volumetric video system volumetric video system

Offering a Brand-new Viewing Experience

Volumetric Video System

Canon‘s cutting-edge imaging technology offers you a mind-blowing sports viewing and entertainment experience by making you feel as if you were playing on the field or stage with other players.

November 29, 2023

A Revolutionary Technology which Dramatically Changes How Sports are Viewed

Conventional stadium systems use broadcast cameras and cable camera systems which provide video feeds from limited viewpoints. Meanwhile, Canon’s Volumetric Video System allows the viewer to see the action on the field from any position or any angle in the stadium. You can view the same scene from various angles, changing to the perspective of an athlete on the field or any number of alternate viewpoints. Additionally, viewers can control both viewpoint and game time at will. For example, viewpoint can be changed while watching the scene in slow motion. This revolutionary technology dramatically changes how sports are viewed, and it has become reality.

The means by which video is generated may very well be considered the future of video capture. Visual data is captured by high-resolution cameras installed around the stadium, then converted into 3D data and stored on servers. When the user sets or moves the position of the virtual camera, the video they see is generated from the 3D data to show video from the desired camera angle. This video data can then be output for viewing.

Example setup and applications of the Free Viewpoint Video System

In addition to optical and visual technologies consistently developed since its founding, the Canon group develops cutting-edge technologies in such fields as network transmission and user interface. Such technologies have the power to take the workflows of video production and broadcasting to a new level. Canon’s project to develop its Volumetric Video System involved selecting developers from various divisions to work together and combine their specialized engineering skills.

Maintaining Innovative Spirit for a Greater Height Ushering in a New Era

Canon provides Volumetric Video Systems for rugby, basketball, and other kinds of sports. For overseas professional sports matches, video from viewpoints and angles not possible with actual camera positions has been shown on large displays in stadiums and even broadcast on TV stations. Volumetric Video Systems are pioneering a new way to watch sports, such as a bird’s-eye view of a game from the sky and immersive experiences that feel like being right on the field with the players.

Accurate 3D data from fast-moving sports scenes, every camera must start shooting at the exact same time. If the timing is off for even one camera, the data cannot be generated correctly. Developers were aware of this issue from the design phase, and accordingly developed algorithms to control and completely synchronize the start of shooting for multiple cameras. An additional challenge is the need to process enormous amount of data instantaneously in order to generate Free Viewpoint Video data. Efforts are underway to generate high-definition images at faster speeds through such means as parallel distributed processing.

Volumetric Video Technology(3 minutes 14 seconds)

In addition to sports, Volumetric Video Systems are enabling the creation of completely new content in the field of entertainment. Since it was originally researched and developed for sports, it can produce video even for performances where multiple subjects are present in a wide area. The absence of an actual camera or photographer on stage allows for free camera work without the camera showing up in various cuts.

Canon launched Volumetric Video Studio - Kawasaki, that makes possible a fully supported workflow, including capturing and editing of 3D content in 2020. Using 4K cameras and Canon's proprietary image processing technology, high-detail video and 3D data can be generated almost simultaneously with capturing, enabling live streaming of video and shortening the time required for content production. Canon will continue to develop technologies that break down the barriers of location and time, leading to the creation of unprecedented value.

Volumetric Video Studio Kawasaki filming area

Volumetric Video Studio -Kawasaki filming area-

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