The Next Great Real Estate Camera

As a rule, new cameras tend to fall below the bar their pre-launch market hype sets.  The Insta360 One X is an exception to that rule. And if you’re a REALTOR®, it may be the perfect 360° camera. 

When we saw the specs on the Insta360 One X, the update to the very successful Insta360 One, we were excited about the upgraded video capabilities, taking the camera from 4k to a stellar 5.7k resolution, but were concerned that the number of pixels in the photos had dropped from 24 megapixels to 18 megapixels. The instant response from our contacts at Insta360 indicated that the increased sensor size would make up for lower resolution, with improved color quality.  

Initial HDR sample photos Insta360 sent us were not impressive, but they assured us they would be able to improve the HDR quality with some updates. So when the updates came, we put the camera to the test in a model home. We’d like to thank Pardee Homes for allowing us to shoot at their Cresta at Aliento models. 

Insta360 One X HDR Photo Quality

The tour below was shot using the HDR settings that the Insta360 One X defaults to right out of the box. If you’re a photo geek, those settings are AutoISO at +/- 4 EV.  I don’t believe those settings directly correlate with what most photographers would consider +/- 4 exposure, but it doesn’t matter. My point is that you don’t need to worry it about it. See the results below. As always, the floor plan in this tour was created without measuring using just the images. 

What’s more, it seems to capture HDR at lightning speed. There are rumors the pixels in the sensor are capturing different exposures of light in a single shot. I’ve tried doing handheld HDR with other 360° camera and I always end up a bit blurry in the results. Here is a sample of a handheld HDR shot at sunset in the wind. It has not been edited. Click on the image to link to the original photo. 

The new LED face on the camera makes it easy to change settings and know that you’ve changed settings without having to connect to your mobile device. But even that is easier now that Insta360 added the ability to connect to the One X via WiFi. In addition, the battery is removable, giving you the option of having multiple backup batteries. For me, this is a killer feature.

5.7K Video That Doesn’t Render Like Molasses

I had high hopes for the GoPro Fusion. And that is not to say the video quality wasn’t excellent. It was. It just took forever and the kind of machine most normal humans are going to own. On my 2017 MacBook Pro, it took almost 24 hours just to render the initial 30 minutes of Christmas video I shot last year. 

The Insta360 One X video is stellar. And the samples here were shot BEFORE they released the firmware update to add HDR video to their suite of options. If I can get back into these models, I do a direct comparison of the difference.

Here is a sample full 360° walkthrough of the model shown in the immoviewer 3D 360° tour above. As you’ll see, the camera is self-stabilizing, meaning this was shot without the use of a gimbal to decrease bouncing as I walked. If you’re on mobile, you may need to go over to YouTube to view it in VR mode. If you’ve got enough bandwidth,  be sure to click the gear icon and turn up the quality to 5.7k. Then be patient and let it load. It’s worth the wait.  

If you pause the video above, you can look around the room in full 360° at your leisure. I think you’ll agree, the quality is impressive. But as I mention in the video, you can do a lot with a 360° video of this quality. Here is a “reframed” version of the tour above. All camera movement was done in Final Cut Pro and, for the record, this kind of edit will look even more stabilized in outdoor scenes with a wider horizon. It was only my second attempt, so don’t judge too harshly. 

And just for fun, here’s a little “teaser” video, created from the same footage. This time I used the “tiny planet” mapping in Final Cut Pro and sped up the footage to 4x. 

“Yeah, but let me see how someone who actually sells houses for a living is using it.” OK… if you’d like to see how one of your fellow real estate pros is using the Insta360 One X, take a few moments to watch these Community Video Tips from Video Influencer, Michael Thorne. If this doesn’t convince you the One X is the next great real estate camera, nothing will.  🙂

At $399, this camera is priced well and exceeded our expectations. So we’re excited about the Insta360 One X and you can begin making immoviewer 3D 360° tours with the images from this camera today using our desktop app. We already have the SDK from Insta360 and we will be working on an integration with our mobile app soon. 

You can order their “Winter Bundle” through the end of the year using this affiliate link: Insta360 One X Winter Bundle.

And if you’d like to get a demo of how our immoviewer 3D 360 platform for real estate works, just click the button below. 

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