"Steps" in the horizon  

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by lumelix » Wed Aug 29, 2012 6:26 pm

The problem with CP's on clouds in the sky is often.
When your pano is several dozen images wide, it's some work to clean up all manually.
I've found that the CP's in the clouds mostly having bad rms.
Thus they can be cleaned up with a corresponding limit in the editor.
Regards
Martin

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by AlexandreJ » Thu Aug 30, 2012 8:09 am

Artisan S. wrote:And if that does not work (and it will in 9 out of 10 cases) view this, time to fork out some cash Kolor......I want that!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JiZMrQ2Qeuk&feature=player_embedded

This is a team I've meet in fact. Their technology is quite nice but far too complicate to use in the editor. In fact, many such technology coming from researcher do work in some cases, but not in all cases. Our approach 'contraint based masking' in autopano v3 is doing like their technology but without the issues they have : for example, it cannot be applied on fully covering image ( a 100 mm covering a 50 mm in the middle ). We can solve this case, they cannot.

The only part that we still need is a quick way to display over the preview the edges between images ( UI issue only ) and we'll have far better than them in fact.

BTW : before going to mask tool, go to realtime preview, put the multiband slider to 1, apply, then use the mask tool, you'll be surprised !

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by leifs » Thu Aug 30, 2012 9:53 pm

ThomasV wrote:Hi all,

The Kolor team has just published a tutorial concerning the horizon issue with your datas. You can find this one here : http://www.autopano.net/wiki-en/action/view/Fixing_Horizon_Issues.
We really hope it will helps you to solve the issues you are facing.

Regards,
Thomas

I have revisited this pano to check out the tutorial. Now there is a better version of APG, I have improved my skills and there is a tutorial for this unique pano. This should be a walk in the park, I thought.
I have now spent some hours on this pano and to be honest I still struggle. I have tried 2.64 and today 3.0α2. And have still not achieved a pano with a straight and stepless horizon. I'm close and can easily remove the steps with PS, but that was not supposed to be neccesary (?)
There is on trick in the tutorial I have not tried before, the "move pano". It might do the trick for less problematic cases, but it does not in this case. It seems to be a the same as the vanishing point tool, just operated in another way. And seems bit like a chasing rabbit tool: I move the horizon up one place and it goes down another place. And maybe worse: it generate new steps in the horizon. Because there is no chain of CP's along the horizon, like the asked-for horizon-tool must provide.

I appreciate the tutorial and I hope it will help people solve their problems. Unfortunately it is no eureka-solution to me and this special case, at my current skill-level.

leifs








Last edited by leifs on Thu Aug 30, 2012 9:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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by klausesser » Thu Aug 30, 2012 11:00 pm

leifs wrote:
ThomasV wrote:Hi all,

The Kolor team has just published a tutorial concerning the horizon issue with your datas. You can find this one here : http://www.autopano.net/wiki-en/action/view/Fixing_Horizon_Issues.
We really hope it will helps you to solve the issues you are facing.

Regards,
Thomas

I have revisited this pano to check out the tutorial. Now there is a better version of APG, I have improved my skills and there is a tutorial for this unique pano. This should be a walk in the park, I thought.
I have now spent some hours on this pano and to be honest I still struggle. I have tried 2.64 and today 3.0α2. And have still not achieved a pano with a straight and stepless horizon. I'm close and can easily remove the steps with PS, but that was not supposed to be neccesary (?)
There is on trick in the tutorial I have not tried before, the "move pano". It might do the trick for less problematic cases, but it does not in this case. It seems to be a the same as the vanishing point tool, just operated in another way. And seems bit like a chasing rabbit tool: I move the horizon up one place and it goes down another place. And maybe worse: it generate new steps in the horizon. Because there is no chain of CP's along the horizon, like the asked-for horizon-tool must provide.

I appreciate the tutorial and I hope it will help people solve their problems. Unfortunately it is no eureka-solution to me and this special case, at my current skill-level.

leifs

leifs - i promise this are the last words i´ll say to this issue, because i´m starting loose patience;): re-think the way you shoot.
Not every failure can be compensated by new tools - which i guess wouldn´t take you any further in this case, to be honest.

all the best to you and good luck for your work, Klaus
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by AlexandreJ » Fri Aug 31, 2012 7:46 am

leifs wrote:I have revisited this pano to check out the tutorial. Now there is a better version of APG, I have improved my skills and there is a tutorial for this unique pano. This should be a walk in the park, I thought.
I have now spent some hours on this pano and to be honest I still struggle. I have tried 2.64 and today 3.0α2. And have still not achieved a pano with a straight and stepless horizon. I'm close and can easily remove the steps with PS, but that was not supposed to be neccesary (?)
There is on trick in the tutorial I have not tried before, the "move pano". It might do the trick for less problematic cases, but it does not in this case. It seems to be a the same as the vanishing point tool, just operated in another way. And seems bit like a chasing rabbit tool: I move the horizon up one place and it goes down another place. And maybe worse: it generate new steps in the horizon. Because there is no chain of CP's along the horizon, like the asked-for horizon-tool must provide.

I appreciate the tutorial and I hope it will help people solve their problems. Unfortunately it is no eureka-solution to me and this special case, at my current skill-level.

I did play myself with this panorama and ended up with a near perfect pano in 5 minutes.
The key point is control points because these point are tell how one image should be located relatively the other one linked.
For this panorama, the critical part was to put control point only in a narrow windows along the horizon ( even if there were a lot of content in the sky ). So the longest possible in horizontal and a narrow height. By just putting cp there, then everything was perfectly aligned.
I didn't review all pairs, but the one related with image 10 to 15. Sometimes, the solution was not to add cp, but remove quite all of them.

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by klausesser » Fri Aug 31, 2012 2:01 pm

Artisan S. wrote:To the best of my knowledge there is nothing wrong with the way Leif shoots or his Roundshot maybe broken.....not bloody likely since it is Swiss manufacturing....

The point is: he used a pole outside for shooting. Poles rarely stand stable. For shooting hires having windy conditions poles are not the best choice!

Leifs:
"It was shot using a VRdrive 1 on a 2m pole in windy condittions. First one row, change the pitch, then row #2. Ofcourse this is not optimal.
On the other hand this is not indoors and the trouble is the horizon xx kilometers away. The foreground dosn't matter much, so the CP's there could all be deleted (?)."

Klaus

P.S.: Alexandre´s suggestion pinpoints what i also suggested less precisely than him: unlinking and hard-linking again points where the issue appears. No way to have an option in a new tool for getting it done automatically.
Last edited by klausesser on Fri Aug 31, 2012 2:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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by klausesser » Fri Aug 31, 2012 2:42 pm

Artisan S. wrote:You know an ex-recording engineer . . .

So you are . .

Me too: as a recording-engineer in the US i recorded and edited film-music for CBS long time ago in the pre-digital aera . . :cool:

Still editing using ProTools and Nuendo for own projects.

Klaus
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by leifs » Mon Sep 10, 2012 9:02 pm

klausesser wrote:No way to have an option in a new tool for getting it done automatically.

Have you seen anybody asking for a tool to fix this automatically ? If so it was not me.

Roll back to page 1 and see the selling points for APG at http://www.kolor.com/image-stitching-software-autopano-giga-photo-stitching-feature.html
I think a VRdrive 1 on a pole is more than asked for to make a pano using APG.

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by klausesser » Mon Sep 10, 2012 9:20 pm

leifs wrote:I think a VRdrive 1 on a pole is more than asked for to make a pano using APG.

Depends on how the pole moves. A 2 - 4 m pole can move in the wind very much . . even when you tie it to the ground using 4 or five ropes (?).

Saying "automatically" i meant just needing some few clicks instead of heavy editing - sorry: i was "unsharp" ;)

best, Klaus
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by leifs » Tue Nov 20, 2012 11:51 pm

I have for some time had a idea that the APG "move pano" tool generate steps.
Kolor has a wiki "Fixing the panorama's horizon" at http://www.autopano.net/wiki-en/action/view/Fixing_the_panorama's_horizon
It use the "use the Move panorama tool" to fix the straight horizon problem, and it looks ok on distance.

I have use the script on several cases and I wanted it to do the the trick. It don't.

Now I have done a test and it is crystal clear: the "Move panorama tool" generates steps in the horizon. Just look at the iamge below.

Leif




Last edited by leifs on Tue Nov 20, 2012 11:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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by ThomasV » Wed Nov 21, 2012 8:35 am

Hello Leifs,

In my opinion, the steps are already in the first image, even if they are smaller. We understand the need for a simpler tool to have a straight horizon, but the only way I can give is to fix the control points to have a perfectly stitched horizon, and then align the pano with the move tool.

Regards,
Thomas

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by marzipano » Wed Nov 21, 2012 10:52 am

Please do not use apostrophes in url's as they do not interpret correctly

I think this link will work in order to read the Kolor current methodology for a straight horizon that was referenced 2 posts above.

(If it doesn't work then manually put an apostrophe in the url as "panorama's" without the " marks

http://www.autopano.net/wiki-en/action/view/Fixing_the_panorama%27s_horizon

best
Martin

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by leifs » Wed Nov 21, 2012 8:20 pm

If anybody want a challenge here is one: a coastal sphere

The shooting:
VRdrive 2 on a 3m pole stabilized with a tripod.
Windy, clouds are moving fast and there may be a small roll on some images

The images:
Shot with Olympus E-M5 and Panasonic Leica Summilux DG 25mm F1.4 in RAW
Developed in DXO using calibrated modules for camera and lens.
I have found it best to disable APG "Lens distorion correction". It's your choice.
The VRdrive 2 is not set up for perfect NPP.

The challenge:
Produce a APG projectfile that can be loaded, push the render button, and the resulting pano can be inspected in 100% with a straight and horisontal horizon without steps.

The prize:
The honor of beeing a champion of horisontal stepless horizons in APG !

the package: 250MB
96 images JPG
1 XML file for Papywizard import to APG
1 readme file
1 autopano projectfile as an illustration of the scene

Get it from:
www.lstrand.no/ymse/blaafjellet_challenge.zip

Leif :)


Last edited by leifs on Wed Nov 21, 2012 8:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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by klausesser » Wed Nov 21, 2012 8:41 pm

leifs wrote:The challenge:
Produce a APG projectfile that can be loaded, push the render button, and the resulting pano can be inspected in 100% with a straight and horisontal horizon without steps.

Good Lord, Leifs . . why not simply use Photoshop to retouch the horizon . . . :rolleyes:
But i´ll give it a try doing it without using PS.

best, Klaus
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by leifs » Wed Nov 21, 2012 10:41 pm

In my opinion it must be possible to produce a nice horizon in a sphere shot like this without resorting to Photoshop.

Klaus:
I'm not a master of PS, but I can do some retouching.
I have tried to do as you suggest: "simply use Photoshop to retouch the horizon"
I have found it not simple at all !

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by klausesser » Wed Nov 21, 2012 11:16 pm

leifs wrote:In my opinion it must be possible to produce a nice horizon in a sphere shot like this without resorting to Photoshop.

Correct - but depends on how you use the application resp. the tools in it.
And - let´s get it straight: i suspect it´s in the way you shoot, sorry. You constantly have this issues. Maybe the pole is far more instable than you realize.
I can´t see any other reason - but i´m damn sure the reason is not APG. I do very complex stitching sometimes using APG all the time and it works very well.
NEVER had such an issue that couldn´t be solved - after i realized how to use APG guided by Alexandre.
He posted the issue i had here in your thread and he also posted the solution.

ThomasV gave you a hint - did you follow his suggestions?

leifs wrote:Klaus:
I'm not a master of PS, but I can do some retouching.
I have tried to do as you suggest: "simply use Photoshop to retouch the horizon"
I have found it not simple at all !

Well - it´s quite simple indeed related to retouching/composing i usually do. But i agree: you need some skills.

best, Klaus
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by leifs » Wed Nov 21, 2012 11:38 pm

klausesser wrote:And - let´s get it straight: i suspect it´s in the way you shoot, sorry.
best, Klaus

No need to be sorry.
I envy your environment, cities far from a clean distant horizon. Piece of cake.
Indoors old buildings: piece of cake. I can do that too.

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by klausesser » Thu Nov 22, 2012 12:52 am

leifs wrote:cities far from a clean distant horizon. Piece of cake.
Indoors old buildings: piece of cake. I can do that too.

Au contraire: shooting hires on close distances is very much more challenging than shooting hires on large distances. The setup needs to be much more precise - 1mm makes a clearly visible difference. Geometrically complex structures are much harder to stitch shooting hires. DOF is definitely much smaller than shooting landscapes, lights are much more uneven - and so on. "Piece of cake"? :lol::cool:

That´s why i´m so surprised that you have the same issue over and over again shooting very long distances. With objects so very far away the NPP doesn´t matter very much - and it´s definitely surprising that you get those steps in your horizon.
Even with a moving pole it´s surprising. So it might be a combination of a moving NPP and reflections on the water by moving clouds which irritates the CP-search when the optimizer works.

I´ll look into your files right now after having a cup of tea - have to do work through the night anyway . . :cool:

best, Klaus

PS: oops - can´t unzip your folder after downloading: "forbidden"
Last edited by klausesser on Thu Nov 22, 2012 12:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
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by gkaefer » Thu Nov 22, 2012 4:33 am

ok. did spend now 2 hours. not perfect result when zooming 100% in autopano. this result now I got I would postprocess without autopano...

during using the import tool the papy plugin did notcie that the focal in exif and in xml are not equal. I did select to use the EXIF data.
I also selected the option to use the recorded position of the images.

I did place CP's between 3 neuralgic image pairs where no CPs were found automatically. this is on middle of the pano on horizon line where your big step was placed. I did it very rude by accepting RMS of >10. but its enough to solve the step.

now I did use the preview tool and did set the blending level from default value to -10. this gives the most visible steps and is only an temporary step to do...

Now I did not use the "Automatic horizon". it lead to any result, but not the intended one ;-)
I instead used the "Vertical Tool" and did not place the line from top to bottom direction (and hoizon line is than shown on real horizon) - I did place the line from left to right so the horizon line is placed from top to bottom ;-) well known since years now this solution. and it does work.

after using the vertical tool the pano now is rotated 90" so you'Ve to use the turn left 90" icon to get the pano back...

now I did use the preview tool AGAIN and did set the blending level from -10 to + 10. this gives the most smooth steps...

if you than go back to preview and do draw a line from left to right horizon (I did it again with the vertical tool). than the result is not so bad...

a big PS: you placed the horizon between 2 rows. so each top and bottom image contains the same part of the horizon line. if you shoot one row so that the middle of this line is the horizon line, you'Ve far less problems with blending...

Liebe Gruesse
Georg














Last edited by gkaefer on Thu Nov 22, 2012 4:36 am, edited 1 time in total.

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by con » Thu Nov 22, 2012 10:21 am

gkaefer wrote:ok. did spend now 2 hours. not perfect result when zooming 100% in autopano. this result now I got I would postprocess without autopano...

a big PS: you placed the horizon between 2 rows. so each top and bottom image contains the same part of the horizon line. if you shoot one row so that the middle of this line is the horizon line, you'Ve far less problems with blending...

Liebe Gruesse
Georg

Bingo. Great tip :)

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by leifs » Thu Nov 22, 2012 11:01 am

gkaefer wrote:during using the import tool the papy plugin did notcie that the focal in exif and in xml are not equal. I did select to use the EXIF data.
I also selected the option to use the recorded position of the images.

the reason for this was an error in the xml produced by the head. it is fixed later. sorry for this glitch.

gkaefer wrote:Now I did not use the "Automatic horizon". it lead to any result, but not the intended one ;-)
I instead used the "Vertical Tool" and did not place the line from top to bottom direction (and hoizon line is than shown on real horizon) - I did place the line from left to right so the horizon line is placed from top to bottom ;-) well known since years now this solution. and it does work.

after using the vertical tool the pano now is rotated 90" so you'Ve to use the turn left 90" icon to get the pano back...

now I did use the preview tool AGAIN and did set the blending level from -10 to + 10. this gives the most smooth steps...

wow ! how did you figure out this workflow ?

gkaefer wrote:a big PS: you placed the horizon between 2 rows. so each top and bottom image contains the same part of the horizon line. if you shoot one row so that the middle of this line is the horizon line, you'Ve far less problems with blending...

I agree. The shooting pattern is automatically produced by the software in the head. It's technically fine, but in this case it is not optimal. I need to move the rows down, so that the horizon is included in one row only. In the test-set there is up to four overlapping images that include the same part of the horizon.
Last edited by leifs on Thu Nov 22, 2012 11:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
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by leifs » Thu Nov 22, 2012 11:12 am

gkaefer wrote:ok. did spend now 2 hours. not perfect result when zooming 100% in autopano.

Liebe Gruesse
Georg

I have found the image ok in the editor, in preview mode, only to see lots of steps in the rendered image.
There is no way around rendering to know if the result will be fine.

Leif
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by gkaefer » Thu Nov 22, 2012 11:53 am

leifs wrote:
gkaefer wrote:ok. did spend now 2 hours. not perfect result when zooming 100% in autopano.

Liebe Gruesse
Georg

I have found the image ok in the editor, in preview mode, only to see lots of steps in the rendered image.
There is no way around rendering to know if the result will be fine.

Leif

I did expect that... ;-( If you zoom to 100% in the preview the steps are visible too. maybe less than in your download package, but still too much to make a tour of it...

but I think the scene you shot is a real challanging one. Look at image 46 and/or 47. both contain a big ship. the horizon is coming from left. right from the ship there is a naturally step in the horizon because of the rain clouds.

What I personally do not understand is why - if I zoom to 100% in the CP editor to image 46 and 47 and center to the ship - why no single CP can be found automatically. this is an noticable object with different colors... (ok I can set them manually - and even than the automatically ghost removing does work...)

personally I would like to have a tool where I can make a virtual horizon line in all my single images and autopano than does take this human support to focus on blending this lines of the single images to create a perfect smooth horizon.

Liebe Gruesse,
Georg


Last edited by gkaefer on Thu Nov 22, 2012 11:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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by klausesser » Thu Nov 22, 2012 12:07 pm

gkaefer wrote:ok. did spend now 2 hours. not perfect result when zooming 100% in autopano. this result now I got I would postprocess without autopano...

So you could unzip it - i get an error message when i start to unzip.

best, Klaus


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by leifs » Thu Nov 22, 2012 2:04 pm

gkaefer wrote:but I think the scene you shot is a real challanging one.

This is not the worst ! I have spent countless hours fighting steps on panos from Runde.
See e.g. the northernmost pano on http://www.rundskuer.no/panotour/runde/virtualtour.html

gkaefer wrote:personally I would like to have a tool where I can make a virtual horizon line in all my single images and autopano than does take this human support to focus on blending this lines of the single images to create a perfect smooth horizon.

Liebe Gruesse,
Georg

Me, you and a lot of others in the forum has asked for a tool.
The only one who doesn't need it is Klaus !

Leif
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