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One Shot Virtual Tour Optics

Last revision on Tuesday, May 1, 2007 10:08 PM

Information On: One shot panorama lenses and software. One shot QuickTime VR. Fisheye lens 360x180 VRs (IPIX and alternatives).

Since I was researching various one shot 360 lens systems, I thought I'd make this page for others to reference. I currently like the 0-360 unit the best (spec wise -- I don't own one yet), so here is their banner to click on:

360 Degree Virtual Tours with Just One Click!
ALSO: Buy a new Nikon Coolpix 5400 for $219 after rebate! (As of 2/9/05)

One Shot Virtual Tour Optics* Hardware

Comparison Table
Lens Made By Cost OS Software vFoV Qual BL
0-360 Bellissimo, Inc. $595 Win Mac X 0-360 UnWrapper 115 (52.5+62.5) M/G+ Yes
EyeSee 360 One VR Kaidan $750 Win Mac9 X Photo Warp 100 (50+50)   $40
Egg Photo 360 / Egg 360 Egg Solution $350? Win Egg Photo 360 SE 90 P/P  
OneShot360 Remote Reality $495 Win?   90 (15+75) P/P  
SurroundPhoto VR Interactive Corp.? $130+ Win/Mac SurroundPhoto 52 &104 P/P? No
BeHere TotalView              
  1. vFoV = Vertical Field of View - how much up and down of the image you can see from the lens. Numbers are how many degrees Above and Below (i.e. 15+75 is 15 degrees above, and 75 below).
  2. Qual = Quality of Construction - P/P (Plastic Body, Plastic Lens), M/G (Metal Body, Glass Lens).
    + = lens optimized to make use of usable pixels in final image.
  3. BL = Bubble Level - built in bubble level to insure a level horizontal image. ($=extra fee add-on.)

Software

Misc Links of Interest

Comments

1/14/2005 - I just ordered the SurroundPhoto unit. We'll see how well it works. I plan to order a 0-360 unit as well, but they are out of stock right now, so this will have to wait...

1/18/2005 - Can of worms. Unlike my experimentation with 3-D video, VR panorama one-shot systems are turning into something quite different. Except for a list of a dozen or so 'tested' cameras (out of hundreds of models!), it's really difficult to find what will work with any given lens system. Low-end SurroundPhoto basically sells theirs for any camera it can physically point at, while higher end units like 0-360 are precision matched. This leaves me and my Sony DSC-W1 probably useless for quality one-shot VRs. Knowing what camera to buy is also problematic. One company lists cameras rates on specs (not all are actually tested, and may not really work), while others don't list specs for the very same reason (may not work). So, even if I wanted to buy a camera right now, I couldn't buy anything new -- it would have to be an older unit that was tested. And, personally, I kinda want to stick with Sony so I can keep my memory sticks (1GB, 256MB, fast chargers, etc.). We'll see what happens...

1/31/2005 - My SurroundPhoto lens arrived today. Included in the small box was the 360 reflector, support rod, lens attachment tube, hood (details later), and a software CD. The box seems to be leftover from original production runs as it mentions "instructions" which are now included on CD. Of note, the CD had a custom label with my name printed on it. Also, the mirror came with a small cloth pouch (with "surroundphoto.com" silk screened on it). I'll be posting a full review with pictures shortly...

2/3/2005 - I bought a Nikon Coolpix 5400 camera ($216 after rebate!) and the necessary lens adapters to connect the SurroundPhoto to it. Full review and details soon.

2/6/2005 - I have now taken and processed dozens of panoramas using the SurroundPhoto. Review coming shortly. Oh, how I wish I had the 0-360 unit!

2/8/2005 - I did some more test images from a tripod mounted SurroundPhoto. It's getting easier and better. I purchased a Bullseye Bubble Level from Ace Hardware ($3.29) to affix to the top of the optic, which should solve my remaining problem of getting the images level. (The 0-360 unit has the bubble level built in.) Samples to be posted shortly.

8/26/2005 - I am now starting to use the SurroundPhoto. Here are some sample photos I took, all using default software settings.

5/1/2007 - I have a whole series of SurroundPhotos taken at Disneyland two years ago that I need to process and post, but I'm just not motivated.

More to come as I learn... You can e-mail me at alsplace at pobox.com (but you will get a challenge e-mail back that you have to approve before the message will get to me).

* The term "One Shot 360" is apparently a Trademark of one of the manufacturers, so we'll try to stay generic and not use their brand name when referring to other products.

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©2007 Allen C. Huffman