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I've got a piece of footage that I have already tracked.

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However, I can't just seem to 'copy' the tracking data, or the tracks itself. Selecting them all and copy-pasting between projects does nothing at all.

Pretty much, I want to reuse the same footage and tracking points in two different projects.

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I can copy objects (ie. 3D models, armatures, lights, etc.) perfectly fine.

Question: Is there any way to copy tracking data? Or export/import it? (Data as in the keyframes of the tracking points that is used in camera solving, similarity to how armatures retain their animation keyframes and actions)

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2 Answers 2

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You can't copy tracking data between points as the tracking data is unique to each point in the scene. You know as you drive along and everything moves at a different speed, the trees next to the road fly by while the mountains hardly move - camera tracking actually relies on that to calculate the location of the camera from the video.

There is nothing stopping you from adding another point and tracking that point. You also don't need to add another point just because you want to add an object next to something. The points that are reconstructed in the scene are for reference, if you have tracked post three and post five you can place an object in between and it will be next to post four whether there is a tracked point there or not.

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  • $\begingroup$ So basically, I have to retrack the footage every time I use it? $\endgroup$
    – aytimothy
    Commented Sep 16, 2016 at 16:49
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    $\begingroup$ No, the tracking data is saved when you save the blend file. You can save a copy of the file and delete the 3d objects in the new file to re-use the same tracking data. $\endgroup$
    – sambler
    Commented Sep 16, 2016 at 16:57
  • $\begingroup$ Then how do I reuse the same footage (and track points) without saving? Since you aren't really answering the question, but rather providing a workaround. Remember, the points on the image don't equate to anything in the 3D space until you camera solve it. $\endgroup$
    – aytimothy
    Commented Sep 17, 2016 at 3:58
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Yes, it's possible. I found a very good description from JAYJAYFX on YouTube who explained it very clear. Here are the instructions, based on his tutorial.

  1. In your project with the tracking data, select the camera which uses these data.

  2. Select Export and choose the Alembic (.abc) option.

  3. In the export-option window check Selected Objects only

  4. Save the data.

  5. Open a new file. Delete all the objects (cube, camera)

  6. Select Import and choose the Alembic (.abc) option

  7. Import the .abc datafile you just saved. The camera will appear in your new file.

  8. Select the camera (go into camera view). And choose the Object Data Properties of the camera.

  9. Enable Background Images and add the videofile of your original project.

That should do the trick. (don't thank me, thank JAYJAYFx!)

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