May '18 07

Garmin Virb 360 - cycling test: who needs that?!

Welcome to the text about the webcam recording the image in 360 degrees: Garmin Virb 360. If you want a reliable and objective text about the equipment - I warn you, this is not the place ;-)


You are a young, educated man. You can put different complicated applications on various complicated servers in various ways. You have an account on Fejsie, once you had Grona and Nasza-Klasie. You go with the times, you embrace technological innovations. Increasingly, however, you catch on the fact that you do not convince others about the superiority of Adroid over IOS, and the argument that you can install everything, and every application to spirate on the ripped phone, slowly bores you.

Changing the firmware on your phone once played you, now you do not want to. You buy a device in the store and you want it to work, and if you need an application, you buy it for PLN 4 instead of spending the afternoon robbing the rich. When you go to the store to get a TV, you ask a salesman, who will be the easiest to run Netflix and choose the one you control using the remote control with the largest Netflix button - true story. On others, you could probably install the Netflix application, but you know that you will not bother.


The situation is complemented by the moment when a friend is looking for you on Snapchat, and you look at him as a gimbus, because it is an app for the handicapped, it is pointless and will not be accepted. And you're probably wondering what this has to do with the Garmin Virb 360 camera, which text is it for?





Garmin Virb 360 ?! Who is it for ?!


Well, he has some. Garmin Virb 360 represents equipment and technology that I no longer understand and do not understand. Saying this, I feel a bit like this guy from the past, who asked: what for Facebook, if it is Nasza-Klasa and we all have an account on it. I do not want to make this mistake. So I contacted a representative of Garmin Poland and asked to borrow equipment for some time. My attitude towards him was visible already at the time of receipt - we all knew that it would be a text in the style of "what for whom". Ahead of you another, totally unobjectionable, skeptical and not very professional camera test recording in 360 degrees - Garmin Virb 360.


Cameras creating movies that I watched together can for 4 minutes in my life and taking photos, which I almost never enlarge. Unless from a drone, in extraordinary natural circumstances ... but it's a different topic.


garmin virb 360
garmin virb 360


At the beginning I would like to sincerely apologize to Garmin and all companies producing 360 * webcams, the images of which are best viewed in special glasses (in which, for example, we put the phone), but I always associate it with the following, stolen meme.

That's also what I looked like while watching demos:


garmin virb 360




360 technology


With 360 technology, it's like with 3d. There were televisions, there was a craze, people bought, everyone said it made no sense, nobody uses it. Today, you can probably buy them only on Allegro. For a long time, I thought that the 360-degree recording technology would end the same. Today I'm not so sure about it - I approached this topic badly. The premise is that instead of aiming at the camera, we record everything around it all the time. It gives a lot of opportunities and opens up new possibilities. So let's look at the potential gains from such equipment.




Action films.

You mount the camera on the helmet and record everything around - a great thing. Especially in connection with live streaming (that is, live streaming) offered by Garmin Virb 360. Imagine that such cameras are placed on helmets, or on the shoulder of professionals in the spring classics - for example Paris - Roubaix. Visitors go, and you can switch between webcams and look around. You will probably never be more in the middle of a professional peloton.


I can write here what I want, but the facts are simple and it confirms the whole Internet: Garmin Virb 360 is one of the best available on the market, especially for people doing sports


And that's great, but it's the future. This webcam is too big and too heavy to think about such applications at all (and of course the issue of the battery comes in). Riding with her on a road bike helmet is possible, but it causes a lot of discomfort. Apart from the security aspects (the famous case of Schumacher and his ski accident with a camera attached to the helmet) - such riding is simply uncomfortable.


garmin virb 360


I know that the movie from Ronda would probably be cool (or more precisely: the movie from most Ronda, because it will not be recorded), but I would not dare go that way. Maybe people are already accustomed to driving with different electronics attached to each other, but probably not to the point. Maybe if it is mounted under the seatpost or steering wheel ... but then again we lose a large field of vision ... on the third side, we can observe the face of a rider welding the departure. I do not know.






This is the best thing when it comes to recording in 360. The materials are smooth, nothing shakes - in post-production, we can easily set the horizon to always be horizontal or to follow the form of the cadre. It actually works and it's great. The problem is that in road cycling, which is supposedly this blog, it's not much needed, to put it mildly. Unless it is very important to us that the backside is always in the middle. Stabilization will always be better here than even in the best sports cameras. (dot) Thanks to this new possibility appears:


garmin virb edit

The Virb Edit application is so simple that almost everyone should quickly embrace it. The transition with machining to any other is so difficult that almost everyone will want ;-)



Converting to a flat movie


Let me put it plainly - I would rather Rylo (though I have never used it and in theory it is not a direct competition of VIRB 360).


And, please, it seemed to me magic and the future. I do not know if it is necessary for the road, but as a general use tool. In one of the updates, the function: HyperFrame Director Mode has been added. Something that I dreamed about for a long time Rylo webcamwhose whole concept is just to record a movie in 360 degrees, and then choose the best shots. The idea is simple - you always record everything, and then you choose what interests you: regardless of whether it is a movie or a photo. Imagine the situation: you take a picture, and only at home you set which way you were aiming the lens - ideally. THIS IS THE FUTURE.


360 * cameras are a little ahead of reality. They offer something that is temporarily treated as a technological curiosity, but in the future ... well, I do not know myself.


An example of using the fucking slider - the effect can be seen on combining.


The convenience of cycling is obvious, but let's take a blogger who does the stuff at the bicycle market. One of these materials, after which the organizer will later scare lawyers (I greet Bike Expo). He holds the camera in front of him and talks to her, talks to people, shows the equipment. It's only at home that he chooses when his face is shown on the screen, when the interlocutor is on, and when something completely different. Even with the sound there is no problem, because the microphones are on all four sides. Brilliant ... in assumptions, because reality has brought me back to earth.






Already the first photos from Garmin Virb 360 made me realize that all the reviews that spoke about the average quality of photos and excellent movies, did not lie. The photos are very average. There are many reasons:

  1. Pictures can not be easily edited - that is, it can be done, but not quite. We are used to viewing images with "awesome" slides. Here it is not. The famous clarity and a few other options become useless, because we can not get the picture so that the edges fit together after gluing together. On the other hand, imperfection on gluing is still better than the lack of a filter ;-) It should also be remembered that not every program will save us a photo with metatags that will make it presented as 360 * rather than flat.
  2. Pictures are usually overexposed or underexposed. Do you associate such a moment with the view of the camera, that you can either see the face of a man or what is behind him? We can choose either a black face or a white background. Here it is emphasized, because usually one camera will aim at the sun and the other with "it". Averageing will make both sides just as bad and we have no influence on it.
  3. Photos are uncomfortable watching. Of course, they are cool in special glasses, but it's like watching glasses in a 3D TV. Virtually never, the full panorama was not better for me than the wide angle with GoPro (even if it did not cover everything I would like to show).



Of course, you can also take photos with just one lens and we have GoPro with a slightly wider angle.

Of course, all standard modes help in taking photos, like interval tuning, timelapse, self-timer, etc.


Garmin Virb 360 is not equipment for taking pictures.


Anyway, look below, it's one of the better photos and probably one of the better views of Mallorca. Does it make an impression? As a place - yes, as a photo - probably not.


(pictures in this post can be "dragged" - you can look around, wooow ;-) The button on the bottom right in the picture will open them to the full screen. )


And this is a serious problem, because yes, the pictures on Google Mapsy we do fajey, photos of interiors also, but what's the ordinary rider? Let's move to the movies that I like very much, but I do not have time.






Objectively, it does not matter what I write here. If you are looking for 360 * webcams, you want action movies to which you can also paste a lot of statistics such as: watts, speed, elevation, track, altitude, etc. etc. - you will not get anything better at the moment. Finally, if we have: GPS, Glonassa, compass, barometer, accelerometer and gyroscope and the ability to connect our data from the heart rate monitor, boat, car, plane etc.. some data is however. For this Wifi, NFC, ANT +, Bluetooth and voice control.


Reading the specification of the Garmin Virb 360, one statement is made - COMBIN


It ripped me a bit and I even considered buying this type of camera. Fortunately, I managed to borrow it, now I'm sure I do not want her. Not because it is bad, and because I'm too lazy. We came back from Majorca three weeks ago, the photos were ready 3 days earlier, the entry for several thousand words also. Even the simplest film, I still could not bend together (the moment I write this sentence). Movies are great for me, but there are a few problems:



The example of the above movie shows how important the resolution is (you can move it in the jutsu options). 720p to which we are accustomed to on the internet, is not enough here.


  1. The camera can shoot in RAWs (2 separate films, which we then glue together). I reject this option right away, because if it's fun to edit photos, it's pretty hard to play with 5.7K files that take up almost 1GB per minute. Just give me Full HD and less than 400MB per minute. It's a lot more. The material in 1080p is simply ugly. Facebook has reportedly developed an algorithm that can compress material by 80% without any apparent loss of quality.
  2. The choice of the frame is great, but it's even more work. I thought it would be fun, meanwhile, it makes me want to sit on it. If someone likes to pamper their materials, he will be happy - if he counts on the so-called "easy win", i.e. quickly do - I quickly throw, it's probably not here.
  3. Editing in the included application is very easy, but editing in our favorite editing program requires some practice.
  4. The most sensible place to mount the camera is a helmet. It is possible to drive, but the pleasure is somewhat limited.
  5. Either way, we will not record the entire race - the battery will last for about an hour.


garmin virb 360

If you forget to inject metadata after processing the image (or save it), you lose the 360 ​​* effect.


I confess, I am stupid distracted. I gathered for a long time to finally glue the film with the best parts of the routes in Majorca. Once I got to this point, it turned out that it was impossible. I've collected the movie files, but I forgot about the data from the cameras, which are kept in other files. I forgot, because for some magical reasons, I never saw them. Unfortunately, to download material from the webcam, it is not enough to throw the memory card into the computer and lose the clips. It should be done directly with the cable from the device, and these will transfer us both video and data files (to the directory hidden on the disk). The problem arises when, like me, you take one computer for trips, and then you assemble at home on another. After transferring the files between the computers, I lost, for example, the possibility of a bajeranka stabilization and gave up the topic. Shame on me!




There is no doubt - Garmin Virb 360 is a consumer premium product. It is heavy (180g vs 117g on GoPro 6), waterproof, shockproof and gives the impression of indestructible. Not only that, it's the first camera I know of which you do not have to throw away (or repair at suspicious points), when the lens bursts fast ... and we know that it will probably break one day. Garmin sells official replacements that can be quickly rescheduled. A BEAUTIFUL GEST.



The most wonderful solution is the side stick that starts the recording. No button - sliding pstrock. No more starting with each shot from "ej, look or record?". You move in one direction, you wait until beautifully - it turns on and records, you move to the other, you wait for it beautifully - turned off. No more wondering if you have pressed the button properly enough. I want a switch in GoPro! Not only that, you can quickly switch between modes thanks to a dedicated button for photos, instead of flying around the menu and trying to hit the right option.




Garmin virb 360: summary


The guy complains about the equipment because he's got poor movies. LOL



This is not a serious webcam test. It turned out that I was not the target. If you want to read about its possibilities, see good examples of materials and read professional opinions, go to DCrainmakera or on a thousand other websites. I tried to explore the applications of Garmin Virb 360 in the everyday life of a cyclist - not a vlogger (because for those, it will be great). For me, it did not work. However, I imagine a group of people for whom it will probably be the best investment. Well, after all, why aim with a lens, if you can not aim and then think about the frame at home. In this case, even the interview recorded with the selfie stick will be nice. After all, the material in 360 * nobody watches for more than a moment. It's still a technological curiosity rather than a revolution or even a device of the future, right?



For me, 360 * only makes sense to take quick marketing tips or to cut out flat frames from spherical material. And I might even use it, but I prefer GoPro and its size. Maybe one day, when the next generation of Garmin Virb 360 will be the size of normal sports bikes ...


About the Author:
Every day I work in IT: I restart servers, I click on things and I ask if it has already been repaired. I spend my free time with friends on cycling. We visit the best parties, overcome the most spectacular routes, we ride in the toughest races. Blog allows me to develop my passion and describe the best of adventures, so that you do not have to repeat our mistakes. I am trying to stick to the unpopular rule that quality counts not quantity.