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TECHNIQUE: How to shoot 360 video like an Associated Press journalist

360 cameras spotted at Superbowl 2017: Panono and Samsung Gear 360

Just a brief break from CES 2017 related news (still more to come! 😀 ).

The Associated Press believes that all its journalists should be able to shoot 360 video.  In this post, we’ll take a look at the equipment and techniques their journalists use.  The cool thing is that the equipment and techniques are within reach even for you and me.

The AP needs to respond quickly to news around the world.  AP’s journalists need a camera that is easy to carry, has good image quality, and is easy to transmit.  The AP provides its journalists with the Nikon Keymission 360 ($499; reviewed here).

The Nikon Keymission 360 is compact and more rugged than most 360 cameras (in fact, it is waterproof up to 30 meters even without a housing).  Its image quality is among the best for 360 cameras.  Although some users have problems pairing the Keymission with their smartphone, the Keymission can be operated without a smartphone.  Its photos and videos are stitched in-camera in standard equirectangular JPG or MP4 format that are ready for upload or sharing to most 360 sharing sites, including Facebook.

In addition to the Keymission 360, the AP provides a Pelican case and lavalier microphones for interviews.

In addition to having the right equipment, you need to use the right technique.  The AP suggests these techniques such as these:
– position the camera as though it was a person;
– find an angle or perspective that is not readily accessible to the viewer;
– keep the subject between 1 to 6 meters away from the camera;
– avoid moving the camera; any movement must be very smooth.

For more details and techniques, including sample videos illustrating these techniques, check out this post.  Thank you very much to Tracey Paddison for bringing this to my attention!