At NAB 2016, Teradek released Sphere, a quad HDMI device that has the capability of stitching four different cameras and audio to give users a live 360° experience. Now, in probably one of more predictable gear updates coming out of IBC, the company has introduced a 4-channel 4K HD-SDI version of its monitoring and streaming virtual reality (VR) rig, which is more or less identical to its predecessor with the exception of its SDI inputs.
Powered by the Stitching Engine, Sphere does not require a PC to put together the panoramic footage into a 360° format. Instead the engine is an iOS based app and provides real-time compositing for up to 8 HD (1080p) cameras when you daisy-chain a second Sphere through its ethernet port.
The iOS offers a variety of options to tweak the footage (white balance, tint, and color profile) and with multiple lens correction options you can adjust image rotation and edge alignment inside the user-interface. The application can also color match across all video feeds if you're looking for quick calibration. Users can then save stitched video directly to a hard drive in MP4 format.
The Sphere is capable of outputting with only 4 frames of latency and Teradek gives you 3 different options for iPad viewing. Sphere’s new re-stream feature allows multiple iPhones to connect to the feed as well.
- Rectilinear: Allows you to explore live 360º video as if you were wearing a VR headset. Move the iPad around to visualize the experience you're creating for your audience.
- Panoramic: Displays live 360º footage as a single panoramic image.
- Little Planet: 360º content is turned into a stereographic projection, allowing you to view it as if it were a tiny planet.
Besides HD-SDI and HDMI versions, Teradek offers standard units and live streaming for an additional $1,000. The HD-SDI version is set to ship in the next month with a $4,000 price tag for standard and $5,000 for live streaming.
If you're unfamiliar with Sphere, he's our video from NAB 2016 to get you acquainted (with the HDMI version at least).
- 1080p 23.98/24/25/29.97/30
- 1080i 50/59.94/60
- 1080PsF 23.98/24/25
- 480p59.94, 576p50
- HDMI input supports RGB 4:4:4, YCrCb 4:4:4, YCrCb 4:2:2
Be sure to check out more of our IBC 2016 coverage.