Update: 360 camera news is overwhelming.

Facebook is on to something. So much new 360 news it harder keeping news ground. In 2017 360 cameras have gotten so much attention mainly thanks giants lie Facebook and YouTube using and pushing the technology. Recently, Mark Zuckenberg CEO of Facebook announced their 360 camera that promises 6 dof (degree of freedom) movement around the scene.

All I can say is WOW they really are pushing this technology way faster then I expected. The problem is that 3D-360 capture solutions are still in early infancy to be user friendly. They admit that they do not wish to be part of this business but mainly help as much people have access and ways to develop the technology further.

Watch out for real-time AR (augumented reality) 360 video coming later in the development process so called “democratization” to open up AR for developers.

Facebook plans to license its new 360 cameras.

Do question is do we really need 16-32-64 cameras to do the job? What if we could use just one? Adobe claims they can offer 2D-monoscopic to 3D-360 conversion just by using footage from two cameras. They claim it work as long as the camera is in motion “seeing” more into the scene and this way generating a 3D mapped enviroment. It also can make the video stable. Interesting right? Here is a research paper just about this idea and some proof POV that they got it working:

Hacking is a idea to keep video stable DIY 360 camera Gear 360

I’ve seen companies that specialize in gimbal stabilization solutions go to market open in seek of new innovation. They invent product like Moza Mini Wearable Base to upgrade existing stablizers.

Seems to do its job like you would expect of any other camera stabilization to work but what if you just need a software solution to do this job? To figure out stable video well enough on the software side “renders” a product like this questionable. Do I need this later down the road?

Generally speaking it is a great idea to stabilize any camera. This is why drones are so good at what they do. They keep the camera stable and can perform computation tasks better based on a stable image rather then a shake’y one. This is true especially in 360 production.

Stable video works with Kodak Orbit360 4k

Kodak is introducing a new camera. More in depth what to expect and is it worth upgrading from Dual Kodak SP 360 4K is up to you. I’m going to stick with my SP 360 4K for now. What the SP 360 4K needs is:

  • stable video this would be a nice addition.
  • better battery perfomance

For now this is in preorder.  If you sign up on their page, they will email you a promo code that will give you a discount.

3D 360 from YI HALO

Yi Technologies

So along comes The YI HALO Introduces seamless 3D-360 capture solution but with a hefty price tag. It is cheaper then Nokia’s solution or other high tech.

Enjoy this 3D-360 video around New York City with the next generation Jump camera, the YI HALO. Built in partnership with YI Technology works seamlessly with the Jump Assembler. All in 3D-360. (AVAIL. LATE SUMMER 2017) To learn more go to the camera promotion page.

OK so what 360 camera should I get?

Get one that works. In your budget. It’s really that simple and for now all I can say the technology is still evolving like crazy. So getting something now does not mean you will have the tools of future in your hands. Watching how much “vapour-hardware” is around this new technology can be even seen in our now outdated Known 360 cameras post from 2016 does acknowledge how fast this industry is evolving. For now I would recommend to stay with whatever works for you and watch the big guys fight off the first rounds. Facebook, YouTube, GoPro, Nikon, Yi and dozens of other big established companies are dipping their toes into 360 video production. Once the dust settles we can start seeing the market mature like similar like the DSLR community. Stay tuned more posts to come soon but you can see that just following this one trend we already are here in 2017 watching all this happen. Enjoy the ride!

Bartosz Barlowski