Call for interest in Panorama photography

Discussion in 'General Technical Discussion' started by Rich Gibson, Mar 11, 2005.

  1. Are there any folks here either curious about panoramic photography or have expertise in it? I fiddled with Panotools a few years ago. I was able to create a spherical image field which was intriguing.

    Just curious.

    Rich
     
  2. Gale

    Gale

    978
    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Rich,
    I was reading the Retouching forum and there is a new freeeeee pano prog. Yeah, I know, whats the name. Well I don't remember. Have to go hunt. Works like a dream.

    I would like to try a pano.
    I think done right they are beautiful.

    cheers
    Gale
     
  3. Gale

    Gale

    978
    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Rich
    I got lucky :>)))

    It is called auto stitch. The zip file is 1 mg. I could email it to you. Then if you want to you could do a search on the retouching forum for a long thread on it.

    cheers
    gale
     
  4. Gale

    Gale

    978
    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
  5. Gale

    Gale

    978
    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
  6. Panoramas, etc

    Hi,

    I did a small project for the Kora Shriners here in Maine. You can check it out at http://KoraShriners.org The dining hall has a series of murals on the wall. The lighting there is horrible and it's hard to shoot them without distortion, but we pulled it off. Each mural has a hot spot that goes to a higher res JPG of the image with an explanation of what it is. The doors on one end of the hall are a hot spot that leads to the next floor where the ceremonial hall is. If anybody is interested in doing these things, don't hesitate to contact me. I use a D-70 and the standard issue 18-70 lens that came with it.
     
  7. PJohnP

    PJohnP

    Feb 5, 2005
    Rich :


    I've used Panavue Image Assembler and Panorama Factory at various times. I need to digitally stitch together photos of equipment in chemical plants/refineries quite often, and I've found either of these to be useful. PIA is good for multiple rows and columns, while PF does a little better job with extreme fisheye/WA effects. Each one can be smoothly added to the workflow without undue effort (usually).

    When I was in Salt Lake City last week, I was given an evening tour of the LDS Convention Center (posts to come in the Architecture forum on that one - a fascinating and imposing place), and I was shown a room with paintings depicting various scenes from the Book of Mormon. I quickly swung the camera around and shot two photos at 12mm, which I've then stitched together in PF.

    [​IMG]

    It's not perfect, to be sure (and will be shrunk way down for display here), but the software works pretty well. Fixing the inevitable distortions for stitching together images has some serious limits (I use Lensdoc for that), and it's sometimes better to leave artifacts like the ceiling beams with some optical arch effects. I wish I'd placed myself just a couple of feet over to get a better centring of the photos, but that's done.

    I also used PF to join images for the photo I posted yesterday over in Architecture (https://www.nikoncafe.com//forums/viewtopic.php?t=1148). My colleague just told me the prior sets I shot (https://www.nikoncafe.com//forums/viewtopic.php?t=380) were used for submission to an NM competition which he won for in two categories. So, while PIA and PF are not the highest end of software for panoramic or stitching exercises, I guess they can suffice !

    I'd post some of the 4 X 5 matrix shots I've stitched for my work using PIA, but they're proprietary processes and the clients would be a touch aggrieved with me for publication. Suffice to say that with reasonable care, even without a leveled panoramic mount on a tripod and shooting handheld, matrix stitches are also very possible.


    John P.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
  8. Wow, that is impressive! You hardly notice ceiling distortion because of the excellent alignment of the walls and pictures.

    I played with Pano tools and the early version of PTGUI. But it looks like that company that patented joining two hemispherical fisheye pictures has hounded him to stop public work on it. Sad.

    Had a lot of fun and was curious if it warranted a forum of its own here at the cafe. Doesn't look like it, but hey, everything is fine; we can't be all things to everyone.

    Rich
     
  9. PJohnP

    PJohnP

    Feb 5, 2005
    Rich :

    Thanks for the compliment, but I'm still annoyed at my poor placement to better bisect the room for the two shots... I had a very nice and pleasant senior member of the church giving me the tour, and I didn't want to be rude and keep shooting while he stood by. He was very supportive of my photography, however, and took me to some marvelous vantage points that the average visitor might not reach. He also took the time to explain a number of aspects of LDS that I was unfamiliar with, although I don't believe that I will be making a change in that direction.

    .....

    Some of the credit for the (relatively) clean stitch falls to Panorama Factory. One can specify the camera and lens used for photos (including a specific or estimated FL), and this seems to allow for better results. I heartily recommend the package (http://www.panoramafactory.com/) for the photographer who wants to perform linear stitches (one row or column only) and who doesn't want to try and master another arcane art of software. It gets regular updates, is reasonably priced, and doesn't require me to study for another doctorate to understand it.

    Panavue Image Assembler (http://www.panavue.com) was extremely good, but it's not been recently updated, and needs some tending. However, PIA will stitch together a matrix of photos, which PF will not; and additionally, will stitch together images of odd sizes, where PF needs to have equally sized images. PIA still gets very regular use from me.

    As for a separate section on panoramic shots and software, I'm of two minds. I use these approaches as technical tools for my day-to-day work, so I'm probably a bit jaded by the constant efforts. OTOH, I wonder how many people have explored these tools in any depth ? It could be an area of interest as people's knowledge increases.

    There used to be an extremely good site for discussion of these products at http://www.panoguide.com/, but they seem to have dropped that aspect of the site. Pity, because I thought it was about the most objective of the review sites on this subject.



    John P.
     
  10. AutoStitch really works good

    Here's a 9 shot hand held panorama of Bernard Lake in Alaska. I just loaded the shots into AutoStitch and it did all the rest of the work.

    Click on the thumbnail for the larger file. This one is just as it was stitched, slighty cropped, with no other PS adjustments. It was taked early in the morning, thus the wide range of color of the sky from left to right.

    th_4-Bernard-Lake-pano2.


    Chet
     
  11. Re: AutoStitch really works good

    Excellent. I have a series taken at Grianan of Aileach in northwest Ireland. I'll try Autostitch. We'll see how it works.

    Rich
     
  12. If you use either a Mac or PC, Stitcher by RealViz.com will do either cubic or cylindrical panoramas. Cylindrical panoramas can be printed. With the setup I use, I shoot 12 vertical images in a circle and then stitch them. By rendering them as QTVRA (QuickTime Virtual Reality Authoring) they can be viewed with QuickTime. With the viewer, you can zoom in and pan or tilt on the images in or out to the parameters set by the author. Stitcher costs about $450 and they allow you to install it on a laptop and one desktop machine. It's cross platform. Some of the lower end programs will work fine, but don't have the features such as distortion correction and equalization of exposure in images. It is very important that you insure that your camera's 'film' plane is perpendicular to the axis of rotation and that the nodal point of the lens is the center of rotation. Additionally, the overlap of the images should be at least 30%. More is better. When these programs take three images and stitch them together for a 360 degree panorama, a lot of resolution is lost.

    In case I have told you more than you ever wanted to know, I'll shut up now........

    Have a good one.
     
  13. Not at all. I wouldn't have started this thread if I didn't find the whole area fascinating.

    Has anyone worked with Helmut Dersch's Panorama Tools software for Windows? He is a German professor who created the seminal software which stitches images together. An otician (I think) his software is very complex. I tried using it by itself and it took about 10 trys to get it to work. You have to create rather strictly written parameter tables to make it work. One of the unique characteristics is it can create optical coefficients for various lenses which can be used to rectilinearize(?) pictures with curvature distortion. It also can do an impressive job eliminating CA.

    PTGui is a currently supported interface product. You identify corresponding points on the image and it does the table creation. I mentioned earlier a comapny IPIX, was foolishly granted a patent for stitiching two hemispherical images together (to me it's like patenting bifocals!). They've harrassed him with lawsuits even though his work uses three images, not two. I lost track of the situation, but recently I see his software does not include the 360 degree capability. You can get the version (1.92?) which works in 360 degrees from independent sites).

    There was a product Photo Vista, by MGI whic I bought which also was dumbed down to exclude fisheye lenses. Boy was I upset when I realized I spent $50 for nothing! You had to use an older version (2.0) which had this capability. It seems they too were sued by IPIX so they pulled out this capability.

    At one time I heard that IPIX's share value was down to $.25. Probably because of the lawyer's fees.

    Perhaps we can create an inventory of all known software procuts of this type. I have a feeling that someone out there knows much more about this than I. It would be nice to have a library of sorts to help people.

    Rich
     
  14. Panorama software, etc

    Rich,

    Take a squint at Kaidan.com and check out their hardware and some of the programs they sell. That's where I got all the stuff I use, except the tripod, ball head and Arca Swiss plates. I wanted to be able to whip that camera off the tripod or remove it from the panorama head without going through a ritual of unscrewing stuff. Works great. That carbon fiber tripod from China was a smart move. I haven't tested it in a nuclear waste dump or on the backside of Titan, but I am sure it will hold up for most of the things I want to do with it.

    Panorama's that you can put on line are impressive as hell. As soon as my local yacht builder gets a boat nearer to completion, I'm going over there and shoot a couple with hot spots and all. They have a website and I think an interior panorama of one of their 'picnic boats' would be a good enhancement. Their website is http://www.lymanmorse.com/builders/lyman_morse.htm

    A few years back I built their underwater railway to launch a $5,000,000 yacht. The builder used it once. The boat didn't fall off, so I went away paid and relieved..........
     
  15. Re: Panorama software, etc

    Kaidan equipment was what I used with the Coolpix 990. I started with the 900, then 950, 990, 5000 (ugh!) the D100 and now the D2h.

    It sure took a lot of patience setting everything up level so you'd get the best possible shot. I liked the template with the dimples kaidan put in the rotator so you didn't have to take special note of where you started.

    Rich
     
  16. It's called Autostitch and I got the tip here on thie site from Gale. Here's an impressive, melancholy, very windy spot in northwest Ireland called Grianan of Aileach. It's a ring fort. It's desolate but beautiful at the same time. This software is sooooo easy!

    40774971.

    View attachment 6146

    Thanks Gale :D :D :D
     
  17. Reznor

    Reznor Guest

    Hi guys,
    do you have special tripod heads to shoot around the nodal point of your lens? I've read a lot of articles on how to eliminate the parallax effect, and it seems a special spherical head is needed. For landscapes, no need to do this because the objects are far away, but when shooting indoor, its hard to have a ghost-free image when using a ordinary tripod and rotating about your camera.

    I'm looking for a good head to go with my D70, any recommendations ?
     
  18. It's called Autostitch and I got the tip here on thie site from Gale. Here's an impressive, melancholy, very windy spot in northwest Ireland called Grianan of Aileach. It's a ring fort. It's desolate but beautiful at the same time. This software is sooooo easy!

    Hi Rich,

    Very nice Panaramas. I too think Autostitch is a good program and you can't beat the price. I think free! I also use a panarama program from Ulead which also does 360 degree. I have problems because I don't have a panarama head for the tripod so I have only done one and the stitching came out very nice.

    Melissa
     
  19. With my Coolpix 990 I used a custom Kaidan head. Yes, you do need to get it just right for interior shots. I saw a site a few year back in which the photographer, after taking 3 fish-eye shots then holds the camera face down over the center of the area where the tripod was and stitches it into the three to get a complete spherical panorama. Lots o f work!

    Rich

    Rich
     
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