Hudl’s outdoor smart camera was engineered to provide teams with the highest quality video possible.
Coaches have told us time and time again that crystal clear video is key to staying a step ahead of the competition. With Hudl Focus Outdoor, our goal was simple: provide coaches and teams with excellent video, automatically.
Unlike our indoor solution, which records under a consistent environment in gymnasiums, the outdoor camera has to deliver high quality video while overcoming additional challenges.
From the angle of the sun and stadium lights to extreme weather and varying stadium sizes across the country, Focus Outdoor must overcome and adapt to all these variables to record high-quality film for outdoor sports.
And when it comes to high-quality film, HD is an absolute must.
In 2019, we upgraded the Hudl platform to feature video playback in high definition. Admittedly, it was a change that was long overdue. Our smart camera couldn’t offer anything less—our coaches deserve and expect the best.
And no one has higher standards for film than American football coaches.
“We are building a camera for football coaches, who have the highest standards of anyone I’ve met,” said Joel Hensley, Director of Engineering for Hudl Focus. “They want perfection. They demand perfection. So they are going to have a keen eye for anything that doesn’t look great. We have to make sure that the video quality we’re delivering meets their needs.”
Coaches were instrumental in providing feedback that propelled us toward that goal.
Lake Travis high school football head coach Jonathan Coats said his program was willing to splurge on expensive cameras and equipment if it meant capturing the highest quality video
possible. As part of the Focus Outdoor beta program, Coats said initially that the quality wasn’t better than what he could capture with his existing cameras.
Based on feedback from Coats and other coaches in the beta program, our engineers lasered in on improving video quality.
Coach feedback helped the engineers create a rubric for grading video quality to ensure the video would surpass expectations. Key factors to coaches were things like the consistency of video playback—meaning no stuttering, no dropped frames, etc.—and that the camera accurately followed the play without ghosting (players looking blurry or “teleporting” due to missed frames) or blurred images between from one camera lens to the next. It emphasized low image noise, strong color and sharpness.
“We vetted a couple different types of lenses to make sure […] the distance was good and the clarity was good,” said Quality Assurance Director for Hudl Focus Ashely Shubkagel. “We test our lenses right after we get them from our supplier. Then once they’re in the cameras, we test them again to make sure there’s no point of blurriness on the field.”
Thanks to feedback from users, we improved our processes all the way down to how we assemble the cameras. Because quality isn’t just our goal. It’s our passion.
Hudl Focus Outdoor is available as part of an athletic department package. Contact us to learn how to secure your camera.