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Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
Oct 8

Written by:
10/8/2009 12:29 PM  RssIcon

The 3D Film Factory has designed the first true line of production-ready, affordable 3D camera systems intended to shoot superior stereoscopic video. These durable, dual camera, 3D rigs were developed over the course of several years, with the guidance of veteran stereographers and award-winning filmmakers to provide a viable alternative to high-priced 3D systems costing ten times as much.

The company has released for sale three select 3D camera rigs; the 3D-SB (split-beam, or beam-splitter), 3D-SS Indie (side-by-side), and the 3D-SS Pro (side-by-side) models. Each stereo system is designed for a specific production purpose and made to accommodate a wide variety of prosumer and professional grade cameras, including but not limited to; Red One, Sony, Canon, Panasonic, Iconix, Si-2K, D5, as well as, many others.

“Up until now, only a few high-end facilities offer 3D rigs for sale and they’re very expensive”, said company president Karl Kozak. “We found most 3D shooters where trying to fabricate their own rigs, without much success, because they couldn’t afford to buy one. Making a beam-splitter camera rig and mirror box that really works is hard. There’s a lot of trial and error involved. So we’re filling a niche, offering great 3D rigs, that shoot incredible 3D, for a fraction of the cost.”

The 3D-SB (beam-splitter) rig is constructed using black anodized aluminum that’s virtually indestructible and surrounded by ‘light-absorbing’ plastic. With a total weight of less than 24 lbs., the rig is easy-to-use, allowing for quick set-ups and precise 3D alignment. It’s being introduced for a complete price of $2,895.

3D Beam-splitter rigs are mandatory for the smaller (6” to 0”) inter-axial (camera-to-camera) distances needed for medium and close-up shots. Such inter-axial distances can only be achieved with adjustable camera positions and the use of scientifically engineered glass. During shooting, the image for the horizontal camera passes directly through the glass, while the vertical camera’s image is reflected off the front of glass. In effect, the two cameras are sharing some or all of the camera’s field of vision.

“Side-by-side camera configurations can’t be used for close-up shots for good reason,” said Kozak. “You have to get the cameras closer than camera bodies will allow for. That’s why you need a beam-splitter rig.”

The company’s two side-by-side 3D rigs are less complex, but equally necessary in most 3D production situations. Side-by-side systems are specifically designed for filming master to panoramic shots in 3D. In this case, the simple side-by-side camera posture allows for fast, accurate 3D alignment and unobstructed shooting.

Both 3D-SS systems weigh less than 4 lbs., are priced from $350-$499, and boast inter-axial (camera to camera) distances from about 4” to 24”. All of the company’s rigs are constructed using a virtually indestructible aluminum frame.

All three camera systems are available @ www.3DfilmFactory.com

About 3D Film Factory

The 3D Film Factory is a San Diego-based company specializing in the production of original 3D entertainment, as well as, the design and manufacture of high-quality 3D camera rigs. Staffed by a diverse group of talented stereographers, innovative programmers and award-winning filmmakers, the company is currently converting dozens of award-winning films from 2D to stunning 3D, while producing some of the world's most unique 3D video programming. Visit the company’s web site at: www.3dfilmfactory.com

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