NIKFI / Projects / HI-QUALITY 3D IMAGE SYSTEM

HI-QUALITY 3D IMAGE SYSTEM

We are ready to offer the new technology of the 3D shooting in digital format as alternative to using dual cameras with mirror rig system.

The Russian stereoscopic system is one of the oldest in  the world. This  system  was  used  for  production of  3D  movies  for  more  than  50  years. 

The important principle of this system is:

3D shooting with a single digital camera with the use of 3D lenses
of the Russian stereoscopic system "Stereo-70"  film technology.

  • Legendary OSCAR-winning ”Stereo-70” platform
  • Less than four time the weight of rival solutions
  • Allows to create movies where stereo in the levels of idea and scenario. Focusing to idea and drama of the movie rather than to technical details
  • Ultimately uncover the S3D potential

Single camera

Easy to use movie camera has small weight (7 kg) and is convenient to shoot from hands. Vision Research’s camera, the Phantom 65, with its 4,096 x 2,440 pixel CMOS sensor is the first high speed digital camera to rival traditional 65mm film cameras. This multi standard compliant camera will revolutionize the world of high speed cinematography recording 202 frames per second at necessarily resolution for 3D shooting – 4096 x 1712 (65mm 2.40). With “hot-swappable” Phantom CineMag memory magazine   256,   526 Gbt   with   docking   station make this camera user-friendly in either on-set or post-production environments.

This Phantom camera equipped with NIKFI stereo lens was used in 3D shooting of the full-length feature film “The Best Film 3D” by Sony Pictures production.

Single lens

One of the main problems of creating technological systems for 3D shooting of  life  nature, especially people, is the inter axial distance between the left and right lenses which should not exceed the basis of eyesight (65mm) and  should have much smaller size, multiple degree to scale increase of the image on the screen. Two optical blocks consolidated in a uniform frame will form a uniform 3D lens, having the remote control of the focus, iris and imaginary convergence. The cameraman has a complete set of seven 3D lenses: 23mm, 28mm, 32mm, 35mm, 40mm, 75mm and 100mm. The interaxial distance between the left and right optical blocks – 26mm. It is enough for shooting the people and animals  without  effect of  miniaturization and should have a sufficient distance of comfortably reproduced space between the front and background without large parallaxes.

Single sensor

Two frames side by side similar as a 35 mm format locate on the single sensor similar 70 mm film format. In this case the interaxial distance between frames is 26,4 mm that meets the requirements of shooting of the alive model described above. The choice of single system allows solving the problem of synchronization of the left and right images automatically.

Comparative  evaluation of Russian stereoscopic system and     dual cameras with mirror rig systems technologies

Russian stereoscopic system Dual cameras with mirror rig systems
Ergonomics Single camera with ergonomics close to traditional cinema Two cameras installed in a device called a "rig" use technologically sophisticated precision equipment
Weight 7 kg 27-37 kg
Number of stuff Two specialists:
-    Mechanic assistant
-    Focus and imaginary convergence assistant
Five specialists:
-    Two mechanic assistants
-    Optics alignment engineer
-    Focus assistant
-    Imaginary convergence assistant
Angles synchronization Not required, since the information is located on a single sensor Camera synchronization required. Synchronization might be lost when the power voltage drops. For shooting speed 
96 frames per second and higher there are some restrictions on the synchronization
Optical scheme Shooting on parallel axes of the imaginary convergence, to help avoid geometric distortion of images Shooting on converged axes requiring subsequent correction of geometric distortion of images in post-production
Optical system Two optical blocks consolidated in a uniform frame with unified management of focus and iris. Close to the lens barrel in the traditional cinema Two separate lens, each in its own frame, requiring technologically sophisticated synchronization using special processor
Ability to change interaxial distance Discrete change in the range of 
15 to 110mm
(enough for feature films)
Variable from 0 to 110 mm
(Not a fundamental advantage for feature films)
Lens change time As in traditional film production – about 2 minutes. No optics alignment required 20 minutes followed by a technologically complicated optics alignment
Post production other than traditional cinema One extra operation required - to separate a single image into two streams stereo pair Require additional operations:
- Correction of the synchronization of the left and right images
-Correction in brightness, color tone, geometry, the vertical parallax of the left and right images

History of STEREO-70 system

Stereo-70 system was developed in NIKFI (Cinema and Photo Research Institute) in 1965 under direction of professor Andrey G. Boltianskiy and Nina A. Ovsyannikova in  cooperation with  Mosfilm  studio.

For continuous improving of 3-D movie technic NIKFI was honored with Technical Achivement Award by Academy of  Motion  Picture Arts  and  Sciences  in  March 1991.

Other resources:

Three-Dimensional Cinematography in Russia