DEFINITION January 2022 – Web


How Megapixel VR’s HELIOS has become the de facto processing platform for the most complex in-camera VFX POWERFUL PROCESSING

production stage at Studio Babelsberg in Germany. Designed by ARRI Solutions Group for Netflix, the studio is the largest permanently installed volume in Europe, with its 7x55m LED wall – and Megapixel’s HELIOS was hand-picked to power it. “The HELIOS processors are great to work with. The many calibration features allow us to achieve the best image fidelity that our LED panels can,” says Jesse Kretschmer, technical director at DARK BAY. “The HELIOS API is also easy to work with, and with it we have been able to develop custom tools with the exact controls and information we need to keep productions running smoothly.” Megapixel supported industry partners ARRI, Faber AV, Framestore and ROE Visual (LED panels) in the development of the studio, which will offer future customers a proven set-up for virtual production. ARRI’S MIXED REALITY STUDIO In Uxbridge, London, the HELIOS processor continues to drive large volumes. Built by ARRI in partnership with Creative Technology, the stage comprises 343 square metres of LED walls and is one of the biggest permanent mixed-reality spaces in the world. It can be programmed to display 360° imagery that, even when not in-frame, casts dynamic, fully integrated lighting effects onto actors. For this reason,

MEGAPIXEL VR IS an innovative technology partner with numerous patents. It has won accolades from Live Design, the Emmys and the Academy Awards. Launched in 2019, its state-of-the-art HELIOS® LED Processing Platform provides the most advanced in-camera visual effects tools for virtual production, with a full 8K video pipeline, support for HDR formats and customisable, upgradeable inputs. By leveraging AV-over-IP infrastructure, systems are highly resilient with HELIOS’ Seamless Failover mode, resulting in visually lossless failover in the event of a data interruption or frame drop. For robust operation, their patented NanoSync technology provides the most accurate video sync control available, down to the nanosecond, even over 10km fibre links. HELIOS also features superior end-to- end, cinema-grade colour workflow, where metadata is always honoured to ensure colour gamut, greyscale and tone mapping. It is the most accurate in-camera workflow, reducing the time required to colour correct content footage prior to filming – and is quickly becoming the LED processor of choice for in-camera VFX productions. 1899 Netflix’s highly anticipated drama 1899 , set on a migrant steamship on the high seas, recently wrapped at DARK BAY’s new virtual

COLOUR PERFORMANCE What is shown on your grading monitor is what appears on the LED display – this allows HELIOS to offer the best end-to-end workflow in the industry

HELIOS was once again selected; it can deliver a cinema-grade colour workflow and industry-leading image quality. “In virtual production, a clean pipeline and accurate colour reproduction are essential to a great-looking result,” says Tom Burford, head of technical services at Creative Technology – which partnered with ARRI to provide the volume’s playback system. “HELIOS provides this with a very precise representation of our content. It’s exciting to see this in the ARRI stage.” Always innovating, Megapixel has developed the newest virtual production technology, GhostFrame. It allows for simultaneous capture of multiple video feeds hidden to the naked eye, a chroma key matte and even hidden tracking markers. It can be used via the HELIOS Processing Platform to make the impossible possible for all your virtual production, XR and broadcast needs.


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