It’s an exciting time for video right now. Advances like Lytro are changing how we think about still photography, and the sudden proliferation of 4K means better videography and film are cheaper and easier. CENTR stands out, however, not least for what it delivers… namely 360-degree video in a small package.
The CENTR is a pretty simple little device; it’s just a ring with four cameras around it. In fact, it’s designed to have a form factor that makes it simple to use. If you want to film 360 video while carrying it, and keeping your thumbs out of the way, just stick your thumb through the hole and wave the camera around. What’s really impressive, though, is what’s going on inside the camera.
No Stitching, No Bitching
As anybody who has had to assemble a 360-degree panorama can tell you, the problem isn’t getting the video. That part’s easy, just arrange a camera in a circle. The annoying part is “stitching” the video together, where you have to properly align each shot according to the edges. That’s where CENTR comes in and earns the $300 or so you’ll be spending on it; the team behind it have automated the process. You just boot up the camera, start filming and the CENTR takes care of the rest.
If you’ve ever tried to stitch together a panorama, the idea of never having to do it again will fill you with joy.
The Unbroken Circle
Panoramas have their use, especially with the custom player that CENTR has designed that lets you flip around the video like you’re paging through a book. It means that you can get panoramas easily and show them off equally as easily. And it’s also fairly cheap for such a useful tool; $300 will get you one, and they’ll be $400 after the Kickstarter.
Dan Seitz is an obsessive nerd living in New England. He lives in the Boston area with a fiancee, a dog, a cat, and far too many objects with processors.