Xiaomi Yi Action Sport camera 3D 360 rig

Recently on reddit user thewiseal shared his experience building a 360 camera on a budget! We all know that getting a bunch of GoPro’s is very costly. His rig is based on Xiaomi Yi Cameras and seems to be working quite well. Take a look at the footage he was able to capture:

Some information about the camera rig (post taken from reddit):

I use 18 Xiaomi Yi cameras shooting 1600×1200 @ 60fps.
12 cameras are arranged in a hexagonal configuration, in pairs of 2 separated by 55mm. The other 6 cameras are arranged in triangular configuration, 3 capturing zenith and 3 capturing nadir. I use this configuration to get a much better 3D effect at the zenith than with 2 cameras, and it also helps with nadir patching. The rig itself is an Adobe Illustrator file that I 3D printed for $20. I’ll be uploading the file along with my comprehensive guide.

Here you can download the 3D 360 version of the footage. You can view this best on a Oculus DK2 using Live View Rift.

You can learn more about this project at VRColony.net

14 thoughts on “Xiaomi Yi Action Sport camera 3D 360 rig”

  1. Hey, this is me! Thanks for sharing, this site looks like a great resource on 360 cameras. I’ve improved my post-production process and I’m wrapping up an Angkor Wat video that looks much nicer than the Grand Palace clip – I’ll make sure to pass it along when I’m finished!

    I have some guides to my process and rig design posted at my website, VRColony.net. If you’d be kind enough to include a link to that site in your post, I’d happily return the favor on my site.


    1. It’s definitely not the greatest! I get about 2hr life from the camera, 1hr of solid shooting. That’s usually enough for me for 1 day of filming, after which I charge the battery at home. I’ve seen some larger, spare battery packs, that may be an option for the next version of the rig.

  2. This is awesome! I am in the process of learning all of this…

    The jump rig has more of a circular arrangement as opposed to the hexagon arrangement. Would you say there is any benefit to the circular arrangement? Does it help with tighter shooting? Also, is it better to shoot in 4:3?


    1. Hi Paul! The stitching techniques differ for parallel stereo pairs (this rig) vs the circular Jump-style arrangement. With parallel stereo pairs, each camera acts as either a ‘left-eye’ cam or a ‘right-eye’ cam. With the Jump-style rig, half of each camera acts as left-eye, half as right. The essential difference is that the Jump-style rig has twice as many seams, but they are less pronounced than the stereo pairs style.

      However, in the case of Jump, Google uses machine vision to effectively eliminate seams anyway – so the circular configuration is ideal for them. The stereo pairs configuration is nice when you’ll be stitching manually, since you know you have a wide area to work with where there will be no seams.

      It’s usually ideal to shoot in 4:3, for more overlap between cameras (helps with stitching). I shoot the 18-cam rig in 4:3. However, I’ve put together a new 8-camera 3D 360 rig, and I shoot in 16:9 for that rig to maximize resolution (max 4:3 res with my hardware is 1600×1200, max 16:9 is 2304×1296).


      1. Hi,

        I’m very interested in your 8 camera 360 3D rig – can you share some details please?

        Also, what do you guys think about the LucidCam that is on IndigGoGo right now? They have 2 180° lenses and they claim with 3 of these cameras (6 lenses in total) you can do 360 3D video.

  3. Hi Jason,
    Absolutely remarkable work you’re doing, totally Love it!
    Thanks for sharing so much of your Impressing Knowledge. I was looking for Weeks to find Anything coming close to what you are already doing. I am from Germany and keen to dive into 360 degree 3D filming and would really appreciate to get in contact with you, for i do have some questions. Would you mind getting in contact with me? Here is My Mail Adress: marcus.ernst.fh@gmail.com


  4. hi, pozdrowienia! Great job with this videos!
    I’m just wondering – did you try using one of the wide angle lenses (like 220 degree) for 360 video applications? It can reduce amount of cameras to just 2 (for flat video)
    I found the lens replacement for xiaomi/gopro and in theory you can cover entire scene with just 2 cameras but I’m wondering if they are any negative sites using wide angle lenses versus stitching more sources together

  5. At a near position, there is a blind spot between des camera duos.
    Perhaps a more circle design, not a polygon with 6 edges.

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