Photographs and videos are great ways to capture moments and experiences, but both have always been limited by one key aspect: where the camera’s pointing. It’s a bit at odds with how we, as humans, experience the world; there’s often so much going on all around us that videos and photos just can’t capture.
While there’s no substitute to actually being there, the 360cam may just be the next best thing, letting you capture wonderful 360° photos, and videos that are more immersive than any standard photograph can ever be. Let’s check out this powerful device, that can fit in the palm of your hand.
Recommended Reading: The Lytro Illum Lets You Refocus Images After You Capture Them
Introducing The 360cam
The 360cam is, as the makers claim, the world’s first full HD 360° camera. The 360cam will record full HD video and take photos up to 4K resolution. It has a 360° x 300° field of view, which is provided by three 185° fisheye lenses arranged around the 360cam’s unique egg-shaped case.
Along with 3 camera lenses, the 360cam also has 3 microphones that will capture surround sound, as well as a GPS antenna for image geotagging. It also comes with built-in WiFi capabilities, so you can stream video directly from the 360cam and control it from a dedicated remote control app.
On top of that, the WiFi and Live Video capabilities make the 360cam perfect for anyone looking to stream live events in glorious 360° vision.
Want to get a taste of what kinds of photography you will be taking with the camera? Head over to the official 360cam gallery to take a look at some examples. Here’s a panoramic example, but do bear in mind that a proper 360° photo will also show the sky and most of the floor:
The 360cam also has a rechargable Lithium battery and support for MicroSD cards up to 64GB. The universal camera mount also means that you can use the 360cam hands-free with any standard tripod or monopod; no special hardware required to start shooting.
The 360cam has its own on-board image and video stitching hardware, eliminating any need for stitching in post-production. Output videos are MP4 files with h.264 encoding, and you can choose whether videos are recorded at 25 or 30 frames per second. Images are output as JPG files.
While the 360cam’s videos and photos can be opened in all of the usual applications, the makers have propietary apps for iOS, Android, Mac and PC that provide the best 360cam experience.
The 360cam is also compatible with the Oculus Rift, opening up a world of possibilities for experiencing 360° footage but for now, let’s take a look at how 360cam and its specially designed accessories can take videography to a whole new level.
Taking your holiday photos and videos will probably never quite be the same again since the 360cam comes with image stabilizing gyroscopes. You won’t have to worry about shaky hands ruining your beautiful videos.
If you are a regular scuba diver or you need photography or videography underwater, check out their Underwater Lens Cups that will help protect the lenses from image distortion and field of view reduction that can happen underwater.
Couple this with the 360cam’s IPX8 rated waterproof capabilites and you have a great device for immersive underwater video.
The 360cam can also be used as a home surveillance system, with the help of a handy Light Bulb Adaptor, that is. Just screw the camera into the adaptor and onto a normal lightbulb outlet, and you have a 360-degree view of your home, without the need for extra cabling.
Getting Your 360cam
The 360cam is currently being funded on Kickstarter. It secured its initial funding goal in a day. There are a few tiers of pledges to choose from, but you can get the Underwater Lens Cup with the 360cam by pleding $329. You will need to pledge higher for the light bulb adaptor, a Ethernet Video Streaming Base (for live streaming of 360 degree videos) and other additional perks.
Expect to add $20 for shipping if you’re pledging from outside of the US and EU. The merchandise will ship in September 2014.