GoPro's six-camera, 360-degree VR rig up for preorder
The day before it revealed its 16-camera Odyssey rig at Google I/O last year, GoPro announced it was working on a drone as well a six-camera spherical array that was later named the Omni. We may still be waiting for the drone, but at NAB this week the company opened up preorders for the Omni and launched a dedicated platform for sharing and viewing VR content via the web or a new app for iOS and Android devices.
With a price of US$15,000 and limited production numbers, the Odyssey rig designed for Google's 3D, 360-degree virtual reality platform, Jump, was aimed squarely at professionals. With the new Omni, GoPro is targeting a wider market, although the more compact rig will still put a significant dent in your pocket. For the rig and six Hero4 cameras to go in it, you're looking at $5,000.
The rig, which measures 120 x 120 x 120 mm (4.7 x 4.7 x 4.7 in), boasts pixel-level synchronization between all six cameras to make post-production stitching easy and works with the Kolor color-stitching software (GoPro acquired French company Kolor last April) that automatically combines video from the various cameras together. The cameras enable 360-degree videos at 8K spherical resolution (7,940 x 3,970) at 30 frames per second and 1440p (5,638 x 2,819) at 60 fps.
Along with the Omni rig and six cameras (with batteries), the $5,000 kit includes six Mini USB cables, six 32 GB microSD cards and card readers, GoPro Kolor software license, rugged waterproof carry case, a smart remote, seven-port USB hub, and battery charger. Those who don't want the cameras can purchase the rig on its own for $1,500.
GoPro has also announced a dedicated platform for the sharing and viewing of 360-degree content called GoPro VR that is now up and running. It is accessible via the web, or through newly released apps for iOS and Android.
The Omni is available for preorder now, but GoPro hasn't given a shipping date as yet.