Stay Planet VR digital camera and live-streaming platform
$3,495 | liveplanet.internet

Stay Planet VR payments itself as “the one end-to-end VR system,” and technically, because it features a digital camera system in addition to a cloud publishing suite that is able to delivering to simply about each main VR headset and outlet at the moment out there (together with live-streaming high-resolution stereoscopic 360 video over cellular networks) they could be proper.

Stay Planet has quite a lot of issues going for it, particularly in terms of the algorithm and software program options aspect of issues. Their live-streaming and real-time stitching execution is spectacular, and I may see many circumstances the place their cloud publishing platform could possibly be a godsend, which we’ll get to beneath.

In reality, whether or not or not Stay Planet VR is best for you is very depending on how you propose to make use of it, as Stay Planet is concentrating on a really particular consumer – principally these trying to live-stream.

However we’ll begin with the important thing options and the design.

Key Options

  • 16-lens stereoscopic VR 6K digital camera
  • DCI 4K/30p (4096×2160) decision for dwell streaming
  • 6K/24p (6144×3328) for post-production stitching
  • In-camera real-time stitching
  • Stay-streaming functionality
  • Data to a single microSD card
  • VR headset dwell preview
  • Strong cloud publishing answer to all main VR platforms
  • Delivers prime quality VR over LTE networks

Design

The digital camera itself is kind of good. It’s a hefty, well-crafted chunk of heavy polymer and machined steel in regards to the dimension of an additional massive espresso mug. It has sixteen Sunex DSL218 F2.zero lenses and half of.8” Sony IMX 326 sensors, and is flanked on prime and backside by beneficiant air flow grills.

The underside of the unit has inputs for USB stereo, audio-in, ethernet, 12V DC 5A energy, microSD slot, TOSLINK (optical audio), and HDMI out, in addition to a typical 1/4”-20 thread for mounting to any customary tripod plate or system.

The LivePlanet digital camera might appear like one thing out of a science fiction film, nevertheless it’s a strong digital camera with sixteen F2.zero lenses.

The digital camera information to a single microSD card in a compressed .mp4 format. It additionally presents an HDMI out for YUV 4:2:zero seize so you’ll be able to transmit the sign in each stereo or mono to a switcher or for a standard broadcasting workflow. For normal recording, it captures at 50 Mbps, and for live-streaming it may seize at 15, 30, 45, or 60Mbps.

This all weighs in at round 700g (1.5 lb) and comes packaged in a Pelican case with customized foam cutouts.

I had no qualms in regards to the aesthetic and bodily design of the digital camera, however there are a couple of key factors to take note of as you contemplate whether or not this method is best for you, which brings me to…

In use

As with most VR cameras, a lot of the magic occurs on the software program aspect. Within the case of the Stay Planet system, most of that magic is said to dwell streaming. Should you’re on the lookout for a rig to showcase and/or live-stream produced occasions, reminiscent of sports activities, live shows or conferences, and anticipate to do little to no post-processing, the Stay Planet VR system is definitely one to check out, for that is the place Stay Planet VR actually shines.

Stay Planet is concentrating on a really particular consumer, principally these trying to live-stream.

Nonetheless, in case you’re on the lookout for a reasonably moveable system that you could shortly seize and go to seize high-resolution, high-quality 360 footage, it is best to most likely remember of some issues:

There are not any inside microphones. It’s essential join a 3rd occasion microphone, such because the Zoom H2N or Zoom H3-VR, in case you plan to seize audio, in addition to a second tripod or clamp to connect it to the tripod and hold it out of view beneath the digital camera. Stay Planet does assist direct-to-soundboard enter so audio is hooked up to your video information.

There is not any inside battery pack. As a way to use this unit away from an influence supply, you want a 3rd occasion battery pack. The evaluation unit got here geared up with a Watson Professional VM-95-ME 97Wh exterior Lithium-Ion battery pack and Core SWX GPSCPM V-Mount plate and monopod clamp, additionally to be hooked up to the tripod. These are usually not included when buying the Stay Planet VR digital camera.

The digital camera’s ethernet plug supplies a dependable connection for dwell streaming content material.

You’ll be able to’t preview recorded clips within the discipline. As a way to preview what you’ve got recorded the app supplies screenshots, however you’ll be able to’t see recorded video information till you offload footage onto your laptop computer or laptop. Stay Planet says that this can be a characteristic on their roadmap.

The digital camera solely information in compressed .mp4 format. Whereas most cameras at this value level supply a number of recording choices, these involved in shade grading and refining stitches might need to look elsewhere because the Stay Planet VR digital camera doesn’t at the moment report Log or Uncooked footage, nor does it permit you entry to full decision un-stitched digital camera information for fine-tuning utilizing instruments like Mistika VR or Nuke. Stay Planet tells me they’ve options in beta for Uncooked seize and a Premiere Professional plugin, nonetheless it does not appear that entry to particular person digital camera information is but on the roadmap.

The Stay Planet VR digital camera requires some equipment, like an off digital camera battery and audio recorder, so it is not the most effective digital camera for fast tasks. However for live-streaming occasions it is a very highly effective answer.

There is not any inside gyroscope or stabilization answer. Whereas this would not be as a lot of a difficulty if particular person digital camera information could possibly be accessed to post-process utilizing third occasion software program, transferring pictures are nearly inconceivable with the Stay Planet VR system and not using a gimbal or rover with stabilization.

These might appear to be some critical limitations, and for sure makes use of they’re. Nonetheless, when you think about that the system is optimized to live-stream VR content material, options like previewing recorded clips or the particular recording format used are most likely much less crucial.

Software program and apps

First, the fundamentals.

The cellular app, in addition to the net app out of your laptop or laptop computer, are quite simple to make use of. For picture management it presents the necessities: publicity (together with auto-exposure), shadows, saturation, temperature (together with auto-white stability), tint, and curves.

Moreover, you’ll be able to select between monoscopic and stereoscopic, high quality of live-stream, selection of audio stream (with elective microphone hooked up), and discipline of view (at the moment 360 or 180, with plans on future updates to decide on anyplace between zero and 360 levels). Lastly, you get the choice of recording or live-streaming, in addition to a button to activate and off the digital camera unit.

The Stay Planet cellular app is simple to make use of and presents quite a lot of management.

Now, the magic.

First, by taking full benefit of an NVIDIA Jetson TX2 Module (with AI computing), the unit live-stitches 4K footage in real-time, and the algorithm does a incredible job doing so. I used to be as shut as a half meter (1.5 ft.) away, and stitch-lines are hardly noticeable as you’ll be able to see within the video beneath

There may be an impressively noticeable lack of optical circulate Jello-effect, typically seen with different software program stitching techniques at such shut distances. It actually wasn’t till I used to be about 30cm (1 ft.) away that I even observed any sew strains. To get these type of outcomes from a bundle that matches within the palm of your hand, when just some years in the past you wanted an extremely highly effective desktop-sized stitchbox sitting beneath the digital camera, is a greater than spectacular feat.

Editors word: for finest outcomes, we advocate watching this pattern video on a cellular or head-mounted gadget.

The Stay Planet system is ready to live-stitch 4K footage in real-time, a really spectacular feat contemplating how properly it really works. Sew strains are hardly noticeable till one thing will get inside a couple of half meter of the digital camera. (Please excuse the dearth of audio – I failed to think about the dearth of inside microphones till I offloaded later within the day).

Second, the power to observe and preview dwell utilizing a Samsung Gear VR headset is priceless. It’s very simple to setup and use, and is an excellent manner for a producer, director or consumer to expertise, on set, the 360 sphere the best way the top consumer will expertise it. It’s additionally able to concurrently streaming an equirectangular preview to a laptop computer or laptop, from the place you can even management the digital camera and settings.

Third, and that is maybe the primary promoting level for the Stay Planet system, is that it provides the consumer the chance to concurrently live-stream in 4K stereoscopic video, at as little as 2Mbps, to numerous platforms, together with Oculus Go, Samsung Gear VR, and Google Daydream headsets in addition to YouTube and any platform that helps Actual Time Messaging Protocol (RMTP).

To get these type of outcomes from a bundle that matches within the palm of your hand, when just some years in the past you wanted a strong desktop-sized stitchbox sitting beneath the digital camera, is a greater than spectacular feat.

This makes it a chic answer for publishers of dwell occasions to simply distribute to a number of channels. All it is advisable to do is join the digital camera to a router through Ethernet cable, plug it in, and hit the Livestream button on the cellular app or laptop. You then share a easy occasion code generated by the Stay Planet Cloud to whomever you want and customers can login to expertise each dwell, in addition to pre-recorded, video. Fb and Vimeo assist are on the best way.

Now this is the kicker – customers of most main 360 cameras reminiscent of Insta360 Professional, Vuze+, Samsung Gear VR and Rylo can now make the most of Stay Planet VR Studio, Stay Planet’s cloud publishing platform. Because the software program is the place Stay Planet does some critical algorithmic voodoo, that is an extremely welcomed characteristic. Utilizing the Stay Planet publishing platform may give you a constant simple technique to push your 360 content material out to the world, it doesn’t matter what platform a consumer chooses to expertise it on. I can not consider a neater turnkey technique to concurrently publish to all main VR and social media shops.

Lastly, and this can be one of many least talked about and least understood, however maybe some of the thrilling components of the technical design, all of it runs on a blockchain-enabled infrastructure known as VideoCoin.

I can not consider a neater turnkey technique to concurrently publish to all main VR and social media shops.

Those who know me know that something blockchain and distributed ledger know-how will get my full consideration. Whereas this isn’t the place to get into the nitty-gritty of blockchain tech, primarily the premise of most cryptocurrency, what’s necessary within the Stay Planet VR system’s case is that it supplies a peer-to-peer, decentralized, encrypted platform for knowledge distribution – by no means has there been a safer technique to safeguard, management, and distribute your personal knowledge, on this case video.

Stay Planet additionally employs a proprietary algorithm in what they name ViewCast know-how, which predicts head actions with a view to maximize decision within the path the attention is dealing with, enabling high-resolution viewing in headsets even on cellular networks.

The Stay Planet system arrives in a really sturdy Pelican case with customized foam cutouts.

The Stay Planet staff additionally indicated that they “plan to launch an replace each Three weeks.” A few of the issues they particularly identified to us embrace nonetheless picture seize, HDR seize, versatile discipline of view seize (zero to 360º), assist for streaming from a number of cameras, RAW seize, an Adobe Premiere Professional plugin to assist in post-production shade grading, and spatial audio assist on the Stay Planet publishing platform.

Remember that house and publishing via the cloud system will price you, primarily based on how a lot streaming time and house you want. There are packages from $50/month for 90 minutes of streaming and 50GB storage, as much as $270/month for 10 hours of streaming and 250GB storage. To make the most of the ViewCast know-how, it’s going to price you $9.99 per streamed hour.

Picture high quality

Picture high quality is definitely satisfactory and acceptable, particularly for the turn-key dwell occasion use circumstances as described above. Whereas a current replace permits for 6K seize (6144×3328) at 24fps, that’s at the moment reserved for post-production stitching. Most decision for dwell streaming is 4096 x 2160 at 30fps. The digital camera does an excellent job of rendering particulars close-by, nonetheless, at additional distances, in high-contrast conditions, say beneath a tree cover or between a number of buildings in daylight, there tends to be some noticeable edge-fringing.

Conclusions

After I first began utilizing the Stay Planet I bumped into among the similar frustrations that I did once I began capturing 360 a number of years again, piecing collectively third occasion equipment and options. With no inside battery, on-board audio recording, any form of controls on the digital camera unit itself, it is not the most effective digital camera for journey or on-location capturing. It has quite a lot of transferring items, all of which must work completely along with no points.

Backside line, this can be a excellent turn-key answer for the shortly rising market of live-streaming occasions in 360 video.

Nonetheless, once I started to really contemplate what the Stay Planet system was designed to do – effortlessly stream dwell occasions – my perspective modified. Stay Planet’s software program engineering and options are prime notch. For live-streaming, particularly over wi-fi networks, 4K is greater than sufficient decision for that bandwidth to deal with. Moreover, since Stay Planet has begun to open up its software program options to customers of different cameras, it is completely price maintaining a tally of Stay Planet’s evolution as I’ve but to see something that rivals Stay Planet VR Studio on the software program and distribution entrance.

Backside line, this can be a excellent turn-key answer for the shortly rising market of live-streaming occasions in 360 video, and it will get my enthusiastic suggestion as a system to make use of for dwell streaming functions. Moreover, Stay Planet VR Studio definitely will get my nod as a publishing platform for customers of any digital camera.

What we like

  • Construct high quality
  • Instantaneous stitching
  • Stay Planet live-streaming publishing platform
  • Good picture high quality
  • Finish-to-end system
  • Solely requires 1 MicroSD card

What we might prefer to see improved

  • Value
  • No inside or swappable battery
  • No audio recording
  • No nonetheless picture seize (coming quickly)
  • No uncooked recording (coming quickly)
  • No entry to particular person digital camera information
  • No stabilization
(Score primarily based totally on use as a live-streaming system)

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