Forum : Advice & Critiques

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Topic: How to create Smooth PhotoSynth

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VZahn (8 months ago)
How do I create a smooth Photosynth like this:
 http://photosynth.net/view.aspx?cid=53315a79-99e0-4824-8306-535ec665d312

 When I create a Synth with a friend it looks like chiselled with corners and edges:
 http://photosynth.net/view.aspx?cid=55b02b8d-3363-4ccd-8c69-8112ec3e5382

 How I get them more smooth with the Desktop programm?
Nathanael (8 months ago)
Hi, VZahn,

What you're trying to make is a panorama, but you're uploading your photos as a photosynth.

Photosynth.net hosts both 
1) photosynths
2) panoramas

You can upload panoramas to Photosynth.net created in: 
Microsoft ICE ( http://bit.ly/microsoftice )
Adobe Photoshop for Windows via this plugin: http://bit.ly/pstops
the mobile panorama apps http://bit.ly/photosynthforwinphone http://bit.ly/photosynthforios
and soon Windows 8.1 www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y5j7Fbx-Fh0&hd=1

For a perfect panorama, your camera's lens should not change height, latitude, or longitude (or change the focal distance or zoom in or out between shots). 

For a better explanation about why keeping your camera's lens in one point in space is important for a good panorama, remember that panorama stitching is 2D stitching + foreground must line up with background the same in all shots, then read this: http://johnhpanos.com/epcalib.htm and watch these videos: http://bit.ly/howtopano
Nathanael (8 months ago)
It's true that if you want to show people a seamless panoramic view and an idea of what it is like to stand in one position and look all around them, that a panorama is the best option.

However, many people take photos for a panorama but then upload them as a photosynth. 
That does not make a good panorama, but it does not make a good photosynth either.

Photosynths do things that panoramas simply cannot.

Some examples: 
Photos in a photosynth can be shot at different distances or zoom levels from an object, but panoramas cannot handle this.
Photosynths match foreground and background independently and therefore have a 3D understanding of what was photographed (as long as it was stationary). Panoramas only match in 2D and therefore if foreground and background line up differently in different input shots you will get a glitchy panorama.
A photosynth can take you on a tour of an entire home where a panorama is only good for standing in one spot in one room.
Nathanael (8 months ago)
But learning to shoot a good photosynth takes a little more effort and certainly navigating a large photosynth is more complex than navigating a single panorama.

If you're ever interested in learning how to shoot a good photosynth, I'd recommend watching the Photosynth video crash course at http://bit.ly/howtosynth and downloading the Photosynth Photography Guide from http://photosynth.net/help.aspx#photosynthhelp

If you're up for a more detailed explanation, check out my write up here: http://bit.ly/sinkorsynth
Nathanael (8 months ago)
As an example of my own where I've shot both a panorama and a photosynth outside of the Oregon capitol building: 

Here's the panorama: http://photosynth.net/view.aspx?cid=fb46dad2-6b11-4ef0-971e-826c87ed5d9b
Here's the photosynth: http://photosynth.net/view.aspx?cid=7993c73b-fefe-4176-9987-24f92df2eab6

Here's the synth in the real Photosynth viewer: http://photosynth.net/d3d/photosynth.aspx?cid=7993c73b-fefe-4176-9987-24f92df2eab6 
(requires desktop Internet Explorer on a computer with Photosynth installed)

In the synth, be sure to use the [P] key to toggle between:
Photos Only
Photos + Point Cloud
Point Cloud Only

The full stop [.] and comma [,] keys will take you forward or backward through the photos in alphabetical order.

In Point Cloud Only mode, use the [W][A][S][D][E][C] keys to move around and [{][L][:]["] keys to look around.

The [Enter] key will fit the photo to your screen.

Use your scrollwheel to zoom.

More controls here: http://zoom.it/ITFp#full
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