Tuesday, August 14, 2007

dailywireless.org � Panoramic Video

Panoramic video is like a QTVR window into a scene. With movement all around. The Omnidirectional Vision Page has a terrific overview of 360 degree video techniques.
The problem with panoramic video, like panoramic stills, is bandwidth. A 360 degree shot has to be at least 6 screens wide requiring a similar increase in bandwidth. Standard video cameras don’t have the resolution.
HDTV might. If you shot HD video, up into a panoramic mirror, perhaps a single camera would do the trick. With an effective height of 120 pixels and an effective length of 800-1200 pixels, perhaps single camera video panoramas could be practical.
Panasonic’s new $399 FZ7 still camera can shoot 848 x 480 (16:9) video at 30 frames/second. I wonder what would happen if you pointed it up into a 360 degree mirror. With the right deconvolving software, perhaps you’d end up with 360 degree concert videos. Or maybe not.
How about that Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX1, HDTV still camera. The 8-Megapixel, widescreen shooter has Optical Image Stabilization and can record HD video ($700). The $550 Canon S80 point and shoot can record movies in XGA resolution (1024 x 768 pixels) at 15 frames per second.
Point it up into a Kaidan 360 One VR lens (right, $749.95) consisting of a lightweight and rugged optical system and EyeSee360 PhotoWarp software. The 360 One VR optic provides a complete 360° horizontal panorama with a 100° vertical field-of-view (50° above and 50° below the horizon).
Sony’s HDR-HC1 HDV Camcorder ($1999) is the first High Definition (HDV) camcorder under $2,000. The HDR-HC1 features a single 4:3 aspect ratio CMOS chip and achieves a resolution nearly triple most MiniDV camcorders, recording some 656.1 lines of horizontal resolution and 480 lines of vertical resolution. The Sony HDR-HC3, available in a couple of months, will have 1080i. Screw on a fisheye lens and you’re good to go.
Make a Panoramic EventCam with six, $500 Canon S80s with wide angle lenses. Breeze Systems’s RemoteCapture lets you control the cameras from a remote PC.Or automatically FTP to a Zoom Server like Social Canvas so multiple users can (virtually) zoom in on a small section of an 8 Meg image.Here a 360 degree panorama from the top of Mt Everest and a one Gig Panoscan.