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Life in 360 reviews Garmin Virb 360; plus: a second opinion

Life in 360's Garmin Virb 360 review
Life in 360’s Garmin Virb 360 review

Ben Claremont (Life in 360) has posted a detailed review of the Garmin Virb 360.  Check out his review!

A couple of weeks ago, Ben posted a comparison between the Garmin Virb 360, Samsung Gear 360 2017, and Xiaomi Mijia Mi Sphere:

Spoiler alert: Ben found that the Virb 360 had the best image quality among the three cameras. Now, Ben has also made an in-depth review of the Virb 360:

SECOND OPINION

I’m also a fan of the Virb 360, but in my opinion, for most consumers, it’s not as good of a value as the Xiaomi Mijia Mi Sphere.   Here are the things that I like about the Virb 360:
+ videos are very detailed
+ 4K in-camera stitching
+ excellent on-camera controls, especially the video switch
+ NFC works (with my Samsung phone)
+ waterproof
+ voice control is cool and I use it occasionally
+ replaceable lens

Here are some of the disadvantages of the Virb 360:
– the photo resolution and quality are not impressive
– the exposure is often too conservative, usually leaving videos underexposed unless you connect with the app
– even in ‘vivid’ mode, the video looks flat, so you’ll need to adjust it in postprocessing
– 5.7K mode requires third party stitching program; will not have stabilization
– isolated exposure mode doesn’t work as advertised
– specs say shutter speed is up to 30 seconds but it seems you can’t select that speed.
– yes it’s waterproof but there is a large “blind spot” (objects near the stitch line will tend to disappear)
– in my case, when I use it with an iPhone, it sometimes randomly switches to time lapse mode and gets stuck there, unresponsive to controls.  I would have to remove the battery to get it un-stuck.

The disadvantages are not dealbreakers, but I think more like missed opportunities.

RECOMMENDATION / SUMMARY

If video is your priority, the Virb 360 is the probably best option at the moment among consumer 360 cameras.  But if you want a more balanced performer (with excellent photo AND video almost as good as the Virb 360) at a much lower price, that would be the Xiaomi Mi Sphere.  As for the Gear 360 2017, it’s a good camera, although a little less capable than the Xiaomi, but it is currently much more affordable than either the Virb 360 or Xiaomi.  Anyway, I will post another comparison soon that will include one or two new cameras 😉  Also, you may want to wait and see if the Yi 360 VR ($399)Insta360’s new camera, or the Ricoh Theta V (Theta 4K) are better — they should be available soon (yes I will review them all).

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Mic Ty

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