This information is for Vicon Shogun 1.7. For up-to-date help, see the latest Shogun documentation.

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After you have calibrated your Vicon cameras, you are ready to create and calibrate subjects and any props that you need.

To create and calibrate subjects, complete the following procedures as required:

In addition to the following information, see also the Vicon video 6 - Shogun Live - Subject Calibration, which demonstrates how to place markers on a performer and how to calibrate a subject using a T-pose and ROM. (Note that the latest version of Shogun uses an A-pose for subject calibration, and includes a cluster-picker to help with subject booting when using the high-density finger marker sets.)

Load subjects and props via .mcp file

For an easy way to quickly load subjects and props from an existing scene, you can load an .mcp file directly into Shogun Live.

To quickly load subjects and props from an .mcp:

  1. At the top of the Tracking panel, click the Load tracking configuration button .
  2. From the Load Tracking Configuration dialog box, select or browse to the required .mcp file.
    The subjects and props are displayed in the Tracking panel as normal.

Choose a marker set

Choose a marker set, depending on your requirements. Templates (labeling and solving) for the following marker sets are supplied with the latest release of Shogun:

Marker setDescription
FrontWaistStandard 53-marker set
FrontWaist10FingersStandard marker set plus 10 finger-markers
FrontWaist3FingersStandard marker set plus three finger-markers
FrontWaist5FingersStandard marker set plus five finger-markers
ProductionProduction marker set, which helps with marker occlusion and includes extra markers for the back and top of the shoulders to help with gap-filling and solving
Production10FingersProduction marker set plus 10 finger-markers
Production3FingersProduction marker set plus three finger-markers
Production5FingersProduction marker set plus five finger-markers
SideWaistAlternative standard marker set, which avoids front waist marker occlusion (useful if, for example, the front waist marker is likely to be occluded due to a performer's hands obstructing it or the performer bending forwards)
SideWaist10FingersStandard marker set with side waist markers plus 10 finger-markers
SideWaist3FingersStandard marker set with side waist markers plus three finger-markers
SideWaist5FingersStandard marker set with side waist markers plus five finger-markers

For the most realistic finger animation, the 10 finger-marker set is recommended.

It is assumed that you are using one of Shogun’s default labeling templates. If you are using a different template, please contact Vicon Support.

Add labeling clusters to the datastore (optional step)

To help Shogun Live in booting the labeling setup and to uniquely identify performers, you can use labeling clusters. Labeling clusters are particularly useful in scenes with multiple performers.

Place one or more labeling clusters on each performer, with each cluster containing five or more markers. Ensure labeling clusters are unique by varying the position of the markers in each cluster.

Before you can use the labeling clusters for motion capture, you must add them to the Shogun Live datastore, to enable Shogun Live to recognize them.

To create labeling clusters:

  1. To save clusters, you can either use the default folder (C:\Users\Public\Documents\Vicon\Clusters), or to change the default location, in the Preferences dialog box (Shift+P), on the User tab, go to the Folders section and on the Labeling Clusters line, enter or browse to the required folder.
  2. Place the labeling cluster(s) in the volume and ensure all the markers are visible to the cameras.
  3. In the 3D Scene, ALT+drag to select a minimum of five markers for the new cluster.
  4. In the Tracking panel, ensure the Setup tab is selected and in the Labeling Cluster field, enter a name for the new cluster and then click the adjacent Create button.

    A labeling cluster is created from the selected markers and a .vsk file (with the same name as the labeling cluster) is created in the folder specified in Step 1.

    To help you to identify a labeling cluster, in the tree at the top of the Tracking panel, hover the mouse pointer over the cluster's icon. An enlarged view of the cluster is displayed.
  5. If you need to rename, detach, delete, or export a cluster, at the top of the Tracking panel, right-click the cluster and from the menu, select the required option. To rename you can also double-click the required cluster and then enter the new name.

Place markers on a performer

To place markers on a performer:

  1. Place your chosen marker set on the performer(s).
    The following images show the standard Vicon FrontWaist 53-marker set, and also show the placement of a cluster.


    These images show the placement of markers for the Production marker set (with 10 finger-markers):


    If you're using side waist markers, place the waist marker(s) at the sides of the performer's waist:

  2. Ensure that the foot markers are placed so that the toe marker is as far forward as possible on the foot while still facing upward. Also ensure that the three other markers (the heel marker and the two markers on either side of the front of the foot) are in the same plane, and are as low (ie near to the floor), as possible.


  3. If you're using finger markers, place them on the hands. 
    Follow these guidelines to ensure that the finger markers produce an accurate solve:

    • Wrists: The wrist marker placement is important because the foundation of a good finger solve is a correctly solved wrist. Place the wrist markers on either side of the wrist so that both markers are the same distance down the arm and as close to the joint center as possible.
    • Hands: Place the hand markers just before the knuckle of the index and pinky finger.
    • Fingers: For 3 finger-marker setups, place a marker just before the first joint of the index, pinky, and thumb, so that it is not affected by rotation of the second joint (see the photo of the 3 finger marker set).
      For 5 finger-marker setups, place the markers at the end of each of the five fingers (see the photo of the 5 finger-marker set).
      For 10 finger-marker setups, place the markers at the end of each finger, and mid markers on the second phalange apart from the mid (see the photo of the 10 finger-marker set).
    • Upper arms and legs: To help with calibration, place offset markers on the upper arms and legs.

      These images show placement of the wrist, hand, and finger markers in a three-finger setup:


      This image shows placement of the wrist, hand, and finger markers in a 5 finger-marker set:


      This image shows placement of the wrist, hand, and finger markers in a 10 finger-marker set:

      Placement for all the finger marker sets, as displayed in Shogun, is shown below:

      10 finger-marker set
      3 finger-marker set
      5 finger-marker set
      Finger marker size
      For a successful calibration, choose the correct size of markers for the hands, fingers and wrists:
      • Hand markers. Marker size is critical for the wrist rotation in the A-pose. If you use large markers, this can cause an upward rotation of the the wrist and downward rotation of the knuckles. For the best results, we recommend that the markers' centers are about 10 mm from the joint axis.
      • Finger markers. Marker size is also important for calibration. For the best results, we recommend that the markers' centers are about 5 mm from the joint axis.
      • Wrist markers. Marker size does not affect calibration, so you can use normal body-size markers or finger-size markers.
  4. If you're using clusters (see Add clusters to the Shogun Live datastore), if you haven't already done so, place them on the performer(s). Normally, a good location for the cluster is on the torso, but not too close to other markers. This can be on the front, as shown in the following image, or on the back, as shown in the illustrations in Step 1.

Create and calibrate a subject

Calibrating a subject involves having a performer wearing the required marker set stand in an A-pose and then perform a Range of Motion (ROM) in the capture volume. During the ROM, ensure that the performer goes through a full range of movement for every limb and joint that is to be captured.

Before you begin, t o give the clearest view of the subject, at the top of the 3D Scene view, ensure View Filters is selected, then under the Volume options, clear Cameras. In the Subjects section, select Solve and in the options matrix, in the S column, ensure Skin is selected (in addition to any other options that you may want to use).

Live occlusion-fixing occurs by default. This ensures the skeleton continues to behave correctly while markers are occluded. To ensure occlusion fixing is displayed, display the View Filters, and in the Data section, ensure Missing Markers is selected. In the Subjects section, select Solve, and in the options matrix, in the S column, ensure Skin is selected. Occlusion fixing is indicated by the red color and is also visible when X-Ray is selected.
To turn off occlusion fixing, at the top of the Processing panel, click Show Advanced and in the General section, clear Occlusion Fixing.

If you want to set aside a part of your volume for subject calibration, to avoid having to clear the volume each time you have to calibrate or re-calibrate a subject, see Create a subject calibration hotspot in Getting more from Vicon Shogun

High fidelity fingers marker sets

If you're using a marker set that includes markers for high fidelity fingers, note that labeling also makes use of this feature. To help the calibration, ensure you have placed offset markers on the upper arms and legs.

Because the high-density marker set results in a greater demands on processing, you may experience dropped frames, especially when using more than one actor. Ideally, test first with a single actor on a high-spec, multi-core machine.
To improve processing, you can run reconstruction, labeling, solving and/or retargeting over multiple machines. For information, see Run Shogun processing on multiple machines in Getting more from Vicon Shogun.

To perform live subject calibration:

  1. In the Tracking panel, on the Setup tab, in the Template field, choose the appropriate template for your subject.
    If you're using side waist markers and/or finger markers, make sure you choose the templates that include side waist markers and/or fingers (indicated by their names).
  2. To choose a mesh, ensure the Advanced properties are displayed (if they aren't, click Show Advanced at the top right of the Setup tab) and from the Skin list, select the mesh that is to be used for the solving skeleton. 
  3. To select a labeling cluster, for example, for a subject who is wearing a high density marker set (ie finger markers or any other high density set), ensure the Advanced properties are displayed and in the Labeling Cluster Selection field, make the required selection:
    • All Any currently unattached labeling cluster will be attached to the subject.

    • Selected Only the cluster(s) selected at the start of calibration will be attached to the subject.

    • None No labeling clusters are used for calibration.

  4. In the Subject field, enter a name for the new subject and click Create.

  5. Have the performer wearing the correct marker set (see Place markers on a performer) enter the volume and stand in an A-pose, with the hands flat.

    If you're using a template that includes fingers, also ensure that:
    • The wrists are straight, not bent to either side or up or down.
    • The fingers are straight, with a natural spread, and no bend.
    • The thumb is held tight against the index finger. Ensure that the thumb and the fingers all point in the same direction.
  6. On the menu bar, above the workspace, Subject Calibration Active and a flashing red circle is displayed.
    In the 3D Scene view, the markers are labeled, and the labeling and solving skeleton is displayed.
    Look for feedback in top right of view pane, which shows the number of markers found and the number of markers required, as well as other calibration feedback.

  7. Visually check that all the markers have been labeled and everything looks OK.   

    To quickly check that all the required markers have been placed on the performer, ensure the subject is selected and check the Marker Selection counter (bottom right of the view pane). For more information, see Check the marker count on the current selection.
  8. After waiting until you’re happy with the position of the joints, on the Setup tab below the Subject field, click Accept A-Pose.

    If, despite using offset and left and right markers (see the guidance on marker placement for finger marker sets), you still experience problems with subject booting, in the Tracking panel, ensure the Setup tab is selected with Advanced options displayed, and in the Capture section, select Capture Canceled Calibrations. (This enables Support to troubleshoot your issue.)

  9. Get the performer to perform a ROM (Range Of Motion) that includes all the required movement. If you're using one of the high-fidelity fingers templates, include some finger movements as part of this process. Include bending and spreading the fingers as well as poses of the hand that will be useful for checking the accuracy of the labeling. 
    Include the following in your ROM:
    • Fists
    • Wiggle the fingers
    • Touch the tip of the thumb against the tip of each digit of the same hand:
      • Thumb to index finger
      • Thumb to middle finger
      • Thumb to ring finger
      • Thumb to pinkie
  10. When the ROM is complete, click Stop Calibrating.
    In the 3D Scene, you can see the mesh and solving skeleton of the subject (if you need to change the display, at the top left of the workspace, click View Filters and choose the required options).
    At the top of the Tracking panel, a subject with the name you supplied in Step 1 above is displayed, together with a node representing its labeling cluster (if any).

    The subject is now fully calibrated and can be used in captures as required (for example, if you're using it for retargeting, see Load retargeting setup).

If you have difficulty with calibrating your subject satisfactorily, see Troubleshoot subject calibration.

An alternative to live solving subject calibration
In Shogun 1.6 and later, if you find that after Live calibration the solve requires much tweaking, for a post-processed alternative, try Auto-Skeleton in Shogun Post. For information, see Use Auto-Skeleton in Getting more from Vicon Shogun.

Check the marker count of the current selection

The Marker Selection counter enables you to easily check the number of markers currently selected. This is useful during subject calibration, if you need to check that the required number of markers have all been placed on a subject, or within a particular set of markers (for example, facial markers).

To display the number of selected markers:

  1. In the 3D Scene view, ensure View Filters is selected and in the Overlays section, select the Selected Marker Count option.

  2. At the bottom right of the view pane, the Marker Selection count is displayed. If no markers are currently selected, a zero is displayed.


  3. As you select markers in the view pane, the Marker Selection counter changes to display the number of selected markers.

Load a retargeting setup

If you're retargeting your fully calibrated subject onto a target FBX, you can now load the retargeting setup file (VSR) and link it to your subject.

  1. Ensure the retargeting setup files (.vsr) and skins (.fbx) that you want to use are located in the relevant folders:
    • VSR:  C:\Users\Public\Documents\Vicon\Retargets
    • FBX: C:\Users\Public\Documents\Vicon\Skins
  2. To turn on retargeting in Shogun Live, in the Processing pane, go to the General section and set the Processing Output Level to Retarget.
  3. In the Tracking panel, ensure the relevant subject is selected and then click on the Properties tab.
  4. In Retarget field, select the required VSR file(s) and then click Reload .

    Your character is now retargeted in the 3D workspace.
  5. To select or change a skin for the retargeting, click the Retarget Skin field and select the required skin.
  6. If you notice discrepancies between the retargeted character and the performer driving it, you will need to modify the retargeting.
    For information on creating and modifying retargets, see Retarget with Shogun Post.