Thanks to social media, our appetite for capturing and sharing content has never been bigger.
What might have seemed impossible just a few years ago, we’re sharing millions of videos and pictures every day through our smart phones in staggering amounts and ever increasing quality.
With the big social platforms supporting experiences for 360 content, there’s a whole new world to explore.
Insta360 launched some of the first cameras to tap social media’s love of 360 content, but the new ONE camera takes immersion to the next level.
Up to now, Insta360’s range included two entry level cameras, The Nano for iPhone (£200) and The Air for Android (£120) and their beast top end sphere, The Pro (£Don’t Ask!).
The ONE enters the market as a more mid-range, more evolved offering. It retails for £319 but don’t let the price tag put you off. If you’re creating 360 content or want to push the boundaries of photography and video making then it more than justifies the cost.
Boasting ultra high-definition 4k video and 24 megapixel photos, it captures moments you can revisit in exquisite detail. It’s a giant leap from other entry level 360 cameras that suffer from blocky presentation or uneven stitching.
The quality is evident when viewing on the iPhone screen but really stands out when you see the content on the big screen or through a VR headset like Google cardboard.
One of the new features Insta360 have launched is their take on ‘bullet time’, the camera effect made famous by movies like The Matrix. Using the camera’s slow mo feature, The ONE creates the bullet time effect as the user spins the camera around them.
It takes a little time to master – and a lot of faith to spin the camera on the included action string – but the results can be quite mesmerising. Ideal for capturing group shots, just make sure the tallest person in your group does the spinning.
360 video is great to interact with, but the ability to look around means that you lose some ability to ‘direct’ the viewer to certain moments. The ONE’s new ‘free capture’ and ‘smart tracking’ offer a way to have the best of both worlds.
Essentially, you can watch a video back and record cue points around the best moments and then export the video as a flattened 1080p video. It’s great for filming events but you could also use it for more simple video projects – capture everything at the time then choose later what you want to highlight.
You don’t need to have it connected to an iPhone to use most features, as it comes with programmable button, timer, bluetooth controls and micro-SD card slot. But its companion app makes light work of editing, sharing footage, playback with VR headsets and streaming 360 live to social media.
Even the carry case included is cleverly designed. It protects the dual lenses in a rugged case, works as a small monopod for use without a phone or monopod to hold a phone for live streaming. The camera itself features a standard mount for tripods, monopods and grips.
All in all, The ONE for iPhone is a decent 360 camera offering some great features that lets you take your 360 content to the next level. And don’t worry Android users, there’s a version on the way for you soon too!