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"360 degree" (or 4pi) camera for Animation:Master some day?

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There may already be such a rendering option, but it would be really cool to have an equiangular or fish-eye, or dual-fish-eye "360 degree" rendering option. Has there been any interest in adding this in A:M?


I'm working on binaural 3D audio rendering of whale songs. What is binaural 3D? If you listen to a normal stereo recording with headphones, it will sound like the sound is inside your head. Binaural rendering (if you synthesize the mix) or binaural dummy head recording (live recording with an anatomically realistic dummy head) pops the sound out into space outside your head where it belongs, even though you are listening with headphones. The sophistication with which such recordings can be rendered has improved quite a bit in recent years.


Back to whale songs...I can place the whale sounds anywhere in (virtual) space, so you will hear the songs not just around you in the horizontal plane but above...AND below you. With headphones (or virtual reality headgear) that track your head movement, this can also be adapted for virtual reality so you can turn or tilt your head without the sound field turning with your head. It would be so cool to be able to animate whales and render for VR to match the whale songs. Rendering to an equiangular or fisheye video format would allow this to be "prerendered" in a relatively straightforward manner. Playback would be "interactive", but only in the sense of the user being able to control what direction they look. (Same applies to the way I'll render the audio.)


Bill Gaylord

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It's unlikely to become an explicit feature in A:M since it is very rare that anyone models a CG environment in a full 360° .


However it would be pretty straight forward to automate the creation of the parts you need so you could add them together in a compositing program.

A pose might be made to turn the camera in eight 45° increments and the Chor sent to NetRender once for each increment.

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Myself and a user named Ben once fashioned a fisheye camera for Animation:Master using a half-sphere with 100%transparency and refraction that constrains closely to the camera... like a LENS! I believe it is available for download if you search the contributors cue forum for keyword 'fisheye'. You could also look into the 'gazing ball method' where you would aim your camera into a sphere that is 100% reflective- altho- both these ideas will not give you the 180degree angle I believe you are looking for.


HERE is link to an animation where I used my fisheye from back in 2008. https://youtu.be/fY9nDwTSrFc

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I don't see why you couldn't build a model with the cameras built into it. It could be as simple as a cube, with six cameras. Then you could move the model around in your space.


You'd have to render six times, but that's to be expected.


Adobe has simple instructions for how to create a 360° panorama in PS here.

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Equiangular should be equirectangular in my post. Two formats are the most popular in VR: equirectangular (the most widely supported) is a mapping of a spherical view...360 degrees horizontal by 180 degrees vertical mapped to a rectangle...very easy to store as a normal rectangular picture frame; and cubic which matches 6 element camera views directly, but is not quite so straightforward to store as a file, but not terribly difficult. The fisheye and dual-fisheye are not so popular. In VR there are also plenty of proprietary mappings.


I figure a render straight to one of these formats could potentially be more efficient to render...one pass, albeit with more rays, versus rendering multiple views separately, then reformatting the resulting images to construct the VR version.


However, rendering multiple views and transforming them outside of A:M is still clearly an option.

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  • 2 months later...

Probably separate renders matching the six planes of an equirectangular format would be the most straightforward, one camera for each. I could probably develop (or find) a utility to map the renders to an equirectangular file format to allow it to be played on a 3D player.


Is there an anamorphic lens option on the camera? It will be interesting to work out how to match the borders seamlessly, if possible. I suppose post processing in a compositing app can be used to correct mismatches in brightness, color, etc., to make the border seamless.


In the meantime I can do a normal static camera view and add the 3D audio track rendered as a binaural (two channel) track as an initial demo. I'll likely post the audio on it's own within the next few weeks. I've found a particular humpback whale recording with a distinct echo off the floor of the ocean. I can separate the whale song from it's echo. I'll render the whale calls in specific locations (and varying distances) around the listener and render the echo as bouncing from below and over a wider expanse of directions--should send chills up your spine if it renders well!


Stay tuned!

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Is there an anamorphic lens option on the camera?


In Render to File Settings>Output>Resolution...


Aspect will get you the squish or stretch of anamorphic lenses.



Here are three renders of a disc with Aspect set to 0.5, 1.0 and 2.0


They all cover the same horizontal angle. The vertical coverage is what changes.







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