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360-degree dome projector demo with 360 video

360 dome projector
360 dome projector.  Cameo appearance by Ivanka.  Just kidding.

Do you want to see what it’s like to watch a 360 video in a 360-degree dome projector? What better way than with… a 360 video? 😀

Wouldn’t it be great to be able to watch a 360 video together with friends and family?  Currently, 360 videos are often viewed on a smartphone or PC, not in a social setting with other people.  However, a dome projector can present a 360 video for viewing by a group.

Fulldome is a company that specializes in building dome projectors, with over 500 projects installed all over the world, according to their website.

Fulldome had setup a couple of dome projectors at VRLA (yes this video’s a few months old… so sue me). Here’s a 360 video of the dome projector (caution: parts of the video are NSFW):

According to the Fulldome reps I spoke with, creating videos for a dome screen like this is simple — you simply shoot a hemispherical video with a circular fisheye (or you can use a spherical 360 video as well, although parts of the video won’t be seen).  When the circular fisheye video is projected into the dome, it appears to have almost normal (undistorted) proportions!  Pretty cool huh?

BTW, this video was shot with the Samsung Gear 360 2017 (available on Amazon or on eBay).  At that time, the Gear 360 2017 was still very new (I was one of the few people who had it ahead of its release). The light was very low, like in a movie theater, and I didn’t know how well the Gear 360 2017 would manage under those conditions. Nonetheless I shot the Gear 360 2017 and… it turned out decently I think, for a consumer 360 camera.

Meanwhile, what do you think of dome projectors like this?  Would there be more theaters like this in the future, showing 360 videos?   Are you a multi-millionaire planning to have a dome projector in your home, and more importantly, can you be my kids’ godparent? 😀

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Mic Ty

4 Comments

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  • Very nice this! I definitely think there are going to be theatres like this. Today all of this is still new, but already making so much more impact then 3D ever did. But tomorrow this technology matures, systems go in mass production and everyone will want this. As long as dome projection doesn’t get into the livingroom, I think movie theatres can attract crowds to new movies in 360. Uhm… and need revolving chairs so one can follow the action and not twist ones neck 😀

    On a side note: this reminds me very strongly of a Tactical station on a Minbari cruiser in a Babylon 5 episode 😀

    Sorry, love your kids but I’m not anywhere near as wealthy as to become their godfather 😛

    regards, Frank

  • This has been a common method of displaying 360 content for quite some time (before the latest wave of headsets).
    Our company presented at NAB for VR producers in 2014 and the common statement was “yes, let me out of the headset”.
    For 360 camera content immersive group displays are a perfect presentation platform.
    https://youtu.be/gYzFqqMBvK0