Michael Grotticelli /
09.26.2011
Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
VisiSonics to launch panoramic A/V camera at AES

VisiSonics will do its first public demo of its new RealSpace Panoramic Audio cameras and Digital Audio Arrays at the AES convention next month in New York City.

The company will show its RealSpace 5/64 Panoramic AudioVisual Camera, which provides real-time visualization, capture and processing of audio-visual scenes. The integrated RealSpace camera contains 64 microphones and five color digital video cameras.

Based on an architecture that allows real-time audio-visual data capture and real-time processing by exploiting the computing abilities of graphics processors (GPUs), the device renders a seamless 360-degree panoramic video stream that allows easy visual identification of sound sources, noise sources and aberrant reflections and enables spatially selective sound capture via real-time "beamforming."

The device comes bundled with a GPU-equipped laptop and software; no additional hardware or cabling is required. The camera outputs synchronized audio and video data streams that may be interfaced to a standard PC through a combination of Firewire and USB.

The company also offers a 15/64 3D RealSpace Panoramic Audio Camera that combines 15 video cameras with 64 microphones in a sphere that is approximately the size of a human head.

Every targeted point is captured by at least three of the 15 cameras. With the three-camera-overlap of each pixel, the computation of the changed line of sight (parallax) provides for the placement of each point in true 3D space. The camera provides a visual data stream where each point in space is imaged by three sensors. This form of output is suitable for 3D reconstruction algorithms.

The RealSpace 15/64 camera’s applications include advanced telepresence and other applications in which 3D vision is required. The outputs from the 15/64 device will be used to drive 3D head-mounted displays, providing true high-definition video to each eye to recreate the 3D environment. The device incorporates the microphone structure of the 5/64 camera to produces the same co-registered audio panorama.

At AES, the company will also introduce VDAM-240001 digital microphone, which users can easily group to form array configurations they desire. Each microphone captures 24-bit sound at 48kHz. The interconnection and digitization architecture allows up to 256 microphones to be connected via a small controller unit to the USB port of a PC.

The provided drivers allow users to manipulate the channels using standard tools. The company said the new digital arrays provide an unmatched price/performance ratio that enable acoustic applications that were previously out of reach for many users because of cost and complexity.



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