SEERCAM’s low cost 3D-printed VR rig offers single pin recording, By Sarah Redohl

No VR filmmaker’s kit is complete without a few homespun solutions, like compressed air to cool off your cameras in hot weather and duct tape (just in case). But as more creators flock to the emerging medium, manufacturers are providing more ready-made solutions, like SEERCAM’s Cube Go3 and Cube Go7 VR rigs.

Both the Cube Go3 and Cube Go7 aim to address issues that weren’t thought through in first-gen rigs, like access to inputs, battery and settings.

Both rigs offer solutions that make it possible to keep cameras mounted throughout the shoot. Camera settings and inputs can be accessed while mounted, and display lamps give videographers a quick and visible status report. The Cube Go3 also allows you to detach the batteries while the cameras are in the rig.

Perhaps the most stand-out feature of the Cube Go3 is the all-in-one recording pin, which makes it easier to sync recording times without a remote (SEERCAM still recommends using a remote with the Cube Go7).

The Cube Go3 can hold three GoPros and only works with cameras with angles of view greater than 220 degrees. It would be interesting to see a sample of the rig in action, compared to similar three-camera setups like the Freedom360 Broadcaster 3X ($374), which utilizes three GoPros equipped with modified lenses with fields of view beyond 180 degrees.

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Setting Up a Virtual-Reality Playroom? Avoid These Pitfalls, By Sarah E. Needleman

How to set up your Oculus Rift, Vive, PlayStation VR or other VR system to maximize fun and minimize bruises



MY FIRST FEW minutes playing the quirky virtual-reality game “Job Simulator” went by entirely without incident. I’d already strapped on a VR headset that obliterated the real world from view and made me feel as though I was standing in a kitchen of the future. Using the VR controllers I held in each hand, I could reach out to open the virtual refrigerator door, take out a steak and sear it on the virtual stove. I’ve totally got this, I thought.

But then two eggs started rolling away. As I lunged forward to catch them, I attempted to lean on the “counter,” which unfortunately didn’t exist. I ended up falling forward and hitting my head on the very real wall in the non-virtual room.

‘‘You can’t just put VR in the corner of a room like a new TV.’’

Virtual reality is the newest and most immersive way to play games, socialize online, watch video and more. But the real-world bump on my noggin made me realize that setting up a space in your home to best experience the technology requires some careful planning. This isn’t like the game consoles of yore, which called for nothing more than an old couch and rickety coffee table. “You can’t just put VR in the corner of a room like a new TV,” said Paul Bettner, co-founder of entertainment company Playful Corp.

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HTC Just Launched a Virtual Reality App Store With $1 Content, By Matt Peckham

A visitor tests the new 'Vive steam VR' virtual device at the HTC stand on the second day of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on February 23, 2016.
A visitor tests the new ‘Vive steam VR’ virtual device at the HTC stand on the second day of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on February 23, 2016.

Leading title prices slashed for 48-hour launch sale

HTC’s app store for its Vive virtual reality headset expands globally Friday after launching solely in China earlier this year. It’s called Viveport, and HTC says that for the next 48 hours (from 12:00 a.m. PT September 30), it’s marking “several marquee titles” down to a buck a piece. That includes stuff like Mars Odyssey, a normally $8 NASA Lander and Rover infused romp across the red planet, as well as Firebird – La Peri, an otherwise $10 visual fantasy set to French composer Paul Dukas’ ballet.

HTC’s teasing a mystery, too, obviously hoping to drum up social media followers: Keep tabs on the company’s hijinks, and it promises to “relay a secret message that will reopen a path to unlimited Viveport content for worthy contenders.”

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IBC 2016 – Varavon goes cyborg with giant 17 camera VR helmet, By Mathew Allard ACS


At the IBC Show in Amsterdam, Korean maker Varavon were showing some very unique VR rigs. The one that caught our eye looked like the blaster helmet Luke Skywalker was wearing when he first started practicing with a lightsabre onboard the Millennium Falcon.

The prototype helmet VR rig features mounting points for a crazy 17 GoPros, and is designed to provide a 360 degree first person view. Not only would you need a strong neck, but also pretty good eye sight as there is only a couple of small gaps for you to see through.

Varavon were also displaying another prototype VR rig with four GoPros that was mounted on a single hand gimbal. The nice thing about this particular gimbal was that you could also attach it to certain drones to create a stabilised flying VR solution.


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Best Buy to host PlayStation VR midnight launch events at 350 stores, By Shawn Knight

Sony’s PlayStation VR headset is scheduled to arrive in just a couple of weeks. Looking to cater to those that absolutely can’t wait any longer than humanly possible, Best Buy on Thursday said it will be hosting midnight launch events at around 350 of its stores across the country.
Shane Kitzman, Best Buy’s media relations leader, said in a post on the company’s corporate website that select stores will open their doors at 12:01 a.m. EDT on October 13. This trickles down across time zones moving from east to west, meaning stores in the Central time zone will open at 11:01 p.m., 10:01 p.m. for Mountain Time and 9:01 p.m. on the West Coast.

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Varavon Shows Us a Unique 3-Axis VR Drone, By Sebastian Wöber

The Varavon 3-Axis VR Drone is a large virtual reality camera platform with a special gimbal design that holds the camera array steady even during fast movements and strong wind. At their booth at Photokina, the guys from Varavon showed us how the gimbal stabilization works. Unfortunately, they were not allowed to fly the drone in the convention center halls or even outside due to drone laws in Germany.

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Jaunt’s future-proof VR camera, by TechCrunch

The Jaunt VR camera is clearly one of the best VR cameras to date. Anyone thinking in terms of VR production will want to know more about this device. Our friends at TechCrunch visited “Jaunt headquarters to learn more about how they are building unique experiences for VR.” Have a look!

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F.Y.I.Start VR partners with Nokia to create content using OZO camera


 Sydney, Australia-based virtual reality studio Start VR today announced its official partnership with Nokia Technologies, making the studio one of the first in the Australasia region to showcase the OZO camera – a groundbreaking stereoscopic virtual reality camera for professional content production.

The OZO camera debuted in North America in November 2015; this partnership will usher in new productions at Start VR, which will be among the first to benefit from the camera’s capabilities, including spherical and stereoscopic video capture with spatial audio array.

“Start VR is the first official partner with Nokia Technologies in Australasia to create content using the OZO camera,” says Malachi Bierstein, Nokia Technology Head of Sales, Digital Media.

“After meeting the company’s highly talented Head of Content Martin Taylor, Start VR became our top choice for a collaborative partnership whereby the studio would champion the OZO camera in the Australasia region.

Start VR is a company turning out an impressive slate of VR projects, from interactive films to brand stories to business and educational VR applications. What we are impressed with is the cinematic approach to VR and their active work in developing the VR community in Australia and, along with it, the OZO.”

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Come, travel with me to the future. Not a distant future, but one right within our grasp — just a few months away, in fact. A future that will expand the boundaries of sight, sound, and the shared cinematic experience.

Do you remember the first time you watched Star Wars: A New Hope? I do. I remember the famous trench run sequence when Luke and the Red Squadron swoop down on the Death Star amidst a sea of laser cannon fire. They’re tasked with flying the length of a service trench on the Death Star’s surface until they come to a narrow exhaust port they must destroy with two torpedoes… assuming they live long enough to get there. Without the use of virtual reality, George Lucas created a scene that was tense, immersive, and memorable. But what if a technology arose that allowed you to have your senses cut off from the world you know, letting you physically feel like you were on that run with Luke and his fellow Rebel pilots?

Do you remember the first time you watched When Harry Met Sally? Look back on the way you felt during that famous diner scene, when Meg Ryan faked an orgasm at the table with Billy Crystal. Writer Nora Ephron and director Rob Reiner completely engrossed the viewer, pulling audiences into the embarrassment and absurdity of it all. But what if you could experience that moment like you were at a table right next to Ryan and Crystal?

The Exorcist scared people into the hospital. Literally. When it opened, there were actually theaters where moviegoers were taken out via ambulance because it was too much to handle. My daughter is a horror movie buff, but even with all of today’s tech, most of the movies she sees don’t shake her like that. I bet putting her — and her fellow jaded young viewers — in the midst of well-told ghost stories that immerse their senses could mean the rebirth of that level of visceral fear and sensory shock that the original Exorcist elicited.

Long before seeing Star Trek’s Holodeck, I was struck by Professor Charles Xavier’s Danger Room in the Uncanny X-Men comic books. The thought that I could be immersed in a virtual reality training room with seemingly real threats and obstacles was titillating. (It’s probably the reason why I got into paintball so heavily at one point.) And while we’re far away from me being able to test my mettle against Sentinels, or seeing if I can pilot the Millennium Falcon through the Kessel run in 12 parsecs, three companies recently announced something signifying a great step in that direction for the masses: Taiwanese tech manufacturer Acer, Swedish developer Starbreeze Studios, and IMAX have collaborated to bring moviegoers six IMAX virtual reality centers, with the first opening up in my hometown of Los Angeles. To borrow from an internet meme, I am excite!

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Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Legendary team on VR short, By Jeremy Kay

Oscar winners Iñárritu and his frequent cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki are diving into the virtual reality medium with a piece about a group of immigrants and refugees crossing the Mexico-US border.

Iñárritu and Legendary Entertainment announced on Wednesday that they are commencing work on the experimental film after four years of secret development.

Legendary Entertainment and Fondazione Prada are financing the project and Lucasfilm’s recently established immersive entertainment division ILMxLAB will build the virtual world and characters.

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