Create Cylindrical Panoramas With Hugin
More expensive is not necessarily better. If you believed that to create panoramas you needed to acquire some expensive editing software this is because you didn't know Hugin.
Hugin is an excellent open source 360 degree or partial panorama's editor. If you have programming skills can adapt the program to your preferences or use their codes to create a completely new program. For the average photographer, Hugin is one of the most comprehensive programs of panorama editing and furthermore, it is completely free.
To transform a set of common camera photographs into a 360 degree panorama just follow the steps below with attention and the end of the page you will have created your first panorama. A warning: once you have created your first panorama you could never stop. The 360 degree photography is really addictive. To begin, although the program can potentially identify the images corresponding to the same scene from a wider group of photographs, best results are obtained by manual selection. So we will. The first step, then, is to place in a folder all pictures corresponding to our panorama and open Hugin. We'll select all the images and drag the selection to the program's starting window :
If the photographs used are direct digital camera shots, they contain, in addition to the image. attached information recorded by the camera to which the program has access and which gets certain parameters such as the type of camera and lens and its focal length. If Hugin can not find this information then it will prompt the user for it, as we will see, but in our case since we use the images straight as downloaded from the camera, the program already has all the information it needs to create a panorama and shows it at the initial tab :
Below we will click on the Pictures tab, where we can see the list of images loaded togheter with information corresponding to each one of them and some functions to be applied :
The next step is to choose an image to be taken as a reference for the entire set. This is especially useful when between our photographs some are more tilted than others. By choosing among them an alignment which pleases us, the alignment of the whole will be subordinate to the alignment of our reference image. To do this simply select the line corresponding to the chosen image and click on Anchor for Position. By being established the reference image, at the right of the screen bottom you can see the image chosen along with its data :
Prior to photographing our images we had set the camera's exposure to a fixed value, so that all our images have the same level of light. If they would have had different values, in this step we would have selected to establish a reference image for the exposure so that the exposure of this photograph woukd be taken as a starting point to determine the exposure values for the rest of the images. We'll Skip this step because in our example is not necessary, and proceed directly to choose the type of control points detector. As we can see, there is a dropdown menu where we can choose our prefered detector.
Despite being Hugin a free program, not all detectors we can use are so. If we use a different detector than the default one -HuginsCPFind- we'll need to download it separately from the Internet and possibly pay for it. Sometimes the different detectors provide different results, but generally this is not so. We will use the Hugin detector and therefore, should it be not selected, we will select it from the list :
The program, by default, creates up to ten control points on each overlapping of images. If the alignment of the images is good, this is usually sufficient. Create more control points will make the process slightly slower but also more accurate, so as to prioritize the quality of the result over the speed, in this case by increasing the control points up to 30 by overlap. In case we do not get a good picture, we can return back to this point to further increase the number of control points :
By clicking on the Create control points button the process will begin and a window will open where we can see a step by step report of the internal processes of the program while completing this stage :
When the process is complete we will see a notification that accounts the number of control points found and added to be used in creating the panorama :
Back on the initial tab we can see that the control points have been added to the information to be used for the creation of the panorama. Based on this information, Hugin also tells us that the information is sufficient to create a good Stitch. The information corresponding to the focal length of the camera lens also has been slightly modified to be adapted to the data detected by the program, which is more accurate than the other and all this information has been automatically created by the program :
Now we are able to create the panorama, for which we must click on the Align button. This will open a new window where you can see a step by step report of the panorama creation internal processes. None of this is important to us. At the end of the process the window will close automatically :
When closing this window, a new one opens with a preview of the panorama. This is the key moment. By the first time we can see our panorama and we know if we are about to complete the task or else we need to make adjustments or return to some previous step. In our example we have had success. The picture is well aligned so we can go on. To center it according to our liking we click to open the Move/Drag tab :
Now that we see our panorama we think that it would look better if the aisle which the preview shows near the right side was located in the center. For this we need to turn the panorama, indicating the number of degree we want to rotate in the box named Turn. If this is our first panorama we may need to try a few times before achieving the desired location. With a little practice we'll get to center our panoramas in as little as one attempt. We think a rotation of 200 degree will locate the center of the panorama there where we want it, so we will type in 200 into the box :
Now it only remains to click on Apply to see the result of our intervention :
We have had success. The picture looks as we want it to, so we can close the preview window and return to the main Hugin window :
We're ready to definitely stitch our panorama, so that with one click we'll enter the Stitcher tab :
Here we have a view over technical information about the panorama and some advanced optiones. In the vast majority of cases we would not need to modify anything. For our panorama to be stored in good quality we'll opt for a high definition format such as TIFF and as compression type we'll choose None :
We are ready to create our panorama. To do so click on Stitch Now :
A new window opens where we can choose a name and a location to save the file :
Upon accepting, a new window will open where Hugin shows us a step by step detail of the internal processes passed on creating our panorama in real time :
At the end of these processes, the open window will close automatically. Our panorama has already been created and saved and we can find it in the location that we had chosen in the previous step :
This is how without any help other than a common camera and this free program we have created our 360 degree panorama, ready to be viewed, edited , published, shared, or any use we decide to give it :
To see the created panorama in the form of an interactive Virtual Tour click on the image. In the next page will see an alternative way to create the same panorama using another software.
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With any camera
360 Degree Interactive Panoramas
In Three Easy Steps
After reading this tutorial you'll be able to create your first 360 degree interactive photography with the camera you already have :
1 - Photograph
Take one or more pictures of the place you want to show.
2 - Edit
Convert your pictures into 360 degree panoramas.
3 - Publish
Make your panoramas interactive and available to the world on the internet.
If a picture is worth a thousand words, a 360 degree interactive panorama is worth a thousand pictures...
Online Virtual Tour Creator
Using the online virtual tour creator you can :
Convert your 360 degree pictures to virtual tours with a single click.
Insert your virtual tours into web sites, emails, blogs or wherever you like by just copying and pasting a text.
Know in a practical way all kinds of 360 degree pictures.
Discover that you can create hundreds of interactive virtual tours just as easily as you take pictures with your camera.
Check that with just one click from your camera and another click from your mouse it is possible to create a 360 degree interactive virtual tour out of nothing. And completely free of charge!!!
You can get started right now, even if you don't have a camera
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