Back in January, GoPro dropped hints that an accessible, pocket-sized virtual reality (VR) camera was in the works and now we’re finally seeing the fruits of its labor.
The GoPro Omni is a hollowed-out hexadecimal cube that holds six Hero4 Black cameras. All the cameras are programed to record in unison and the resulting picture produces a 360-degree video, which can be viewed and explored in virtual reality.
The action camera company hasn’t announced pricing or availability yet, but has said that the rig will come in an all-in-one bundle that includes all the necessary cables and cameras. Of course, should you have six GoPro cameras sitting around collecting dust, you can also just slot them into the housing.
The bad news?
The Omni probably won’t be cheap. You can bet the all-in-one bundle will be expensive given that each camera costs $ 429 (£399, AU$ 649) on their own. Now multiply that six fold and you’re looking at a hefty price tag of at least $ 2,574 (£2,394, AU$ 3,894).
While the Omni doesn’t seem like the everyman VR camera solution the company promised, at least it’s far more approachable than company’s previous $ 15,000 (about £10,411, AU$ 13,029) 360-degree camera contraption, the GoPro Odyssey.
Not only is it less expensive than the Odyssey, it’s simpler too in that it comes with hardware inside the rig that synchronizes all of the footage at a "per pixel-level." Wannabe videographers will also be able to grade and cut their software with Kolor, a piece of VR-video software that GoPro acquired last April.
The big differentiator between the two products (besides price, obviously) is that unlike the Odyssey the GoPro Omni isn’t designed to record in 3D. Despite its inability to record in 3D, however, the Omni should appeal to (semi-) professional videographers who want to get their toes wet with shooting for the VR format.
- There are plenty of other 360-degree cameras on the market