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360 video

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Matt Stephens, Jan 26, 2016.

  1. Matt Stephens

    Matt Stephens Well-Known Member

    I'm wondering if anyone else has ventured into the world of 360-degree video/photography? If so, have you done any storytelling with it? Last week, we got a Freedom360 rig (six GoPros connected to one device) and this week we added a Ricoh Theta S. There's a bit of a learning curve, but I am loving this so far and would love to see any examples anyone has that they've done.

    Note that if you're on mobile, I don't know how YouTube's mobile site player handles embeds, but they work perfectly in the app.

    First video was very basic and with the subjects being so close, there was quite a bit of ghosting. That's the problem with having six images overlapping. CSU basketball pregame:

    Yesterday, I took a small step and edited two video together (exporting the clips from Video Stitch, then adding music and meshing them in Premiere):

  2. ewebeck

    ewebeck New Member

    Not video, but something a little simpler: Bubbli is a relatively new app that takes 360 photos. It amounts to essentially a VR-esque experience in a photo. Good for taking fans/readers/etc into the scene
    Matt Stephens likes this.
  3. Matt Stephens

    Matt Stephens Well-Known Member

    Thanks. I'll check that app out.
  4. SFIND

    SFIND Active Member

    Very neat Matt. Video's didn't display right on my Fire HDX but work perfect on a computer.

    I'm curious as to what you guys see yourself using it for? Big events?
  5. Matt Stephens

    Matt Stephens Well-Known Member

    Good to know it doesn't work on Fire tablets. Thanks for that. And what all will we do with it? I'm honestly not sure. I posted something yesterday on our site simply asking readers what they want us to do with it and where they want us to take them. Right now, we're keeping things simple because I'm learning about editing as we go, so they're basically just short clips for the moment. But I want to do more storytelling with it. With VOs and everything. Instead of giving readers a fixed look at something, allow them to look around. One of my editors is going to a company-wide VR summit coming up, so that should be interesting. A former coworker who is now at USA Today is heading to the Iowa Caucus just to do 360 video. It's a whole new world we're just starting to navigate, so it's a lot of trial and error, but from what I've heard from my Twitter followers whenever I post something, they're loving it. A couple of GearVR headsets and are enjoying them that way.

    I also tried out the Ricoh Theta S for the first time yesterday. Nowhere near the same picture quality, but it's much simpler to stitch because it does it in camera and there are only two lenses vs. six with the GoPros. I set it up in Larry Eustachy's office for a quick interview. Allows readers to come in there and join in the conversation with us.

  6. SFIND

    SFIND Active Member

    Very cool, Matt! Thanks for the thoughts on what you guys are looking to use it for. I've become the unofficial tech guy at my shop the last five years (since the photo staff has been gutted). Our chain's less online-oriented (a.k.a. our sites aren't as nice) as Gannett but we're heading in that direction and I've advised the higher ups on equipment and photo/video online strategy. They've added video equipment over the last year and they're looking at other things, including adding a drone for festival reports, aerial game shots, etc. I've read very little on these 360 rigs and your videos are the first I've ever actually seen with them.
  7. Matt Stephens

    Matt Stephens Well-Known Member

    Glad to help. If you want to start experimenting with 360 photo/video at a cheaper entry point, see if the higher ups will go in for a Ricoh Theta S for $350. Keep in mind, though, to really get into it, you're going to need quality software and a GPU. That can add up.
  8. PCLoadLetter

    PCLoadLetter Well-Known Member

    I have to say... I just don't see the point of the 360 video. It seems like it sets out to show everything and ends up showing nothing. Maybe there's a use that will make sense for me.

    I've seen a variation of it that allows the viewer to play the video and rotate the view as it plays. That's pretty freakin' cool, and makes a lot more sense to me.

    I saw something shot with the Bubbli app this weekend and was very impressed.
  9. Matt Stephens

    Matt Stephens Well-Known Member

    That's what the videos I posted should be doing. They work on desktop and the YouTube app.
  10. PCLoadLetter

    PCLoadLetter Well-Known Member

    Ah! Got it -- it doesn't work in Safari on a Mac, but I just tried it in Google on the Mac and it worked perfectly. So, yeah, take back what I said. (The entire 360 degrees gets squashed into one standard video in Safari, turning it into an absurd fisheye lens.)

    This is my favorite use of these I've seen, but I'm a major F1 geek:

    Matt Stephens likes this.
  11. Matt Stephens

    Matt Stephens Well-Known Member

    Using the Ricoh Theta S today. Went over to Colorado State University and shot a little bit in the snow. I love how easy it is. I hate that the quality is 960p.

  12. Matt Stephens

    Matt Stephens Well-Known Member

    This one turned out better than I expected, given I used the GoPros with so many close subjects. Down at the Broncos parade yesterday. Ignore the idiot in the sunglasses.

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