Tag Archives: Broadcast
Pan-Tilt Heads at Wimbledon Tennis Championship
Once again MRMC’s pan-tilt heads were operating at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships. It’s been four years since the heads were implemented at the tournament in partnership with Nikon. In 2013, renowned sports photographer Bob Martin wanted to bring a whole new dynamic to the photography at Wimbledon and therefore trialled MRMC heads mounted with Nikon D4s.
To date, there’s around 20 MRMC robotic heads covering the action from centre court to many of the outer ones that traditionally received little coverage.
Bob Martin, sports photographer, said at the time:
“The demand for new images at big sporting events is what encourages me to push the limits of photography. Using this set up, it’s proved that capturing the impossible is now possible, which is very exciting for the future of photography”.
MRMCs heads are not only used for photography at Wimbledon, they are also used by Hawk-Eye Innovations. They use the heads with their own SMART Production technology to capture footage that gets aired through the red button and BBC iPlayer app as well as other international broadcasters.
Due to the extremely smooth and quiet functionality of the AFC pan-tilt head, along with full lens control and its IP architecture that allows seamless integration into any system, MRMC heads are fast becoming a de-facto choice for many live sports productions & photography agencies.
For more information on the AFC click here
Marintek run an ocean basin laboratory in Norway where they test marine vessels and offshore structures in big wave conditions.
They had a project for high speed filming of an oil rig floating in the pool, attached and secured in an anchor system to the bottom. However, during heavy wave testing, the structure would move from centre.
That's where we come in…
Marintek were looking for a robotic pan tilt head for a high speed camera with an automatic function so the camera would track the model independently with no camera operator during testing.
As you can see from the images, The AFC-100 controlled by Flair software provided an ideal solution.
Due to Flair’s support for real-time motion capture systems, MRMC’s robotic control provided a seamless integration with Marintek’s existing data tracking environment. Being a leading supplier of robotic systems for camera automation in sports, the MRMC solution also proved an ideal fit for this research and development application.
According to principle photographer, Siw Hermanstad, “The head performed flawlessly” for the initial project and will continue to be used for day to day operation in their 4-6 channel multi camera productions.
For more information or to see some video examples of The AFC – 100 click here
At MRMC we are proud of our major new product releases and concentrate so hard on them we often forget the significance of our many incremental feature additions and product upgrades that occur on a daily basis but may not be headline news or create a flurry of press releases. Recently we’ve been looking through our work over the past months and realised those small changes amounted to a lot, so we thought we’d list some. If you want more info on any of them just let us know:
- Developments and tests to make the Bolt High Speed rig 20% faster than before.
- Developing and Testing the new Version 6.0 of our Academy award winning motion control software.
- Turntable range increased from small to large, and most with speeds in excess of 100 degrees per second.
- Flair multi-controller created, allowing multiple motion control rigs to be controlled from a central source.
- Orbital XL rig created for super-sized e-commerce photography.
- Head and Flair Ethernet API created allowing any of our products to be controlled directly from 3rd party software.
- Improved or implemented interfacing to a number of 3rd party products, including DMX lighting controls, Dragonframe, 6-degrees-of-freedom joysticks, and various 3D tracking systems.
- Interfacing to Oculus Rift.
- Broadcast vertical columns for on-air moves.
- Etc. etc.
The list is long and lengthy, this is just a snapshot. With 6 full-time developers and several support engineers and freelancers, the development is rapid and ever-changing – so if you don’t immediately see what you need just ask.
Tel: +44 (0)1342 838000 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mark Roberts Motion Control press announcement
For immediate release
MARK ROBERTS MOTION CONTROL TO SHOW AUTOMATED STUDIO WITH PRESENTER TRACKING AT BVE2015
See Mark Roberts Motion Control on the Nikon stand J06 at London BVE 2015 Expo at London Excel 24th – 26th February
London 20th February 2015: Mark Roberts Motion Control will show an example of its automated studio system with live presenter tracking at BVE2015. A collaboration with Nikon, it will be located on the Nikon stand J06, and will consist of a StudioBot running on rails and three automated remote heads all mounted with Nikon DSLR cameras with teleprompters and other studio equipment in an automated studio setup.
As a further enhancement to the system live presenter tracking will be demonstrated where the cameras will automatically track multiple presenters walking around the studio area.
This could apply particularly in the case of the studio being used for low cost productions. This would allow, for example, a presenter or a couple of presenters sitting in front of cameras, to select for themselves who the cameras should follow, or they could press a button for the cameras to go to a preset position. The presenters could be standing or walking.
The system offers several control options using touch screens including simple iPhone or iPad apps, as well as full joystick panels. This type of operation also offers additional creativity again on lower budget productions of bringing additional cameras into use not normally within that budget level.
Mark Roberts Motion Control has supplied robotics for a number of Nikon projects including the studio automation at London Live, which has now been runnign for over a year, 24/7.
Bryn Balcombe, Technology Director at London Live said "We wanted to design a studio utilising advances in technology now available to allow high quality programme production at a lower cost and overhead than ever before. The automated camera systems from Mark Roberts Motion Control have been integral in this. The system has been in use 24/7 now for a year and is a key element of our success. We have laid the foundations today for a fully autonomous and reactive studio environment of the future.”
“Our motion control software is tracking agnostic, so it can be interfaced to many tracking systems” said Assaff Rawner, managing director of Mark Roberts Motion Control. “ For example we have interfaced with various sports tracking systems including football, horse racing and tennis, as well as studio based tracking systems like the one shown at BVE.
The Nikons used at London Live are D4S DSLRs. These are large format sensor cameras that produce a shallow depth of field to give a more cinematic look. Zoom and focus are all computer controlled and fully integrated with the rest of the robotic system.
Here is a link to a London Live promotional video which includes shots of the studio and equipment: http://youtu.be/Ztr_l9IjQqY
Don’t miss the live demonstrations of Mark Roberts Motion Control on the Nikon stand J06 at BVE Expo 2015, London Excel, 24th – 26th February.
Mark Roberts Motion Control is an award-winning UK company, well established in the design and manufacture of robotic systems, supplying products all over the world from their HQ in Sussex. Most of the design and production team have been with the company for years and are experts in their fields. Their motion control rigs have become the established standard for the Motion Picture industry worldwide. The credits list includes just about every blockbuster to come out of Hollywood, and just about every other major film studio. The Motion Picture industry accepts nothing less than total reliability, and their rigs keep on performing perfectly, day, after day, after day.
In 1999 the Academy for Motion Pictures made a special award to Mark Roberts Motion Control recognising that their rigs have become the de facto standard for film production.