Need Help with Indoor Virtual Tours.  

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360photography
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Need Help with Indoor Virtual Tours.

by 360photography » Thu Feb 03, 2011 8:39 am

I am new to virtual tour photography and find it very exciting. I am battling extremely with shooting indoors. The light looks awefull and i am simply lost when it comes to creating virtual tours indoors. Outdoors is a breeze and i have created some amazing virtual tours of various venues outdoors and they truly look stunning. But need some help with shooting virtual tours indoors. Please can anyone give me some advice on how to aproach this problem.
Last edited by 360photography on Thu Feb 03, 2011 8:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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by klausesser » Thu Feb 03, 2011 1:58 pm

360photography wrote:Please can anyone give me some advice on how to aproach this problem.

The first and most important aproach is to exactly (!!) line up your set.

Would be clever to give us a bit more of information about your setup . . . :cool:

best, Klaus
Last edited by klausesser on Thu Feb 03, 2011 1:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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by 360photography » Thu Feb 03, 2011 2:08 pm

I am using a Nikon D90 with a nodal ninja pano head and a sigma 8mm Fisheye lens. My problem is not stitching the images its actually taking them :-) I'm new to all of this and have no idea what to do with indoors situations. Should i be using external flashes to light the place up etc?

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by mediavets » Thu Feb 03, 2011 2:18 pm

360photography wrote:I am using a Nikon D90 with a nodal ninja pano head and a sigma 8mm Fisheye lens. My problem is not stitching the images its actually taking them :-) I'm new to all of this and have no idea what to do with indoors situations. Should i be using external flashes to light the place up etc?

No - do not use flash at all. But you can turn on the lights if you like. It's easier if there less difference between interior and exterior light levels - so late afternoon/early evening can sometimes be a good time.

Use manual settings for everything - focus, shutter speed, aperture, white balance, and use the same settings for all the images in a pano.

With your setup I'd shoot 4-around at about +5 degrees pitch - that should cover the zenith area and leave a small 'hole' at the nadir.

Don't worry about that for now - just concentrate on getting a decent result with the 4-around.

Force APP/APG to ptovide a 360x180 pano FOV by setting 'Preferrred Extend' to 'Max. projection range' in Group settings.

Are you confident that your camera/lens is correctly set at the No Parallax Point (NPP) - this is critically important when shooting interior panos with a fisheye lens.

Check it out using this technique:
http://www.easypano.com/forum/display_topic_threads.asp?ForumID=1&TopicID=4162

Interior panos are the most challenging sort of panos to create.

It's easier if there less difference between interior and exterior light levels - so late afternoon/early evening can be a good time.

Once you have mastered the basics you can consider using exposure bracketing and fusion ....but that's all for later.
Last edited by mediavets on Thu Feb 03, 2011 2:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Many different Nodal Ninja and Agnos pano heads. Merlin/Panogear mount with Papywizard on Nokia Internet tablets.
Nikon D5100 and D40, Sigma 8mm f3.5 FE, Nikon 10.5mm FE, 35mm, 50mm, 18-55mm, 70-210mm. Promote control.

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by billjones » Fri Feb 11, 2011 5:09 pm

It's not hard to get the lighting right. I use a canon 5d with the sigma 8mm and take 4 shots. Now for some reason there are shots that just will not stitch and I hate having to go back so I take a set from one spot and then move the tripod a couple of feet, change the rotation point and take a second set. By changing the the rotation point I mean the first set may have started with the camera pointed do north, the second set would start north by northwest ...

For lighting I have just bit the bullet and bracket thee shots, 1/2 to 1 stop above and below. I then use photomatix to blend them (make sure you have the don't crop dialog on) Then in autopano make sure the setting are correct, lens focal length, crop factor etc.

Two sets of examples for you.

http://astimegoesby.us/panoramas/arephoto/sample03/
http://astimegoesby.us/panoramas/arephoto/waterbirth/


Bill Jones
http://rhmpano.org
http://astimegoesby.us
Last edited by billjones on Sun Jun 10, 2012 5:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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by Destiny » Fri Feb 11, 2011 11:06 pm

Ok Destiny here... I LOVED your VR examples Bill Jones.... Do not take them off.. I copied the links... :)

I did not understand some of what you said since I am mostly self-taught with photography. What do you mean by 'Bracket Three Shots?".... and.. is that a light I spied in the Main Bedroom Bathroom reflection.... What is it??? I am very very critical with my own VR movies... I see that your VRs, even though they are great, I did see some missed or bad stitched areas so perhaps I am being too critical with my own VR movies... I thought the black spot on one VR was a bug on the ceiling but its not, now I have seen a bigger black bug, I realise its a missed patch... I was itching to put that into Photoshop to fix it for you :) I had a huge one

I agree with the comments above... I too had many problems but these guys came to my rescue.. Lighting is everything in photography.. I started using a flash but now MOSTLY manual.. I set the shutter speed, and the f, but as for White Balance, I leave that on automatic... I just found it a heaps easier for me until I become more expert... Light changes in a home so much that I think this is the best for me... I use a Nikon D90 with a Nikon AF DX Fisheye-Nikkor 10.5mm f/2.8G ED Lens.. I love it!! I also use a beautiful tripod.. it makes all the difference to have a nice sturdy tripod... After reading so much about taking VR movies, I think in the end you do as suggested by those in the know and then do what works for you.. I am doing bits from many suggested advice comments... I set my camera to start at f8 and then play with it from there.. I might go to f7+ but then play with the shutter speed and leave the WB on Auto. I then point the camera down until the pano head is just in the frame and take 6 shots at 60 degree setting. I then point the camera up to 45 degrees and take 6 more shots, but I am still playing with everything... I still think that my NPP is a bit out but not much... That is soooo important.... One thing that has me confused is my bubble.. How can it be different in such a small distance from the Tripod bubble to the Nodal Ninga bubble... I set my NNP in a very strange way... I pointed my camera down and took just one shot.. I then put that image into Photoshop and found the centre... Very easy and quick... I tried other methods but they too a long time...

You have given me an idea… I will try to find a nice new home being built and see if they will let me take a VR of it… Did you take these images early morning…?? I think the same.. Early morning or late afternoon is best… Sometimes the stitches miss but if move the focal point to focus on a point that helps during the stitching process…. I tried 4 images using the same method as stated before.. I also tried 6 at 90 degrees plus Zenith and Nadir…. But that is pain….. I think I have to move my camera lens just a tab back or forward since I have come to realise that the dome of the lens has to be set in such a way that no matter where you move the lens it follows the curvature of a ball… I think this is really important…

I intend to buy a sliding plate for my Acratech GP Ballhead so I can centre the camera and try to see if I can use that to create VR movies…. I will mount it on my Rotor… Interested to know what you think about that….

D
Primary School Teacher - Hobby Virtual Tours and 3D/360 Object/Product Photographer - Our aim is to create a 3D/360 Virtual Tour Shop/Store with links to 3D/360 degree products. My gear, VR Drive II - D90 - Nikon 10.5 fisheye - Nikon D800 with Nikon-Nikkor 14-24 - NOVOFLEX Magic Balance - Acratech GP Ball-head - Nodal Ninja 4 + RD-16 Rotor - Manfrotto 190CXPRO4 Carbon Fiber Tripod :) :)

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by mediavets » Fri Feb 11, 2011 11:19 pm

billjones wrote:It's not hard to get the lighting right. .....

For lighting I have just bit the bullet and bracket thee shots, 1/2 to 1 stop above and below....

Bill Jones
http://rhmpano.org
http://astimegoesby.us

If +1/-1 EV is sufficient to capture the dynamic ramge of a scene some would say expsoure bracketing is not necessary at all. I've read that one can get the same effect in RAW conversion from a single image.

A more common complaint/observation is that the AEB functon of most cameras does not offer a wide enough exposure bracketing range to handle the very wide dynamic range frequently encountered when shooting panos.
Andrew Stephens
Many different Nodal Ninja and Agnos pano heads. Merlin/Panogear mount with Papywizard on Nokia Internet tablets.
Nikon D5100 and D40, Sigma 8mm f3.5 FE, Nikon 10.5mm FE, 35mm, 50mm, 18-55mm, 70-210mm. Promote control.

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by Destiny » Sat Feb 12, 2011 12:53 am

Well you probably think I am talking crazy but I think I have found the perfect VR setup… I first tried my Acratech GP Ballhead. I centred the lens to the ball by eye but I had to put my camera at Landscape, therefore I had to take 3 rows of images. My thinking is that if I set the curve of my fisheye lens centre toh the ballhead then no matter where the lens was it would work… Emm… It almost does… in fact much better than I thought it would, it just missed a couple of areas, so I got to thinking… I think its because its hard to stop the camera yarning left or right when I tilt it to the next alignment that effected it.. So, I checked out the Acratech web site and found this… Its perfect… Using the bracket the camera can but put to portrait and no problems with yarn, since its not a ball its just rotates parallel to the ground… and since it pivots from the center of the tripod it has to rotate center to the fisheye lens…. Is this crazy thinking…. Does anyone have this equipment to try it…. :)
http://acratech.net/product.php?productid=10&cat=1&page=1
http://acratech.net/product.php?productid=71&cat=4&page=1

D
Primary School Teacher - Hobby Virtual Tours and 3D/360 Object/Product Photographer - Our aim is to create a 3D/360 Virtual Tour Shop/Store with links to 3D/360 degree products. My gear, VR Drive II - D90 - Nikon 10.5 fisheye - Nikon D800 with Nikon-Nikkor 14-24 - NOVOFLEX Magic Balance - Acratech GP Ball-head - Nodal Ninja 4 + RD-16 Rotor - Manfrotto 190CXPRO4 Carbon Fiber Tripod :) :)

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by mediavets » Sat Feb 12, 2011 5:36 am

Destiny wrote:Is this crazy thinking….
D

Yes. There's no way you could set a camera/lens so that it rotates around the NPP using these components.
Last edited by mediavets on Sat Feb 12, 2011 12:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Nikon D5100 and D40, Sigma 8mm f3.5 FE, Nikon 10.5mm FE, 35mm, 50mm, 18-55mm, 70-210mm. Promote control.

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by Destiny » Sat Feb 12, 2011 11:40 am

I think I might have found my problem.... I realise my bubble on my NNP3 has to be set centre but if I do that the tripod bubble is not centre which got me thinking... When I put the Acratech GP Ballhead on the same tripod the bubble is same a the tripod bubble, centre and it stays centred when I turn it... I was wondering.. would it be be possible that the bubble on my NNP3 is not set in right...???? It wouldn't surprise me to be honest since its not square and the increments are not the same from one side to the other... It looks ok but how would I check that...??

D
Primary School Teacher - Hobby Virtual Tours and 3D/360 Object/Product Photographer - Our aim is to create a 3D/360 Virtual Tour Shop/Store with links to 3D/360 degree products. My gear, VR Drive II - D90 - Nikon 10.5 fisheye - Nikon D800 with Nikon-Nikkor 14-24 - NOVOFLEX Magic Balance - Acratech GP Ball-head - Nodal Ninja 4 + RD-16 Rotor - Manfrotto 190CXPRO4 Carbon Fiber Tripod :) :)

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by mediavets » Sat Feb 12, 2011 12:15 pm

Destiny wrote:I think I might have found my problem.... I realise my bubble on my NNP3 has to be set centre but if I do that the tripod bubble is not centre which got me thinking... When I put the Acratech GP Ballhead on the same tripod the bubble is same a the tripod bubble, centre and it stays centred when I turn it... I was wondering.. would it be be possible that the bubble on my NNP3 is not set in right...???? It wouldn't surprise me to be honest since its not square and the increments are not the same from one side to the other... It looks ok but how would I check that...??

D

The bubble level on a pano head is very unlikely to remain centred as it rotates - and it doesn't matter.

Set it once then leave it alone - do NOT try and adjust it as you rotate the head to shoot the pano.

In theory of course if shooting a 360x180 it matters not at all whether the pano head is level because you can level the image when stitching. In practice it makes life a little easier of the panohead is more or less level, but I wouldn't get neurotic about getting it precisely level; and if you have multiple levels - say tripod, ball head and pano head - then the only one that matters is the level on the pano head.

..........

Regarding the other matter - how are you substantiating your claim that the yaw increments are inconsistent?

Even if true again it doesn't really matter - as long as you have adequate overlaps between adajacent images it doesn't matter how precise the yaw intervals are. Click-stops just make judging/setting intervals easier when shooting.
Last edited by mediavets on Sat Feb 12, 2011 12:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Andrew Stephens
Many different Nodal Ninja and Agnos pano heads. Merlin/Panogear mount with Papywizard on Nokia Internet tablets.
Nikon D5100 and D40, Sigma 8mm f3.5 FE, Nikon 10.5mm FE, 35mm, 50mm, 18-55mm, 70-210mm. Promote control.

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by hankkarl » Sun Feb 13, 2011 3:32 am

360photography wrote:I am new to virtual tour photography and find it very exciting. I am battling extremely with shooting indoors. The light looks awefull and i am simply lost when it comes to creating virtual tours indoors. Outdoors is a breeze and i have created some amazing virtual tours of various venues outdoors and they truly look stunning. But need some help with shooting virtual tours indoors. Please can anyone give me some advice on how to aproach this problem.

Lighting on indoor panos can be challenging, especially if you have cool white fluorescents, incandescents and sunlight all in the same room.

one thing that helps is to get the property owner to replace the cool white fluorescent tubes with high CRI tubes (at least 90 CRI) use either 5600 degrees K to match the outdoors or about 4000 degrees K to match incandescent bulbs. Watch out for the spiral fluorescent bulbs that fit in a standeard (Edison) socket also.

I've seen green, pink ( actually a pale magenta), orange and white from a shot where there was strong daylight (white), incandescent (orange), cool white fluorescents (green) and warm white fluorescents (pink).

You may have to EV bracket over a 9EV range or more if the room is not well lit and the outdoors is bright.

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by Destiny » Sun Feb 13, 2011 9:27 am

emm.. when you come to do your navigation I would make your own arrows or hotspots as 24bit png... I have just made a nice 3D left and right arrow with a spiral arrow for the go to the next area in the same scene.. You can resize your arrows or hotspots in ptp, its really great now... you just drop a hotshot on your pano and then change it to what you want... Now I have my npp shorted out I am making up my tour assets.. When you make up your map, if you want one, make that as a png too.. I have extended my trees outside the boundary for the gardens to make it more interesting rather than a rectangle/square map... I really need to find somewhere nice to caputer my images for this... Real Estate agents are a real pain.... ptp is just great for creating your virtual tours since you only have to drag the hotspot to link it.. You can decide which movie shows first. There are a number of ways you can navigate, from hotspots, map, thumbs or a combo box.. You could even put different logo links if you wanted to open a html file... I just love the new ptp an so far it has not crashed...

D
Primary School Teacher - Hobby Virtual Tours and 3D/360 Object/Product Photographer - Our aim is to create a 3D/360 Virtual Tour Shop/Store with links to 3D/360 degree products. My gear, VR Drive II - D90 - Nikon 10.5 fisheye - Nikon D800 with Nikon-Nikkor 14-24 - NOVOFLEX Magic Balance - Acratech GP Ball-head - Nodal Ninja 4 + RD-16 Rotor - Manfrotto 190CXPRO4 Carbon Fiber Tripod :) :)

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by billjones » Mon Feb 14, 2011 1:49 am

Back to bracketed lighting, here is a better explanation and examples. Now realize these where done for real estate, not commercial in the sense that perfection was the desired result, having a selling image in a difficult lighting situation was.

http://realestate.redhillsmedia.com/why-our-images-look-so-good/

I agree about not perfect panos of the homes, but once again, when you sell a service like this to a Realtor. What I have is 10,000 times better then what they are used to and I make a profit instead of spending days working on the perfect pano.
.
My better work, and still has flaws can be seen at http://rhmpano.org where I do do Gothic Churches and Monastery's. And even there they are not perfect. I try to get a set of fisheye pano's attached to a couple of 36 shot 24mm pano's. I do still do the exposure bracketing where needed and that why you can see out the windows or have a stained-glass panel not blown out by sunlight. I also use krpano tools to present the 'movie' or if it'ds a walk through tour autopanotour with the krpano licence. I also use realviz/autodesk stitcher at times, but mostly autopanogiga. If you take a look, remeber to zoom in and look at the pealed paint and cobwebs in the rafters..

The Canon 5d is full frame so I take 4 rotaion shots (actually 12 with the bracketing). The 36 shot 24mm panos where actually 108 shots.

I do play with the time of day for churches, I find if I do it on a cloudy day or the sun is as high as possible I get better results with the windows.

Without reading back through the entire head, are you using a pano head?? or trying to get by without one? I started with a Kaeden and it worked, but moving up to the Nodel Ninja 5 with the r16 base made my life so much easier.
Last edited by billjones on Mon Feb 14, 2011 1:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

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by billjones » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:24 am

If +1/-1 EV is sufficient to capture the dynamic range of a scene some would say exposure bracketing is not necessary at all. I've read that one can get the same effect in RAW conversion from a single image.

If you shoot raw and do 36 images you have to either run them all into something like Lightroom, tweak one image till you get what you want then apply that to all of the other images and export.

.or.

Tweak each shot in something like Photoshop and save.

.or. my way, still takes time but, computer time, not mine, is to use something like photmatix, set it for batch processing, load only one set of 3 and have it process by all options, (check everything) ESPECIALLY "DON'T CROP" and you end up with 6 copies of the 3 bracketed shots named as follows IMG_7206_7_8Adjust.jpg (IMG_726_7_8 refers to the 3 shots) and Auto, intensive, average, compressor and enhancer.

If you are indoors with a good tripod and used a remote for the bracketed shots don't worry about Photomatix aligning the shots.

Pick the one you like the best, un-check the options you you don't want (uncheck 5 of the options, but keep DON'T CROP) load the 108 images into the batch, run and go have a beer or two, depending on the computer speed, you might be a able to eat dinner, make love to your spouse or walk the dog. your choice :-)

Now build your pano..

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by billjones » Mon Feb 14, 2011 6:17 pm

Destiny wrote:Ok Destiny here... I LOVED your VR examples Bill Jones.... Do not take them off.. I copied the links... :)

.... and.. is that a light I spied in the Main Bedroom Bathroom reflection.... What is it???

That's the camera and lens, I just didn't clone it out because once again, amount of work for the pay... I used the lens clamp off my Canon 300mm f4 lens, cut a 3/4 inch strip of automotive cork gasket (left over from the transmission cover gasket I made for my Ford Model-T) and shimmed the inside of the ring so it would clamp around the 8mm lens, then mounted on a Bogen heaver duty light stand. Measured the circumference of the top pole and cut a piece of blue painters tape, wrapped it around and made a pen line every 90 degrees. Allows for quick and dirty shots and is light enough to move around quickly. It's also level to the floor which should be perpendicular to the walls.

I do have a bubble level attached to the light stand so if I am doing low res shots in a church (the ones taken in the side areas) I set the light stand so a single leg is pointed down hill and shim it up with how ever many business cards it takes (like shooting from the aisle which may be sloped.

With that setup I can demount the camera from the lens and attach the 24/105, snap the camera onto the NN5 which is already on the Bogen tripod (I use bogen RC-1 quick releases) and check to make sure the lens is set at 24mm and start shooting. If I haven't powered off the camera during this, my 3 shot brackets are still set.
Last edited by billjones on Tue Feb 15, 2011 5:17 am, edited 1 time in total.


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