Improvements to the Pixels to Points tool in v25.0
Pixels to Points is a photogrammetric processing tool within Global Mapper Pro that creates photo-textured 3D models, orthoimages, and high-resolution point clouds via Structure from Motion (SfM) and Multi-View Stereovision. Using overlapping UAV-collected images, these generated data models can be used in Global Mapper to measure terrain volume, asses structures, create detailed base maps, and more.
The new version 25 release provides yet more improvements to the Pixels to Points tool, including significant speed advancements to decrease the processing time and revisions to the Wizard to streamline your workflow further than before. These improvements came from extensive fine-tuning in development and QA, and through Beta testers for the software. Typically a few weeks before each release, a new version of the software is provided for Beta testers who volunteer to try out the new software. In exchange for early access to new tools and updates, these Beta testers help contribute to the process that makes Global Mapper such an outstanding software.
Let us take a broad look at the processes that make up Pixels to Points. Structure from Motion is used to process the images and find features:
For more information check out this blog: How Pixels to Points Works
The GM P2P process uses a series of steps across two separate libraries: OpenMVG and OpenMVS. Speed improvement for this recent update focused on the most time-consuming steps of this process including SfM in OpenMVG. These speedups in v25.0 are all CPU-based and do not require a GPU, although the whole process runs better with a GPU.
The Pixels to Points Wizard is designed to increase ease of use for existing users and make photogrammetric processing more approachable to new users by streamlining settings choices. Simply import your images and choose your most important output, including the option to run a quick output for quality assessment. Global Mapper adjusts the Pixel to Points settings to match your input, providing an optional follow-up option to tweak the settings if desired. Use the primary dialog to add control points and assess more advanced settings such as masking and color harmonization. With Global Mapper Pro’s powerful point cloud processing tools, Pixels to Points provides a powerful and streamlined option for creating and editing your spatial data.
Just like all tools in Global Mapper, there are many smaller updates to help make sure users get the best outputs. One of these updates to the wizard that many users may not often encounter is the Projection Advisor. This guided warning will trigger when a user applies a projection to the output that may not be compatible with the source images. For example, if the images were collected in The US, but the user choose a Polar projection. This is another step of preprocessing output validation that happens behind the scenes in Pixels to points to save you time and effort.
If you’re interested in becoming a Beta tester, email Beta@bluemarblegeo.com or keep an eye on the Global Mapper Forum page.