With wearable gadgets like Google Glass and Memoto, taking firsthand videos or snapshots of what you are doing is real easy these days. But today we are going to show you a mind-boggling new way of taking videos, 360 degrees wide. Check out this video (if you want to skip to the gist, go to 0:35).
Like what you see? That’s what you see in a 360 degree horizontal view and 180 degree vertical view from a single point of reference. And to get this, you need GoPro cameras, some fancy software and a special camera holder, one from 360Heros.
Recommended Reading: How to Make Time-lapse Video – Ultimate Guide
1. GoPro Cameras
GoPro cameras offer HD view, are waterproof and can withstand wear and tear that is expected with extreme sports, making it the perfect camera for these activities.
While normally, the versatile GoPro camera is attached to the helmet or a part of the body, to get a high-def, almost cinematic view of the surroundings, the camera requires some help – a special camera holder and some fancy video-stitching software.
There are a few types of GoPro models but only 2 are compatible with the 360Heros camera stand – GoPro Hero2 and Hero3. As for Hero3, there are 3 different models: Hero3 White edition, Silver edition and Black edition.
(Image Source: Outdoor Equipment Rentals)
The main difference between the models are their megapixels (MP) and low light image quality.
- White Edition – 5 MP, Consumer grade. [$199.99]
- Silver Edition – 11 MP, Prosumer grade. [$299.99]
- Black Edition – 12 MP, Professional grade. [$399.99]
2. 360Heros Plug-and-Play Holder
One GoPro camera can record a 170-degree view, which is basically from your far left, to your far right. With this 3D-printed 360Heros holder (available on Kickstarter), you can attach 6-7 cameras and operate them wirelessly to grab videos or shots.
The holder positions the cameras strategically to capture images that can be compiled into a spherical view of 360 degrees horizontally (that’s a full turn) and 180 degrees (the view above you and below you).
The holder is made out of aircraft-grade 3D printed flexible nylon. Just slide in your GoPro camera and lock it in place, and start shooting. Backers on Kickstarter will receive their own holder around June 2013.
3. Video Stitching Software
To help you stitch your videos together and to produce a 360-degree video or panoramic view, you need a software for it. 360Heros has recommended three desktop software to help you stitch your videos:
- PTGui – 360-degree videos [Personal License ($106) | Pro Personal License ($200)]
- Kolor – build mp4 files and jpeg stills [Bundle Autopano 3.0 + Panotour 1.8 (€189.00)]
- Video-Stitch – interactive videos [Beta (Free)]
Want to see what this alliance can produce? Check out the videos and panoramas that got the full treatment.