The Super 360 Cameras

When talking 360 cameras, most of us think of affordable ones that you could buy from your local BestBuy or from amazon for 200-500$. But the professionals have other options. These are a few o the non-affordable ones. Sit back, relax and enjoy the line-up:

Nokia OZO – 45,000$

Nokia OZO
Nokia OZO

 

 

At a price of 45,000 $, Nokia OZO is a little monster of a camera with 8 2K x 2K synchronized sensors. Full spherical coverage as well as full-spherical audio coverage due to the omni-directional solid state audio sensor.

 

A media module connects into the camera with a capacity of 500 Gb Solid state drive and a 45 minute recording time

Under the partnership, Sony Pictures will use Ozo to capture, create, edit, and distribute VR content. The studio will also integrate the Ozo Player SDK into Sony Pictures Home Entertainment’s Privilege Plus app on Google Play.

Facebook Surround 360 – 30,000$

facebook_360photo
Facebook Surround 360

 

 

Equipped with 14 wide angle cameras on a horizontal ring and to top it up (pun intended) 1 fish eye lens on top and 2 on bottom for complete spherical coverage

In order to ensure that all these camera capture all the pixels in sync, it is equipped with a global shutter.

This camera is Open Source, all the components and the specifications are available on GitHub. The camera is not for sale. One cannot buy a fully assembled camera. However, using the instructions and the list of components, one can build it in 3-4 hours (according to the Facebook Team) The initial cost of the components was 30,000$.




Google Odyssey – Google JUMP rig- 15,000$

google-jump
Google Odyssey

 

 

 

 

 

Google took a more practical approach. Using 16 GoPro cameras and a rig they developed to hold and sync all called JUMP, they created a camera called GoPro Odyssey. all this comes at a price range of 15,000 $ but it is not available for purchase. If you are interested, you have to register with Google JUMP project and they will make it available to you if you qualify. Google will be the one to determine the qualification criteria.

Samsung Project Beyond – no price released yet

Samsung Project Beyond
Samsung Project Beyond

 

 

 

 

 

With one more camera than Google, Samsung Project Beyond assembles 16 cameras plus 1 into a rig they call OmniView. Since this product is still in development, Samsung has not yet announced the availability of the consumer version of Project Beyond nor the price at which it will be made available to the consumer market.  However, an “Innovator Edition” of the Project Beyond will be available in early December, which means you’ll still be able to get it. We’ll have to wait a few months to see how affordable is the device.

 

 

Why Ricoh Theta SC

October 2016 is the birth month of the third member of the Ricoh Theta family. After the successful model Ricoh Theta S and the little brother Ricoh Theta m15, Ricoh is bringing a third member in the family. But is it a third member or a replacement of the little brother m15? Sorry little brother, I think you are out.

The Ricoh website only features the two models as of October 17 2016. If you want to see a full comparison spec between all three Ricoh Theta models, check out our Ricoh Theta Models Comparison page.

Main Differences

RICOH THETA SC RICOH THETA m15
Dimensions (in) 1.77 x 5.14 x 0.90 in 1.65 x 5.07 x 0.89
Dimensions (mm) 45.2 x 130.6 x 22.9 mm 42 x 129 x 22.8 mm
Weight (oz) 3.59 3.35
Weight (grams) 102 95
Internal Memory 8 Gb 4 Gb
One video record time 5 min 3 min

I think a small upgrade of the m15 was to be expected. the major improvements over the m15 are the increase of internal memory from 4 Gb to 8Gb and the increase of the maximum video duration from 3 minutes to 5 minutes.

There is a slight weight increase (7 grams) and a bump in size. The appearance is also changed by replacing the not so popular yellow with a beige color. Doesn’t seem much but it is a welcomed refresh.

Ricoh Theta m15 colors Ricoh Theta SC colors
ricoh-theta-m15-colors ricoh-theta-sc-colors

Images are still roughly 14 megapixels (5376×2688), while videos are 1080p at 30 frames per second, or 720p at 15 fps. The battery life seems to be the same as the m15.

So, there it is, a great improvement over the little brother of the Ricoh Theta family. The good news is that, for a little while, you could score a great deal on the m15 if you are still in the market for that.

The Ricoh Theta SC 360 is selling on Amazon USA for a little less than 300$ while the m15 is selling right now for 235$

For Canada, RICOH THETA SC goes for 399$CND at the time when this article was written.

360 Camera 360Fly

360fly-portable-cameraWhen looking for a 360 camera, size is definitely an issue. If you want to have your camera portable and be able to carry it around, size and weight is on the top of the criteria list. With a tag line that suggests portability and availability “Miss Nothing”, the 360Fly is the world’s smallest 360 camera

This little camera comes in two variants: 360fly 4K and 360fly HD. Withe a raw video resolution of 1504×1504 and a flatten resolution of 2560×1280, 360Fly, even with only one lens captures a good 240 degrees of the field of view. Because it is a single lens, it won’t be able to give you a full Spherical 306 view

With the 360fly 4K’s First-Person mode activated, just orient or mount your camera with its lens facing forward and OnePush button centered/facing up and use your 360fly like traditional point-and-shoot action cameras.

360Fly Specification

360Fly – 4K 360Fly – HD
SIZE Depth: 61mm x Height: 59.5mm Depth: 61mm x Height: 59.5mm
WEIGHT 172g 138g
CAPACITY 64 GB 32 GB
RESOLUTION 2880 x 2880 pixels 1504 x 1504 pixels
CONNECTIVITY Wi-Fi [802.11b/g/n], Bluetooth 4.0 Wi-Fi [802.11b/g/n], Bluetooth 4.0
RECORDING RATE 50 Mbps 20 Mbps
BATTERY 1.5 hours of video recording Up to 3 hours of video recording
AUDIO FORMAT Stereo AAC 48KHz 96Kbps Mono AAC 48KHz 64Kbps
MICROPHONE built-in dual omnidirectional built-in
SENSORS accelerometer, e-compass, non-assisted GPS, gyroscope accelerometer
POWER SOURCE built-in li-polymer battery (1780mAh) built-in li-polymer battery (1630mAh)
CHARGING TIME Approx. 2.5 hours with 1.5A charger Approx. 2.5 hours with 1A charger
Buy from 360Fly Website Buy from 360Fly Website

 

360 Camera – Samsung Gear 360

360-camera-samsung-gear-360

 

Samsung has done it again on the 360 camera front. Samsung has the best gadgets on the market and this is no different. Awesome and easy to use, Samsung Gear 360 comes with a Dual CMOS 15megapixel sensor.

 

 

 

This camera can work as a Single CAM or Dual CAM.

Packed with Gyro, Accelerometer, a 1350mAh battery and a MicroSD Card slot (up to 200GB) and with an internal 1GB of RAM, this camera is quite a performer. It comes in a small package of  66.7 x 56.3 x 60.1 mm (152 g incl. battery).

 

360-camera-samsung-gear-360-portable-phone

The camera connects on Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (2.4/5GHz), Wi-Fi Direct, Bluetooth® v4.1, USB 2.0, NFC

If you are a Samsung fan, you will be happy with this camera. It is compatible with all the new Samsung Devices Galaxy S6, S6 edge, S6 edge+, Note5, S7, S7 edge using the Samsung Gear 360 Manager app. It is also working very well on a PC with the Gear 360 ActionDirector software. But unfortunately not compatible with OSX or iOS yet for editing capabilities.

 

USA Canada


360 Camera – BublCam

If you’re looking for a small, lightweight, cool looking sphere camera BublCam is a great choice.

bublcam

Based in Toronto, Bubl Technology Ltd. company produces BublCam, an innovative camera capable of capturing 100% of the spherical range in photo and video (bubls), without any blind spots. The Bublcam is an end to end technology solution allowing you to capture, view and share bubls through its hardware, web and mobile apps. It also includes features for HDR and time lapse photos.

Full Camera Control

Full camera control is available directly from the Bublcam or remotely via the mobile app for iOS or Android. You can trigger capture from another room or preview your content via the live stream.

Specifications

Powered by a 3.7V LiPo at 1560mAh battery that charges through USB in approx. 2 hours, the Bubl has 4 lenses of 5 Megapixel with 190deg Field of View. Only 160deg are used due to the construction of the sphere. The focal length of the lens is 1.2mm and the minimum Focal Distance is 25 cm. It takes 14 megapixel photos or 30 fpsvideos at 1440p x1440p resolution or 15 fps video at 1920p x 1920p resolution. They are saved on a microSD/SDHC card 4Gb to 32Gb in size. Can connect through USB 2.0, and WiFi. Is equipped with a Tri-axial +/- 1.5G accelerometer. Software is compatible with Mac OSX and Windows 7, 8, 10.

BublCamcaptures/ stitches video in two formats: Multiplex and Equirectangular.

A Multiplex file displays the content captured from each of the 4 lenses in separate quadrants of the file.

An Equirectangular file displays the spherical stitched content in a flat projection.

It’s a small 800 (3.14″) diameter sphere that weights 280 grams making is a fun portable 360 camera

BublCam – Buy on Bubl website


Multi Camera Setups for 360 videos

multi-camera-setup

While the amateur market is filling up with the cheap 360 cameras, the pro’s are keeping it real with Multi Camera setups. 2, 3, 4, 5,6 cameras sometimes even up to 14, mostly GoPro because of their performance during action scenes, mounted together to capture all the angles of the scene. The prices for these gears vary from the low 300’s up to 5000 – 6000 dollars. Cameras not included.

One company that is really focused on this multi camera support market is Freedom360

With accessories like multi camera mounts, poles, tripods, stabilizers, Freedom 360 is a leader in this market.

Of course working with something like this is challenging and all the captured images would be nothing without the Software. Freedom 360 is offering Software products to help with the post editing.

If one really wants to get the details of every angle, add more cameras. 360Rize is taking it to the next level. With setups that can take up to 14 cameras, this hobby can become expensive.

Their Top of the line product 360Orb (Pro24), a monster setup with …you guessed it 24 GoPro cameras.

Only 1770 $. Not too bad. Oh wait…. you also need 24 GoPro’s So at ~500$ a piece… hmm…14k

But what a setup. Imagine wearing that on your head while walking around in a crowded place.

Till Next Time

Paul


Three 360 Cameras for YouTube

ricoh
You probably saw 360 videos and are wondering how are they created. The ones you see on YouTube, are uploaded by 360 video creators that meet the YouTube conditions. As of September 2016, YouTube supports uploading and playback of 360° spherical videos on computers in Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, and Opera browsers. In order to upload a 360° video file, you’ll need to modify the file with an app or script before uploading.


You can also watch 360° videos on YouTube apps for Android and iOS.  For an immersive experience, you can even watch 360° videos with Cardboard and the YouTube Android app. 



A full guide of how to upload your 360 video can be found here.


How to Upload Your 360 Video


It is interesting that YouTube supports only Three 360 cameras as of September 2016. I’m sure there will be more in the future, but for now, this is a new field and the Hardware is catching up.


The 3 cameras are:


Ricoh Theta

with Ricoh Theta, you can capture the entire 360° space with a single shot. You can use a PC or smartphone to have fun with the space! This is a new world that revolutionizes conventional photos and videos. 

Buy Ricoh Theta from Amazon

Kodak SP360 – is more of an action camera. Sold by itself or in 3 bundles (Aqua Sport, Explorer and Extreme), Kodak SP360 is for the adventurer in you. It comes with FREE desktop editing software that is available for Mac and PCs to start editing your own 360° videos with plenty of flair. Also, comes with a mobile app

Buy Kodak SP360 with Explorer Accessory Pack from Amazon

 

IC Real Tech Allie

Looking like a nanny cam, the Allie Camera can stream live in 360 over YouTube or other platforms. 

Buy ALLie Home 360 from Amazon