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Panoramic Photos
Hello,.

I am a total beginner to panoramic photos and wanted some advice..

I done a google search and came up with ADG Panorama Tools which I thought was good..

But a quick search on here took me to Autostitch. I have just been on their webpage and it looks really good. And it's free!  I think Im going to go with them..

Are they any basic rules to abide by when taking photos that are for a panoramic image?.

Thanks.

N..

Comments (12)

Nish wrote:.

Hello,.

I am a total beginner to panoramic photos and wanted some advice..

I done a google search and came up with ADG Panorama Tools which Ithought was good..

But a quick search on here took me to Autostitch. I have just been ontheir webpage and it looks really good. And it's free!  I think Imgoing to go with them..

Autostitch is a good place to start. Many people never need anything else. However, some find out that Autostitch is quite limited. if you get to that point, try Panorama Factory or PTgui..

Are they any basic rules to abide by when taking photos that are fora panoramic image?.

Hundreds! Start here:.

Http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panoramic_photography.

Http://www.panoramicearth.com/page.php?p=PANORAMAADVICE.

Http://www.naturephotographers.net/articles0103/ejp0103-1.html.

There must be 10,000 more out there?.

With Autostitch, the main rule is to be sure to supply it pix that have zero geometric distortion. Many cameras have a bit of barrel distortion at their full WA setting. These need to be "fixed" by using "PTlens" or something similar. Or take the pix at a FL that produces rectilinear images..

Charlie DavisNikon 5700 & Sony R1HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/..

Comment #1

Nish wrote:.

I done a google search and came up with ADG Panorama Tools which Ithought was good..

There are LOTS of software packs available. Shoot a "bad" panorama and test them out. Of course, there is such a thing as personal preference .

Are they any basic rules to abide by when taking photos that are fora panoramic image?.

Yep. However, you did not mention your gear. Nevertheless:.

0 - at first, you should try a tripod. It's not REALLY necessary, but it helps.

1 - Shoot manual exposure. F around 7.1 to 13. Pick a shutter speed good enough that the brightest sky you'll have in your panorama is not burned.2 - manual focus, infinite3 - shoot vertically4 - do not shoot wide angle! 50-100mm (film equivalent) should do it5 - overlap generously. You'll learn later how much overlap you need.6 - try not to include moving things: people, cars, waves7. I almost forgot, if you don't shoot raw, lock the white balance..

/d/n..

Comment #2

Devnull wrote:.

Nish wrote:.

I done a google search and came up with ADG Panorama Tools which Ithought was good..

There are LOTS of software packs available. Shoot a "bad" panoramaand test them out. Of course, there is such a thing as personalpreference .

I'll add that there are 3 basic types of stitching software. I'm not sure I have good names for these, but here is a try:.

1) 1-dimensional...produces a long, thin strip image (PanoramaFactory)2) 2-dimensional...produces a big, fat image (PTgui & AutoStitch)2) Imersive...produces an image of everything.

Are they any basic rules to abide by when taking photos that are fora panoramic image?.

Yep. However, you did not mention your gear. Nevertheless:.

0 - at first, you should try a tripod. It's not REALLY necessary, butit helps1 - Shoot manual exposure. F around 7.1 to 13. Pick a shutter speedgood enough that the brightest sky you'll have in your panorama isnot burned.2 - manual focus, infinite3 - shoot vertically4 - do not shoot wide angle! 50-100mm (film equivalent) should do it5 - overlap generously. You'll learn later how much overlap you need.6 - try not to include moving things: people, cars, waves7. I almost forgot, if you don't shoot raw, lock the white balance..

These are the comon "rules" for a 1-dimensional pano. I think #4 is wrong. Most people use WA with success..

The amount of overlap depends on the software you use. Usually 25% to 33% is best..

I'll add the following:.

8) Choose a still day! Wind moves leaves, branches, and whole trees. This ruins the results..

9) Choose a cloudless day! Fast moving clouds can be a problem too. First, they move in the sky and can make stitching problematic. Second, and more of a problem, they make the light change!.

10) Take the series of shots as quickly as possible. Conditions change and doing it quickly will make this less of a problem..

11) It helps to have a good "pano head", as it can make moving to the next position quick and accurate. It also locates the axis of rotation at the entrance pupil of the lens (which is important if there are any foreground objects in the picture...grass, rox, tree limbs, etc)..

Rules are made to be broken...after you learn what the rule is for..

Charlie DavisNikon 5700 & Sony R1HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/..

Comment #3

Thanks for all of the advice .

Do you think it is possible to create decent panoramic shots from a digital camera?.

Im using a Sony T100 at the moment...

Comment #4

Nish wrote:.

Thanks for all of the advice .

Do you think it is possible to create decent panoramic shots from adigital camera?.

Sure. Why would it be a problem?.

Im using a Sony T100 at the moment..

Finally. You beginners should tell us in the first post what equipment and software you have..

Does the T100 have a tripod socket on the bottom? Yes, I see one there. You can take pix with the T100 and stitch them together. If you are satisfied with the IQ of the tiny 1/2.5" sensor, then you will like the composites too..

Have you picked a photo editor?.

Charlie DavisNikon 5700 & Sony R1HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/..

Comment #5

Have a look at my panorama tutorial page: http://www.millhouse.nl/digitalpanorama.html.

Try the various stitching software packages before buying it..

Don't be affraid to use wide angle lenses.Wide angle images stitch well with software like PTGui.Just play around with different focal lengths to see what effect it produces..

PTGui works well with hand held images, but a tripod and pano head will give an even better result (avoiding parallax)..

Have fun!.

Regards,.

Fred Kamphueshttp://www.millhouse.nl..

Comment #6

F. Kamphues wrote:.

Don't be affraid to use wide angle lenses..

Beg to disagree... well, mostly .

Thought experiment 1:.

Suppose you are on the top of a mountain*, or on a high rise* or something. You take ONE image using a 12 mm lens at f8. You also take a set of images using a 200 mm lens at f8, which you stitch into a panorama covering the same field of view. The only difference between the images should be the megapixel count..

Conclusion 1: longer lens means more MP at the same FOV..

Conclusion 1(a): at the same FOV, longer lens means as well more work and larger files .

______________* high rise so you don't catch the ground in the field of view.

Thought experiment 2:.

Same high rise; you take a two shot panorama with a 12mm lens and a two shot panorama with a 200mm lens. You'll notice when postprocessing that the 12 mm needs MUCH MORE overlapping..

Conclusion 2: longer lens means less overlapping is needed..

Thought experiment 3. Repeat experiment 2. Examine the corners of the panorama taken with the wide angle lens. You'll see that they are softer, due to the fact it needs more perspective correction.

Conclusion 3: You'll get less quality with a wide angle also due to distortion correction/.

However, if you are not on a high rise, there will be differences when using the wide angle lens, due to the fact that the foreground is captured..

/d/n..

Comment #7

Thought experiment 3.

Just an example:At 17 mm focal length I use 18 images per revolution.A 180 panorama requires 9 images.At 35 mm focal length I use 36 images per revolution.A 180 panorama requires 36 images (two rows of 18 images).At 80 mm focal length I use 72 images per revolution.A 180 panorama requires 144 images (four rows of 36 images)..

At long focal length you start running into stitching problems, as the software may not recognise any control points in e.g. a plain blue sky..

The numbers at 35 and 80 mm focal length may be even bigger due to the required vertical overlap..

Conclusion: the choice of focal length depends on the desired size of your panorama and limitations with large even coloured objects (such as blue sky)..

Regards,.

Fred Kamphueshttp://www.millhouse.nl..

Comment #8

Chuxter wrote:.

These are the comon "rules" for a 1-dimensional pano. I think #4 iswrong. Most people use WA with success..

I think it depends on many factors - I have always advocated going slightly longer and taking more frames - but I think the content of the scene is a significant factor - if you have foreground and distant objects where parallax may be an issue, longer FLs seem less troublesome. If all your scene is on the horizon, then a wide angle works fine. If you have strong verticals where distortion may be an issue, longer might be better etc..

It also depends on the lens and camera used. A cheap zoom may simply not produce as good quality at it's widest angle and improve for zooming a little. So I think this is a rule that requires flexibility depending on the scene and equipment. I've done more with wider angles recently than in the past and they've not been as problematic as I expected, so I'm softening my view on it..

9) Choose a cloudless day! Fast moving clouds can be a problem too.First, they move in the sky and can make stitching problematic.Second, and more of a problem, they make the light change!.

Your exposure should be set manually across the entire series, set to prevent the brightest portion from blowing out - including WB - set everything to be the same from frame to frame - including focus. I set mine manually in advance using a hyperfocal technique with an aperture to ensure best DOF and optimal focus for the scene. You want as little as possible to change between frames to ensure a clean stitch..

11) It helps to have a good "pano head", as it can make moving to thenext position quick and accurate. It also locates the axis ofrotation at the entrance pupil of the lens (which is important ifthere are any foreground objects in the picture...grass, rox, treelimbs, etc)..

I've done probably over 50 panos and not used a tripod yet. When you practice a good holding technique (this is something few seem to understand the value of for *any* photography, judging by the photographers I see in the field using cameras with very poor holding technique) understand the shape of your arc, work out a good way to overlap and line up frames (I use the left and right-most dots on the focus screen to line up on the same detail as I pan) and practice a couple of sweeps to ensure you can cover it all without getting your elbow snagged etc..

Rules are made to be broken...after you learn what the rule is for..

Indeed.  .

My panos at http://www.zenadsl5251.zen.co.uk/photos/panos.html which links to a tutorial on my own workflow. I have several sets taken last week, waiting to work on, but not had time, I'm dying to get on with them..

So many photos, so little time.http://www.peekaboo.me.uk - general portfolio & tutorialshttp://www.boo-photos.co.uk - live music portfoliohttp://imageevent.com/boophotos/ - most recent images.

Please do not amend and re-post my images unless specifically requested or given permission to do so...

Comment #9

I hope this helps..

Http://dptnt.com/...007/07/13-tips-for-better-landscape-panorama-photography/.

Max~*~* http://dptnt.com *~*~Digital Photography Tips and Techniques..

Comment #10

Boo wrote:.

Chuxter wrote:.

These are the comon "rules" for a 1-dimensional pano. I think #4 iswrong. Most people use WA with success..

I think it depends on many factors - I have always advocated goingslightly longer and taking more frames - but I think the content ofthe scene is a significant factor - if you have foreground anddistant objects where parallax may be an issue, longer FLs seem lesstroublesome. If all your scene is on the horizon, then a wide angleworks fine. If you have strong verticals where distortion may be anissue, longer might be better etc..

It also depends on the lens and camera used. A cheap zoom may simplynot produce as good quality at it's widest angle and improve forzooming a little. So I think this is a rule that requiresflexibility depending on the scene and equipment. I've done morewith wider angles recently than in the past and they've not been asproblematic as I expected, so I'm softening my view on it..

Yes, I think many people experience a relatively poor WA lens and come to the conclusion that ALL WA lenses are bad..

9) Choose a cloudless day! Fast moving clouds can be a problem too.First, they move in the sky and can make stitching problematic.Second, and more of a problem, they make the light change!.

Your exposure should be set manually across the entire series, set toprevent the brightest portion from blowing out - including WB - seteverything to be the same from frame to frame - including focus. Iset mine manually in advance using a hyperfocal technique with anaperture to ensure best DOF and optimal focus for the scene. Youwant as little as possible to change between frames to ensure a cleanstitch..

Yes, of course. But my point was that if the light is changing between frames (like with shadows of clouds moving across the area), there is no way to get a good result..

11) It helps to have a good "pano head", as it can make moving to thenext position quick and accurate. It also locates the axis ofrotation at the entrance pupil of the lens (which is important ifthere are any foreground objects in the picture...grass, rox, treelimbs, etc)..

I've done probably over 50 panos and not used a tripod yet. When youpractice a good holding technique (this is something few seem tounderstand the value of for *any* photography, judging by thephotographers I see in the field using cameras with very poor holdingtechnique) understand the shape of your arc, work out a good way tooverlap and line up frames (I use the left and right-most dots on thefocus screen to line up on the same detail as I pan) and practice acouple of sweeps to ensure you can cover it all without getting yourelbow snagged etc..

Until you actually experience using a pano head... .

I also sometimes take hand-held pictures and stitch them. Like if I've hiked 2 miles into the canyon and want to capture something that is too big and close (like the other side of the canyon), I do it by hand. But if I can anticipate and bring along the tripod and pano head, the results are more predictable..

Rules are made to be broken...after you learn what the rule is for..

Indeed.  .

Charlie DavisNikon 5700 & Sony R1HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/..

Comment #11

Chuxter wrote:.

Yes, of course. But my point was that if the light is changingbetween frames (like with shadows of clouds moving across the area),there is no way to get a good result..

Indeed - clouds changing light and water moving never make for satisfactory joins. My comment was really for the OP's benefit really, to reiterate the great advantage that capturing consistent frames in the first instance provides. Most unsatisfactory stitches come from poor consistency of light or colour in overlapping areas - and focus. I've found the details of the overlaps of my stitches are better when I keep the same focus for all frames too..

Until you actually experience using a pano head... .

I'm sure. I adapted a macro slide as a pano head (good only for landscape orientation) and set it all up for the lenses I was using at the time - but it was worthless atop my inferior and unsuitable tripod. My comment was really aimed at not putting a beginner off from trying a pano because they don't have a heavy tripod and head - good technique in both setting up the camera for the shots and in holding and moving to take the scene can go a long way to getting panos without the expense of new gear. In my case, my ability to hold steady is rather better than the quality of my tripod..

But if I can anticipate and bring along the tripod and panohead, the results are more predictable..

I would imagine that for architectural or multi-row panos a good physical set up is a must, but you can certainly get good enough results hand held to give it a try and then splash out of a good tripod and head when you know that's what's limiting your panos. My problem is that the gear wish list is much longer than the budget. Was it ever thus!?.

So many photos, so little time.http://www.peekaboo.me.uk - general portfolio & tutorialshttp://www.boo-photos.co.uk - live music portfoliohttp://imageevent.com/boophotos/ - most recent images.

Please do not amend and re-post my images unless specifically requested or given permission to do so...

Comment #12

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