What is a Virtual Tour

What is a Virtual Tour ?

Virtual Tour is called many things in South Africa; it’s a product that has been called 360 photos, 360 Spin, 360 Panorama, 360 Virtual Tours, 360 Photography and lastly a Virtual Tour. 360 Photography has been around for hundred of years already see link for examples

Nowadays this product is doing very well in South Africa and is still a new type of photography in the market. The reason why this product is doing so well is because of its visual technology.Software and Hardware for 360 Cameras are getting less expensive and is more available now in South Africa.

This product is also very easy to share on the world wide web as there is lots of web sites out there were you can publish your 360 Photos too. Virtual Tours is the future of photography.

There are tree types of 360 Panorama’s

  • Partial 360 panorama – Is the original panoramic photography that is done. These photo,s are stitched together, once all the photos are stitched you will have a wide angle image.
  • Cylindrical 360 panorama – Secondly is 360 photo shoot were images is shoot in a circular movement.Example 360 Degree movement around the photographer. They are called cylindrical 360 panorama. Covers 360 degree views of around up and down 180X90 angles.Difference from partial 360 panorama is that you shoot less photos
  • Spherical 360 panoramas – Is the best 360 panorama to use .You will be able to capture the complete view of photo shot scene in 360X360 angles.The 360 photo can even capture the photographers tripod legs.

Tips for 360 panoramas

What is the best techniques in creating 360 photo,s in to a virtual tour?  Well its very easy especially of you are a professional photographer already.

  1. First get a scene were you want to do the 360 photo shoot.
  2. You start by moving in a 360 degree movement with other words moving around in a circle, until you have returned back to you original position. OK now you think to yourself how do I then know were I started and ended in a circular movement?
  3. The trick comes from a technique that is illustrated with your eye for EXAMPLE: If you close your one eye and hold your finger in front of your face and then open and close the other eye, you will see that your finger looks like it moved even though you know that your finger is still at the same position.

As long as you apply this technique correctly your photos will overlap. To achieve this technique you need a specialised 360 panorama rotator that will keep the field of view in the centre as you move the camera in a circular movement.

Equipment needed

You might think you need some specialised 360 camera ?. It doesn’t matter with what kind of camera you use, even a cell phone can be used, as long as the field of view technique is done correctly, you can pretty much shoot any kind of 360 panorama.Virtual Tour South Africa recommends a full frame camera and a circular fish-eye lens with a specialized panoramic rotator.

For the Professionals

  • Photos must be taken at the same central focal point to avoid stitching errors.
  • Use panoramic head for hassle free stitching.
  • Camera images must be shoot as raw to get best quality.
  • Auto mode must be avoid, set all settings manually on your camera .

How to stitch 360 photos ?

No matter how good your stitching software is its important that your focal point of view is 99 percent of the time correct, the software does compensate for corrections to be made, if stitching points are out.

Please contact us for training and quotes on 360 panoramic stitching software,tools and equipment to be used for creating virtual tours.

Drop us a email at this link – johann@vtp.co.za

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