Playing with the PixPro 360 4k

On the advice of some of the guys at the IMERSA Summit, I decided it was time to get a better camera setup. (I’d been using a GoPro that I’d ripped the original lens off of and replaced with a 185 degree lens – and while it’s pretty compact, it’s very fussy to deal with.)

This is me with my rig — hiding behind a car while Taylor hides behind a tree – so we can get photos of a statue without being included in the photos.

Taylor Michael Matson and I decided to run around and test out our cameras/get some footage for his upcoming class/scout Vanderbilt Campus for our upcoming Mini Maker Faire, and I’m pretty pleased with the results.

I’m shooting with the PixPro 360 4K – and I have to say, the workflow is much faster and easier than I had anticipated.

The little wonder remote…

The remote that comes with the camera set is a total Godsend. It not only starts both cameras in synch, but it can control the type of image you’re recording as well as turn the cameras on and off.

The batteries in the cameras don’t last as long as I’d like (about 45 minutes if you’re recording video), so I picked up two pairs of Wasabi Power batteries (they only last about half an hour, themselves). I can do some specific tests on all of the above, now that I have them. BUT that’s what you have the USB port for, right? Continuous power.

Wrong. The only thing I’m not terribly crazy about with this whole camera setup (aside from short battery life) is the dual camera mount design. It does a nice job of aligning the cameras, but it cuts off access to the USB power output and memory card for the camera. Those ports are located on the bottom of the camera, when the cameras are in place.

There are videos online explaining that you can dremel out a hole in the existing mount, but I think re-engineering a new one is the route I’d rather go.

…MicroSD, MicroUSB and MicroHDMI…

…but you can’t get to them when you’re filming with two cameras.

There’s a model that addresses this problem on Thingiverse, but when we tried printing it at scale, with ABS, the sizing was slightly too small, when  scaled up 2%.

My dream setup for this little camera is to attach a USB power brick to each one, so that I can do things like 10-hour time lapses.

Here’s a quick example of what the 360 stitching software does out of the box…

Not entirely sure why the other camera didn’t pick up the missing rock, but I’m certain that with a little more adjustment, I think I can get that part of the image back, from the camera that *did* capture it. :). To be fair, the rocks are absurdly close to the camera, so it may just be that I need to plan to give a little more space between the camera and close objects.

The next step will be cropping these to fit in a 180 degree space and looking into the workflow around doing the same for video, for this setup.

I’m going to give this video a go, and see where it takes me…. then I’ll squish or chop the footage where it’s needed to get it back into my little dome.