1. Tracking Footage in SynthEyes
Open the SynthEyes software.
Before tracking the footage, you'll need to set the preference. Since, you will work in 3ds Max later, the preferences must be set according to 3ds Max.
Go to Edit > Edit Preferences.
Set the Axis as Z Up (Max), Default Export Type as Max
Script V6/Later, Max Axis Ordering as XYZ and then click on OK.
To load the footage to track, click on Open File icon.
Alternatively, press Ctrl-O keys.
This opens a browser window. Navigate to the location where you've saved the files. The footage is in an image sequence, so select the first file and then click on Open.
This opens the Image Settings window. Here you set frame rate of the footage, pixel aspect ratio and lens settings. I've set the Frame Rate to 30 fps.
SynthEyes loads the footage in its timeline. There are several white plus signs on the table in the scene. These act as good tracking markers.
Now press Auto button to start the automated tracking process.
The software starts tracking the scene. You can see the process as shown in the following image.
SynthEyes finishes the tracking task within a couple of seconds and generates the camera and tracking data as well.
But, you can see the camera is
not facing in the right direction. You need to setup the correct co-ordinate
system before exporting the camera data to 3ds Max.
To setup the correct co-ordinates, click on the Co-ordinate Control System Panel icon. Alternatively, you can press F8 key.
First click on the 3 icon and then click on
a good tracking point to set it as the origin.
Next, click on another point to make it the reference point for the XY plane.
Finally, click on one more point to make it the reference point for the Z direction. As soon as you click on it, a dialogue
box appears and asks you to finalise the coordinate system. Click on Yes.
Another window appears which confirms the solving is done. Click on OK button.
And now you'll see the camera is pointing in the right direction. All the tracking points are now placed on the grid. This confirms that the tracking has been done successfully.
Now you're ready to export the camera to Max.
It’s time to save the camera data. Go to File
> Export > Max Script V6/Later.
Save the script as Max Tracker.
A small dialogue box appears to ask for another confirmation. Select V6 or later and then click on OK.
2. Setting up the Tracked Camera Data in 3ds Max
Open 3ds Max. The very first thing you need to do is run the script,
which you saved from SynthEyes. Go to Max Script > Run Script.
You'll see the same camera and tracking points load inside the 3ds Max
viewport. The camera is looking downwards and all the tracking points are
perfectly positioned on the ground.
You'll need to set the live footage as the background.
While in the Camera view, press Alt-B to open the Viewport Configuration window. Check the Use Files ratio button, the Animate Background option and the Match Rendering Output button, and then click on the Files button.
Since the live action footage is an image sequence. Select the first file (Table_00000.jpg), check the Sequence option and then click Open.
Create a box in the camera view.
I've applied a wooden texture on to the box.
I've also applied several lights to mimic the original lights in the live action footage.
Now you can render the sequence. After rendering and playing the video file, the 3d box will look like the integral part of the live action footage.
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