Audi grandsphere concept presented as Virtual Exhibit on air
Baar, Switzerland (8 October 2021) – When SXCES Communication AG was challenged to bring their well-established Virtual Exhibit to broadcast quality for the Preshow of the Audi grandsphere concept launched right before the IAA, they set out to create something unique. As an absolute solid tracking was crucial but seemed restricted by a very demanding studio setup SXCES relied on the unique technology of GhostFrame to nail perfect execution.
“When we learned about GhostFrame in a call with TrackMen, we were very excited about it,” states Sebastian Kuhn, from SXCES. “The obligated studio setup hardly seemed to leave any chance for stable tracking. The most important area we were dependent on for tracking reasons was the LED floor, which was seamlessly integrated into the studio setup. GhostFrame offered the perfect option to integrate these tracking targets invisible in the setup, exactly what we needed. The production of the Audi grandsphere project as the first of our Virtual Exhibit on air was made possible by using GhostFrame.”
GhostFrame is a collaboration of AGS, Megapixel VR, and ROE Visual. These companies have combined their respective IP to enable the GhostFrame technology, adding TrackMen as the exclusive partner for the GhostFrame Track feature.
Both Faber Audiovisuals and Creative Technology Germany provided the ROE Visual Black Marble LED floor panels, running on Megapixel’s HELIOS LED processing platform. Both rental companies own a large stock of this high-performance LED floor, used for exhibitions, product presentations, and virtual production studios.
With the first tests with Audi and SXCES starting in early August, the time to plan and prepare was condensed. Fifty sqm of Black Marble was used to create a LED floor where the presenters could walk freely while discussing and highlighting the features of the new concept car.
Working alongside the content creators for the Preshow, GhostFrame was able to add a hidden tracking pattern to the LED floor, making it possible to position the 3D model of the car with hyper-accuracy. While the camera capture showed just a concrete floor, the presenters could see the car’s outline and the exhibit’s orientation during their whole presentation. This made the presentation very real; the hosts were able to interact with the car naturally. The position accuracy also allowed mixing shoots of the 3D model car with shoots of the actual car.
“Being able to see the car means you can pretend to touch it or indicate even the smallest details. You don’t have to worry about walking right through the model. It’s there right before your eyes all the time,” comments Kuhn.
The Audi presentation provided a perfect example of the power of the patented GhostFrame technology. In this case, GhostFrame Tracking offered the only possible method available for tracking.
The setting for the presentation, selected by Audi, was deliberately chosen for its clean and straightforward style. The room’s clean style ensured that attention would be focused on the vehicle and not its surroundings.
In this stylish white room, using traditional optical systems that use markers was not an option; any marker would have been visible through reflection on the car or the car’s windows. Even a camera tracking system without markers would not work since the environment did not provide any natural objects that could be used as a reference.
Using the standard GhostFrame feature that creates a hidden tracking pattern was the only way to make this presentation possible, allowing the camera to fly freely under the sizeable light panel. The tracking pattern in the LED floor was at all times visible for the camera tracking system, but not for the human eye and the filming camera. In this setting, the system neither affected the original intention of the room design nor did it restrict the camera movement.
“Even in very narrow camera perspectives, the tracking was rock solid,” states Thorsten Mika from GhostFrame partner TrackMen. “You can trust the tracking pattern to do precisely what it’s supposed to do, syncing the camera movement exactly with your content.” “GhostFrame representatives accompanied the whole production process, making sure the tight planning worked out,” adds Max von Braun, from GhostFrame partner AGS. “We’re delighted this high-profile presentation worked out so well for SXCES and their client Audi.”