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Using VIO POV HD Action Cameras for Recording 3D Video

December 9th, 2011 · 7 Comments · Shooting in 3D

If you thought that you can use only the GoPro HERO or HERO 2 action cameras together with the GoPro 3D HERO system or maybe alternatively use the Drift HD Action Camera with MIO 3D for recording 3D video with a compact solution and in extreme conditions, then you should be aware that there are other alternatives as well. One such interesting alternative is the VIO POV HD action camera, a similar solution to the others already mentioned, but with slightly different approach and some extra features. The VIO POV HD camera uses a separate module containing the lens and the sensor (camera head) connected with a cable to the long main body of the device, it appears to be more rugged and also offers some interesting and more advanced features compared to the HERO and Drift HD cameras… but all that also comes with a higher price.

As with the other action cameras, using VIO POV HD also requires you to pair two of these cameras together and have them synchronized in order to get the two separate views required for the 3D video you are making. On the image above you can see roughly what are the sizes of the camera head of the VIO POV HD, so that you can get an idea how you can pair two of them in a stereoscopic 3D rig. The largest size is the front part of the camera head has a diameter of about 38 millimeters, so the minimum interaxial distance you can get by pairing two of these heads is going to be around 38 millimeters. It is up to you to make a custom mount that will hold the two camera heads together and maybe will also allow you to easily change the interaxial distance.

The VIO POV HD action cameras come with a wireless remote control that can be used to start/stop recording video on single as well as multiple cameras at the same time (works with more than two cameras as well). The thing you need to do is first make sure what is the channel number at which the remote control is set to operate at, there is a dial inside the remote that can be used to select from 10 available channels. Then you need to set the channel of the wireless remote inside the configuration of the two cameras that you are going to use for recording 3D video, you can find the option in the Settings menu of the device under Remote ID Channel. Make sure that both cameras are set to use the same channel and that the channel is the same that one of the wireless remotes is set to operate at, you can easily test if everything is properly working if both cameras start/stop recording at the same time. As usual with this type of synchronization of two cameras using a remote control to trigger them together you should expect some slight drift in the synchronization, but you should be able to fix that in post most of the time.

For more information about the VIO POV HD action cameras…

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7 responses so far ↓

  • 1 David Cole // Dec 9, 2011 at 02:27

    You really can’t fix temporal offset in post. Mis-sync is BAD news, any way you slice it.

  • 2 gordy // Dec 9, 2011 at 04:11

    Agreed. Every time we see new cameras like this, there are two basic questions. Resolution and true synch. If you can’t get them in perfect phase, it’s not good 3D.

  • 3 Max // Dec 9, 2011 at 09:52

    Well, when fast motion is the situation, totally agreed.

    “also offers some interesting and more advanced features ”
    I don’t find a list of this features.

  • 4 JP Perry // Feb 14, 2012 at 03:12

    How do you genlock the cameras?

  • 5 Skaven252 // Jun 25, 2012 at 23:56

    People have done 3D recordings before, with separate non-genlocked cameras. If there is a small phase sync error, it’s not such a big problem.

    I have already made a number of successful (even if not perfectly synced) 3D recordings with a pair of VIO POV.HDs. The quality is astounding, way better than the GoPro 3D kit, especially since you can freely mount the cameras to any inter-ocular distance you wish.

  • 6 Skaven252 // Jul 17, 2012 at 10:17

    Case in point: this roller coaster ride was shot with a stereoscopic pair of head-mounted VIO POV.HDs:

    (the audio was recorded with a separate set of binaural mikes and a Zoom recorder)

  • 7 Skaven252 // Oct 22, 2012 at 14:58

    Any suggestions for a mount that would get two 20 mm camera housings perfectly aligned at more or less a human IPD (65 mm) between them?

    I’ve looked into some gun sight mounts, but those usually cannot be attached to tripods. They don’t have suitable screws / holes for that.

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