Stereo Panoramas (longish post)
- I sometimes see amazing 3D panoramas here on this list, and recently I purchased a Fujifilm 3D W3 stereo camera that, despite its limitations, is giving me a lot of fun. It has also helped to spark an interest in photography in my wife, who otherwise has a completely blind spot for the hobby that means so much to me. For me, it is the revival of an interest that began over 60 years ago, when I was 14, and has continued at varying levels of intensity down the years.
However, all this has re-fired my ambition to create stereo panoramas. Unfortunately, after having decided it was all going to be too much for me to cope with, I have not kept all the informative posts that appeared here over the years, and searching the Yahoo archives generates far too much "noise."
I am interested in the technique of using my (Pentax) DSLR's HD video capabilities to sweep around the 360 degrees, rotating the camera about a point displaced from its NPP, then slicing and splicing the resultant sequence into two separate images with the parallax to generate a true stereo impression. I know the Stereo Data Maker program can be used to assist with this process, but it is confined to working with Canon cameras. So I am looking for something else... Maybe I should consider the built-in video capabilities of my Fuji P&P stereo camera? at least with the latter I would be starting with stereo pairs of images... or complete video sequences.
Is my planned slice and splice approach the best (or indeed even a POSSIBLE) way to produce immersive 360 x 180 VR panoramas that can be viewed as stereo images? If so, is there anywhere that I can find a step-by-step account of how to proceed? If not, what are the other options?
I will be beta-testing a stepping-motor based rotator, and hope to use that to drive the camera. Since I can program the steps to be as close together as I like, only limited by the storage capacity if my memory card, I could also prepare a set of high-res images. These could also be in portrait orientation, to get better vertical coverage--something that's impossible with the Fuji stereo camera. The slow speed of the stepper motor means that the scene would have to be pretty static. I would be very grateful for any comments the experts might care to make. Of course I know using the video capabilities, even HD, will limit the ultimate resolution and may also limit me to cylindrical panoramas... (Sigh)
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