Can the PS2 EyeToy and PS Eye compare to the Kinect?

August 1, 2010

Can the PS2 EyeToy and PS Eye compare to the Kinect? One of the biggest criticisms around Microsoft’s new Kinect is around its allegedly new technology. Many argue that the tech in Kinect is nothing new and has been done before.

The devices that many have been drawing parallel to the Kinect are the PS2 EyeToy and the Playstation Eye. Many believe that these devices offer the same capabilities as the Kinect.

Some of the features touted for the Kinect are:

  • Face recognition
  • Body tracking
  • Voice recognition

We’ve known that the PS Eye can do face/head tracking, but can it do face recognition?

Apparently the PS Eye has always been capable of facial detection. You just have to program for it. According to SlashGear the PS Eye can "detect gender and even the age of the face, separate facial features such as the nose, eyes and ears, and even detect whether you’re smiling or not.” Apparently these tools are currently in development so that third party studios can implement them without hard coding anything.

We’ve known that the PS2 EyeToy and PS Eye can detect movement, but can it do full body tracking?

It appears that these two devices have always been able to do full body tracking. PS2 game Kinetic 2005 (no relation to Kinect) was able to do full body tracking to get users exercising. PS Eye also has a game called Kung Fu Live that tracks your entire body and translates your body movements onto the screen.

We know that the PS2 EyeToy and PS Eye both have mics built in for video chat, but can it be used for voice recognition?

Those that may have played Sing Star will probably already know the answer to that question. Sony has had voice recognition tech in its Sing Star titles. However, Sony will be incorporating this capability into the SDKs so developers can use this tech on any games.

 

This tech allows you to navigate menus, start and stop playback all via voice commands. A mic is required like the one built into the PS Eye or standalone Sing Star mic.

Here is a video compilation of the mention features side by side:

 

It appears that the PS2 EyeToy and PS Eye are capable of doing pretty much most of Kinect’s touted features. So, does Kinect bring anything new to the table?

Yes. One thing Kinect does have going for it is its package. Unlike many of the tech shown above, Microsoft is packaging all of the tools and functionality into one tidy SDK for developers. Also, Microsoft may have the right marketing campaign for the Kinect. The ads have been targeted at the casual market with futuristic promises that seem enticing.  Marketing is probably the factor that will either make or break Kinect.

35 Responses to “Can the PS2 EyeToy and PS Eye compare to the Kinect?”

  1. gunstar:

    Sony is lucky to have a scientist from MIT in its R&D department combine that with Sony’s high quality control and you have the best world class electronics hardware. That’s US and Japan working together.

    Although the Eye Toy may share many pros and cons of Kinect, for an 8 year old technology, it sure doesn’t share the latter’s douche laggery.

    With what we constantly of Kinect’s performances how the hell is M$ (yet again or again “rush”) going to sell this faulty broken product like the 360?

  2. CarlB:

    Mike, you forgot to mention 3D body tracking (Eye and Eyetoy were incapable of it), and Kinetic had a vital failure with lighting restrictions.

    If Kinect was the exact same as Eye however, it would only mean a massively retarded failure on Sony’s part to utilize some very basic aspects of their existing technology.

    Fortunately we know Sony isn’t retarded, the Eye is inferior technology, and they are likely now busy on the next Eye that emulates most of what Kinect can now do; while Microsoft is likely busy on Kinect 2, which is likely twice as capable as Kinect.

  3. InaudibleWhisper:

    Well you forget the key difference between the two — the fact that they’re two completely different pieces of technology. The PSEye and Eyetoy are just standard cams. No different from the webcam on your computer. Any cleverness comes from software, and most of the body tracking you talk about, such as that in Kinetic, is not body tracking, it’s movement tracking. It didn’t actually recognise a human body, you could hit the targets by throwing a cat at them if you so wish and you could cheat by shaking the camera or swiping a finger right in front of it. And of course any tracking involved is entirely 2 dimensional.

    Kinect’s primary technology is an IR depth cam. Basically an IR pattern (like a barcode) is projected onto the environment, and the depth sensor reads how it bends around objects, and gives each incoming pixel a depth level. This is combined with Microsoft’s packed in skeletal tracking software. Whilst it is true that the PSEye is capable of face tracking and rudimentary body tracking, to say that as a result they’re capable of the same things is just wrong. It’s like saying Super Mario Brothers and Mario 64 are the same because they both feature plumbers jumping around. Like saying a square is a cube.

    And the reason Kinect at present has more lag isn’t because of the hardware, it’s because the software has to deal with the raw data in real-time, and produce a body pose reading for the game 30 times every second. The software is constantly being improved upon (and will continue to be after launch). It’s already half of what it seemed during those early Ricochet demo’s in 09. And besides, it comes equipped with an RGB camera also, just like the PSEye, which is just as capable of the same kind of rudimentary lag-free “tracking”.

  4. lock_down:

    “Kinect 2: Now with controllers and buttons”

  5. Barnabe Jones:

    This is pretty old news. They’re pretty equally matched in terms of what can be done with the tech, except that Move can actually be used with good games.

  6. ncaissie:

    “Mike, you forgot to mention 3D body tracking (Eye and Eyetoy were incapable of it), and Kinetic had a vital failure with lighting restrictions.”
    Yet ms kinetic failed with good lighting. Or did you skip the topic of the Chinese girls running?
    Lmao you are sad.

  7. ncaissie:

    And the ps eye has the power of a good consol to run on.
    The only chance ms has is to make a ps3 version. Lol

  8. b0xel:

    “you forgot to mention 3D body tracking (Eye and Eyetoy were incapable of it)”
    thats where the Move comes in.

  9. oldschool1987:

    @ Iwhisper: Still looks no where near as great as M$ is making it out to be. That video where the two women were running made me cringe! I’m just glad that happened before it came out to buy.

  10. Roca.:

    b0xel nailed it

  11. gunstar:

    PSEye owns Kinect

    it can do everything Kinect promises
    HD 1080p graphics
    augmented reality
    full body and legs tracking
    head tracking
    face detection
    voice recognition
    voice command gameplay
    voice recognition
    noise cancellation

    and more……
    motion capture technology
    gender, age and emotion detection
    60-120fps animation

    and yes including the limitations…
    but that is where the Move controller comes in

    submillimeter precision
    submillisecond precision
    LED light for motion capture
    manetometer
    gyroscope
    accelerometer
    analog buttons
    digital buttons
    gameplay distance from camera is: 1 cm to 4 meters (12 feet)
    multi-touch controls
    force feedback
    can be played like the Dual Shock 3 while sitting, lying down or just about any position possible aside from standing up
    can be played as kids’toy or adult toy with attatchments like pistols, rifle, sword, shield, bow, steering wheel, baseball bat, golf club, etc. for augmented reality 2.0

    PSEye owns Kinect

  12. CarlB:

    “attatchments”

    lol, can’t wait for those, they really made the Wii what it is today.

    “Yet ms kinetic failed with good lighting”

    Yes, because every gamer has a hundred plus flashbulbs/strobe light going off in his game room… haha… what a failure.

  13. Rimmer:

    Lets have a quick reality check please:
    “thats where the Move comes in” to track one (or two with two controllers) points in space vs 40 with kinect.

    “it can do everything Kinect promises” – hardly without the depth camera and the motorized base let alone the software suite that actually makes everything work.

    HD 1080p graphics – I am pretty sure kinect never “promised” that, plus it has bugger-all to do with move or kinect.

    60-120fps animation – to do 120fps it needs to drop the resolution of the camera to 320×230, so bang goes any precision. Still twice as fast as kinect though.

    gameplay distance from camera is: 1 cm to 4 meters (12 feet)- 1cm? hardly, try a theoretical distance of 25cm. Other than that you are just as restricted to the same physical limitations as kinect as you need to be far away enough for the camera to see the entire person for full body tracking.

    multi-touch controls – where on earth do you get that nonsense from?

    can be played like the Dual Shock 3 while sitting, lying down or just about any position possible aside from standing up – I think you mean “as well as” not “aside”

    “submillisecond precision” hardly, not even the dualshock controller can manage that. The move controller has been clocked in at 22ms. Still faster than kinect, but nevertheless laggy.

    All the other points have only ever been shown in tech demos and have yet to be brought together like kinect as. Until then they are but wishful thinking.

    “Yet ms kinetic failed with good lighting”
    As CarlB says, the strobe like effect of the flashbulbs was hardly helpful, plus I suspect they were actually standing too far away from the device.

  14. Roca.:

    Mike – “Sony has had voice recognition tech in its SingStar titles”

    oh yeah…I forgot about this feature.
    I have to say, the voice recognition in SingStar seems to be way ahead of Kinect’s voice recognition features. In Singstar you just say the name of the artirts, song or album and it takes you there in a blink of a eye while with Kinect you have to say “XBOX….then [insert command]”

    @Rimmer
    while you stated Move is about 22ms, that’s way better than the Wii’s 50ms and Kinect’s 150ms.

    dont forget that Kinect’s camara records at 30fps limiting its refresh rate for slow movements while PS Eye records at 60fps.

    and lets not forget all its combined limitations that is already hurting Kinect’s lineup, promised features and “minority report” UI:

    * 10 -15 percent of the overall 360′s computing power , not just the CPU
    * Single speaker voice control
    * Limited to 2 players
    * no buttons
    * no physical feedback
    * 30fps
    * 6ft of space required
    * no hardcore games
    * Laggy
    * cannot track small body movement
    * Minority Report UI control turned out into Mii-Too UI

  15. phranctoast:

    I believe if Eye Toy and PS Eye proved one thing is, Camera only setups are bound to fail due to that one little problem of losing ability to control certain aspects of gaming.

    How the resident Xbots fail to see that is mind boggling. Developers have already made that claim. Do you guys think you know more than developers?

  16. Roca.:

    @Phranc

    maybe this is why EA will not support Kinect with their new IP called “create”. It will fully support Move though

    http://www.nowgamer.com/news/3825/eas-create-skips-kinect-uses-move

  17. ncaissie:

    “Yes, because every gamer has a hundred plus flashbulbs/strobe light going off in his game room… haha… what a failure.”
    Haha that is the excuse? Lol ok we will see.

  18. phranctoast:

    I was always under the impression that MS looked down on user generated content. I wonder if this game can only exist because EA is well known to use their own dedicated servers and not the P2P crap that Live is mostly known for.

  19. Rimmer:

    They would have to redesign the whole interface to use kinect, whereas there is little involved in getting it to work with move. I suspect all new games released for the PS3 will have some support for move. Kinect will need to prove itself before more developers bother with the investment in developing for it.

  20. phranctoast:

    “Kinect will need to prove itself before more developers bother with the investment in developing for it.”

    I agree that it will need to “prove itself” capable of handling games that aren’t “tech demo’s” and casual only games.

  21. gunstar:

    @ Rimmer
    Its obvious you are oblivious to all these features that fortunately, are all well documented live demos of the PSEye & Move on YouTube and any gaming site that deeply covers PSMove.

    as for the submillisecond motion capture:
    its at 6:25 of this video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JE5be1tRAI4

    Dr. Marks guarantees “You can make movements as fast as you want and the PS Eye will be able to track it.”

    PS Move will only make sense to those who want to prove it & believe it.

    As for me, I am gonna have me some fun with the Move.

  22. gunstar:

    @ Rimmer
    “submillisecond precision” hardly, not even the dualshock controller can manage that. The move controller has been clocked in at 22ms. Still faster than kinect, but nevertheless laggy.

    Laggy my ass. You are dealing with light technology here, dude.

    You dare compare DS3 bluetooth short length radio waves with LED light.

    The speed of light in a vacuum is presently defined to be exactly 299,792,458 m/s (approximately 186,282 miles per second).

    Bluetooth maximum effective distance/second is about 100 meters where Moves LED light maximum distance/second is from infinity and beyond!

    The fixed value of the speed of light in SI units results from the fact that the metre is now defined in terms of the speed of light. Light always travels at a constant speed, even between particles of a substance through which it is shining.

    Do your home work first, dude. Have ample knowledge of both these two competing technologies before you babble about your ignorance and make a fool of yourself.

  23. CarlB:

    Move =
    Wand(s)+ nunchuk (navigation controller) without cord =
    “Wii-too” with 28ms difference (is this even considering the ms diff between wii-mote plus vs. old wii-mote?)

    Big deal.

  24. Roca.:

    well, thats beside that Wii mote have to work around the wii sensor bar and IR montion tech is not as good (in many ways) as BT. Not to mention the 1:1 tracking done by the Eye tracking the light globe on the Move which makes the move more “precise” & “accurate” – all that on top the 28ms less lag.

  25. Rimmer:

    “Do your home work first, dude. Have ample knowledge of both these two competing technologies before you babble about your ignorance and make a fool of yourself.” you are kidding right? Aside from getting SI units mixed up and lacking even the most basic understanding of science (Blue tooth radio waves are a form of radiation just like light and therefore travel at the same speed) The speed of light is irrelevant when the theoretical minimum latency that the Eye can track is 8 milliseconds (120fps). Add to that the time it takes for the signal to be processed by the sensor, passed on to the machine and then the motion calculated and converted into on screen movement and you will see that sub-millisecond latency is impossible.
    Try a little harder next time.

  26. phranctoast:

    I do look forward to a thorough digital foundry lag test of the two systems. That will end a lot of this BS.

  27. phranctoast:

    http://www.t3.com/news/playstation-move-to-outsell-kinects-limited-control?=47803

    UK survey says PS3 will outsell Kinetic.

    Eye Toy creator comments on camera only limitations (He’d know right….)

  28. phranctoast:

    http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=403046

    Interesting Move Topic.

  29. CarlB:

    http://gamrfeed.vgchartz.com/story/81252/blitz-games-kinect-lag-soon-a-thing-of-the-past/

    Interesting Kinect Topic.

  30. Roca.:

    “Soon” LMAO

    Move Lag = 22ms
    Wii Lag = 50ms
    Kinect Lagfest = 150ms

  31. CarlB:

    “this is all software-based, so where some people might see some little cracks, they’re easily fixable by software. That is, the camera fundamentally works and gives you the input; game designers are running forward in a completely new area and learning this stuff. It’s like any console. The first few games will look like nothing compared to second and third generation.”

    http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/29537/Qamp_A_Blitz_Talks_Indies_Program_Kinect_Development_Claims_No_Lag_In_Kinect.php

  32. phranctoast:

    Interesting. Game developer tying to sell their technology as being best.

  33. CarlB:

    Perhaps in the article, however in the quote above they are talking about their own games as well: “The first few games will look like nothing compared to second and third generation”

  34. Godless:

    Kinect Vs Move + PS Eye.

    There is no question that the kinect can do way more than the other two combined.

    There are a couple here trying to claim that body tracking can be done on the eye cam just like the kinect. .

    NO NO NO. .it can’t . .nothing like it. If you point at the eye cam, it has no idea what just happened to your arm. .Kinect can tell where your pointing. And whether your arms are pointing in front or behind you .the depth sensor is needed. No amount of software on a 2D cam will ever make it as powerful as depth sensing hardware.

    The only downer on kinect is the lag. .if they sort it, it will make it a viable gaming interface, if they don’t then it will always just be a first try at a new technology that never quite worked.

    Have a look on the web at some of the things others have done with hacked kinect hardware. .it is a very powerful bit of kit, just try and find anything similar being done with the PS Eye.

    PS3 Help required (totally of topic)

    I’ve just tried again to get the PS3 to play movies etc from an external drive, I’d kinda hoped the last update might have added it or made it easier
    Can the PS3 browse external hard disks and play movies (AVI DiVx etc), music and pictures
    I just can’t seem to get it to do it. Am I missing something?

  35. Godless:

    And LOL at the movie. .reminds me of the game the kids play with the Xbox webcam “I’m in the movies”

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