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REALITY GARAGE

LEARNING CENTER

Common VR Cameras and Stitching Software

GO PRO FUSION 

This camera is a great camera that shoots 360 degree 5K monoscopic video and pictures at 30 fps, and the stabilization is fantastic!  It is simple to use with a typical gopro buttons and menus,. We have found this to be an excellent VR action camera, particularly where stereoscopic is not important. It is also great for capturing time lapse scenes. Some tips and tricks for use: 

  • The tripod that comes with the camera is not much use. Buy a good mono pod.

  • In order to take 360 pictures without you being in the picture when you press the button, you will need to use the phone app or you can set the camera to time lapse mode for time lapse of 10 seconds, and then initiate the time lapse with a button press. 

  • Since there are only two lenses, avoiding stitch lines is easy to manage, just avoid having your content focus areas located at the edges of the camera.

Orient camera to scene focus areas

STITCHING AND RENDERING

Here are specific instructions:

To Manually Render Your Footage from an External Hard Drive:

  • Create a ‘project’ folder in your hard drive.

  • In your Project folder create a ‘Source’ folder. Create another folder in the Project folder called ‘Renders’, which you will use later.

  • In the source folder make two more folders for the front and back cards called ‘SD1’ and ‘SD2’, respectively. You can also call them 100GFRNT and 100GBACK, or just Front and Back, whatever will help you keep better track.

  • Use a micro SD card adapter to insert the FRONT SD card or SD1 into your computer.

  • Place the footage folder from this card into the SD1 folder. It be DCIM/100GFRNT/, the second folder is the one you want.

  • Repeat the process for SD2, or the back SD card. This card will have a DCIM folder with a 100GBACK/ folder. Copy the entire folder into your SD2 folder. 

  • Open the Fusion Studio App

  • In the Preferences, change the export destination to your ‘Renders’ folder.

  • Hit Add Media, and select your source folder as the media.

  • Fusion Studio will then create previews of all of the videos on the card, which you can then review. 

  • Select the clips you wish to render out and add them to the render queue by pressing the button in the bottom right hand of the app.

  • Select Editing for export destination, the highest resolution, and 360 Audio for the highest quality output. You can lower these settings if you want a lower sample video that will render faster for you to preview. 

  • Click Create the Render Queue.

  • Double check the settings if you’d like by clicking the video in the render que, then hit Render Selected.

  • Depending how fast your computer is, this step could a while, which is why you aren’t rendering from the camera directly: everyone is going to need it! This step also crashed my 2014 MacBook Pro, 256GB SSD, so you’re going to want a really powerful machine to output these clips.

Vuze 3D and XR Cameras

Does not get much simpler to use than these cameras! They are rugged and produce good results with proper attention to stitch line issues and scene composition. The audio is great, and for scenarios where you have control of the scene and can keep the scene focus area away from the stitch zones, then these are great cameras.

  • To capture videos with the Vuze camera, turn on the camera by pressing the power button and waiting until the blinking blue power light turns solid. 
    Hit the record button to record, hit it again to stop recording. 

STITCHING AND RENDERING

Vuze VR Studio software is the stitching program to use for both cameras. It is intuitive to use and provides features that other stitching programs do not, such as the ability to set top and bottom patch images.  If you capture an image of the floor where you place your camera monopod (without the monopod) you can use this image as the bottom patch, and you can avoid having to mask using adobe or other editing software!

Here are specific instructions:

  • For rendering videos taken with a Vuze, you will need to download the app VuzeVRStudio from the Vuze website. 

  • Using a microSD adapter, insert the Vuze’s card into your computer. 

  • Launch the VuzeVRStudio app, and using the media browser, locate the SD card. 

  • Clicking this will pull up all the video previews from clips taken on that SD card. 

  • Locate the clips you want to work with and output, and select them. 

  • On your harddrive, create a folder for your project, and a source folder and render folder inside the project folder. 

  • Import the clips to the Source folder by changing the import destination and selecting Import. 

  • To the left of the media browser, hit the Recent Media button, this will take you to your imported videos. 

  • You can select the video you’d like to render, and a preview will appear on the right of the screen, to the right of that you see a bar of different tools to make adjustments to the videos like color temperature and position, and fix issues with the stitching. 

  • When the video is where you would like it to be, hit the green render button at the bottom right of the screen. 

  • This will bring up your render options that you can go through before outputting. 

    • Changing 3D to 2D or 4k to 2k will make your output go faster, but you will lose video quality.

    • Changing H.264 encoding to ProRes will up the video quality but the output will be slower. ProRes is only necessary if you plan to color correct your video after rendering it, H.264 works well if you don’t plan to make many changes. 

  • Change the output destination to your Renders folder, name the clip, then hit Render.

    • If you don’t name the clip it will auto output with the name “untitled project”, make it hard to organize your clips, and create confusion later on.