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Thread: The Commanders - Camera Suite controls

  1. #1

    The Commanders - Camera Suite controls

    Hail fellow Commanders.

    I have seen a lot of confused posts with people frustrated at the complexity of setting up the new camera suite included with The Commanders release so I thought some explanation based on my own findings may be helpful.

    First of all forget the free camera is a camera and think of it as flying another ship or drone with your own ship as its target!


    With this concept in mind everything else should be relatively straight forward.


    The Camera


    The camera can be in one of two states - fixed or free.

    A Fixed camera is static and does not move from its subject...as such you can really only look at what it is pointing at and any movement of the controls will affect the ship itself rather than the camera. There are 5 internal fixed camera
    positions and 3 external fixed camera positions.

    The Free camera is just that - you can pan it around; roll, pitch, yaw and slew left and right, up and down. You can roll it around it's own axis and zoom in and out and then lock it in a new aspect creating a bespoke external fixed camera.

    The free camera can be accessed from any of the 5 internal or 3 external fixed cameras.

    Caution:
    If you access the free camera from any of the 5 internal fixed camera's it is best to be gentle with the flight controls because they do cause some ship movement as well as moving the camera - you are better off sticking to the zoom and blur functions on the internal cameras.

    When you access the free camera from any of the 3 external fixed cameras you are essentially piloting a drone with your own ship as it's target, although this can be changed by detaching the camera. When you detach the camera you are locking it in a fixed aspect and are then free to control your ship from a distance - again caution is advisable here as your ship can quickly disappear from the field of view and you will not be able to see where it is headed unless you change to the regular fixed camera's or exit the suite entirely.

    After a bit of practice you will quickly get to grips with this...it's pretty cool watching yourself pilot your ship as a spectator. At this point you can lock your camera back to the ship and it will become a new temporary fixed camera.


    Distance Limitations

    The camera will allow you to zoom out from the point of focus to a limited range. Whether in your SRV or your ship on a planet surface the distance is restricted to 250 metres. Once clear of a body the distance increases to 3000 metres. Once the camera reaches either of these distances it is dragged along with the point of focus as if it were tethered to it.


    The Controls


    Ok, so enough explanation of the what, here's the meat and tatties of how:

    In free camera mode you can bind the controls using exactly the same keys and controllers you use for flying your ship - these do NOT affect the ships controls or indeed even tell you that a key or axis is already in use! This is important because many of you think that you cannot use these functions as they are already assigned to controlling your ship.


    Obviously there are going to be a lot of different controllers in use but as a guide here are the settings I have used with my X56 Rhino HOTAS controller.

    The main control actions are boxed in blue for the throttle (camera travel forward and backward with the throttle X-axis and camera left, right, up and down using the H3 analogue stick).

    The main control actions are boxed in green for the stick (camera pitch on the Y axis, yaw on the RZ axis and roll on the X axis).

    All other functions are made with various buttons and hat switches on both stick and throttle as I find natural to me. The main thing is to use the flight stick and throttle to manoeuvre the camera exactly as you would your ship, once you
    have these in place and are comfortable you can tweak the buttons and switches for the other functions as you see fit.





    My X56 HOTAS settings for the camera:




    Edit: Using the camera for exploration video added.



    Youtube Link - Ship Camera



    Youtube Link - SRV Camera





    YouTube Link - Using the SRV Camera to Explore


    I hope this is of some help to those of you struggling with the camera suite.

    Fly safe Commanders

    Rardain

  2. #2
    Thanks CMDR, much appreciated!
    This looks really helpful and might actually make me have a go at the new fancy cam.

  3. #3
    Thank you for your work. There are a lot of buttons to assign.
    I used a complete MFD panel just for camera...



    Fly save commanders

  4. #4
    I am slowly getting used to it. I have it also bound to my Hotas. One thing I am still struggeling with is with the SRV. When I enter the cam mode and then enter free camera the SRV starts moving forward. I have to set the handbrake to avoid that. No idea how to fix this.

  5. #5
    The thing is, setting up controls is one thing. Actually using the camera is another. I found out the hard way when all of a sudden planets (and stars) were going in some kind of egg shape. This was caused by zooming out to 0.0x in free camera mode.

    When I increased the distance (which is what I should have done), things went better. Here is the difference:
    Egg like ammonia world here (zoomed out to 0.0x):


    And a ringed ammonia, camera distance way out and then zoomed in:


    Much better

  6. #6
    Originally Posted by Traesha View Post (Source)
    The thing is, setting up controls is one thing. Actually using the camera is another. I found out the hard way when all of a sudden planets (and stars) were going in some kind of egg shape. This was caused by zooming out to 0.0x in free camera mode.

    When I increased the distance (which is what I should have done), things went better. Here is the difference:
    Egg like ammonia world here (zoomed out to 0.0x):


    And a ringed ammonia, camera distance way out and then zoomed in:


    Much better
    That's called a field of view (FOV).

  7. #7
    Originally Posted by Qohen Leth View Post (Source)
    That's called a field of view (FOV).
    Well, thats what they said in the bug report forum. It's very confusing though since we can check under graphics and adjust Field Of View there which may have something but very little to do with it. The last shot was taken with 100% (all the way to the right) Field Of View.
    When however you change the zoom on the camera, it will make stars and planets look like eggs as shown in the video here:

  8. #8
    Thanks for this work well-deserved +1
    I will give it another try now ...

    edit update:
    well I thought I had it sorted (eventually!) but I find whenever I return to the ship controls after using the free camera my throttle setting is reversed!
    Plus, when I changed the view from external to internal, all the controls changed to ship controls rather than the camera ...
    patience wearing thin

  9. #9
    thanks, it saved me wrecking my head any further

  10. #10
    Originally Posted by Ben Romach View Post (Source)
    Thank you for your work. There are a lot of buttons to assign.
    I used a complete MFD panel just for camera...

    https://uploadix.de/images/2017/04/1...416_084912.jpg

    Fly save commanders
    Hi Ben,

    How do you find the Cougar MFD's for use in the game? I have thought about buying them in the past but always wondered how good they were build-wise and used in-game.

    Personally - I have all the buttons for the cameras assigned to the various HAT's and the POV on my HOTAS - the X56 has a wealth of them so it's easy to get everything assigned without having to take your hands of them, which is the whole point I suppose. I appreciate not everyone can afford something like the Saitek HOTAS or it's competitors so the MFD's maybe are a good way to expand functionality.

  11. #11
    Thanks for that.

    For me the difficulty is knowing what you can assign to buttons you already use without breaking anything. Because ideally you DO want some button overlap but it's not easy to figure out what combos are safe without understanding how it all works. It is a bit of a catch 22.

    Assigning zoom/focus and such to the hat (which I assume is what you've done) makes a world of difference, I had them assigned to the throttle spinners. (this doesn't work too well)

  12. #12
    Hi Rardain,

    I dont't want to steal the thread - just one thing. I love the MFD's and don't wanna miss them again.
    I look for a hardware thread for further experience...

  13. #13
    Originally Posted by Rardain View Post (Source)
    I have seen a lot of confused posts with people frustrated at the complexity of setting up the new camera suite included with The Commanders release so I thought some explanation based on my own findings may be helpful.
    Thanks a lot for posting this in the exploration forum! Some people like me don't venture outside of this forum at all, although we range free all over the galaxy

    Yesterday I spent a couple of hours fiddling around with the camera, and I came to pretty much the same conclusions and results as you did. What I found additionally confusing is that some of the bindings are labelled differently in the configuration screen and in the HUD:

    Label in configuration screen Label in HUD
    Lock to vehicle "Ship controls" or "Camera controls"
    Lock to world "Detach camera" or "Attach camera"
    Toggle rotation lock "Stabiliser off" or "Stabiliser on"

    If you find the time maybe you could integrate this into your screenshot.

  14. #14
    Here's a quick rundown of how my HOTAS is set up for the camera - one of the clever things Frontier have done with the camera is the ability to jump between camera control and ship control seamlessly. if you set up your controller to mimic your ship you really will get the best out of it.

    The graphic shows how I have my HOTAS set up for camera control - none of these settings affect the ships control whilst using the camera in Free mode. I am going to (hopefully) put up a video to show the ease of manoeuvring a bit later but my broadband upload speed is rubbish so it may take a while.


  15. #15
    Originally Posted by Traesha View Post (Source)
    Well, thats what they said in the bug report forum. It's very confusing though since we can check under graphics and adjust Field Of View there which may have something but very little to do with it. The last shot was taken with 100% (all the way to the right) Field Of View.
    When however you change the zoom on the camera, it will make stars and planets look like eggs as shown in the video here:
    https://youtu.be/yWamF4G8wRI
    "Zoom 0.0" is misleading. I'm pretty sure that if you want the default view (i.e. the view that your FOV is normally set to in the config files) you have to set Zoom to 1.0x (EDIT: THIS IS WRONG - see my post on Page 2 for correction). Setting it to a smaller value (< 1.0x) increases the FOV and adds more distortion around the edges of the screen (making planets look more egg-shaped), while setting it to a larger value (> 1.0x) narrows the field of view and reduces the edge distortions.

    The default vertical FOV is set in the config file and is 54.32 - what I can't figure out is how the zoom values convert to FOV in degrees. I would love to know how to do this.


    Also, I've found that the camera controls are very... jerky. It seems hard for me to get fine control of the free camera movement and I'm not sure if there's a way to control this - has anyone found how to do this?

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