Exporting tracking data from Mocha Hitfilm to Unreal Engine vía Blender

laconstantedeplanck
laconstantedeplanck Website User Posts: 68 Enthusiast

Hello there!

First and foremost, THANK YOU FXHOME for giving us this INSANE black friday offer. Honestly, it's pretty much appreciated.

TL;DR at the bottom. I have recently started watching season two of Mandalorian and I came across this outstanding tutorial by Javert using CamTrackAR and Unreal Engine (honestly, if you haven't watched this tutorial yet, close this tab, get a beer and enjoy this masterpiece, then remember to come back to help me solve my problem :D ):

Mandalorian 3D Environment Tutorial | Unreal Engine & CamTrackAR - YouTube

In this tutorial, Javert says that Unreal Engine can import tracking data in FBX format and to do so, he opens the .hfcs file he got from CamTrackAR to Blender, because Blender can export tracking data in FBX file format.

I was wondering if it'd be possible to export the tracking data of an already-recorded footage that has been tracked using Mocha Hitfilm (that also provides a .hfcs file) to Blender so I can export it to FBX in order to be opened in Unreal Engine.

I've tried tracking different clips using Mocha and exporting both the 'Camera Track' and the '3D Camera Solve' hcfs files to be imported in Blender but got a Blender error while importing it using the 'Hitfilm AR to Blender' plugin. It seems this plugin might work only with CamTrackAR hfcs's and not Mocha's. I've opened both hfcs files with Notepad and they look quite different both in the standard definition and in the tracking points definition:

(CamTrackAR hfcs on the left hand side and Mocha's on the right)


I read somewhere in this forum that it wasn't possible as of 2017. I was wondering if it works now and maybe I'm doing something wrong or, just in case it's not currently supported, if it will work with the recent changes on Mocha and the upcoming release of Hitfilm somewhat in the near future.

I also read a workaround involving tracking the footage with Mocha, then adding some fake tracking markers onto the footage (even with just a color plane instead the real footage itself) and then track that new footage with Blender. Then export the tracking data to FBX to be opened in Unreal. I think this still works as a nice workaround but I just wanted to now if there is a more direct way to achieve this nowadays.

Thanks folks, your help is really apppreciated.


TL;DR. Does a Mocha track hfcs file can be imported into Blender to be exported to Unreal Engine?

Comments

  • Triem23
    Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 19,953 Ambassador
    edited November 2020

    Nope.

    Bear in mind Imagineer's Mocha Pro allows export of tracking data to multiple formats. Mocha Pro is over a thousand dollars. Any kind of export of Mocha Hitfilm (in Pro or a $50 add-on for Express) tracks from Hitfilm would undercut Mocha's other product.

    Same with Foundry's tracker. Foundry sells standalone trackers that cost $2k. Exporting Foundry data from Hitfilm Pro would be Foundry shooting themselves in the foot.

    On the other hand, you can track directly in Blender and export from there.

  • laconstantedeplanck
    laconstantedeplanck Website User Posts: 68 Enthusiast

    Thanks @Triem23 for your fast answer. I get your point, that makes a lot of sense.

    I'll try tracking in Blender and then export from there to both Unreal and Hitfilm as you suggest. I find tracking in Mocha way more easy than doing it in Blender, but just because I'm used to it.

    Definitively I'm considering buying an iPad (cheapest Apple device to be able to install the CamTrackAR app), so all the green screen tracking can be done quite more easily.

    Another thing I'd consider is buying Mocha Pro using the monthly subscription, currently at USD 75 per month, so I can track at once all the footage I need to use with Unreal on those 30 days of valid subscription, then back off. Depending on the frequency in which our projects need to use Unreal, that'd be a not-so-expensive workaround.


  • Triem23
    Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 19,953 Ambassador

    My Mocha Pro is a couple years old (I want to upgrade this year. I tend to do a perpetual license, but I've only upgraded Mocha once since 2013.

    Get the OFX Plug in version. You'll still be able to export the track data for other software, but you'll also be able to take advantage of things like Mega Plates and subplanar warping directly in Hitfilm.

  • laconstantedeplanck
    laconstantedeplanck Website User Posts: 68 Enthusiast

    Thanks for your tips, I'll try then :)