Spherical Panorama Creation With Hugin
On this page you can see step by step how to create a spherical photography from non aligned shots captured with the help of a nodal rotator and edited with this excellent software.
Hugin is a very complete free and open source program so it is possible to find many different variations of it or even create your own version.
Going on with the example started on the previous pages, on this page we'll create a Spherical Panorama from pictures taken with the help of a nodal rotator in three different rows. Of these, the two photographs that point to the scene's nadir have already been edited to crop the presence of the rotator out of the image. Altough Hugin is able to distinguish by itself the images belonging in a same panorama, we prefer for more accuracy to do this selection manually. We'll get started, then, by selecting our nine images and dragging the selection into Hugin's main window to load them :
A new program's window has opened indicating that the information contained by any/some files has not be enough to identify the type of image. It will be necessary to complete this information by introducing more data manually. To start with it, we see that the Type of Lens is normal or rectilinear, which is different from the lens we have use to capture our photographs. We'll display the drop-down menu to look for our type of lens :
We'll select Full Frame Fisheye :
Next it is necessary to type in the Horizontal View Field or the Focal Distance and its multiplier corresponding to the used camera. In our case we don't know the first but we do know the second and third figures so we can calculate the first from the other two. We know we have used an 8 mm Fisheye converter and the focal distance multiplier of our Nikon 5000 Camera is 1,5. By typing in these data in the corresponding boxes, in the box corresponding to the Horizontal View Field we can see that the data in degree has been autocompleted :
After accepting it is possible that the same window will appear again asking for data corresponding to other images. Normally the data will be identical for all amages since it would not be reasonable to change the camera in the middle of a sequence aimed at making a panorama. Finally only the main Hugin's window will remain with the data loaded in the Asistant tab, as we can see below :
The next step is to enter the second tab named Images. On it we'll find a list of all the images loaded togheter with some data corresponding to each one of them and some function to execute. We'll start by making one of the shots the reference image :
To take an image as a reference we must select it on the list and click on the anchor button. There are two such buttons. One to anchor the image for position, the other one to do likewise with the exposure. What both do is to take the anchored photograph as a reference to define from it the position and/or exposure of the rest of the images.
In our example we do not have any oblique images which could result in a tilted panorama, so probably any side image will serve as anchor for the position. We do not choose a zenith or a nadir shot, because all these will be splitted at the time of the panorama creation. In the right side pane Choosen Image we have some data about the choosen picture and a preview of it :
By clicking on the correponding button we'll proceed to Anchor this image for the position. As for the anchor for the exposure, since we have taken all the photographs with an identical exposure value, it will not be necessary to set an anchor and we'll simply skip this step :
Next we'll put our attention to the settings of the Coincidence Characteristics, this is, the options we have when looking for coincidence or control points between different photographs. There are several options in the menu, each one corresponding to a different search option, however, these options consist of aditional programs to the principal. They are exernal programas and it is likely not all of them have been loaded togheter with your version of Hugin, so they would then need to be downloaded from the internet and installed separatedly. Some of these aren't even free. Despite in some cases the use of different detectors can produce a little different results, this is not always the case. For this tutorial we'll use the default detector, this is, HuginsCPFind, Hugin's specific control points detector :
In the box corresponding to the number of points by overlap, no matter the default is ten points and this is generally enough, to increase the presition in the search we recommend to use a larger number. This will make the search a little slower but more precise. For the example we'll use 30 control points by overlap. Established this figure, we'll click on Create control points to start the search :
Then a new window will open showing us step by step the detail of the internal procecess that the control points detection passes through, and which will automatically close at the end of the operation :
Now an alert shows us the search results. The control points detector has found 127 of them :
We'll acccept to close the alert and go back to Hugin's main window. At the Asistant tab now be can see the same data about 127 points found but also that there is a problem : the point have not defined a single group of images but two without connections between them. In one of the groups there are eight images, while one has been left aside. This tells us that no control points have been found between this image -number 6 on the images list- and the rest :
Facing such an inconvenience, an alternative would be to repeat the search using another control points detector. Another alternative, which we'll chose this time, is to add them manually. For this we'll click on the Control Points tab to access the tool that edits them :
This tool lets us see, side by side, two images, and a drop-down menu asociated to each one, so that with the combination of both menues we can put side by side any pair of images we may need to look for coincidence points between them. We'll use the right side menu to establish a different image for this side :
Now we can see the images 0 and 1 side by side and we see the control points that connect them, both at the images and at the list below them, with technical data about the points :
The same way we can see the points linking the images 1 and 2 :
It only takes to click any of the arrows for both images to change leaving place for the next pair :
We could go straight to the image which we know the control points detector have found no overlapping areas with other images, but it's also easy to keep clicking on the arrow and browse all images one by one. If we'd perceived any misslocated control point we could simply remove it from the list or use the mouse to relocate it :
Another click and we have glanced at all lateral overlaps :
We have finally reached the unconnected photograph. It is the one corresponding to the panorama zenith. The automatic detector has found no coincidence points between it and the rest of images. However, at a glance we can say indeed there are areas we can identify as having points in common with the opposite image, such as the encounter between the end of the rabbet and the ceiling :
With a click of the mouse we'll add a control point at the choosen spot. Close to it we can see an enlargment of the area which will be useful for us to locate the point more precisely :
When marking a point at any of the pictures, the program will try to identify the same spot on the complementary picture. In case it doesn't find it, it will show a notice as the one below :
It will be necessary to accept before setting the point manually :
Now the control point is set at both photographs, but it has not yet been added. We can still use the mouse to move it around in search of a better positioning. When we are sure that the position of the point at both images is correct, by clicking on add we'll confirm this first coincidence between them :
We can now see that the control point has a number that identifies it at both images and it has also appeared on the list with its aditional data :
The same way we'll add a second control point. We could go on but we believe these will be enough :
We go on and it is natural we find no overlapping areas between zenith and nadir :
Instead there are many control points between the shots we have convered the nadir with :
We see a last overlapping :
Back to the first tab we see now that to those 127 control points found have been added the two control points we have manually created. Now we know all images are connected, so we are ready to try to align them by clicking on the Align button :
A new window opens where we can see step by step the internal processes of the program as it combines the photographs :
At the end of the process the window closes leaving open the program's main window, in whose Asistant tab we can read we have obtained a good result : Good Stitch. We can also see the the focal distance value we have set has been slightly modified to be adequated to the reality directly measured from the photographs according to the combination between them :
Moreover, at ending the aligning process a new window opens where by the first time we can see a preview of the panorama we are creating :
On this window we also have some tools that we may use to improve our panorama before finishing it. We'll click to activate the Move / Drag tab, where there are three boxes where we can introduce numeric data to rotate the images according to the three axis in space :
To recenter the panorama so that the image looks better balanced we can use the Yaw tool which will allow us to laterally move the image to the left or right. For this example, a 100 degree turn will let us make the ending at both sides of the panorama match the center of the only empty wall in the room. A minus sign before the number indicates that the movement will be from right to left. This will be the only move we'll apply. All movements will be executed at clicking the Apply button :
This is what the preview of the panorama looks like once the movement has been applied :
If we don't want to make any more modifications we can close the preview window and go back to Hugin's main window. To definitively stitch the images we'll click on the Stitcher tab :
Among other options that we do not need to change, we'll confirm that we'll create our panorama as an equirectangular projection. We can see the horizontal and vertical fields of view, which we will not modify, as we will not modify the dimensions of the image :
Among the charateristics that we can define for the output file we find a drop-down menu to choose an image format. This time we'll save our panorama as a TIFF image :
We can asign our file a type of compression but to save it with its complete attributes we'll opt to choose No (None) compression :
To get the definitive photographs's stitching process started we'll click on Stitch Now :
Then a last dialog window will open where we'll choose the name and location in the hard disk for the file to be created :
When we accept by clicking on Save a new window will open. On this we'll see step by step the program's internal procecess as it stitches the panorama :
When the process is finished we can find the file at the location where we had decided to save it :
This is what our Spherical Panorama looks like. The image is 360 degree wide but it does not reach an 180 degree height because it contains a hole in the center of the nadir, over which we want to paste a cap. Click on the image to see it as a Virtual Tour :
Before definitively ending our Spherical Panorama by pasting a Logo cap over its nadir, we'll present an alternative process to the one in this page but using another program.
Add A Question Or Comment
All fields are optional. Messages not regarding the subject may be moderated.
If you like 360 Facil please share it with your social networks
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
Find us in Facebook and thank you for your Like.