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Best way to create 360 images for VR projects

Community Beginner ,
Sep 18, 2020

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I want to create more VR projects and I am trying to find out the best way to create the images for Captivate VR projects.  What projection is best:  Cylindrical, circular fisheye?  What cameras work best:  GoPro Max, Ricoh, others?  What is the best stitching software for 360 photos?  Does anyone have experience with PTGui (www.ptgui.com) for stitching photos together for Captivate VR projects?  I am hoping that someone has discussed this, but I have not found a good thread yet.

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Best way to create 360 images for VR projects

Community Beginner ,
Sep 18, 2020

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I want to create more VR projects and I am trying to find out the best way to create the images for Captivate VR projects.  What projection is best:  Cylindrical, circular fisheye?  What cameras work best:  GoPro Max, Ricoh, others?  What is the best stitching software for 360 photos?  Does anyone have experience with PTGui (www.ptgui.com) for stitching photos together for Captivate VR projects?  I am hoping that someone has discussed this, but I have not found a good thread yet.

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Sep 18, 2020 0
Advocate ,
Sep 18, 2020

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Hi Jeff Mckune

Interesting subject, and, although I can't give a satisfactory advise, I'm responding to you because I'm intrigued by trying out VR projects in Captivate myself. And this way I get this onto My Follows list and when I know more I'll come back and tell you about my research in this field.
I am thinking of using my LinkedIn account to get in contact with pros or semi-pros who are practicing VR respectively omnidirectional photography. To initiate some form of collaboration.

Maybe this page on Wikipedia on VR Photography gives you a first entry point. I found it quite helpful to learn that when you want to stitch a number of photos to a 360 panorama that you should mount a camera (any camera really) in portrait position on a tripod and rotate the camera and make an image every 30 degrees.
I can't tell you anything about PTGui stitching software but it certainly looks promising. BAFAIK Photoshop offers a stitching routine as well. I'll try that very soon.

Well so much for now, good luck with your efforts

Klaus

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Sep 18, 2020 1
Advocate ,
Sep 19, 2020

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Hi Jeff

one more thing: When using Photoshop for stitching a series of images, this Adobe Photoshop User Guide might be of help.

Klaus

 

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Sep 19, 2020 1
Community Beginner ,
Sep 26, 2020

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Klaus and all,

 

I did learn that PTGui works quite well for creating 360 images for use in Adobe Captivate.  You can use a DSLR, a GoPro, or whatever camera you want.  A tripod is a necessity.  Their website provides a good video on eliminating parallax which can make the stitching not very clean.  However, I tried it with a Hero8 Black camera.  Because the camera is so narrow, the parallax center point was pretty much where the camera mounted on the tripod.  I shot 16 images overlapping at least 30% for each image.  It took about a minute.  I then added the images to PTGui.  It figured out the correct order for the images and stitched them perfectly.  As PTGui can output several different panoramic projections, I selected 360x180 2:1 equirectangular images.  The program merged stitched and projected the single image, saving it as a JPEG.  I was impressed by how fast it processed the images.  The result was an image that could be directly added to a Captivate VR project, ready for hotspots and other elements.  The learning curve was low for getting started, but there are lots of more advanced features.  Nice piece of software, great support, reasonably priced, and a great add-on for Captivate for creating VR projects.

 

 

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Sep 26, 2020 1
Advocate ,
Sep 27, 2020

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Thank you, Jeff, for sharing your experiences.

I've got a few questions and a favour to ask:

  • Where did you take your images? (outdoors or indoors)
  • Did you have objects on different depth levels in your shot? (like people walking across your camera angle)
  • What's the pixel size and ratio of your PTGui processed panorama image?
  • You probably used manual mode for focus and other settings (like exposure time, aperture and so on). Have you?
  • And here's the favour to ask: Can you (kindly) supply a small reproduction as image here of your resulting equirectangular pano-result? I mean, not full size, 500 pixels wide maybe? It would help to get a better idea.

advanced thanks

Klaus

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Sep 27, 2020 0
Community Beginner ,
Sep 27, 2020

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Klaus,

 

I took the images indoors in my study.  Yes, there were chairs that were closer to the camera and items on the walls or in the next room that were farther from the camera.  The resulting 360 image is 12,614 x 6307 pixels, at 10.4 megabytes on disk.  Photoshop reports "Pixel Dimensions" as 227.6M.  Actually, since I was using a GoPro and had watched the video on the PTGui website on parallax calibration, I just had the GoPro Hero8 set at "Superphoto" and shot away.  Even with windows on one side of the room, there was uniform brightness in the resulting image.  

 

Rather than post a picture of my study, let me share an outdoor picture that one of the tech support reps sent to me so that I could test a resulting image in Captivate prior to purchase.  The image that is attached should be the same dimensions.  However, I saved the image at a JPEG picture quality of 8 which makes the file size small enough to post.  I don't know if the forum posting mechanism will downsample the file or not.  Hopefully it will give you something to try.  I believe this is from the Netherlands, which is where New House Internet Services, the makers of PTGui, are located.

DSC00312 Panorama 2.jpg

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Sep 27, 2020 0