This information is for Vicon Shogun 1.9. For up-to-date help, see the latest Shogun documentation.

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It is assumed that your Vicon system hardware (including the Vicon cameras, Vicon connectivity units, and any supported third-party devices) has been set up and connected and that Shogun is installed and licensed.

If you're installing your Vicon system yourself, see the Vicon documentation that was supplied with your hardware and Installing and licensing Vicon Shogun, together with any relevant videos (see the video links below). If you need further help with setting up your Vicon system, please contact Vicon Support.

When you start Shogun Live or connect Vicon devices to your system, Shogun checks to see whether the firmware for all your devices is up-to-date. If your devices aren’t using the latest firmware, Shogun displays an icon in the toolbar to let you know that a more up-to-date version of the firmware is available. To benefit from the latest enhancements and bug fixes for your Vicon system, click the icon and update your firmware. (The Vicon Firmware Manager is installed with the latest version of Shogun. If you don't have the Vicon Firmware Manager, download it from the Vicon website.)

To prepare your Vicon system for motion capture with Vicon Shogun Live, you'll need to complete these procedures in this order:

If your system includes Vicon video cameras, see also Prepare video cameras (optional step).

You can watch a Vicon video that shows the above steps:

(If your system includes Vicon video cameras, see also 3 - Shogun Live - Setting up Vue video camera.)

Create a folder hierarchy to store takes

Before you begin motion capture with Vicon Shogun Live, you must create a hierarchy of folders in which to store the files associated with your motion capture takes. You can do this either in Vicon Shogun Post or in Vicon Eclipse running as a standalone application.

To create the folder hierarchy to store your takes:

  1. Start Vicon Shogun Post or Vicon Eclipse .
  2. If you are using Shogun Post, open the Data Management panel (press F2, or on the Panels tab on the ribbon, select Data Management).
  3. In the Data Management panel or in Eclipse, select Create a new database.  (Note that the Eclipse buttons are slightly different from the Data Management ones, but their function is the same.)

  4. In the New Database dialog box:
    1. In the Location field, browse to or enter the required location. This can be anywhere where you normally save data, for example in your Documents folder.
    2. In the Name field, enter a name and (if required) a description in the Description field.
    3. In the Based on list, select Shogun Animation Template.eni.

  5. Select Create and in the next dialog box, ensure your new database is selected and select Open.
  6. In the Data Management pane, create the structure in which Shogun Live will store your take:
    1. Right-click in the window, select New > Project, and enter a suitable name for your project.

    2. Select the Project line you just created, right-click, and select New > Capture day.

    3. Click in the new Capture day node, right-click, and select New > Session.

  7. Open Windows Explorer and view the folder structure you just created.

    Note that the .enf file has the name you gave to your database. It contains the file structure instructions to Eclipse that tell it which is the main folder and which are the subfolders for this database. The subfolder structure reflects the Project, Capture day and Session that you specified. Each subfolder contains an .enf file that indicates to Eclipse where it belongs in the hierarchy.

    You now have an active session, ready to store your Shogun Live takes.

Before you begin capturing, to save your captured takes into the newly created folder hierarchy, you will need to specify the path to it in Shogun Live, as described in Capture a take.

Position the cameras and markers

With your Vicon system set up, installed and licensed, the first task in setting up your capture space is to position the cameras and markers.

  1. Position your cameras around the capture volume, ensuring that two or more cameras can see every point in the volume in which you intend to capture motion.
  2. Place Vicon retroreflective markers around the floor to outline your capture volume.

    You may find it helpful to create an asymmetrical pattern along the perimeter, as shown above, to help orient your view. For example, for a rectangular volume, place a different number of markers at each corner. For an elliptical volume, vary the spacing between markers as you place them around the perimeter.
  3. Place five markers in a cross shape to identify the volume origin.

Check the coverage of the capture volume

After you have positioned cameras and markers in the capture volume, the next task is to ensure that the cameras can see the whole of the volume.

  1. Ensure your cameras are physically connected to the system (for details, see the hardware documentation supplied with your Vicon system).
  2. Switch on your Vicon system and start Vicon Shogun Live.
  3. In the System panel (by default located on the left of the Shogun Live window), SHIFT+click to select all the cameras, or, for a large number of cameras, right-click and select Select All Cameras.
  4. In the Workspace ensure that the Cameras view is selected.

  5. Keeping all the cameras selected, in the Optical Mode section below, change Grayscale Mode to All.

  6. Using the default lens settings on each camera, ensure that:
    • You can see 2D marker images from each connected optical camera.
    • Two or more cameras can see every point in the volume in which you intend to capture motion.

Adjust the focus and aperture

To achieve a good marker image you may need to adjust the camera lens. Depending on your Vicon camera model, you may find two or three adjustment rings on the lens. These control the focus and aperture, and if the camera has an additional ring, the focal length (zoom).

Vicon Valkyrie:


Vicon Vantage:

For Vantage cameras (as with T-Series cameras), for 8.5 and 12.5 mm lenses, the order of the aperture and focus rings is the reverse of that shown.

Vicon Vero:


Vicon Vue:

Vicon Viper:                                                      Vicon ViperX:


Vicon Bonita:

Vicon MX T-Series:

Using T-Series cameras with Shogun 1.9 is not supported or tested. For information on using these cameras, see the documentation for versions of Shogun earlier than 1.9.
Note also that if you add Valkyrie cameras to a system that includes T-Series cameras, the T-Series cameras will not work.

To focus a camera:

  1. To make focusing easier, in the View Filters, go to the 2D Data options and select Maximize Grayscale, which zooms the view into any visible markers.

  2. Fully open the Aperture ring.
  3. Adjust the Focus ring so that the markers become round and clear. As you rotate the focus ring, notice the marker images get smaller and then at some point will begin to get larger again. Good focus is when the marker is at its smallest size. Leaving this setting at infinity is normally suitable. Aim for a marker image similar to the following:


  4. Close the Aperture ring so that as much background noise as possible is removed without compromising the quality of the marker image. Try to obtain good, clear images of markers even when they are close together, as shown in the following image, where the markers on the left are touching. The markers should not be too small, and the center should be just off-white (not fully saturated) when viewed from the middle of the volume.

Optimize camera settings

To ensure optimum marker recognition, you adjust the camera settings in Shogun Live.

To optimize camera settings:

  1. In Vicon Shogun Live, make sure you are viewing 2D data from your cameras in one or more Cameras views. (To display the necessary layout, you can click the Load saved view list in the menu bar near the top of the Shogun window, then click System Setup.)

  2. Have someone wave the calibration device around in the capture volume and ensure you can see marker images moving in each Cameras view.


  3. In the System panel, SHIFT+click to select all the cameras, go to the Optical Mode section below and adjust the following camera settings as necessary:
    • Gain: To start with, leave the setting at the default of 1x to ensure 2D marker images are bright enough to see clearly. If the markers appear too faint or if the cameras have trouble distinguishing them, adjust this setting.
    • Threshold: A good starting value is 0.2 to 0.3. This setting determines the minimum value at which data is registered by pixels on the camera sensor and considered for circle fitting. As this setting acts like a high-pass filter, reducing this value increases the data that can pass through the sensor.
    • Strobe Intensity: Adjust this setting to increase the effective brightness of the strobe and therefore the distance at which and clarity with which it is likely to illuminate. A good starting value is 1.0 (100%), which is why this is the default setting.

If you need to further adjust any of the above settings for individual cameras, in the System panel, click the name of the relevant camera and change the required setting(s) in the Optical Mode section.

When you have finished focusing and optimizing the cameras, with all cameras selected, in the Optical Mode section change Grayscale Mode back to Auto.

Set timecode (optional step)

If your system includes an external timecode generator, before you calibrate the cameras, you must set the required timecode in Shogun Live.

To set the timecode:

  1. In the System panel, in the Connectivity section, select your device to view its current settings.


  2. At the top of the System panel, view the system settings.
  3. In the Frame Rate (Hz) list, select the required frame rate.

    If you're tracking fast-moving props, for best results, choose a reasonably high frame rate (100–120 Hz ) and ensure the rate of dropped frames is minimal.

    (For information about using High Speed mode, which enables you to run Vicon Vantage cameras at a higher frame rate while maintaining the FOV, see Use High Speed mode to run Vantage cameras at higher frame rates.)

  4. To use a genlock standard, ensure the Genlock Setup option is selected and from the Genlock Setup list, select the standard you want to use. Similarly, if required, enable the Timecode Setup option and select a timecode standard from the Timecode Setup list. The following example shows the SDI standard and a frame rate of 120 selected:

  5. In the Genlock and Timecode section for the selected connectivity device, to enable genlock, select Genlock Enabled.
  6. In the Timecode Source list, select the required option.

  7. In the Data Capture panel (by default displayed at the bottom of the Camera Calibration panel, on the right of the Shogun Live window), the timecode is now displayed.


    It is also shown as part of the information displayed at the bottom of the Workspace.

Use High Speed mode to run Vantage cameras at higher frame rates

Shogun 1.5 and later supports the use of the Vantage+ firmware upgrade (Firmware 725 and later), enabling you to use High Speed mode with your Vantage cameras without having to change the field of view (FOV) or lens. When you capture optical data, subsampling (selectively reducing the pixel count) enables you to run at high camera frame rates without reducing the FOV (frame size). You can change frame rates during capture and you don't need to set up your cameras again when you increase the frame rate, as the FOV is unchanged.

Note that because the higher speeds are achieved through subsampling (removing some pixels from the frames), some reduction in resolution is incurred. For details, see High-speed mode in the Vicon Vantage Reference Guide.

To select high-speed mode:

  1. In Vicon Shogun Live, in the System panel, select the Frame Rate list and set the system frame rate to the speed you want to use in High Speed mode.
    A warning may temporarily be displayed, alerting you to the discrepancy between the requested frame rate and the actual system frame rate, until you select high speed mode for all the relevant cameras, as explained next.
  2. In the System panel, select one or more cameras. 
  3. In the camera properties below, ensure the Advanced properties are displayed and in the Optical Setup section, select the Sensor Mode menu and select High Speed.

  4. In the Cameras view pane, notice that the High-Speed mode icon is displayed in the top left corner of the view, next to the other camera details