The Insta360 Sphere easily captures amazing 360-degree drone footage
This article was originally featured on PopPhoto.
Drone enthusiasts are aware that the DJI Mavic Air 2/2S has a great camera. However, it can only capture flat footage. For those wanting a 360-degree view on their flight, Insta360 recently released the Sphere, a 360-degree drone camera that allows creators to capture crazy footage by attaching the dual camera to the drone and then adding the desired effects after the flight.
One of the challenges in recording such footage is that the drone pilot must be skilled at using their aircraft to make the dramatic dives and swoops, twists and turns. Insta360 Sphere now puts that ability in the hands of less-experienced drone operators by capturing every angle with the ability to add effects during the editing process.
How the Insta360 Sphere works
Mounted on a DJI Mavic Air 2/2S drone, the Sphere captures 360-degree 5.7k footage as the craft flies. To capture unique perspectives, the operator does not need any maneuvers. The Sphere does all of the heavy lifting so it is more than enough to pilot the drone forwards or backwards.
This is what video-makers refer to as an “invisible camera”. Ordinarily, a 360-degree camera will capture the drone in its field of view, which requires extensive editing in post-production to remove. The Sphere uses two cameras, one facing out from the top and one pointing down from its bottom. They are attached to the drone using a locking mechanism. This arrangement removes the drone completely from the image.
“Insta360’s proprietary dynamic stitching algorithm makes the whole drone (including the propellers) disappear automatically, leaving the user with glorious, uninterrupted shots,” the company writes.
Insta360 claims the Sphere won’t disrupt the drone’s GPS signal nor remote control. This is a significant highlight as an earlier product, the One R Aerial Addon, had blocked the Mavic 2’s GPS signal. This made flying for amateurs much more difficult.
Editing Insta360 Sphere footage
Insta360 employs its proprietary image stabilization system, FlowState, which is also used in other products such as the One X, X2, and Go 2. FlowState promises to reduce vibrations and shakes even in windy conditions.
Intuitive framing software allows you to adjust the angle and direction of your camera in post-production via an app or your computer’s desktop. You can also create multiple edits using the same flight video captured by the Sphere or the drone’s camera. The software can simulate complex aerial cinematic techniques such as barrel rolls and dolly zooms by simply tapping.
How to buy the Insta360 Sphere
The Sphere is now available on the Insta360 website for $429.99. Those who want the Memory Card Kit, which comes with a 64-gigabyte MicroSD card, will pay $439.99.
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