Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

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Paul Jonathan

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostThu Aug 20, 2020 9:56 pm

Yeah just saw the CDA-Tek demo as well, but i feel the focus pulls are way to harsh and mechanical. Csaba's solution looks much more promising. Hoping to hear about a production update soon! I believe he is in the middle of fulfilling the preorders of the BLE4k at the moment, so hopefully once those are out, there will be more new on ToF autofocus.
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sicc333

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostFri Dec 25, 2020 2:05 pm

Hello, any updates on this project?
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chris.white

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostWed Apr 28, 2021 12:13 am

Any progress on this Csaba?

The CDA-Tek product build seems like garbage. A lot of people that have received theirs are complaining of rattling sounds as if the internals are loose, and there seem to be some reliability issues. Would love to see your version in production.
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Chris Shivers

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostWed Apr 28, 2021 4:40 am

I just thought about it, maybe you can use multiple ToF sensors while using AI to recognize faces. You can pinpoint where the face is and then have the sensors shoot infrared light when it comes into its vicinity. So instead of havin one sensor shoot light in the middle it can shoot it from the left and right or other directions
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Kim Janson

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostWed Apr 28, 2021 9:26 am

The problem especially with face and eyes is that they emit invisible IR light, they are supposed to be eye safe, but so is likely your laser pen, and would you want to look the beam directly for long time.

This is from Garmin Lidar

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To me it does not sound like it is completely ok to use it on application where it is on purpose pointed to someones eye possibly for long durations and without them knowing that their eyes are pointed with strong invisible light.

I have been thinking two solutions for this problem.

1. it would emit only when the camera operator press a button, i.e. the camera operator is responsible not pointing long periods to anyones eye.

2. making sure the beam constantly moves.

and there is also a 3rd solution I can think of, but not publick at this time 8-)
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Johannes Jonsson

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostWed Apr 28, 2021 9:46 am

Csaba Nagy wrote:
Wayne Steven wrote:Just remember that it will be offset from the true lens centre, and it will not always be perfect in focus, as the different angle of view csn see the centre differently, as different levels of objects in the focus zone may make different things shift in or out of the centre of the TOF's view, so a gap would be there in the TOF, or part yhere, but the lens sees the area next to the gap. If you use a big region of focus, it should get rid of that, but you then you have to deal with the microfocus of which micro distance you want. The closer you are, or the more this can offset, the more it can effect.


This absolutely something to take into account, to put this effect into more visual terms I recorded a similar test in a near pitch black environment to see the infrared beam that is being used to measure distance ( its not visible to the human eye )

Finally something useful to come out of the lack of IR filtration... :lol:



Hi Csaba
Any news?
I never use AF but reading this thread is giving me the idea that your system could be great tool to have in many commercial shots so I am getting quite interested.
Johannes
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chris.white

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostTue May 25, 2021 8:01 pm

Kim Janson wrote:and there is also a 3rd solution I can think of, but not publick at this time 8-)


So, when is your version coming out, Kim? ;)
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Kim Janson

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostTue May 25, 2021 8:13 pm

It might take some time, currently busy with this prototype, but it might be slightly related ;)



I will add this, it is not only knowing the correct focus distance, it is as much focusing the lens to that distance and doing it smoothly. I am currently working with a camera that has very good inbuilt lens* with accurate and smooth focus and zoom (and iris) control and it also reports the current positions at fast rate. That camera has also pretty good autofocusing and possibility to select the focus point, but also give minimum focus distance. It is pretty awesome camera by it self, but especially great platform to learn as from camera and lens side it has done things almost as they should be in order to integrate with additional focus assisting tools.

Some of that experience will be then possible to use with cameras that provide no support for external focus assisting tools, but it will require lens with accurate and smooth control.

This one is an old B4 lens on what we rebuild the lens control electronics.



BTW, on that video the Canon R mic was on auto gain and very high level, you can hear the clock ticking and the Micro Studio 4k fan, but also the Canon RF lens focusing on steps, the crackling sound.


*very good from the lens control point of view, but othervice good also considering its size and weight and that it is 12 x zoom. But that is enough about what is cooking :D

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chris.white wrote:
Kim Janson wrote:and there is also a 3rd solution I can think of, but not public at this time 8-)


So, when is your version coming out, Kim? ;)
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Frank Glencairn

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostWed May 26, 2021 10:02 am

Any news on that?
Looked at the DJI ToF, but you can only use it with a gimbal, so that's no option for me.
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ricardo marty

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostWed May 26, 2021 5:08 pm

If bmd can't develop a good af They should consider developing a lidar for video cameras. That would use blue tooth to update the camera focus. They got great engineers shouldn't be a huge problem. Im sure they can even better it.


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Frank Glencairn

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostWed May 26, 2021 6:04 pm

I second that.

Having a "native" ToF module from BM would be awesome.
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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostWed May 26, 2021 9:55 pm

Kim Janson wrote:It might take some time, currently busy with this prototype, but it might be slightly related ;)


Looks interesting. I have to say, the part I really liked about Csaba's was that it used Tilta's Nucleus system... which I do have. So, if you're able to work whatever you're doing into that... ;)
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Kim Janson

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostThu May 27, 2021 3:56 am

The Tilta in general looks great especially for the price, and that is challenging for us as we work on totally different price point.

We do have though full BMD camera control with BT or SDI and VISCA control, Control over Ethernet, USB, RC radio modules, Control SW for Camera and Gimbal control, prototypes for many controllers including fluid-head and hand-wheel and of course gimbals and many sensors even some drones.

One of the many out side the box gimbal designs :)

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So we do mostly custom builds and OEM designs, but trying to make some of this stuff also under our own name.

So with that new controller we can control a lot, the challenge is to focus to essential, it will have some focus assisting tools though, integrating sensors, camera and lens control to assist the operator.
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Csaba Nagy

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostTue Jun 22, 2021 3:05 am

Long time coming. For those that have been following the development of the TOF Autofocus I demonstrated almost two years ago.

This is the next evolutionary step. Over the past few week's I have been prototyping a new product that will allow you to use a DJI 3D Focus Module without the RS2 gimbal! The prototype hardware connects to the 3D Focus module via it's USB-C connection and drives focus of a Blackmagic Camera over Bluetooth.

Images can be seen of the simple handheld setup and everything is powered from the camera. Very minimal!

Image

With the limited testing I've done so far, I can say this solution works fantastic with native MFT Lenses. For this project I actually acquired my first electronic MFT lens ( Lumix 25mm F1.7 ) and it's internal AF motor is perfect for applications such as this.

See more samples here:


This is merely an early look, keep and eye out here for further updates.

Cheers,
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ricardo marty

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostTue Jun 22, 2021 3:57 am

Csaba Nagy wrote:Long time coming. For those that have been following the development of the TOF Autofocus I demonstrated almost two years ago.


This is merely an early look, keep and eye out here for further updates.

Cheers,


Do you think it would work with other auto focus lenses? Like canon ef lenses on a 6k?


Ricardo Marty
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Csaba Nagy

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostTue Jun 22, 2021 4:42 am

ricardo marty wrote:
Csaba Nagy wrote:Long time coming. For those that have been following the development of the TOF Autofocus I demonstrated almost two years ago.


This is merely an early look, keep and eye out here for further updates.

Cheers,


Do you think it would work with other auto focus lenses? Like canon ef lenses on a 6k?


Ricardo Marty


I don't have a BMPCC6K or 6KPro to test with. But I can say that Through the Metabones on the BMPCC4K is very hit and miss in the testing I've done. It's a fluid situation because as new firmware is released with the Blackmagic; compatibility and performance of adapted lenses seem to change constantly. Also Metabones and adapters have their own firmware that changes.

So in short, at least for the initial release: Native MFT lenses will be recommended as they have very good/consistent performance. This isn't to say adapted lenses wont work, it's simply that performance will vary.
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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostFri Jul 09, 2021 8:18 pm

Are you still planning on a version for use with manual lenses and the Tilta Nucleus as previously demonstrated?
---
c

Csaba Nagy wrote:Long time coming. For those that have been following the development of the TOF Autofocus I demonstrated almost two years ago.

This is the next evolutionary step. Over the past few week's I have been prototyping a new product that will allow you to use a DJI 3D Focus Module without the RS2 gimbal! The prototype hardware connects to the 3D Focus module via it's USB-C connection and drives focus of a Blackmagic Camera over Bluetooth.

Images can be seen of the simple handheld setup and everything is powered from the camera. Very minimal!

Image

With the limited testing I've done so far, I can say this solution works fantastic with native MFT Lenses. For this project I actually acquired my first electronic MFT lens ( Lumix 25mm F1.7 ) and it's internal AF motor is perfect for applications such as this.

See more samples here:


This is merely an early look, keep and eye out here for further updates.

Cheers,
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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostFri Jul 09, 2021 8:37 pm

Just watched the last test video. Pretty nice to see good progress happening. Keep up the good innovation. Hopefully BMD's next camera will have time of flight autofocus too.
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Frank Glencairn

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostMon Jul 12, 2021 6:30 am

Glad to hear that you take it a step further, and with the price of the DJI module it sound's like a sweet deal. But actually I was really hoping for a solution for manual glass, and an external motor.
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Csaba Nagy

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostMon Jul 12, 2021 8:13 am

Frank Glencairn wrote:Glad to hear that you take it a step further, and with the price of the DJI module it sound's like a sweet deal. But actually I was really hoping for a solution for manual glass, and an external motor.


This is a stepping stone product launch and so I hope to develop a more fully fledged "pro" model with motor control as you mention. I was among/if the not the first to demonstrate Tilta motor control almost two years ago now, so I will be aiming to make it compatible with that system.

An obvious extension of this first product is to do motor control using the DJI Motor, which unfortunately has been a bit difficult to reverse engineer but I'm optimistic I can figure that out eventually. Would help If I owned the RS2 and all the other bits to help in that endeavor :?

One thing at time, I was hoping to be a bit further than I am with the first batch of this product to this point, but nothing too severe.
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Frank Glencairn

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostTue Jul 13, 2021 6:02 am

Thanks Csaba, looking forward to it.
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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostThu Jul 29, 2021 6:46 pm

Csaba Nagy

I'm not sure how this works.

1- how do I connect to camera?

2- Does it automatically focus and follows or do I need a separate controlar?

Id wish there was a video on installation and how it operates during shooting.


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Kim Janson

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostThu Jul 29, 2021 7:00 pm

I will be adding the ToF sensor to this setup next week :D



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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostSun Aug 01, 2021 10:56 pm

Csaba Nagy wrote:
Frank Glencairn wrote:Glad to hear that you take it a step further, and with the price of the DJI module it sound's like a sweet deal. But actually I was really hoping for a solution for manual glass, and an external motor.


This is a stepping stone product launch and so I hope to develop a more fully fledged "pro" model with motor control as you mention. I was among/if the not the first to demonstrate Tilta motor control almost two years ago now, so I will be aiming to make it compatible with that system.

An obvious extension of this first product is to do motor control using the DJI Motor, which unfortunately has been a bit difficult to reverse engineer but I'm optimistic I can figure that out eventually. Would help If I owned the RS2 and all the other bits to help in that endeavor :?

One thing at time, I was hoping to be a bit further than I am with the first batch of this product to this point, but nothing too severe.



This sounds very cool.
I have the AFX but it's pretty big.
Am interested in seeing your product once it's finished.
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danielschweinert

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostWed Aug 04, 2021 2:43 pm

Just got my Ronin RS2 PRO Combo and first thing I did, was open the focus motor case and take a look inside. I also took some photos :-) LOL
Maybe it's useful for someone here. I really like the idea to use this motor with the Lidar module without the gimbal.
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Kim Janson

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Re: Time of Flight Autofocus is here!

PostWed Aug 04, 2021 3:32 pm

The problem is the protocol they use to control those lens servos, I doubt it is available, so should be reverse engineered.
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