Testing: Conclusion

After done several tests with the Samsung Gear 360 and the Zoom H2n some things have been learned when it comes to creating 360-degree videos.

The first thing is the actual shooting part of these videos is that it is less hands on. Once recording, there is no touching the camera anymore and no live feedback. After the shot is made you can look it back through the Samsung Gear 360 app or on a computer. This takes significantly more time when comparing to creating traditional videos, so good preparations are a must. It is actually more time consuming in general. The stitching, editing, exporting and uploading (to YouTube) takes a lot of time, in my experience. This can get especially in the way when you want to review your work with a VR headset.

When not satisfied with the results, it is hard to edit the video to your likings. Since cutting in shot may result in your subject being suddenly moved in the scene which lessens the experience of the viewer. With traditional video you can do this, but with the medium you have to reshoot. Which, again, is time consuming.

The gear that was used for making these test was very nice to work with. It is mentioned on this blog that they are easy to use and deliver good quality. Although some issues surfaced with Samsung Gear 360. After about 15 to 20 minutes it overheats and can’t record before it is cooled down, which can take a while. Another thing that is frustrating is that the software for this camera is only made for Samsung Galaxy phones and Windows. It would also stop recording sometimes for no particular reason and then work normally for the next take.

Several people have seen the test videos that were made and they all reacted positively. For most it was their first experience in VR and were amazed by simply the medium itself. Sometimes they forgot that they can look around and when they did things like “Oh! There is also stuff happening here!” was shouted. This resulted in wanting to see the video again to see what else was going on. A lot of the people did not seem to mind when the video was takes place in one location. This perhaps could be because when transitioning to another location in the same video makes it feel less ‘realistic’ and they are reminded of it being a video. When in one location they felt like they were at the location for a little bit. Some of them actually tried to touch the surroundings, although they knew it was not real.

The videos that took place in a single location with a stationary camera position were received best. The viewer was more at easy and able to take their time and look around. When there was more movement and transitions in the video, it sometimes would feel a little confusing and disorienting.

So the overall experience with 360-degree video is that it takes a lot of preparation and time to create what you want. But it is worth it in the end, because for a lot of people it is a new experience which they do enjoy.