Two Litchi Apps
The main Litchi app icon is below and this is the app that has a separate automated pano setting which flies all DJI drones including Phantom 3 Phantom 4, Mavic and Inspire 1 .
The other app icon is below and controls the DJI Osmo ground based camera. The Pano is one of five autonomous flying modes in the Litchi app.
The Litchi App Setting for Our 360 Panoramas
In Litchi the 360 panoramas are very simple to set up and operate. After many tests we now use the setting of eight images per row. This means the camera takes an image them moves 45° and then takes another image and moves 45° until it has rotated the full 360° taking eight images.
Each image with the setting of eight images per row overlaps approximately 70% with the next image.
Our next setting is to take three rows. This is a middle row and an upper and lower row giving a total of 24 images for the 360 Panoramas.
The final setting is two extra images either looking directly up when the camera is on a tripod on the ground or looking directly down if the camera is in the air below a drone.
This gives us a total of 26 images in all of our 360 panoramas. (8 images x 3 rows = 24 images + 2 nadir/zenith =total 26 images)
Nadir or Zenith
These final two images are called either the Nadir or the Zenith. The Nadir is the point directly below the camera and the Zenith the point directly above the camera.
So when we are photographing on the ground with a tripod using our DJI Osmo camera there will be a part of the total 360 panorama where there is no image below the camera where the tripod is.
When photographing in the air using a drone part of the total 360 panorama where there is no image is above the camera where the drone is.
Where these un-photographed black holes appear you often see Nadir or Zenith circular patches with logos or colour circles to cover the black hole. The other alternative is to use the powers of photoshop to insert the missing ground or sky so you get a full 360 panorama experience.
Using PT Gui
When all of the 26 images making up the 360 panoramas have been taken they need to be stitched together. We use a software program called PTGui to stitch the 26 images together and allows you to create fully spherical 360° x 180° panoramas.
PTGui includes interactive panorama viewers both for local viewing on your computer, and for embedding in a web page.
PTGui has a really good trial version which is fully functional, with no time limit or close out pressure, but stitched panoramas have a visible PTGui watermark.
The paid versions for PTGui are Standard Personal License at £87 and the Pro Personal License at £163. Click here to see our earlier detailed post on PTGui.
Here are two examples of ground based 360 panoramas and 360 aerial panoramas.