BlackMagic Design equips Hibino Corporation’s VFX Studio
Hibino Corporation’s VFX studio in Japan has implemented a dynamic fibre optic workflow with products from BlackMagic Design. The products include the URSA Mini Pro 4.6K G2 camera and the ATEM Television Studio 4K mixer.
The Hibino VFX studio draws on the company’s extensive experience working with LED screens combined with visual effects camera recordings. “Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we had to stop our projects and ended up with a lot of LED screens in our warehouse. So we came up with the solution of virtual production. We streamed live extended reality (XR) productions over the Internet using the LED screens and applied the technology in order to create this visual effects camera studio,” explained Takanori Higashida, the studio’s producer.
The studio is based on 12G and fibre optic technology. The signal from the URSA Mini Pro 4.6K G2 camera is sent to a Smart Videohub 40×40 matrix via an ATEM Television Studio 4K mixer. The signals are then transmitted to various monitors, such as the Video Assist 12G HDR and SmartView 4K models, while the images are colour corrected in real time using an ATEM Camera Control Panel device. Other Blackmagic products are also used, including Studio Fiber Converters, Camera Fiber Converters and Teranex Mini SDI to HDMI 12G converters.
ROE Visual LED screens are installed at the top of the set and on the sides. Meanwhile, the cameras capture virtual images as auxiliary studio equipment. A camera tracking system installed on this model sends position information as well as focal length and focus information from the lens. The studio then uses Unreal Engine for real-time rendering of the 3D computer graphics background.
“By reproducing images on the LED screens in the background, we can create any lighting effect. If it’s a shoot with a green background, we have to light the objects evenly, so it’s difficult to be creative. Also, when using LED screens in virtual productions we achieve exceptional reflection and clarity on transparent objects. Unlike a green background, it is also advantageous for the artists, as they don’t have to act imagining what’s behind it”, says Shigenori Kikuch, studio producer at Hibino.