Beautiful, new and a bit frustrating, the Samsung Gear 360 is a fairly unique product that has excited countless tech and camera junkies. But is it worth the investment? Or nothing more than just a fad right now? Let’s take a more in depth look at the camera in this Samsung Gear 360 review:
What is the new Samsung Gear 360?
The Samsung Gear 360 is a type of camera that lets you take images in a 360-degree view. Before anything, you have to know that this is the second, more recent version. The first version was a product that had short shelf life as Samsung pretty much introduced that into the market too fast. The updated version has the same name as the first but this time it’s taller and slimmer. Samsung also fixed some of the minor and annoying issues that made the first 360 frustrating to use.
Who is expected to use 360 cameras?
Mainly, Samsung aims this camera at two different types of users. The first one is geared towards heavy outdoorsmen or adventurers who want to capture their crazy skydiving or outdoor adventure in 360 mode. The other type are those who want a cool video or image of them, something they normally can’t achieve with a regular camera.
Samsung Gear 360 Review: Looks and Design
This new version of the Samsung Gear 360 is much better compared to the previous iteration. The new version fits easily into the hand or a larger pocket, ready to be pulled out for an adventure when needed. This is made more convenient thanks to the handle. The first one never had a handle and just looked too mechanical instead of sleek.
The great thing about the 360 as well is that unlike Insta360 Air or the Giroptic iO, you don’t need to tether the camera to a phone. In fact, you can use this independently. The camera has two buttons, one for the power and the other to cycle through the menu. Right at the handle is a large record button with a small LCD. There’s also a USB-Type C port with a microSD card slot here including a tripod screw mount found at the bottom portion of the handle.
Unlike the first Gear 360, wherein you could only use it together with Samsung phones, this updated version now works for Android and iOS devices. Just note down that the camera will only work with iPhones 6s and later while it’s compatible with the Note 5, S6 and S6 Edge and later phones. It won’t work with other Android phones though.
Of course, being a Samsung product, expect a few limitations if you’re using the camera together with an iPhone. For instance, it won’t let you do a live preview of what you’re recording while in video mode. There’s also no way to livestream directly to YouTube or Facebook but you can transfer your video to your iPhone and upload it from there.
Samsung Gear 360 Review: Camera Performance
As mentioned, the camera can be used without even having your phone around. Simply press the button on the camera to turn it on. It can be described as a cute little bubble pop and afterwards, it’s just a matter of clicking to snap a photo or to start recording a video. Even though it’s sleeker and smaller, the new 360 doesn’t have as good a camera as its previous version.
The first one had 15 megapixel fish-eye lenses but this new version uses 8.4 megapixels fish eye lenses instead. Despite this, it’s still of great quality for any of your intended audience. The photo resolution comes up to 5792 x 2896. The Gear 360 can easily balance dim versus lighted areas. It also results in gorgeously saturated colors that make it beautiful to look at.
In terms of video, it’s capable of shooting at 4k but only at a maximum of 24 frames per second. It’s good enough for typical shoots but of course, if you want a more fluid shot then you’ll likely find that at 60 frames per second, something the camera doesn’t offer yet.
Transferring files can be done by plugging your phone to the camera and picking the files. These transfers are faster compared to before. It also allows you to use the device even when transferring files in the background.
In terms of battery life, about 1% of the internal battery of the camera drops for each minute you film. This will give you about an hour or close to two hours of footage. When transferring files, you will have several hours to do so without any problem. This second version doesn’t have a removable battery like the first but it has a good enough capacity that using it shouldn’t be a problem.
Samsung Gear 360 Review: Verdict
In the end, there’s something exciting to this new technology. Sure, at the moment it seems to be specifically geared towards a niche audience, but it does show plenty of promise. Out of the casual 360-degree cameras available in the market today, the Samsung Gear 360 is one of the better ones out there.
However, there are real limitations that Samsung should look into. That includes ensuring that the camera’s full capacity is usable with other devices. As mentioned, despite being able to use it with iOS devices, it works best with Samsung phones and it also doesn’t allow you to use it if you have a non-Samsung Android phone.
While the Samsung Gear 360 is a quality camera, it can be improved upon still. For the price though, it’s a great introduction to world of 360 video and photography.
– What does Gear 360 do?
The Samsung Gear 360 is the Samsung’s first consumer camera that shoots 360 photos and videos. It shoots with two super-wide lenses, and users stitch the images into a sphere with a desktop app or on a Samsung Galaxy phones.
– Is the gear 360 waterproof?
No Samsung Gear 360 camera is not waterproof. We can call it water resistant, because it’s very sturdy, a few splash of water or dust wouldn’t break it.
– How do you edit a 360 video?
Samsung Gear 360
Samsung Gear 360 is a toy like beautiful camera that's budget friendly, more than average quality and very unique.
- Slick, ergonomic design
- Now also works with iOS
- Great packaging, a perfect gift idea
- Easy and fun to use
- Amazing price - $155 from Amazon
NOT SO GOOD:
- Samsung Galaxy and iPhone compatibility only
- Editing in Mac laptops is very difficult
- 4K only at a max of 24fps