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Nikon Europe: Auto-tracking for small studios

A new auto-tracking system for small studio applications has been created by Mark Roberts Motion Control for Nikon.

The system is similar to large-scale systems recently tested at such sports events as Sochi, Golf Masters, basketball and horse-racing, and is designed for tracking talent or objects in motion in smaller studio spaces using automated cameras. It is suitable for integration with a number of wireless optical and radio tracking systems.

The system is being demonstrated with Nikon’s D4S cameras, which recently won the EISA award for the European Professional D-SLR Camera 2014-2015, and operated through a Polycam autotracking system to track multiple focus points.

The configuration has been used on location for motor sports to track cars traveling at speeds over 355kph and accelerating through tight corners, demanding ultra-fast response from the camera heads. It can also enable a single operator to automatically control the synchronous movement of numerous cameras and provide accurate tracking shots during live events.

“The multiple camera installations are easy to set up and control from a central location,” said Assaf Rawner, CEO of Mark Roberts Motion Control. “In F1, for example, there could be substantial savings just on freight costs, taking into account all the peripheral equipment needed to put an operator safely into the field. The broadcast unit also has the advantage of directly controlling and synchronising remote cameras from one place, all over a standard Ethernet network infrastructure”.

The AFC-100 heads provide IP connectivity and scalable architecture. Operating distances are unrestricted and there is built-in integration with IP broadcast camera, lens, statistical and image analysis technology.