhone solution is super convenient. I was traveling out of country and brought my laptop and already had my phone. Had a nice mocap session in my hotel. Super convenient. Not sure if the pricing but it used to be way cheaper as well. I’ll let everyone know what happens with the PN Pro this weekend. Fingers crossed for a great mocap session!

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