3DV Systems Ltd. Introduces ZCAM™, World's First Real-Time 3D Studio Camera

3DV To Display Revolutionary 3D Camera AT NAB99 Show in Las Vegas

NAB Show, Las Vegas (April 19, 1999)
3DV Systems, Ltd., a leader in the field of three-dimensional vision, will be taking the realm of production possibilities to a new level with the launch of ZCAM™, the world's first real-time 3D studio camera. On display for the first time at this year's NAB Show in Las Vegas at Booth S1538 in the Sands Expo, ZCAM is designed to meet the demanding and rapidly-changing requirements of the production and post-production markets. ZCAM enables operators to capture and manipulate video-rate 3D data in real-time, and offers an array of capabilities previously unattainable in the production industry. Configured as an add-on to color studio cameras, ZCAM allows production professionals to enhance special effects while at the same time reducing costs.

"ZCAM is a revolution in the production and post-production industries, as it allows operators to do what could never be done before -- capture and manipulate 3D data in real time," said Ori Braun, President and CEO of 3DV Systems Ltd. "The use of 3D graphics has always been limited by the inability of existing technology to capture 3D data in real time and cost-effectively. Now broadcasters can enjoy a whole new range of production possibilities that are only limited by their imagination."

Early Adopters Feedback Positive
Initial response to ZCAM has been favorable. "Every few years an innovative piece of technology comes along that's not just another passing fad, but something unique that facilitates new production paths," said Doron Fiterman, Producer and Chief Technical Officer at Tel Aviv-based Gravity Post Production. "These tools give us, the creative people, the means to implement what we could only dream of previously. ZCAM is such a tool."


New Production Capabilities Include "Screen-Less" Imaging
ZCAM represents a major shift in 3D technology and imaging, extending the current capabilities of the production and post-production markets. The camera enables real-time separation of an object from its background. Utilizing depth keying rather than chroma keying, ZCAM allows "screen-less" blue-screen imaging in television studios, allowing the user to shoot foreground elements against any background, then display the elements against different, selected backgrounds. As ZCAM captures and maps the third dimension, users can place objects in various positions in a scene, such as before or behind other objects, in real time. The user can also implement special 3D effects in real time, such as illumination, augmentation of the 3D scene and interaction of real and virtual objects.

Simultaneous Pixel Reading Through New, Proprietary Technology
Through the use of proprietary Parallel Range Sensing (PRS), an innovative new 3D imaging concept introduced by 3DV Systems, ZCAM captures both color (RGB) and depth (Z) - the distance from the camera - for each pixel. PRS technology allows simultaneous reading of the entire scene, as opposed to the time-intensive chore of reading one pixel or line at a time. Through an electro-optical device, ZCAM generates a depth map in real time by producing a video stream that indicates the distance of every on-screen pixel from the camera.

ZCAM incorporates 3DV's unique electro-optical components, a CCD sensor, a pulse illumination source, a software tool for real-time and off-line depth processing and plug-in software tools for standard industry applications such as SOFTIMAGE 3D™ and Adobe Premier™.

Unique ZCAM Features, Operator Benefits
In addition to capturing both color and depth for each pixel, ZCAM's real-time data capture rate is over 30 frames per second. Similarly, as ZCAM views both color and depth, users can bypass the inconvenience of operating separate 3D and color cameras. ZCAM also allows users to capture film sets as a 3D model. 3D animation programs can manipulate the model either in a post-production process, using standard industry tools such as SOFTIMAGE™ and Discrete Logic Effect™, or in real-time, enabling powerful effects during live broadcasts.

About 3DV
3DV Systems, Ltd. is the technology leader in the field of three-dimensional vision. Established in 1996, 3DV Systems is a privately held company based in Israel. 3DV's multidisciplinary R&D team consists of highly qualified and experienced professionals with specialized expertise in physics, electronics and software. Based on proven development capabilities and proprietary patent-pending technology, 3DV is poised to become a leading provider of state-of-the-art 3D vision solutions.