Some thoughts on 360 Photos/Video

By Alex on May 20, 2016 — 1 min read

I’ve owned a theta 360 for a while, and bust it out every once in a while to see if I can get something cool with it. Yesterday I took this:

The video is pretty bad. It’s probably even worse since I tried (unsuccessfully) to grade it into something better in premiere. That being said, I think there is promise in the format… maybe…

  • If you’re doing 360 stuff as a consumer you’re probably better off sticking to photos. The quality is more than good enough for “social media”.


  • The theta, with it’s app, is really well set up for the camera->phone photo workflow. You can adjust the image in the app and then kick it over to your photo editing app of choice.
  • It is NOT set up well for video. Or at least everything else isn’t. YouTube and Facebook support 3D video, but you can either post straight from the theta app (which doesn’t really let you edit), or you can put the footage into some kind of video editing app which will strip the 360 metadata.
  • Free money-losing app idea: a mobile app that adds metadata back to 3D video on my iphone. I have to do this with a python app now that looks like it was made for windows 95.
  • You CAN convert stills to videos with apps like roll world. This is cooler than it sounds since a lot of the fun of having a 360 photo is using an app to move around in it, not looking at the still.
  • It’s pretty likely that 360 video won’t be compelling from a consumer standpoint until the cost of capturing 4k footage drops and streaming it becomes a possibility. 1080p is still too grainy for my eyes.
  • Same for VR. Footage where the camera is moving could easily cause motion sickness, and still camera footage is hard to make interesting without a lot of work.

That’s about it. If you want to see good theta 360 shots, along with a lot of other good stuff, go check out Phillip Bloom’s Insta.

Posted in: video