We're very excited to finally reveal Helios Pro for cinematographers, photographers and designers, anyone in fact who photographs anything outdoors. Not only can you pinpoint the position of the sun, the moon (and now) stars the way you can in Helios, we've also added light simulation magic into the alchemal mix. Now you can visualize exactly what shots will look like at any location, at any time of the year or day. You can see precisely how light will illuminate and the shadows fall.For landscapes we create a dynamic 3d mesh of the surrounding terrain and show how the light will change throughout the day across the hills, mountains and valleys.
For city photographers we download OpenStreetMap building data and render a 3d reconstruction of the buildings and streets. You can therefore see exactly how the light will strike the buildings throughout the day.
Helios Pro uses two distinct types of AR, and it's important to know and understand the differences. Basic AR overlays things over the screen of the camera — when users move their camera up, down, and to the left and right, the information moves with the image. That's how most sun simulators work. Think of it a bit like Iron Man's heads-up display in his suit. Information, like the position of the sun, is overlaid on the camera image.
Apple's ARKit — and what we’ve built into Helios Pro — is something different. ARKit projects a 3D model placed in the real world, so that users can walk around it and look at a physical 3D object from different angles through their phone. ARKit uses very sophisticated algorithms to work out where the object is in space, so that when users walk forwards and backwards, or swing sideways the object behaves as if it’s there with you (whether on location or at your desk). Move the camera and the 3D objects and world moves with you.
New to Helios Pro are a number of tools to help with night photography. The new milky way section gives you three different ways of visualizing the stars at any location. Helios Pro chooses the best constellation to track, depending on your latitude (though you may choose your own). It uses these constellations to calculate the rise and set times of the Milky Way at your location.
This unique tool is designed to let night photographers plan Milky Way photography. The days of the month run along the bottom and the hours of the day on the left-hand side. The yellow, white and blackcurrant overlays show when the sun, moon and Milky Way are in the sky. Simply search for the time when there is only stars in the sky (so the light doesn't spoil your view of the stars).
The light pollution map shows you, for a particular location, the likelihood that light from surrounding houses and cities will disrupt your view of the night sky. Across the bottom runs the color scale that tells you how polluted the sky is likely to be.
Picture this (because for filmmakers and photographers, this is the job, isn't it?): with Helios Pro, users can project a 3D version of the landscape of any location on the planet's surface (Central park, or the Bermuda Triangle, or Death Valley or the top of Old Smokey) and accurately simulate the light falling on the hills (or mountains, buildings, streets, people, cars, dinosaurs or whatever) at any date or time, past or future. It helps users figure out what the best time to shoot will be – and from what angle.
But this part is key, so we’ll do it in Orange:
While other apps show users where the sun or moon will be, Helios Pro gives a real sense of light and shadow allowing you to be perfectly prepared for the shoot long in advance.
- Multiple tools to explore sun, moon, and star data.
- Light simulation on a range of virtual stand-ins.
- Scarily accurate alchemy and celestial mechanics.
- Night-shoot planner to see the optimum dates and times to shoot the Milky Way.
- Dynamically generated 3D models of landscapes, buildings, cars, trees (and of course, a dinosaur).
- Many tools will still work without reception.
- Multiple ways to export data.
- iPad and iPhone compatible