Friday, March 10, 2017

Could this 360 video be from the Samsung Gear 360 Pro?


A few weeks ago, Samsung posted a 360 music video featuring Biffy Clyro.  Although the video was entitled "Samsung Gear 360 - Biffy Clyro VR," the 360 video shows that the cameras that they used do not appear to be from the Samsung Gear 360.  The question is, which 360 camera is it from?

UPDATE:  Thanks to Pasztor Tamas of Instarfilms, we now know it's NOT the Samsung Gear 360 and NOT Project Beyond.  See the picture of the camera in the update below!

UPDATE 2:  Dean Johnson believes it's a 360 rig by Blackmagic, such as this one.

Here's the video, posted by Samsung Mobile:


If you watch the video, you'll see that it shows perspectives from three 360 cameras:
- the first is a 360 camera inside the transparent room, toward the front;
- the second is a 360 camera controlled by a robot arm in front of the room, and
- there's a third 360 camera suspended above and behind the robot arm.

The first camera can be seen in some parts of the video captured by the second camera.  Here's a screen shot:

Here's a closeup view:



The camera's outline does not look anything like the Samsung Gear 360, which looks like an eyeball:

Similarly, the second camera can be seen in some footage from the third camera:

The shape is similar to the first camera and again looks nothing like the Gear 360.

Update: There's a non-360 version of the music video on Vimeo that shows a better view of the camera:


Biffy Clyro - Flammable (Samsung Hypercube) from Solent Film on Vimeo.

Here is what the camera looks like:


WHICH CAMERA IS IT?
There are four possibilities:

1.  "It's the Samsung Gear 360, silly."
Evidence: First, the title of the music video itself says so.  Second, the video is in 4k 2D 360, and the Gear 360 does record in 4k 2D 360.  As for the appearance, it's possible that the two cameras are Samsung Gear 360s but enclosed in a protective housing, which could make sense given the fireworks.
Counter-evidence: While that could be true for the second camera, there is no need for an external housing inside the transparent room.  Indeed, the video does actually show several Samsung Gear 360 cameras inside the room, and they are not enclosed in a housing.  Here's one of them:
(BTW, I don't recall seeing any portion of the music video taken from the perspective of the Samsung Gear 360, so I don't think the videos from within the room are from the Gear 360.)

Conclusion: It seems very unlikely that the first camera is a Samsung Gear 360.  Given that the second camera looks similar to the first camera, it does not seem to be a Samsung Gear 360 either.
UPDATE: the non-360 version of the music video shows it's NOT the Samsung Gear 360.

2. Samsung Project Beyond

Evidence: Samsung has a second 360 camera codenamed Project Beyond, a 3D 360 camera with 18 lenses.  The camera in the video seems like it might be the right size and approximately the right shape for Project Beyond.  The video is also in 4k, and Project Beyond does shoot in 4k resolution, which supports this possibility.

Counter-evidence: On the other hand, Project Beyond is a 3D camera.  It seems like it would be a missed opportunity for Samsung to post the video in 2D.  In addition, because Project Beyond is already known to the public, they could simply have identified the video as coming from Project Beyond instead of "Samsung Gear 360."
UPDATE: the non-360 version of the music video shows it's NOT Project Beyond.

3. Samsung Gear 360 Pro
EvidenceSamsung has already acknowledged the existence of the Samsung Gear 360 Pro.  Could the camera in the music video be the Samsung Gear 360 Pro?  It could be why the video was entitled "Samsung Gear 360" rather than Project Beyond.  However, since no one outside of Samsung knows for sure how it looks, it's possible but there's no way yet to confirm either way.

Counter-evidence: I also think that if the Gear 360 Pro is as large as the first or second camera in the music video, it would not be for consumers.  If the Gear 360 Pro is not for consumers, then it could sell alongside the Samsung Gear 360 (they would be for separate market segments).  However, the Gear 360 has been heavily discounted since January, which seems like it could be on clearance, which could imply that the Gear 360 Pro might be a replacement for the Gear 360.  Then again, maybe Samsung just wanted to sell more Gear 360 cameras by cutting the price drastically.

UPDATE: the non-360 version of the music video shows a six-lens camera rig.  It may be a Samsung Gear 360 Pro prototype, or it could be a custom rig built for the project.

4.  A third party camera
It's possible that the camera is not one of Samsung's.  However, given the relatively large budget for the music video, Samsung's promotion of the video, and Samsung's own 360 cameras, it appears unlikely that it is a third party camera.

UPDATE 2:  Dean Johnson believes it's a 360 rig by Blackmagic, such as this one:


How about you?  What do you think?  Which camera do you think it is?

14 comments:

  1. www.instarfilms.hu/samsung.jpg

    It seems to be a prototype camera or a future product without the housing. It has 6 single lenses, i don't know an existing 360 camera like this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Pasztor. Thanks! That's very interesting! Is that picture from the music video? I don't recall seeing it. But I agree I haven't seen a 360 camera or rig like that before. Insta360 Pro has the same configuration but of course it looks different. Thanks again my friend!

      Best regards,
      Mic

      Delete
  2. Interesting, though a little disappointing if it is the mysterious Pro, as I watched this video the other night on my PSVR and remember thinking how average the quality was, I assumed it was the original Gear360 actually. If the "Pro" doesn't come with 3D it will be a lost cause.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. New info: Dean Johnson thinks it is a Blackmagic rig!

      Best regards,
      Mic

      Delete
  3. Perhaps a version of the project beyond without 3D capabilities (and without housing)?
    Could be possible that the "Gear 360 Pro" is a pro-grade camera (like the name already says) and not the successor of Gear 360 for consumers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. But it could also just be a setup for recording the video in higher quality (as the Gear 360 would deliver) - whatever rig they might have used.

      Delete
    2. New info: Dean Johnson thinks it's a Blackmagic rig! Interesting that Samsung would use a 360 camera from a 3rd party instead of its own Project Beyond.

      Best regards,
      Mic

      Delete
  4. I've got it!

    https://goo.gl/images/s5VBHt

    At 1:35 you can see a really close shot about the rig, but just a few frames. (www.instarfilms.hu/samsung2.jpg) The lenses, the camera bodies, the silver tripod thread at the bottom of the cameras are the same.

    But i have a question: Why did they leave the 360 rig in the normal music video, if it's not a Samsung product?? There is a lot of handheld shots in the "cube", so they recorded the 360 and the normal version separately, they could put away the 360 rig at these normal shots.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sharp eye Pasztor, and great investigation! Yes I think that's probably it!

      It's a good question also, why they didn't remove the rig during the re-take.

      Thanks again Pasztor!

      Best regards,
      Mic

      Delete
  5. Based on the circular lens setup on the larger rig, its possibly one of 360 designs Blackmagic micro cinema camera rigs.

    https://i1.creativecow.net/u/189/vr1.jpg

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you my friend! Yes I think you're right!

      Best regards,
      Mic

      Delete
    2. No problem.

      With any luck the other smaller one is the upcoming Samsung Pro and its good enough to cut in with those rigs...

      Calum

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    3. anyone know what lens these are?

      Delete

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