Rendering 360° Panorama Complete Guide

Jan 5, 2021 Update

Spherical 360° Panorama Live Example

Why to Use 360° ​​Panoramas

Hope you enjoy playing with interactive 360 panorama above. And now let's dive into technology details.

Many of you already know how important photorealistic 3D visualization is and its role in visual presentation of ideas, especially in the field of interior design. Nice photorealistic renders are very representative by themselves. It's like real a photos from a future of non-existent objects. Nonetheless, even a set of really photorealistic static images showing an object from different angles, can be not enough to present a complete picture of the idea due to the lack of interactivity. This is definitely because not many people can imagine themselves inside a picture just by looking at it. In human nature, it is much easier to perceive interactive and moving images as reflecting true reality than static ones.

And this is where the interactive 360 ​​panoramas come into play to shine!

Of course, an interactive panorama that allows to the viewer to look around, only from a static point of view, is not fully interactive, such as interior scenes created with the Unreal Engine, for example. In such scenes, you can really not only look around 360 degrees (including immersive 360° VR), but also literally move anywhere within certain boundaries of the scene.

On the other hand, if you're an well-formed professional with experience in, say, 3ds Max, you probably wouldn't want to spend a year mastering a new 3d package (Unreal, Unity, whatever...), just to cover some cases where static images aren't quite enough to present an idea.

The second con is that interactive engines do not provide effective 3D modeling and texturing tools, and you still need to model and assemble the scene in your native 3D modeling software. In the essence, you are modeling and texturing all the objects of the scene, lets say of interior, from the walls to the furniture, and then export them as 3d assets to a real-time engine. And only then, using a real-time engine toolkit, you start to adjusting lighting, customizing materials, and compiling an executable file with a built-in viewer to present your scene to the consumer (client, employer, etc.) in full 3D. This process requires much more time and effort than just doing everything you need in your native 3D program and then simply "hitting the render button".

Thus, interactive panorama is easy and fast way to fill 2d images with additional sense of presence and volume with almost the same effort that required for a usual static visualizations. It only takes a few extra steps. So read this tutorial further to find out exactly what these steps are.

Cubic Panorama

The easiest way to understand what Panorama 360 technology is and how it works is to imagine a cube with photos of the interior applied as a self-luminous texture on each of its faces. Photo of the ceiling on top, photo of the floor on a bottom, photos of a walls and furniture on a front, back, left and right faces respectively. And now imagine yourself standing inside this cube in one place, not moving, but turning your head and looking around. What you will see will be the interior around you. And that's how interactive panorama technology really works. It is a cube, with applied textures, and the camera inside strictly centered in the middle.

The thumbnail image of this tutorial will also help you imagine this.

By rotating the panorama, you are actually rotating the camera inside and watching the textures on the cube. Since the textures (material) are self-illuminating and are not affected by any lighting or shadows, the joining of the faces are barely noticeable. Of course, the respective sides of the textures themselves seamlessly join each other.

As you may have guessed, the process of rendering a cubic panorama is about how to render these conjugating texture images and then stitch them into the single image of a special format. In turn, the process of creating interactive panoramas is how to load special formatted image into specialized software for viewing panoramas. In a very simplistic sense, a panorama viewer is a standalone scene with a cube and a camera inside. Also viewer provides you controls for rotating the camera and renders on the screen the view from that camera in real time. And basically that's it.

Let's return to the image of a special format, or panoramic image, or panorama projection. You can see it in the picture above. This is example of a cubic map panorama format. The cubic panoramic image looks like a cross assembled from six square images.

Cons of Cubic Panorama

It may seem to you that to reproduce cubic projection image, it is enough to create 6 cameras aimed at the corresponding sides of the scene, render from them, and then compose the results together into one cross-shaped image. I must say that this assumption will be mostly true.

The only feature to note is that the side renders applied to the faces of the virtual cube should not be just the regular camera shots. It must be the the projections of a sphere on the faces of the cube. The diameter of the sphere should be equal to the diagonal of the cube. This is needed to cover the entire 360​​° of the surrounding space and to have seamlessly stitchable images with specific perspective distortions.

Sounds pretty complicated, doesn't it?

Therefore, we are not going to use cubic projection to create panoramas, because of redundant complexity.

Cons of Box Camera

It should be noted that, with 3ds Max, you can get render composed from six standard cameras placed on the sides of a box. You can use a Box Type Camera for this. The 3ds Max will automatically place six cameras, render from them and then compose the results ino one image. But, even this method is still inconvenient.

Firstly, because the format of the cubic panorama is a horizontal cross, while the 3ds Max Box Camera makes an vertical cross and you need to convert one to another using 2d editor.

Secondly, because the cross-like pattern is very badly utilize an image canvas, occupying only part of it. In addition to that, the biased rendering applications, in order to save CPU time (such as a Quasi-Monte Carlo based V-Ray) simplify the results by throwing out some "unimportant" samples. As a result, the edges of each camera render will not be perfect with distinctive jaggedness. This can lead to the appearance of visible edging where different cubic renders will be stitched together.

And third, it is still not a projection of a sphere on a cube. This is a projection of the scene directly on the cube (formed by 6 square frames of the cameras). This means that the "cubeness" of such a panorama will be quite obvious. Especially during interactive camera rotation.

Cons of Panorama Exporter

3ds Max also has utility called Panorama Exporter. It located at: Command Panel => Utilities => Panorama Exporter and has two buttons, Render and Viewer.... If you click the Render button, the visualization settings will appear and you will be able to make a spherical panorama from the selected camera. But the problem is that this utility is the same six cameras, and it makes separate 6 square renders one after another and only then stitch them into one spherical image. If you want to use, for instance, V-Ray Frame Buffer mouse tracking or region rendering options, forget about it. This utility does not allow you to do this.

The Viewer is very simple and, in my experience, it is very slow. It can be used to make draft panorama previews, but it is not suitable for displaying results to a client.

In addition, both Panorama Render and Viewer are interface blocking. This literally means that if you open either Viewer or Render window, the other 3ds Max interface will "freeze".

Impossibility to use standard handy tooling that you are used to using every day, will ruin your normal workflow. In any case, you are free to use Panorama Exporter Utility, if all of the above does not bother you, but I personally do not use it and therefore cannot recommend it to you.

Spherical Panorama as a "all-in-one" Solution

As you can see, cubic projection based rendering is not the best option, but there is another one. The equirectangular (also known as equidirectional) or simply the spherical panorama format. Briefly, a spherical panorama projection it is a "unfolding" of a sphere into rectangular "pelt". The equirectangular projection is a well-established and long-used concept of cartography. It is used to represent the spherical surface of the planet Earth as a rectangular world map, mainly to be printed on a rectangular sheets of paper.

The spherical 3d panorama also has long been used in modern photography. I think most of you have used and seen panoramas of Google Street View many times.

Another common use of panoramic photography is to create spherical HDR environment maps. I also believe that most of you not only know about, but already use such maps to illuminate and form an reflections in your 3D scenes.

I will not go into the details of the panoramic photography. But, in short, there are two main methods by which a photographer obtains spherical projections of the environment.

In the first method, they literally use a mirror ball. They place mirror ball in the environment in which they want to shoot, and then shoot the ball itself with wide-angle lens. Initially one side and then the opposite:

Afterwards the images with hemispheres are uploaded into special software, which converts them into a single spherical projection of the environment.

In the second method, the photographer mounts the camera on a tripod and captures the environment by rotating the camera itself. The idea is to capture all 360 degrees of the environment from one point with a small overlap between frames. Only one photo of the environment is taken at a time:

The process is repeated until the photographer creates enough photos to cover all 360°. Then, with the help of special photo stitching software and manual retouching in the raster editor, the photos are composed together into a single 360 degree equirectangular panorama projection image of the environment.

In 3d, the process of obtaining a spherical panoramic image is much simpler. But first let's see how a spherical map (equirectangular projection) looks like:

(A white grid is added just so you can better see the distortion of the scene on the projection.)

Camera Placement

To make a spherical projection, you must have a Camera in your scene. Use a Standard 3ds Max Target Camera for this purpose.

The place where you put the camera's body (Camera's body Pivot Point) will be the point of view center of the future interactive panorama. In optics, this point is called the nodal point.

Usually, the best nodal point is in the center of a scene. Since you probably want to watch the scene from a human point of view, it is wise to have a nodal point at a distance of 1.6-1.9 meters (average human height) from the floor.

Next, move the Camera.Target to get the best shot from the nodal point you choose. This view will be the default or initial view for the panorama, so it is important that it is the best possible view from the nodal point you choose.

Spherical Camera Mode (Type)

Now you need to make the Standard camera work in Spherical mode. V-Ray has settings for this.

To locate it, open the render settings (F10 on the keyboard). In Render Scene dialog that opens, go to the V-Ray tab and find the V-Ray:: Camera dropdown. There, change the Type from Standard to Spherical. Next, select the Override FOV check-box checked and enter the FOV value as 360 degrees.

Now you have a spherical camera in your scene that is ready to render a spherical panorama.

Render Output

According to the technical specifications of the equirectangular projection image, it should be a rectangle whose width is twice the height, ie has a aspect ratio of 2:1.

To set the aspect ratio of the rendering output in 3ds Max, you need to go to the Common tab of the Render Scene dialog and go down to the Output Size section. There, find the Image Aspect option and set it to 2. When the aspect ratio is set, lock it by clicking the "lock" icon next to it.

When you have the Image Aspect locked, you can change the width to the desired value, and the height will be automatically changed to the appropriate value to maintain the locked aspect ratio and vice versa. Very handy option, by the way.

As for the image resolution, it should be as high as possible. The bigger it is, the clearer and more detailed the panorama will be. This is because the panoramic camera will only display a part of the panoramic image at a time. Only the part that fits into the camera view will be shown in the viewport of the panorama viewer. To better understand this, we should temporarily return to the description of the second method that photographers use to create panoramas. The illustration there shows an approximate part of the sphere that can simultaneously fit into the camera frame. So imagine how much higher the resolution of the rest of the image should be compared to the camera frame.

Based on this, we can conclude that the size of the panoramic image we need directly depends on the screen size of the device on which the panorama will be viewed. It also depends on whether it is full screen mode view or not. And in fact, it is difficult, and sometimes even impossible to predict. That's why, I advise you to stick to something like 8k wide, that is 8192 × 4096 pixels. This resolution will suffice for viewing on most devices. If you can do more, please, if you want less, fine too. I believe you will quickly find what works best for you.

There are technical limitations for panorama viewers on the maximum image size they can process. But these are specific software values, and it's somewhere around 20,000 pixels wide and more. You should never go that far, otherwise the rendering time will be significant.

The last thing to consider about rendering output is the image format. The most universal are JPG and PNG.

I advise you to save the visualization results in the file format of your choice, perform all the necessary compositional work to which you are used to, and only then re-save the result in JPG format with a compression of about ~ 90%. The smaller the image file, the faster it will be loaded by panorama viewers, and the easier it will be to send it over the Internet (send it by e-mail to a client, upload it to online services for editing and viewing panoramas, etc.).

When you're done and the panorama is saved somewhere on your drive as an image file, we can move on to the last step - uploading it to the panorama viewer.

Panorama Viewers

If we return to the explanation of what a panorama viewer is, on the example of a cubic projection, then it seems logical that a spherical panorama viewer is the same technology, with the only difference that instead of a cube, it uses a sphere with an interactive camera inside.

And this level of understanding of ​​how technology works will be enough not to go into any other details, but just start using it. However, since we have already begun to consider the technology itself, it should be noted, for technical correctness, that many panorama viewers still uses a cube. They takes a spherical panoramic image and projects it onto a cube, so in this case we finally have a projection of the sphere on the cube.

This extra step, panoramic software does automatically for you, so you don't need to put in any extra effort on this.

Today there are many 360 panorama viewers. Some of them free, some are not.

As a rule, paid versions have a built-in editor and allow you to create control points on panoramas, clicking on which, the user can see additional information or even move between different panoramas. Free ones, mostly provides only the basic functionality of panorama viewing.

According to the scope of this tutorial, we need only the basic functionality of panorama viewing, so we will consider free panorama viewers only. If you need advanced functionality, once you've learned how to render an equirectangular projections and use the basic panorama viewer, you'll definitely be able to master more complex panorama related software on your own. For example, to create interactive panoramic tours between the rooms of the real estate you archviz.

Mobile Panorama Viewers

A mobile panorama viewer app is one of the first things that comes to mind when you think of a panorama viewer solution. And really, there are lot of them for both Android and iOS. All you have to do is just search the Google Play or App Store for "360 Panorama Viewer" and you'll see plenty of apps to choose from for both platforms. From simple finger swipes to gyroscopically controlled cardboard virtual reality.

I haven't found one that I would really like and that I could definitely recommend to you, but you may be less demanding than I am, and maybe find some app that you really like. So, just try a few. Some have a good user interface, while others look ugly, overloaded with advertising and unprofessional, though prettier interface does not mean better performance and functionality, and vice versa. Anyway, they all have the same principle of use. When you have finished rendering the panoramic image, you need to upload it to your mobile device. Then open the panorama viewer app of your choice and select uploaded image from its menu. The program will "think" a bit, and then show a panorama with the image you provide.

But before you dive into the searches for a suitable mobile application and multiple installations, think about the following. You will definitely render a panorama on a computer (desktop or laptop). After that, you will immediately need to review the result of your work. Upload the just rendered image to your mobile phone, viewing the panorama through its small screen, and all this every time you just need to see immediate results, can hardly be called a convenient solution.

Even more, when you finally finish and, for example, send to client a final panorama visualization, you should also ask a client to install the same or similar program on a phone or tablet so that the client can see how cool the final render made by you looks. Will the client agree to install an unfamiliar app on a phone just to see an image you provide? Especially something potentially full of annoying ad and asking for permission to full access the camera and storage. Let's say it's questionable.

Free Online Panorama Viewer

I asked the same questions and came to the conclusion that I indeed needed something simpler that worked on desktop, could be instantly available, free and not installable. And that's how the 360° Panorama Web Viewer tool was born. I developed it using a popular WebGl-based library called Pannellum. This library is mainly focused on giving to a web developers the tooling to embed already created panoramas on web pages. So I turned it into a user-friendly tool where anyone can change a panoramic image directly on the page, that is, to use it as a full-fledged standalone application, that simply works in a browser.

To avoid duplication, I would not explain all the details, because everything you need, including instructions for use, is on the page of this panorama viewer. But in short, you open the panorama viewer tool page, drop the panoramic image into the viewport of panorama viewer, and immediately see the panorama ready to use. Nothing else, no long loads, no installations. Open the page, apply the image, you're done!

By the way, the panorama from the example at the beginning was created with literally this tool, only the ability to change panoramic images was disabled for demonstration purposes of this tutorial.

So try it now, it's very easy to use and it's free.


I hope you like this tutorial, leave any questions about it in the comments section below.

May 25, 2010
Thx for such a fantastic tutorial!
May 25, 2010
Wow men! you read my mind. great tut!
May 25, 2010
Awesome dude!
May 26, 2010
You're the best! Very amazing tutorial!!!
May 26, 2010
And you don't need to stitch anything by hand. It's actually huge relief!
May 27, 2010
Very good tutorial !!! Thank you!!!
May 28, 2010
very useful thanx
May 29, 2010
Thank you.
Jun 2, 2010
thank you man it is what i am looking for
Jun 3, 2010
One question sir! I've tried to install the Pano2QTVR at office and it works fine, but when i tried it at home, every time i click the open button beside the create button there's an error and i cannot view the output, it only displays black screen in QuickTime.
Jun 4, 2010
Hi zero, thank you for your reply! There were some issues with a QuickTime Player on the Windows 64-bit platforms, but they were fixed in the latest versions of player. Try to download the latest one from the Apple's site and install it: Hope it will be useful for you. If you will have any questions, please write. We'll look into them together ;)
Jun 6, 2010
Thanks a lot. I've already solved my problem thanks to your help. I appreciate it. More power to you!
Jun 14, 2010
Many thanks to the authors of the tutorial. I've been looking for this for a long time and here it is, everything is well chewed!
Jun 15, 2010
Thank you very much, RenderStuff !!! Nowadays, people like you, those who help others for free, even if it is an advice only, is very rare! I have no more questions about creating a 360 panorama and it's all thanks to you! I will be a frequent visitor to your site! Thanks again!
Jun 17, 2010
Hi, thanks for the great article! I've been doing this before with just a panorama exporter and I'd love to try this method instead. But, can I use mental ray instead of V-Ray? How to make a trick with the camera there?
Jun 17, 2010
Hi Vasco! With Mental Ray, this can be done easily. To render an 360 panoramic image you need to use specialized MR camera lens shader. It is called WrapAround (lume). Go to the Render tab of the Render Scene (F10) dialog, find Camera Shaders group in Camera Effects rollout and set the WrapAround (lume) shader into the Lens slot. Just click the button that says none and pick the very bottom shader in the opened list. Also do not forget to set Image Aspect to 2:1 !
Jun 17, 2010
Thanks a lot!
Jun 25, 2010
Thank you, it's a really good stuff. One question, how do you manage the quality of final .mov? I Set it to High and insert 1800px image but the result is blurred... Thanks.
Jun 26, 2010
Hello! We are glad that this tutorial helped you. Actually you are not the first who is interested in a such thing like panorama rendering resolution. For example, the panorama for this lesson was rendered as 6000x3000 pixels. For the subjective assessment of what resolution is necessary to obtain a clear panorama, you should be guided by the rule "the more the better". If time allows, the 8000x4000px will will not be excessive. Of course, if it is a final render. If we take the viewing angle of the standard aspect ratio of 4:3 frame as 120 degrees, then after doing magic with a formulas :) it turns out that if you multiply the less side of the proposed frame by 1.41, you get a less side of the panorama. That is, in theory, if we want to get quality panorama for the 800*600 camera frame, the smaller side of 600 pixels should be multiplied by 1,41. We get 846 pixels. This is the shorter side of the desired panorama. It is easy to guess that the full panorama resolution is 1692 by 846 pixels in this case. Unfortunately, in practice, when converting an equidistant projection with specific distortions in the cubic map the quality is lost. To make the picture beautiful it should be rendered at higher resolution. The easiest way is to multiply bigger side of the frame by 3 and get a bigger side of the panorama. In this example, with the frame 800 by 600 pixels, the good quality rendering resolution is 2400 by 1200 pixels. Fell free to rely on your own subjective opinion. If you think it is better to make bigger resolution - make it bigger, or vice versa, if you think that this is just take an extra time without noticeable improvements - reduce it. In the rendering process the are lot of approximate are subjective things, this is one of them.
Jun 26, 2010
Thank you for the tutorial! All except the last action, with Pano2QTVR, is great. When I Pano2QTVR it throws Error: CreateMovieFile -50. Please tell me how to fix it.
Jun 26, 2010
Hello, Sol. We recommend you to download the latest version of QuickTime from the Apple website. Most likely your problem is an older version of QuickTime codec.
Jun 28, 2010
On another computer, everything went well. It is strange, but I repeat all the same actions. Thank you, the results are impressive))
Jul 2, 2010
Thank you very very much for the complete answer, I'll note it for further tests. Best regards,
Jul 15, 2010
Great tutorial.... go to work on them!
Sep 3, 2010
Thanks I'll try it right now)
Sep 8, 2010
hi Renderstuff! This wonderful tutorial has helped me a lot, wish you more strength to keep it up.
Sep 8, 2010
Hi Zero! Thank you for your visit and we're glad you've made it!
Sep 11, 2010
Thank you very much for the tutorial. Is there a way to make a pano of exterior? I mean, making the camera move around a building.
Sep 11, 2010
Hi stenio! Surely the creating of the model interactive preview with a 360 degree turnaround is possible. For example, this can be achieved by rendering tunaround (fluthrough by type) animation. Then the result can be viewed via any video player that supports forward and backward controlled playback. This is what the all pseudo-3d viewers do. However, such solution is completely out of the panorama concept. Panorama doesn't allow of changing camera's nodal point position.
Sep 12, 2010
Hi, RenderStuff. Thank you for the explanation and for the fast reply. I was hoping that we could make a magic and make this kind of work with just one render like we do with panorama... Now, I see that we have to render a lot of frames around the object. :(
Sep 13, 2010
Stenio, this is not actually a big problem, as flythrough animation renders quite fast. For example, there is a noticeable time saving on the GI maps calculation if you use a right way to do it. Moreover, usually, there is no necessity to have a such high resolution on the animation, like with the static frames. This also decreases the final rendering time. In future tutorials we surely will explain how to render flythrough and dynamic animations.
Sep 18, 2010
Hi, RenderStuff. Once again, thanks for all the tips. I will bookmarked you site to see the next tutorials. Best Regards.
Oct 26, 2010
RenderStuff, thanks for the lesson. But the program kakayato strange if I save a project in the same folder where did render it gives an error CreateMovieFile -50. and if on the desktop, then all super. Full of Shaitan. And even I tried to copy it to another location, but Quick Time writes that the file is not found. Can you tell what's going on.
Oct 26, 2010
Hello, Indi. Service message Error CreateMovieFile -50 may appear when the name of the file to save you, too long or just contain non-Latin characters. Under the name must be understood as the name of the file and its full path. Most likely because the desktop folder does not contain non-Latin characters - you keep on your desktop without any problems;)
Oct 26, 2010
RenderStuff thank you for your website and lessons. It's okay, I tried again, everything went really well, the PC campaign buggy. p, s, a striking result. Some customers just a few pictures, and this is what you need, and in a short time.
Nov 1, 2010
Awesome mate, truly awesome. Thanks to you I got down the whole process in under 30 mins :) Appreciated.
Nov 9, 2010
Hello, can yop tell how to make panorams in max 2010?
Nov 10, 2010
Hello mila, There is no difference in the process of creating the 360 degree panorama in the 3ds Max from 9 to 2011 version. The main key is the step-by-step following the tutorial instructions. To make the panorama rendering using the mental ray renderer, you need to use the WrapAround (lume), as described in the above comments ;)
Nov 13, 2010
Thank you very much this is what I need)) And you successful renderings))
Nov 13, 2010
Yes)) I've got a great panorama ))) Thanks! again!
Nov 18, 2010
Thank you so much)))
Nov 25, 2010
wow wow thanks a lot
Nov 27, 2010
do not think that will turn as fast)) lesson really easy)), but there was one thing :( about 360 degrees with the V-ray all clear) is no problem), but I have the hardwarwe that does not allow me to render big pictures... wery long loads ... how to make the camera 360 degrees through a conventional rendering? :) I searched through almost all of these settings... and nothing.
Nov 27, 2010
The built-in utility panoramic 3ds Max, supporting standard renderers, Panorama Exporter is a utility. To use it, go to the Command Panel and click on the Utilities tab (little black hammer with red handle). There click on the More button and in the resulting list, select the Panorama Exporter. Then Panorama Exporter functions appear in the Utilities tab menu. Hold Render button. You will Render Setup Dialog dialog box. In it you select the desired resolution and then PUSH Render button, but now in the Render Setup Dialog box. Panorama Exporter renders the six sides of the cube around the nodal point of the camera and automatically sew it into an interactive panorama. In a single paragraph panorama File menu, select Export => Export Sphere and save a bitmap file spherical (equirectangular) panorama. Then - according to the lesson;)
Nov 27, 2010
spasiibo great !!! I would have such knowledge of 3d max))) so I want to know everything ... only to learn no :( inst all breaks off))) contacted pancake with programming))), the current head of rubbish currently score)))) Thanks again !! ! I will try to learn :)
san chan dran
Nov 30, 2010
thanx alot render stuff. im really searching 4 this ...
Dec 2, 2010
and if there is a function for transitions allowed in the other room?
Dec 2, 2010
There are many tools that allow you to create virtual panoramic tours. It will be better if you find the one that best suits your needs and wallet yourself. Just goole "Virtual Tour Software 360" and it will show you many items to choose from. You can also add a year to the search string to see the most selected selection of Panorama 360 programs on the market.
Dec 6, 2010
Good afternoon. I want to thank the team for renderstuff informative and easy to understand lessons. Add to Favorites. Only I have a problem. Perhaps someone faced a similar. 3dsmax 2009. vray. Vray I put the camera in the middle of the room. Perspective, Ctrl C (regular camera). I do render. But in the final image appears horizontal lines. Here flooded finalku and noted problem areas.
Dec 6, 2010
Hey, Natalia bands can be seen. Immediately the question - and you tried to visualize the other rooms? There is such a problem? Because in this case it is more likely the problem is not in the panorama. Usually, so it looks imaging costed using a network renderigna, such as mental ray, when the results of failures of different networked computers vary in brightness. Given that you're using V-Ray and his way of rendering buckets (squares), these problems in the form of strips of different brightness along the entire visualization, not even the power of visualization, should not be. Try to render another room or any abstract hay, to make sure that the problem is not connected with 3ds Max and V-ray, and the bug is a particular scene. In addition, we strongly recommend that after the establishment of the chamber (Ctrl + C), position it so that the camera and its Target were the same height and have a horizontal coordinate (relative to the type of the camera), so that only the value of the third coordinate (responsible for distance from the camera to the target with) differed. The other two coordinates they must be identical. In other words, the camera should be strictly front side or strictly.
Dec 12, 2010
Great!! I had forgotten about panoramas, but now i will use it on the draft rendering stage. Thanks!!
Dec 22, 2010
Hey hi dude nice stuff..really great but i have a problem that the panorama video that is created is very blur unlike the renders..i changed the settings in Pano2QTVR but still no progress..and ya i tried the render setup settings for the camera in vray in other projects to but they make a wired render..if possible can you please help me...Thanx in advance..
Dec 22, 2010
Hello Jay, thank you for your question. It is the matter of resolution of equirectangular projection. Briefly, the 360 degrees panoramic image, in contrast to the square (for convenience) static image, catches all the six square sides of the virtual cube, stretching over all its faces. So, roughly, the resolution of the one cube's face is six times less than the resolution of the whole equirectangular projection. And so you get with the supposedly same resolution the blurred panorama, that is indeed has to have six times more pixels. For the more exact tips on resolution setting look a little above is a comments, there is an corresponding answer.
Dec 29, 2010
Prompt, whether it is possible with the help of the above programs do "transitions" from room to room. Or is it done by some other means? That is, we look one room, and then we click in the view, for example on the door and go into the next room. Thank you
Dec 29, 2010
Roberta, hello. Yes of course you can. Please see Andrey's question above.
Jan 28, 2011
Also first encountered error CreateMovieFile -50 - moved the project to source code from the desktop to the My Documents and all earned. More on foreign forums that error associated with too long file name or with a professional. symbols.
Jan 31, 2011
Thank you for the lesson, very lucidly written all !!
Feb 3, 2011
The author, a genius))) kiss on both cheeks)))
Feb 14, 2011
Hey hi, Thanks renderstuff. I enjoyed with 360 camera setting but quality of rendered image was very poor, Some one can help me out to improve quality.
Feb 14, 2011
Hi mujeeb, the answer to your question is in the previous comment ;)
Feb 16, 2011
Hi, I have now had such question, and how to insert a logo or website address such as a panorama, I figured out how to make pan, but with the logo that it does not come out, please tell me.
Feb 16, 2011
Hello, Edward. In the Additional Sprites tab has the tools to impose on the panorama image, such as a logo. Using a sprite image with transparency, such as PNG or GIF, you can achieve the desired effect with the address label site. Learn more about these features and their use, please visit the site Pano2QTVR creators.
Feb 17, 2011
Use standard Panoram Exporter in Utilities, and you will be happy. Do not take your head
Feb 17, 2011
Of Van, please do not mislead other users 3ds Max giving incompetent unverified and advice based on their personal prejudices. To create a panorama using Panorama Exporter utility, of course, possible. Panorama Exporter is built basic function 3ds Max and it was originally designed to run only with standard 3ds Max camera. In this sense, it is for the better does not differ from that described in the lesson towards the creation of a virtual 360-degree panorama. However, creating a panorama view of the exporter has several disadvantages due to its operating principle, in which he renders six types (front, right, back, left, bottom, top) and automatically stitches them into a spherical (equirectangular) projection immediately afterwards. First, make the adjustment very difficult in this visualization. For example, when you want to prerender some part of the image, using the Region Render. That is, if you want to change something small, will not use%B0t rendering the region and will have to wait until all the sides of a cube to render and glue. As a result of the local correction becomes irrational. Secondly, this way makes it impossible to create and save to your hard disk panoramic GI maps for later use when loading from a file, which is especially important when making a panorama of a very large resolution. Calculation of large panoramas takes a long time, even using destributivny rendering. Thirdly, Panorama Exporter utility creates a very blurry and ugly equidistant projection, which can only be used as a rough draft-preview. We advise all not to use the Panorama Exporter utility. The technology described in this lesson, is devoid of the disadvantages described above and enables cool interactive panoramas.
Feb 19, 2011
Hi, Thanx for the reply. In your tutorial you mentioned that vray physical camera doest not work as spherical 360 camera but i tried and got a good result. Best reagrd.
Feb 19, 2011
Hello Mujeeb, You probably use the latest version of V-Ray that already supports spherical mode for VRayPhysicalCamera, which was not available at the time of publishing this tutorial. Luckily, since that time there were made no changes that lead to impossibility of following this tutorial. So, the which camera type to use in V-Ray is rather the matter of taste nowadays.
Feb 25, 2011
RenderStuff, this site by weight of gold for me. I did not think that such a panorama so easy to create and I have a different question here is if, for example, I created a room and put to the car and I wanted to create a panorama revolves around the machine ie that it was possible to consider cars from all directions)) hope to answer how to do it
Feb 25, 2011
Hello sergey, thank you for your feedback and pertinent question! Of course, the creation of an interactive 360-degree preview of the model possible. For example, this can be done, turn render the animation (fly-through of the type). The result can be viewed in any video player that supports Primo controlled and reverse playback. This is what makes all the pseudo-3d viewers. Incidentally, the flyby animation rendering is not a big problem in terms of render time, as it rendered quickly enough. For example, there is a significant time savings in the calculation of GI maps. Also, there is usually no need to render the animation in such a high resolution, which is exposed to static frames. It also may reduce the rendering time. However, this solution completely beyond pan concept. Panorama does not allow changing the position of the nodal point of the camera.
Apr 4, 2011
Good afternoon! Thank you for the lesson. You as always on top :) All chotko dostupnoi clear. I did everything - from the first time came out (with the permission of the truth was wrong, but eventually realized that it is necessary to render in the longer time-NII) I want to ask about the nodal point. Does the right of finding her in 3ds max and consequently the location of the camera based on NT? As I understand it, even if I can find it, the axis of rotation can not be ustaonvit? Or rephrase the question a little - how to choose the position of the camera in the scene, not to observe the strong distortion when changing the viewing angle (when the camera is rotated)? PS I am pleased to join your group :)
Apr 5, 2011
Hi, thanks for the tip! We are glad that lesson helped you to create a virtual panorama. Choosing the nodal point of the panoramic camera, or, in our case, simply pan the center, is trivial. Ideally, this should be just the geometric center of the zone, which is supposed to review. Choose any subjectively the most appropriate point in the scene. Put to the camera and its purpose is located at the same height along the Z axis, and a camera. In general, that's all. Which way to direct? Yes anywhere, what you think is most appropriate for the initial position of the camera in your panorama. How to get rid of the specific distortions in the review of the panorama? Yes, in general, in any way, such is the lack of work. However, you can minimize them as much as possible having escaped all the objects in the scene. The closer the object to the nodal point of the panoramic camera - the greater the distortion when rotating panorama. But, in fact, it all boils down to installing and panoramic camera in the center of the room visualized that will make sure all the walls and objects in them as much as possible equidistant from the nodal point. Of course, if it will not appear under the bed or table standing in the center of the interior :)
Apr 5, 2011
Many thanks for the answer. There are still some questions about the setup V-Ray, ask them in the relevant sections.
May 26, 2011
Really good stuff Was just wondering if the spherical (equirectangular) format obtained from max in this case , could directly be inserted as a spherical environment in a new max file , so as to utilize it to make a quick 360 spin-pan animation using a camera rotating around it's axis , or another format is needed to achieve that ? Also which version of vray exactly supports spherical cam with physical cam Thanks mate
May 26, 2011
Sure, it could. As the 3ds Max Environment is actually a large sphere, which is endlessly far from the scene center, and it holds the texture. In its turn the equirectangular texture is an ideal unwrap of the sphere. So, the obtained equirectangular projection could be exactly set as 3ds Max environment. Main thing is remember to set the Spherical Environment value for Mapping in Coordinates rollout. Regarding this cheat :D with panorama animation, it is more rational to make the large sphere yourself. Then to make it self-illuminated with the equirectangular projection as texture. And, finally, set the camera inside, which you wish to animate. This will be quicker and simpler, than to mess with the 3ds Max spherical environment. Do not forget to flip the spehere’s normals, so the camera does not look at the backfaces ;) The VRay 1.5 starting from the SP3, as well as the V-Ray 2.0, supports the camera overrides (e.g. spherical, box etc).
Jun 8, 2011
And please tell me how to do so does not revolve around a single point, and around the building like?
Jun 12, 2011
Hi, I work with a Panoramic photographer and regularly need to output panoramic model content for insertion into his photoshop panoramic files. Is there a way to output a panorama with control over the number of shots used over a specified panoramic angle. E.G. can you render a panoramic image that takes 6 shots (renders) horizontally taking in an overall Field of View of say 120 degrees? This 360 pan approach produces too much lens distortion for my purposes given it only outputs 4 shots (excluding straight up and straight down which are of no use to me) for a horizontal FOV of 360 degree. Up to now we have been doing camera setup manually and manually stitching the individual shots but it is very time consuming and problematic. Hope you understand what i'm describing and have some ideas. Thanks
Jun 13, 2011
Hi Colin, The technique of creating the cylindrical panorama is the same as for the spherical in fact. The only difference is that in V-Ray:Camera rollout we should choose the Cylindrical(ortho) camera type instead of Spherical. And, the image proportions should be 4:1, not 2:1. Then we can get the cylindrical projection. In addition, we have to take into account that the cylindrical camera type makes the projection on cylinder, which not as the sphere, must have some height. That is for this cylinder’s height, the parameter Height is responsible, and this parameter value is measured in current system units, half above the camera, and half below it. To catch the desired portion of the scene, we got to mess with right cylinder height and the initial camera position on the Z-axis. When we got the rendering of the cylindrical projection, we need to open it in Pano2QTVR, as it described in tutorial, but only choose Cylindrical instead of Equirectangular. Please note, that this is orthographical projection and no perspective distortion will occur. Such panorama will look a little (or very :)) flat. That is all. This how it is done officially. However, there is a trick, which can help the cylindrical panorama look alive, not like some flat technical projection. The main point here is to make everything like in the tutorial and on after-rendering stage, crop the obtained image in Photoshop to 4:1 proportions and load in in Pano2QTVR as cylindrical. This will make the great cylindrical panorama :) For those who wish to save some rendering time – you can make the region rendering, by roughly cropping the image part by ¼ at the top and ¼ at the bottom. P.S.: Colin, we believe this gives you idea how to act in your situation ;)
Jun 20, 2011
Good time of day. The question is. In what format should be the end result to sahronit panorama could also twirl as you have in the forum, but without an Internet.
Jun 20, 2011
GREETINGS, Meridia. Allow to answer your question. "Twirl" on the Internet or without it (on your computer) does not depend on the format in which you keep the end result. This formulation is similar to this question: "What I have to buy a nail, so it is not the goal fence to my neighbor and the fence?" As you know - from the nail here depends nothing :) So keep it in the .swf format and opens onto kompyuteres using FlashPlayer or any player that plays Flash. If you do not know what it was, you can simply on the resulting file, right-click, then select "open with" and select your web browser. Open your view, in the same web browser, but it will work, as you know, not via the Internet and directly to your computer. But if we dig a little deeper still, even this view, which is in the lesson, she opened it to your computer! Since downloads the file currently in the cache (or if you like, temporary Internet files), your web browser when you visit the page,. That is, first save it to disk C in the folder of temporary Internet files. And then there plays. So the difference in concepts from the Internet or from a PC - in principle, no. Internet in this case is the only source Flash file. You've got to be the source of your computer :) I hope not too confused;)
Jun 21, 2011
As we wrote in the lesson, only the demo version can be downloaded for free Pano2QTVR. One of the main limitations of the demo, it is possible to save only mov. In order to use the full functionality Pano2QTVR, in particular, be able to save to swf format, you must purchase the full version of this program;) Questions about the illegal use, we do not discuss the software. Be careful ;)
Aug 10, 2011
A great lesson, thank you so much! I did not know about this method. Just a question-time rendering circular Panarama identical time rendering 6 angles (as in the method of crosslinking with 6 pictures into a cube) or is it faster?
Maks (RenderStuff)
Aug 10, 2011
Hello, Elena! At first glance, no difference should not be in the rendering time. After all, if we render 18 Megapixels in equidistant projection, we might as well (and time) can render the same 18 megapixels individual projection cube. However, when using the rendering method equidistant projection, results in savings on:
  • preparatory operations, such as installation projections, rendering the launch sequence;
  • general secondary illumination rendering maps GI;
  • not inflated settings that might be necessary for a better pairing separately counted cube projections;
  • unavoidable absence, in the case of the individual renders, need to match the image;
  • fulfillment of post-processing, as You do not need to do it in six separate frames or pre-merge them into a single image;
  • simple instructions into a single image "collecting" the panorama program.
One time-saving on the above points enough to use that method for rendering a 360 ° panorama of the equidistant projection, rather than any other;)
Aug 15, 2011
Thanks for the answer! By the way, in virey 1.5 Sp5 standard camera is already set is not necessary, and can be put virey Fizikal spherical. But! Render size 3000h6000 considered 7 hours and was figured out with only one-third. And this despite the fact that one perspective is considered to be the size of 1000x1000 40-50 minutes! True Light cache and irmapu higher value delivered, is still a big picture, but this time difference, of course, not acceptable (compared to 6 miscalculation images and stitching them). PS Probably, the quality is too high, try half image count. If and then the time will be off-scale in seven hours, have yet to switch to another method.
Maks (RenderStuff)
Aug 15, 2011
Elina, an elementary calculation shows that the perspective and foreshortening 1000x1000 6000h3000 differ in the number of pixels in the 18 (!!!) times. In other words, with identical settings, without taking into account economies of GI and preparatory operations perspective 6000h3000 should be considered 12-15 hours. If we count the number of pixels in size 1000x1000 six renderings, a similar resolution panoramas will 3464h1732 instead 6000h3000 as you chose. Try to put these 3464h1732 - then comparison will become more fair :)
Aug 18, 2011
So here's what happened: 2000h4000 image pixels considered 6 hours (setting this time I almost did not increase). What has been quite acceptable. PS And yet, I would like to mention one detail (I think at the stage of interior approval is important): If you want to pererenderit some small piece, and he, for example, misses the camera display, and if not for her is, a separate the region is not allocated, only to re-count the whole picture. PPS Once again, thank you so much for such a detailed explanation!
Maks (RenderStuff)
Aug 18, 2011
Hello! In fact, you can do the region render. You only need to turn on safe frame (if previously and so is not included) in the view of the camera and panormanoy can safely allocate the desired region, in exactly the same way as in a flat rendering. All you need is to get in the correct zone equidistant projection. In order not to speculate "on the eye", let down on the background of the viewport of the camera previously-calculated equidistant projection and its landmarks, where to set the frame region :)
Alex 21
Oct 4, 2011
:( Mmm and I have quicktime and windows x64 does not work: ((((
Maks (RenderStuff)
Oct 4, 2011
Alex 21, try to remove the currently installed version and install the latest quicktime. Quicktime in windows x64 has been working :)
Oct 7, 2011
Hey guys!, somebody tried this on Cinema 4D R12?, please I would like some instructions on how to render an equirectangular panorama at 6000x3000 px, but using C4D R12 and Vray, please help! Thanks for this awesome tut! Ciao.
Oct 8, 2011
Hi, Nuurs! We are not sure about the exact techniques of rendering panoramas in Cinema 4D + V-Ray, but we believe that it can be done using the Box type of the Vray camera in C4D. It will do the mentioned in tutorial "cubic" or "vertical cross" rendering, which you can use in the Pano2QTVR selecting Cubic instead of Equirectangular in the panorama options. Hope it's the solution ;)
Dec 2, 2011
probuval gamu! ne iza atavo! fotka renderitsa narmalino no sahraniaietsa polnastiu ciornaia kak kvadrat malevicia!
Feb 8, 2012
I decided to try it - funny things turn out! * THUMBS UP * Thank you for the tutorial dudes, I am very happy with the results.
Mar 12, 2012
The question is - let's say in my stage 3 cameras, 2 of them are standard, and one virtual. I created a virtual panorama, all arranged, like a conventional rendering of the standard camera (the other two). But now my rendering of the standard cells obtained also in the form of an equidistant projection. What to do? Newly change the settings for the cameras or still can be done to different cameras in a scene Rendili differently? If the question is not clear, paraphrasing - Settings for the virtual camera are valid for all other cameras in the scene ???
Anton (RenderStuff)
Mar 12, 2012

What kind of "camera settings" you say? :)

In order to render the panorama, not one particular configuration of the scene the camera is not affected.
Change only render settings (F10 on the keyboard), which are global for the entire scene. In particular the substitution of the global configuration of the standard cells in the scene, as well as render the aspect ratio, 1 to 2. And, in general, all.

By this, to render "flat view" should, in the book V-Rray: Camera uncheck Override FOV and return to the Camera type Standard. And also, in the tab Common, set the desired Output Size.

Question 30 seconds;) What could be easier: D
Mar 20, 2012
Thank you very much, all ok !!!!))))
Apr 10, 2013
Hello. Wow ... *THUMBS UP* I am new to all this ... I had a look but couldn't find the answer. I have a newish computer, Win7, Intel Pentium P6200, 4gb DDR3 ram, Intel HD Graphics. I have a simple (cheaper end) digital still/videoHD camera. Will your programmes (earlier and simpler would be fine) to learn and run on this (which do I need) and how much memory needed? I haven't downloaded anything, would like to look at some of the models. Regards, from UK. Squeak.
May 31, 2013
*THUMBS UP* Great You are my heroes. Really really grateful Thx
Jun 4, 2013
One of the best things on web is this tutorial! Thanx a lot! I'm using Mental Ray and are really happy now! :)
Jun 14, 2013
Nice demo, but the problem for me is Quicktime, and the time lost for building a nice scene in 360 using vray and fix all rendering issues. Now, I use Promenadd plugin for 3DS Max and it changed my life. It is pretty easy to convert a vray scene into a 360 view, and I can share my projects on the web. Icing on on the cake: I can also share my projects with Promenadd Free App on customer's iPads Of course this is a commercial product but if you are a professional, you know this investment will pay off in just a 3-4 hours of any serious project.
Jul 10, 2014
hello, may i know how to convert the quicktime mov to pano file? i use the windows surface rt tab, so i need to put inside, thanks for telling me!
Aug 29, 2015
if i dnt want to get mov format of 360 render means i want to move my render as per my mouse control like @ the start of page ther is a white and golden interior is der
Nov 10, 2015
hey great software just wanted to know the 3DS max resolution for creatiing the high resolution panorama thanku...
Anton (RenderStuff)
Nov 10, 2015
Hi zaryab, The higher the resolution, the better result you get. In practice 3000 px for longer frame side is the minimum. Hope its help ;)
bashir shaikh
Sep 28, 2016
Dear sir how can i get higher resolution of panorama output view? Because i am getting low panorama output view.
Anton (RenderStuff)
Sep 28, 2016
Do the same as you do, but increase an output resolution. If you want to get double the quality of the panorama - double rendered image resolution. This is the best way to improve the quality of panorama.
This discussion has been closed.