Trying out Canon’s mixed-reality tech

July 30, 2012

(Credit: Canon)

Canon begins selling a next-generation form of virtual reality technology known as mixed reality (MR) this month, IEEE Spectrum reports.

Canon’s MR adds computer-generated virtual objects to the real world in real time, at full scale, and in three dimensions. It is  initially targeted at engineering groups involved in designing and building new products.

It uses a video see-through head-mounted display (HMD) with two video cameras, one for each eye, to capture video from the real world, which is sent via cable (attached to the HMD) to a computer for integration with the computer-generated graphics or computer-aided-design data to be overlaid.

The synthesized video is then sent back to twin SXGA-resolution displays in the HMD, which reflect the images through an optical system in the helmet and then into the eyes.

Canon will market the MR technology as a complete system, first in Japan, then overseas — possibly as early as the end of the year in the United States, priced at around US $125 000 for the basic system.