NextStage has 5 tabs that can be selected at the top of the screen; Track, Mask, Stage, Settings and Capture.
You can access them in any order, but generally going from left to right will get set up the fastest.
When starting NextStage you first need to load or create a marker set. A marker set is a file that describes all of the retroreflective markers within a scene, so that the Kinect can find it’s position and orientation. The tools in the Tracking menu let you easily create and refine a marker set.
Once the position of the Kinect is known, you can use a "Scene Space Mask" to tell NextStage what should and shouldn’t be included in a scene. The Mask menu controls a virtual three dimensional rectangle that can be controlled using sliders or manual inputs.
NextStage can import 3D .obj files as a virtual set. The Virtual Set menu lets you control the position, rotation and scale of the set.
The Beta of NextStage does not support lighting, so .obj files will need lighting effects pre-baked into the textures.
NextStage Pro has three capture modes which can be selected in the Export menu. They are HD, Sync and Stream.
HD records 720p RGBA footage from the Kinect’s onboard camera, as well as reference audio and the camera tracking data. You can also export the background plate as a separate video for compositing.
Sync records only the tracking data and reference audio. This is intended for tracking an external camera mounted to the Kinect. Optionally you can export uncompressed depth video for custom workflows.
Stream is an advanced feature that allows you to send tracking data to a custom application, as well as the NextStage for Unity add-on. Please see the Camera Settings tutorial for more information.
NextStage Lite can only export HD video using the onboard camera, and does not include the option to export tracking data.
Once everything is set, NextStage is ready to start recording. The Capture tab lets you record, compensate for the Kinect's auto exposure, and displays critical camera information.
Everything is stored in the Captures folder, which is located in the main NextStage folder. Since there are several different file types, each capture has it’s own sub folder where everything is stored.
Video is exported one of two ways. Either as a .tga image sequence (which can be easily imported into most video applications) or an .avi video file encoded with a preinstalled Compression Codec.
Reference audio is exported as a .wav file. The microphones on the Kinect are very low quality, so these should only be used as a reference for syncing other audio or video tracks.
Finally tracking data is exported as a .dae file which can be opened by most 3D applications.
Keep in mind that the Kinect runs at 30 frames per second exactly, and not 29.97 frames per second, which is commonly referred to as 30. If you are having trouble with with playback speeds or tracking data, make sure your import and project settings are set to 30.