Nowadays, creating your own Virtual Reality content can be possible with a 360 camera. You do not need a degree in video programming. There’s no need of buying a costly 3D camera either. With 360-degree cameras, you will be able to capture shots from all angles. The outcome will be a spherically-shaped video. Do you want to enjoy an immersive experience? Just imagine yourself in the center of the action. Instead of having limitations on your perspective, you can now look around freely.
- 1 What is a 360 Camera?
- 2 Quick Overview Best 360 Camera
- 3 360 Camera Reviews
What is a 360 Camera?
A 360 camera is also known as an “omnidirectional camera.” It is derived from the word “Omni”, which means all. It is the type of camera that can provide a horizontal 360-degree view or a full sphere. Basically, a typical camera has limitations in capturing images, at the most is 180-degree. In contrast, an omnidirectional camera captures images from all angles. These 360 cameras are significant when you require a wide visual coverage. For instance, in robotics, teleconferencing, surveillance and panoramic photography.
- Robotics – In robotics, a 360 camera is very useful for visual odometry. At the same time, it can also solve issues with regards to simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM).
- Teleconferencing – By having a 360 camera, you can include several participants in an important meeting.
- Surveillance – A 360-degree camera is necessary if you want to have a wide visual coverage.
- Panoramic photography – The traditional way of creating panoramic photography comprise of joining several shots in order to obtain one continuous footage. However, this process is very intensive and there are chances that the quality of the outcome is not good. With a 360 degree camera, there’s no need for post-processing and you can also ensure that the quality is good.
Before these 360-degree cameras were invented, creating immersive videos would require a multitude of professional cameras as well as advanced computers and software. When smartphones were introduced, these 360-degree cameras are not only conceivable but are also budget-friendly. These cameras started to appear in the year 2015. This year, you can bring one wherever you go. You can enjoy creating immersive footages on birthday parties, weddings or on your travel adventures.
Actually, these 360-degree cameras have been in the market even before the existence of Oculus Rift. Due to the emergence of virtual reality headsets which are very affordable, these virtual reality videos are now uploaded on YouTube. The 360-degree camera is still considered as a work in progress. It can still go a long way. However, if you are eager to create amazing videos without the need of extensive editing and several expensive cameras then you might want to explore the cameras below. If you want a 360-degree video of yourself then you might want to check these nine amazing cameras.
Quick Overview Best 360 Camera
Ricoh Theta S 360 Camera
360 Degree Spherical Panorama
360fly Action Camera
User-friendly 360° video ecosystem
Kodak Pixpro SP360 4K
YouTube & Facebook Compatible
VSN Mobil V.360 Camera
Shock, dust and waterproof
Allie Home 360 Camera
LIVE streaming in 360-degrees
Kodak PixPro SP360
Capture all the high speed action
Ricoh Theta M15
360 Degree Spherical Panorama images
DETU 360 Video Camera
Small size and light weight, Built in WiFi
Zmodo Pivot 360 Camera
With 16GB of built-in storage
360 Camera Reviews
1. Ricoh Theta S
The Ricoh Theta S is our top choice since it has a lot of features. Most cameras look the same, but not quite with Ricoh Theta S. It has a unique design which looks like the mind eraser being used in the movie “Men in Black.” This camera features two lenses with a 12-megapixel image sensor on each lens. When combined it can produce 14.4-megapixel images or 1080p HD video. You will get to enjoy a stereo sound spherical video in full HD. Footages can be captured at 30 frames per second and can last up to 25 minutes. All of this can be completed with just a single press. Aside from being one of the simplest devices, it is also compact and can be handheld. It has the capability to capture two photos at the same time and combine them into a spherical panoramic video. This can be possible with the use of its two 180-degree lenses located on the front and at the back. With this camera, live streaming can be possible through its built-in USB or HDMI port. Because of its Wi-Fi capability, adjusting its exposure mode can be done right from your mobile device. Options include automatic, shutter priority, and ISO priority.
Internal Storage: 8 GB
- It’s very portable, only weighs 95g.
- User-friendly, with just a single press it can capture 360-degree images.
- Comes with excellent apps.
- Very affordable, good value for your money.
- Videos can be uploaded to Google Street View.
- Images lack quality for its price.
- Expandable memory will not be possible because it has no slot for external memory card.
- Very dependent on your mobile device.
- The battery cannot be replaced.
- Difficult to get yourself out of the shoot.
Here’s a sample footage which is being taken from a Theta S:
2. 360fly 360 Degree Action Camera
360fly 360 Degree Action Camera is our second choice. Are you looking for a camera with eyes at the back? With 360fly, you won’t miss anything. The extremely wide fisheye is placed in such a way that it can look straight up, giving you the chance to view everything above you. You can hold it in your hand just like a tennis ball. You can attach it anywhere you want since it includes a variety of mounts. This device works with GoPro accessories. This camera captures the view in all directions so you can view what’s behind you. Videos can be played on YouTube, Facebook or 360fly website. If you’re watching the video on your mobile device then you can drag your finger to see what’s happening all around you. If you’re using a PC then use your mouse. You will notice that on your video you can see the sky, however, you can’t see all the way down since it uses a 240-degree vertical view. This device is very easy to use, especially for those who have already used a GoPro. It only takes a single press to turn it on/off or to start/stop a video. Other controls can be done through an iOS or Android device. Videos can be transferred to your phone via Wi-Fi or to your PC via the USB charge cable. Footages are captured at 1500×1500 resolution at 30 frames per second. The best thing about this camera is its waterproof up to 165 feet.
Internal Storage: 32 GB
- Perfect for sports and other outdoor recordings.
- Nice appearance.
- Durable construction.
- Free user-friendly app.
- Captured videos can be easily viewed via smartphone or tablet.
- Includes an app for uploading videos to social media.
- Waterproof – just place the plug in the microphone hole to seal it.
- It has a blind spot at the bottom.
- Can only be bought in a single store only – BestBuy.
- Not ideal for low light situations.
- No controls for resolution, frame rate, and other features.
- Does not deliver good quality pictures.
The 360fly has a good price and very easy to use, however, the picture quality is not that good. If quality is your top priority then this is not the product for you. But before making a decision, watch this video recorded from a 360fly 360 camera.
3. Kodak Pixpro SP360 4K
The 4K model is the upgraded version of PixPro SP360 Action Camera. It features an option for 4K resolution both for videos and pictures. The videos are Youtube and Facebook compatible. It also includes PIXPRO SP360 Stitch Software. Just like the 360fly, this camera only uses a single lens in capturing the 360-degree panoramic image. For a full spherical footage, you can use two cameras simultaneously. One camera can be focused at the top and the other is focused forward. You can even mount it at the top or bottom portion of a quadcopter. This camera is using a 12-megapixel BSI CMOS sensor with an F2.8 lens. It has a built-in Wi-Fi and NFC which gives you the chance to control it via PixPro Android and iOS apps. There are 10 options for its viewing modes which include LiveView, Front, Global, Ring, Panorama, Dome, as well as a motion detection mode. Just like its original model, this product is also compatible with several accessories such as a waterproof housing, a suction mount, a remote control, and others.
It is “the world’s first 4K action camera” from Kodak. Although this is very small yet it is also powerful. Its videos have a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels. It can take shots at 30 frames per second. Videos are captured in 720p at 120fps. It has the ability to record footages in numerous angles because of its dome-shaped lens. Aside from capturing images horizontally, it can also capture up and down images.
- Very portable.
- Can be used as an action cam.
- Comes with a wide range of accessories.
- Supports external storage of up to 128 GB.
- The menu system and controls are not instinctive.
- Can’t start a recording immediately since Wi-Fi starts up once you turn on the camera.
Get your Kodak Pixpro SP360 4K now and start cruising:
4. VSN Mobil V.360
VSN Mobil V.360 is our fourth choice. This camera can capture videos at a rate of 30 frames per second along with a 60-degree vertical view. Enjoy sharing a full HD video with the highest resolution of 6480 x 1080. While recording your video, you can also enjoy taking 8 MP panoramic shots. Using the Burst mode, you can take 5 panoramic images with just a single press of a button. It features a built-in time-lapse recording that can let you create amazing videos. Are you looking for the best security camera? With V.360, it can automatically capture videos and images with the use of its audio or movement detection sensor.
With V.360, you can capture the entire scene with just a single shot. All you need to do is to press record or the shutter release. However, with regards to its quality in photos and videos, it is still a work in progress. Nevertheless, it can still be a great source for making movie clips along with virtual reality headsets. You can mount it anywhere since it comes with a 1/4-20 tripod mount. It has a built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. VSN Mobil V.360 includes a Go-Pro mount adapter, a Bluetooth remote control, a microfiber storage case, a rechargeable battery, a USB 3.0 cable, wall charger, a silicone sleeve as well as an adhesive dash mount.
- Easy to operate.
- Robust construction.
- Can be used for video conferencing and surveillance.
- Shockproof, dustproof, waterproof for up to 3 feet for 30 minutes and vibration-proof.
- Longer battery life.
- MicroSD card slot can support up to 128GB.
- The lens is prone to scratch.
- Wi-Fi and apps can be disappointing sometimes.
- The quality of images and videos are modest if you consider its price.
Being the first has its drawbacks. However, VSN Mobil V.360 360 camera has the potential of becoming even better in the future.
5. Allie Home 360 Camera
The Allie Home 360 Camera is our fifth choice. It has two fish-eye lenses that can capture everything. You can interact with a video by clicking the play button. To view in different angles, just swipe the camera in various directions. You can capture excellent images with its 8mp camera. If you have already run out of storage then you can store them in cloud Alliecam.com. It features Wifi and Bluetooth connectivity so you can share your happy moments with the whole world after capturing them. It includes editing software to make your images look more amazing. This camera can shoot anything day and night. You can mount it on your bike or car and take pictures and videos while driving. This camera is produced by one of the most renowned companies IC Real Tech. It can take photos, capture videos and live stream at 360 degrees. In order to make it more immersive, you can use a VR headset.
Internal Storage: 4.7 GB
- It can capture a 360-degree footage without any blind spots.
- Storage can be expandable.
- It has a built-in microphone.
- This camera is currently powered by AC.
- No motion or audio detection or other security features.
6. Kodak PixPro SP360
Kodak PixPro SP360 is our sixth choice. This camera is one of the very first cameras designed for capturing 360 panorama images and videos. It has issues with image quality. Is it worthy to sacrifice the image quality in order to experience a 360 panoramic view? SP360 uses a 16-megapixel sensor with an extremely wide f/2.8 lens. You can capture footages in full HD 1080p at a rate of 30 frames per second. The still photos have the highest resolution of 10 MP. WiFi and NFC is included for instant sharing. When you activate its motion-detection setting, it will begin recording when movement is detected.
- Easy to use.
- Lightweight and compact.
- Videos can be uploaded to YouTube.
- Shockproof, dustproof and water-resistant (but not waterproof)
- Includes a huge variety of accessories.
- Panorama is not in full HD.
- Viewing and sharing are not available in a standard software.
- When you turn on the camera, the Wi-Fi also starts up.
7. Ricoh Theta M15
For our seventh choice, we choose Ricoh Theta M15. It has the capability of recording a full HD video with a resolution of 1920 × 1080 at a rate of 15 fps that can last up to 3 minutes. However, for spherical videos, the quality will depend on the type of your display. This sleek camera has a dual lens, one on the front and another at the back. The result can be controlled by choosing the best exposure modes. The options are automatic, Shutter-Priority, and ISO Priority. It takes a lot of power when the Wi-Fi is enabled. Fortunately, it doesn’t take a long time to charge the battery.
Internal Storage: 4 GB
Available Colors: White, Pink, Yellow, Blue
- Includes Wi-Fi connectivity.
- Easy to use.
- Compact and lightweight.
- Has a reasonable price.
- Low image quality.
- Does not perform well in low light situations.
8. DETU Wireless 360 Video Camera
DETU Wireless 360 Video Camera is our eight choice for the best 360 cameras. It can capture the best images and videos and most of all it is also very affordable. With just a single click, you can record everything around you. It captures a fully interactive video which is highly optimized for social networks and mobile devices. There are various view modes that you can choose from including Panorama, Fisheye, Hemisphere, and Planet. You can quickly view your videos and images using your Android or iOS device since it has a Wi-Fi connectivity.
- Storage can be upgraded up to 32 GB.
- Very affordable.
- Quick installation.
- Gives you a wider view of 360-degree x 236-degree.
- Resolution is not so good.
With DETU Wireless 360 Video Camera, you won’t miss any memorable moments in your vacation. At a very reasonable price, you can record your life and your sweet memories.
9. Zmodo Pivot 360 Rotating Camera
Zmodo Pivot 360 Rotating Camera is our last choice. This camera is the best choice for surveillance since it comes with a motion sensor that has a 360-degree coverage. When movement is detected the Pivot will quickly take shots or videos of the current activity. It can capture a full HD 1080p video with a 135-degree angle of view. Controls can be accessed right on your smartphone. The opportunity of viewing your home even if you are far away is priceless.
Internal Storage: 16 GB
- Includes a sensor for temperature and humidity.
- It has a two-way audio, so you can speak to and from the camera.
- It features a night vision.
Is 360 camera the device of the future? For now, we can simply say that it’s the beginning of something really amazing. It’s capability to capture an entire view which is more than a human eye can do is actually magical. And this is what we truly love. Technology can definitely turn magic into reality. The best moments in our lives can only happen once. That is why it is very important to preserve them so as to turn them into wonderful memories. It is very important to consider the features and specifications of a camera in order the capture these special moments just the way you want it.
Nash Gibson is one of the owners of the Skateboarder community and a friend of James Haden. Aside from his corporate day job as an article writer, he is also gadget buff and an amateur photographer – he is planning to take his photography and videography to the next level through formal education. James and he love to share stuff on their blog which is now a collection of vibrant shots and articles to its many readers.