Adapa360 is working on the world’s first invisible 360 video rig that uses a DSLR or mirrorless camera.
In the past couple of years, we’ve seen several invisible 360 drones. These drones use 360 cameras to capture aerial 360 videos that can be reframed to any angle. At the same time, these invisible drones fit between the two lenses of the 360 camera, rendering the drone invisible to the video. The result is the ability to shoot aerial video and show any angle at any time (even after shooting). Here is a sample video shot with an invisible drone (the Newbeedrone Invisi360):
The main limitation to 360 drones to date has been the image quality. All of the designs thus far have used consumer 360 cameras with small sensors. Although they have a video resolution of 5.7k or 8k, that resolution is spread out over a 360 degree field of view. As a result, the reframed video appears similar to a 1080p video.
Now, Adapa360 is working on an invisible drone that uses a DSLR or mirrorless rig for professional quality 360 video. Called the Hawk21 Medium Lifter, it is a cinelifter — a heavy-duty drone that can carry heavy payloads such as a DSLR or mirrorless camera. There have been invisible 360 drones that use rigs, such as the Spherie, or that carry one or more professional 360 cameras such as the Insta360 Pro, but this is the first invisible drone I’ve seen that uses a rig with unmodified DSLRs.
The Hawk21 has sixteen motors and can carry a payload of 5 to 6 kg. Adapa360 says will also feature position hold with GPS stabilization and a high end flight controller for simple automation. It will also have retractable landing gear to protect the downward-facing lens during landing.
With such a large payload capacity, the Hawk21 Medium Lifter can carry a rig comprised of two Panasonic GH5, Sony Alpha or Red Komodo cameras, with no need to strip or disassemble the cameras. It is designed to use lenses that are 190 degrees field of view or wider, such as an Entaniya lens. There is also dedicated space for 2 external Atomos Ninja V+ recorders as well
Here is a sample 8K 360 video from a prototype that used two Entaniya 250 lenses. Not only is the drone invisible, but the 360 video also appears smoothly stitched, with relatively minor stitching errors. Note: to view the video in 360 on mobile or a VR headset, you need to view it in the YouTube app.
Adapa360 said that they will show a 360 video shot on the Hawk 21 Medium Lifter in a few weeks.
Price and availability have not been disclosed. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments or contact Adapa360 via their Facebook page. Disclosure: I am on Adapa360’s board of advisors.