Industry Insights: Studio Robotics and Camera Control, Part Two



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Earlier this year, we spoke with suppliers and manufacturers related to studio robotic camera systems.

This Industry Insights roundtable examines new technologies impacting studio robotics as well as product roadmaps.

Industry Snapshot: Studio Robotics and Camera Control, Part One

The next part of this series will focus on camera tracking, another key piece of studio technology that enables creative freedom for virtual production.

How does IP production continue to influence your roadmap and products?

Jeanette Dahl Torsvik, Marketing Manager, Electric Friends: We have integrated our systems with new IP products, such as NDI for PTZ cameras, and always try to be up to date with new technologies.

Karen Walker, Vice President of Camera Motion Systems, Ross Video: Native IP-based control is now standard. We see more developments in cable aggregation to robotics, and we continue to facilitate this while improving cable management. As for the SMPTE 2110 standards, one can imagine in the longer term how they will make video analysis, thumbnail capture and storage, and video integration into control systems much easier. In the future, IP video will enable new features and control system architectures that take advantage of the ability to route video anywhere.

Michael Cuomo, Vice President, Telemetry: When we released our S5 series of pan-tilt heads, we included a network trunk for remote camera control, and now it’s even more useful with IP video.

Paddy Taylor, Broadcast Manager, Mark Roberts Motion Control: We have moved to a full IP model which allows our users to set up low cost infrastructure and move to a one-to-many model. For example, our IP Pan Bars are designed to allow a remote operator to have the natural feel of controlling a camera in the traditional way. By placing a monitor or viewfinder above the pan bars, extremely low latency control over IP means an operator can be located anywhere with an internet connection and take control of any camera connected to the system.


James Eddershaw, Managing Director, Shotoku: With several all-IP deployments already completed, we see exciting product development opportunities to adopt more production IP interfaces, although the core technology of a robotic system is not directly affected.

Broadcast Exchange: The Evolution of Robotic Camera Systems in Broadcast

How do you envision cutting-edge technologies such as machine learning for your products?

Jeannette Dahl Torsvik: Machine-controlled cameras will soon be prominent in most genres of television production.

Michael Geissler, CEO, Mo-Sys: Mo-Sys has a machine learning R&D staff studying a wide range of applications for virtual production.

Karen Walker: Ross already has machine learning software functionality that can be used on our robotic camera solutions. As technology improves and becomes more accepted, there will be new developments in this area to make robotics smarter and move more like they would if a cameraman were controlling them.

Michael Cuomo: Artificial intelligence and machine learning are at the heart of our automatic shot correction cropping technology, and we regularly update this software with new features. For complex moves like hands-free talent tracking, machine learning makes it more accurate and reliable over time.

Paddy Taylor: We already offer products that incorporate machine learning around camera movement and talent tracking. As computing power continues to increase, we will evolve these solutions to do more.

James Eddershaw: ML and AI technologies will become increasingly important in the potentially fully automated unmanned production environment of the future. Key to this app are face and body tracking systems like our AutoFrame. With this technology it is already possible to leave the robotic system to follow the anchor or the guest with minimal human intervention on simpler productions. With more advanced AI and ML, it will become possible to leave production fully automated, even on less predictable shows and when more dynamic camera movements are required.

Case study: Nine Network installs Vinten robotics in its Sydney studio

Challenges with broadcast robotic camera systems

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