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More info about Insta360 ONE: all cameras compatible with both Android and iOS, long exposures, and other features

Insta360 ONE drone mount
Insta360 ONE drone mount

This past Monday, Insta360 launched the Insta360 ONE, a new 360 camera accessory that features 4K videos, 4K live streaming and a host of unique features.  Here are additional information about the Insta360 ONE!

1. ANDROID / IOS CROSS-COMPATIBILITY:

A lot of people have been worried about Insta360 ONE’s Android compatibility.  The good news is that you don’t have to worry because ALL Insta360 ONE cameras are compatible with BOTH iOS and Android!  Android compatibility will simply be via an adapter!  Among other things, this will mean you don’t have to worry if you happen to be switching phone systems, or if you have both types of devices (such as an Android phone and iPad).  As they said, “everything epic in ONE.”  🙂

Update: Insta360 has said the adapter for Android is not a simple lightning to Micro USB / USB Type C adapter, but rather a bespoke adapter that will protect both the camera and the phone.

Having said that, you do need to make sure the processor is powerful enough to support the Insta360 ONE.  Officially, Insta360 ONE supports iPhone 6 and above, and iPad Air 2 and above.  But Lok Cheung of PhotoGearNews used his ONE unit with an iPhone 5S and worked fine for him.  I don’t know yet about the minimum specs for Android devices.

2. ANDROID RELEASE DATE

CEO JK Liu informed me that the Android adapter and app are expected to be released in October (but that’s not absolutely certain yet).

3. SHUTTER SPEED

One of the cool features of the Insta360 ONE is its manual exposure.  In that regard, many were wondering how slow the shutter can be.  Would it be slow enough to capture night sky photos?  The answer is that the shutter speed can be as slow as 60 seconds!  Yes that is slow enough to be usable for night sky photos or light painting!

4. WHAT IS RAW and WHY IS IT IMPORTANT

Some people have been confused about the Raw mode, and what its benefits are.  Raw is a format for images that stores the data from the sensors in their most basic form — before any kind of processing.  It’s analogous to the digital equivalent of a film negative.  (In fact, Adobe’s raw format is called Digital Negative — DNG).

The advantage is that you’ll have maximum flexibility in controlling the appearance of the photo.   You’ll also preserve the maximum amount of detail and dynamic range.  Here is a primer about Raw vs. JPG from PetaPixel.

Whereas raw formats are usually proprietary (which means you’ll have to wait for Adobe to add support for it), Insta360 ONE stores the raw files in Adobe DNG format — therefore, it’s immediately compatible with Adobe and pretty much all other image editors with raw editing capability.

What else is cool about the Insta360 ONE is that it appears it can capture in Raw, and the Raw photos will be stitched in Raw as well (just like the Insta360 Pro).  That’s a big deal because normally, you’d have to convert the Raw into JPG so that the app can stitch the image together.  With the Insta360 ONE, the image stays as Raw the whole time, which is not only faster and more convenient, but also preserves the photo’s information as much as possible.  This is a unique feature that AFAIK isn’t found in 360 cameras from other brands.

5. WHAT IS LOG MODE?

One of the Insta360 ONE’s features is that it can shoot in log mode.  This just means that the video will be recorded for maximum dynamic range so that you can grade it yourself (altering the contrast and color as needed).  This is why the log mode videos look grayish.    See this article about log mode and grading, also from Petapixel.

6. INFORMATION ON STITCHING

You may be wondering if the Insta360 ONE stitches photos or videos in realtime.  You’ll be able to view photos and videos fully stitched immediately after taking them, but they’re not actually stitched yet until you export them.  This is actually a useful feature because this means that if there are future improvements to the stitching algorithm, you can restitch the videos to take advantage of the improvements.  It MIGHT also make it possible to stitch with third party software such as Mistika VR if you have such software.

 

About the author

Mic Ty

8 Comments

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  • Hi Mr. Mic Ty..

    So i as android user can order Insta360 One now? No need to wait for Android version? just need help with adapter?.. Really.. 😱

      • Insta360 just sent me an email confirming that the connection with Android will be with an adapter. I’m worried that an adapter could create lever and damage the phone USB connector. Let’s see if it’s a common lightning to USB (or USB-C) connector or something else.

  • Hello Mr. Mic Ty. First of all your post is the best !!
    I have two doubts:
    1) I would love to see the quality of live streaming (video and audio).
    2) How would this live streaming in a low light place, Rock in Rio in the middle of the public?

    Thank you

  • Thanks so much for all your articles.

    Looking to decide asap between Mi Sphere and INsta360 one. I had a couple questions :
    1) Is there any limitation with resolution stitching video on a iphone with the Insta360 like there is on the Mi Sphere?
    2) Does the Mac app work well? Mi Sphere is yet to release one.
    3) How does the photo quality of the Insta360 one compare to the fantastic Mi Sphere quality?

    Thanks!`

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