Get ready because the Samsung Gear 360 is seriously going to change the game.
We’ve been closely following the release of the Samsung Gear 360 ever since it was announced earlier this year. Considering the amount of emails we get from you guys asking about the Gear 360 camera as well, we know you’re as excited as we are to check out this little 360 wonder.
So as soon as we got our hands on a camera, of course we had to unbox it and film it. Be sure to watch the unboxing video above.
I am sure you want to know how it performs and compares to others, even though this is technically not yet available in the U.S.
This is hands down the best consumer 360° camera available on the market today.
After unboxing and syncing my S6 phone to the Gear 360, I tested capturing some footage around the beaches of Venice.
Shooting 3840×1920 @ 30fps with stereo sound and capturing video on a removable microSD card, the Gear 360 manager app on my S6 synced with little problems. I was able to shoot continuously for almost three hours before the battery in the camera died. The Gear 360 does have a removable battery, but I have no idea where to buy an extra one at this time.
You can view initial test footage below. Keep in mind, it was a very bright sunny day, so the direct sunlight did cause some lens flare and create variations in exposure between the two lenses, making the stitch line more obvious in some shots over others. When compared to footage from the Ricoh Theta S though, the Gear 360 blows it away with more clarity and resolution.
Be sure to subscribe on YouTube for future videos where I will test indoor and low-light footage next.
So why is the Gear 360 a game changer? Well for starters, all the necessary stitching is performed by the phone with the Gear 360 Manager app or Samsung’s Gear 360 Action Director software for PC that is included with the camera. Real-time preview of stitched footage on your phone makes composing your shot and watching your stitch line a breeze. A rumored price-point comparable to competitors with half the resolution is fantastic. After shooting and previewing footage on your phone, you’re a couple clicks away from sharing straight to YouTube 360 or Facebook 360, just like other popular photo/video editing apps we’ve grown used to.
Get rid of hours of stitching, make shooting/reviewing on-the-go simple, give us close to 4k footage, and let anyone share straight to their social profiles – you have a consumer 360° camera for everyone – game changer!
Aside from strangers constantly staring at the camera in curiosity, the only other problem I came across in my short time testing was the S6 overheating from continual shooting and previewing of footage on the phone. Being in direct sunlight didn’t help, but at one point the phone got so hot I could barely hold it in my bare hand.
We want to hear from you, will you get a Gear 360 when it goes on sale? Also let us know what you want us to shoot next.
How much does the Gear 360 cost?
As of writing, Samsung has yet to release more information about the price of their Gear 360 camera. What we do know is that on April 29th, Samsung began selling limited quantities of the Gear 360 in-store in Korea and Singapore only. The price came out to around $350.00.
I have also seen hints of the Gear 360 price pop up in the UK and on retailer sites for $400. So we can hopefully assume that it will sell in the range of $350 – $400. Keep in mind you will need a current Samsung phone like the Note 5, S6, or S7 to take advantage of the Gear 360 manager app, but if you already own one, this is a great price point.
When will the Gear 360 be released?
Considering the Gear 360 is already available in limited quantities in Korea and Singapore, we can’t be that far off. Some retailers like Adorama in the US have commented on a delivery date of “second week of June,” and since Samsung has already announced Q2 2016 availability, that fits in line with the story.
360° Camera Comparison – Price, Release Date, and Specs
|Samsung Gear 360||Nikon KeyMission 360||Ricoh Theta S||Bublcam||LG 360 Cam||Giroptic 360cam|
|Price||$350 – $399||Unknown||$349||$799||$200||$499|
|Release Date||Q2 2016||October 2016||Available||June 2016||April 2016||Unknown|
|Lens Specs||f2.0 Fisheye||f2.0 Fisheye||f2.0||f2.8|
|Video Format||H.265 MP4||h.264 MP4||h.264 MP4||h.264 MP4|
|Video Resolution / Framerate||360° – 3840×1920 @30fps
180° – 2560×1440 @30fps
Max 25 mins per video
|2K||2k (1024p) @ 30FPS|
|Still Photo Format||.jpg||.jpg||.jpg||.jpg|
|Still Photo Resolution||360° – 7776×3888 (30MP)
180° – 3072×1728 (5MP)
|Modes||Video, Photo, Timelapse Video & Looping Video||Video & Photo||Video, Photo||Video, Photo||Video, Timelapse, Photo, Photo Burst, Live Stream|
|Storage||MicroSD – Max 128GB||8GB Internal||MicroSD Max 32GB||MicroSD + 4GB Internal||MicroSD Max 128GB|
|Battery||1350mAh||Unknown – 250 photos per charge||1560 mAh||1200 mAh|
|Compatibility||2015/2016 Galaxy, Note 5, & PC||Android, iOS & Windows PC||Android, iOS, Windows PC, & Mac||LG G5, Android||Android, iOS & Windows Phone|
|Durability||Dust and Splash||Waterproof 100ft, Shock and Dust Resistant||Option Waterproof 12ft Case||Waterproof IPX 8 Submersible|
|Connectivity||WiFi, BT, NFC||Wifi, BT, NFC||Wifi||Wifi||Wifi & BT||Wifi & Eternet|
|Dimensions||6.7cm Sphere||44x130x23mm||8cm Sphere||98.5×43.4×29.8mm||69x69mm|
|Weight w/ Battery||153g||125g||280g||97g||180g|