Which Depthkit product is right for you?
There’s a Depthkit software solution for everyone. Compare Depthkit Core to Cinema and Studio, and the Depthkit Expansion Packages for Unity.
October 27, 2021
Depthkit is made by Scatter for creators worldwide and there’s a Depthkit software solution for everyone. Whether you’re creating a live concert in VR, building an AR app for your client, or trying out volumetric filmmaking for the first time, Depthkit has different features to suit your projects. Here's an overview and comparison of Depthkit Core, Depthkit Cinema, Depthkit Studio, and our Unity integrations.
Every Depthkit volumetric video tool is based on our sophisticated technology approach: "Deferred Surface Reconstruction". Creating volumetric video happens in two steps.
First, you’ll record your subject - a real person! - with the Depthkit desktop software application. The software inputs data from a depth sensor connected to your computer, and generates a video file with hue-encoded depth information.
Step two happens in Unity game engine, where the Depthkit Unity integration turns that video file into a true 3D object. This happens in real time, with no cloud processing needed at all. Depthkit’s unique approach means small files and smart rendering of only the perspective that the viewer sees. You can adjust the density of geometry on the fly, controlling for quality and performance.
Recording a real person in color and depth.
Depthkit Studio creates full body, complete holograms, recording your actor from all angles. For professional productions, Depthkit Studio is our most advanced software solution.
With Depthkit Studio, you can set up your very own capture studio in house. You can present the volumetric video to your clients at the level of quality that you would otherwise only be able to achieve at stages in limited locations that cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to install.
How does Depthkit Studio work?
Creating full body volumetric video is possible by placing multiple depth sensing cameras around your capture subject. With 3 Azure Kinects, you can capture 180 to 270 degrees of the front of the person. This is ideal for projects where your audience won’t see the back of your subject - this could be something like an interview or presentation where your subject is talking directly to the viewer, or perhaps a background character in a scene that is distant from the main action.
Set up time is fast and post processing to enhance the quality is simple. For true 6DoF experiences where you see a complete hologram from all sides, film your subject with 6 Azure Kinect depth sensors. If your subject is very detailed, you have more than one person in the capture volume or you want to enlarge the size of the capture volume, you can improve the coverage (and reduce occlusion) by adding more depth sensors, up to 10 Azure Kinects.
Depthkit Studio includes all the functionality of Depthkit Cinema and Depthkit Core, as well as the advanced Expansion Package for Unity, so you have every premium volumetric video feature at your disposal.
For some projects, more than one sensor is overkill.
With Depthkit, there are two alternatives that work with just one sensor: Depthkit Core and Depthkit Cinema.
Depthkit Core lets you record with one sensor only for single perspective or 2.5D capture. Your subject will have depth, but you’ll see rough edges where the capture range ends. This is a great fit for run-and-gun style productions, with a small footprint and an instant plug-in-and-record setup. You can use the Azure Kinect or the older Kinect v2 with Depthkit Core. We also have experimental support for Intel RealSense.
Depthkit Cinema works just like Depthkit Core, but with the ability to also enhance the color resolution of your footage up to 8K. You’ll achieve this by pairing a professional video camera to the depth sensor when you capture.
Depthkit Core and Depthkit Cinema work brilliantly with AR, since they are extremely lightweight. Check out our integration with 8th Wall in this QR code.
If you’re new to volumetric capture and want to learn, test and experiment, you can try out Depthkit Core single sensor capture with our completely free evaluation access. Sign up here for a complimentary Depthkit account to access free Core and Cinema demo samples as well.
Depthkit Studio hardware package
Depthkit software has been designed to work with off-the-shelf hardware, so you can work with gear that you already have. You’ll never need to network computers - Depthkit software works with up to 10 depth sensors running off just one PC. Scatter also offers hardware packages to alleviate the guesswork when you’re building your own volumetric capture system in-house.
Our vetted packages are optimized for filming multiple depth sensors. They include a high end PC, 6 or 10 Azure Kinect depth sensors, and specialized cabling and a calibration chart. Scatter pre-installs software, tests the entire package, and ships directly from New York to you. It’s the fastest, hassle-free way to get set up and be ready to create.
Bring your volumetric subject into 3D.
Once you’ve recorded a real person with the Depthkit software application, you’ll export a special “combined-per-pixel” video file that has the depth information encoded on the hue spectrum.
Depthkit Unity Plugin
With our free Unity plugin, drop your volumetric video files into the game engine and you’ll see your 3D character come to life in your spatial scene. Our proprietary Deferred Surface Reconstruction creates a mesh at run time and optimizes for the perspective of the viewer.
Depthkit Expansion Package for Unity
But why stop there? Play with a range of creative effects, from the photoreal to the fantastical. With the advanced Depthkit Core and Depthkit Studio Expansion Packages for Unity, you can wield Unity’s VFX Graph and Shader Graph to add shadows, relight your subject to match the environment, or let them explode into sparkles. The possibilities are as limitless as your imagination.