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Creating Lightfield Video

There are three major ways to create Lightfield video:
  • Shoot video with a camera
  • Render video using a software tool
  • Capture video inside real-time software

Shoot

You can use a variety of 2D and 3D cameras to create Lightfield videos. We'll list them here from highest potential for quality to lowest.

Custom Stereo Rig

The best way to capture Lightfield 3D video is to build a custom stereo rig using two or more high-quality cinema cameras. Doing this is difficult, but can yield the highest quality results. The distance between the sensors, the accuracy of the synchronization, the precision of the calibration, and of course the quality of the sensors and optics all play a part in the quality of the outcome.
You should expect to use a 3rd party software tool to stitch, synchronize, and align the images. You should edit the two videos into a single SBS file for viewing on Lume Pad or editing. High disparity SBS video made in this way will look much better viewed in Stereo View Mode (ST) instead of Lightfield View Mode.

3D Cameras

Purpose-built stereo 3D cameras have a wide range of potential quality, even within units of the same model. While there are many different models, we recommend the Sony HDR-TD Series Camcorders for 3D video if you can find it. For subjects you're shooting from a closer distance, the RED Hydrogen One is also considered one of the best 3D video cameras available today. High disparity images shot on stereo 3D cameras will look much better viewed in Stereo View Mode (ST) instead of Lightfield View Mode.

LeiaCam

One of the best ways to create Lightfield video is with LeiaCam, which shoots SBS video on the Lume Pad.
To learn more about LeiaCam, check out the LeiaCam page.

Drones

One phenomenal (but slightly less common) way to capture landscapes is to use a drone for aerial videos. When run through Lightfield Studio, drone aerials are converted into Lightfield video. To learn more, go to Editing Lightfield Video.

Orbital Camera Rigs

A very high quality but VERY costly way to capture Lightfield video is to shoot it in an orbital camera rig. This is a rig of many cameras surrounding a subject that are synchronized and shot simultaneously. After stitching all the frames together consecutively in a linear video, you can use Lightfield Studio to convert it into a Lightfield video. To learn more, go to Editing Lightfield Video.

Traditional Cameras

You can also use a variety of normal cameras to shoot 2D video to convert to Lightfield later. Your smartphone, a DSLR, a mirrorless camera, or even a cinema camera can all be used. You can even use a webcam!
You can either convert from 2D to Lightfield in real-time in the LeiaPlayer app, or you can convert a professinal Lightfield video in Lightfield Studio.
To learn more about instant 2D to Lightfield conversion, go to 2D to 3D Lightfield Conversion.
To Learn more about professional quality 2D to Lightfield conversion, go to Editing Lightfield Video.

Render

There are a variety of software tools that let you render out a stereo 3D or Lightfield video.

Maya

You can use the Leia Maya Plugin to render out a Quad Lightfield video in Maya.

Cinema 4D / 3DS Max / KeyShot

Some creators compose Quad Lightfield and SBS videos in other apps using custom camera configurations.

Plugins for Unreal Engine / Unity / Other game engines

There are plugins that allow you to render your game scene in SBS and Quad, and you can use that to render a Lightfield video. Leia's SDKs for Unreal Engine and Unity can be used for this to render Quad Lightfield video.

Capture

You can also capture 3D video from inside some of your favorite real-time apps or games on Windows PC.

Depth Buffer Injection

You can actually capture 3D videos from many popular PC games using a 3rd party tool that gains access to the graphics engine's depth buffer like SuperDepth3D. Try these tools yourself to experiment and see the best ways to capture 3D videos inside your favorite PC games. SuperDepth3D supports over 100 of the most popular AAA PC games of all time. Here is SuperDepth3D's game compatibility list.