Panoramas – made using Sigma 4.5mm and 10mm fisheye lenses

I feel kind of stupid. Long time ago, years ago I got myself two fisheye lenses – the Sigma 10mm and the 4.5mm. I tried hard at the time to make them work as QTVR lenses but somehow I failed or I got better results with my 10-20mm lens. Now, I have this project coming up which made me dust of my QTVR skills and I started off by making a couple of QTVR’s using the Sigma 8-16mm  – which is really wide! It’s actually the same width on the new SD1 as the 12-24 is on a full frame camera.

Anyways. I did a couple of panoramas but wasn’t fully satisfied as I had to work kind of hard with the stitching software to make those images overlap perfectly. But after a few fails I sort of got a pretty decent, sellable result. A couple of days ago I saw this lens list showing the angle of view possible by different lenses and then I saw that my super wide 8-16mm lens only gave me somewhere around 115 degrees per shot – not bad really – but now I saw my 10mm fisheye on the list and it said 154 degrees (on Sigma SD14/15 camera) – That’s a huge difference and I might be stupid but I didn’t realize that fisheye gave that much more. (probably blinded by the mm) – So I attached my 10mm fisheye – calibrated it carefully on my Manfrotto SPH head and updated my PTGui software and WOALA it stitched those images directly without hesitation and without ANY need of my own click.

10mm fisheye image from a panoramaOne of the eight images used to make the panorama below (but there is more images as it’s a three shot HDR). You need to have Quicktime installed to view.

(click inside to view pano or download the file here).

I found that six images around plus up and down would stitch perfectly for a full spherical panorama. And the quality is jaw dropping amazing! Perhaps even better than what I previously got using any of my rectangular optics – but that’s not entirely true as with more images you get more resolution. Now I can’t wait using the Sigma SD1 + my 10mm fisheye.

Now, you might ask yourself – what about that 4.5mm lens of yours? Did you try that one? and YES I did and the results is simply amazing if you think about what kind of lens we’re dealing with. A fully circular, 180 degree lens capable of making a fully spherical image in only three shots. Now, my current Manfrotto SPH isn’t suitable for a 3 shot pano but with four shots it looks great!

Sigma 4.5mm fisheye lensAs you see on the above image part of the Manfrotto SPH head is inside the image, takes up quite a bit of the view. The new version of PTGui 9 has this wonderful function of being able to mask stuff – so all I did was to simply mask out the manfrotto head – and the result is perfect!

Per Ingvarsson x many - QTVR photo

Sigma 4.5mm (click inside to view, or download the file here)

My sister Anna and her husband Krister recently bought some land – and on this land there stood a house, a house that they most likely will replace with a new one but before doing so I wanted a few shots to play with – and here we have the result.

Sisters new place, before renovation.

Sigma 4.5mm (click inside to view pano or download the file here).

Sisters new place, before renovation.

Sigma 4.5mm (click inside to view pano or download the file here).

I’ve been working at the church before and I really love being inside these beautifully crafted buildings and I went to one yesterday to see if I could make something – I’m not entirely happy with the result as it was a really dull day – we had dull days now for at least a full week – but using a three shot HDR you still have lots of information. Mind you that these are long exposures and light is really mixed. (You can see how blue the outdoor becomes)..

Skepplanda Kyrka panoramafotograferad

Click above image to go to the tour – this one is exported to work on iPhone and iPad as well, it´s HTML5 based exported from PTGui. I still need to learn how to erase that bottom tripod or how to add another image on top of the tripod (to hide it) before exporting for web.. Oh well. :) If you know, please tell! And those panoramas in the tour with the (HD) sign is taken with the 10mm fisheye – the rest is 4.5mm.

Sigma Photo Pro and SD15 used.

About Carl Rytterfalk

Welcome to my blog! I'm Carl Rytterfalk, a swedish photographer who loves everything that is interesting in the world of photography. In 2002 I fell in love with the three layered Foveon sensor and has since then been an addicted user of Sigma cameras. Though I use Canon and Nikon as well. :)
This entry was posted in 10mm fisheye, 4.5mm fisheye, All, Full size, Movie, Portraits, Sigma Photo Pro, Sigma SD15 and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to Panoramas – made using Sigma 4.5mm and 10mm fisheye lenses

  1. Dominick says:

    Hi Carl,

    Wonderful work, very inspiring !!!

    I’m wondering if you could recommend a specific software to create the QTVRs ?



  2. I’m currently using PTGui, but Gigapano is also nice, and I used to use Stitcher – but that was years ago. There is this open source project called Hugin that is definitely worth a try depending on your needs. Free.

    Look at above names and use google. :)

  3. Steven says:

    I love that ceiling, that looks like an amazing opportunity for a nice renovation job, seems a waste to demolish the house.

    Your stitching looks good too, the one time I attempted it I couldn’t quite get the colours to match up.

  4. Dominick says:

    Thanks for your quick (no time) reply !


  5. Dominick,

    Ah, :D Just sitting here now nervously awaiting the iPad2 announcement. :D

  6. Matthias says:

    I like the old house the most.

    There seems to be a link mistake. Both “…download the file here” point to

  7. LionelB says:

    The interior of the church is beautiful. Much more like a grand house in its decoration than a sober place of worship. Seats still uncomfortable though I am sure …

  8. Robin says:

    Well, “Sorry, this content can’t be seen with your Operating System.” sounds not very friendly to Linux users. But I guess the panos look good.

    Btw Dominick: I am using hugin as well. It’s doing a great job! =)

  9. Sorry about that Robin, perhaps that last with the church works? No HTML5 support in Linux?

  10. Paul Boothroyd says:

    Interesting how in our dealings with digital photography, we are fascinated by the desire to recreate reality. Sigma is not a straigtforward path to follow, but frequently we are astounded by what we see.

  11. aurin says:

    hi carl, two years ago i read about the sigma 3d-panoramas on the forum, and noticed that some outdoor panos were made by three main shots and a handheld shot covering the tripod area; of course for long exposures you need to put the camera on the end of a tripod arm and hold your breath while you keep it from falling:)

  12. Brian Benham says:

    I love your effects. When I think of panoramics I always thing of horizontal shots, but your vertical shot of the chair in the corner of the room got my creative juices flowing

  13. Hi Mr Carl:
    I need your help !!!!
    My camera’s model is Canon Rebel T2i 550D with 18-55mm zoom kit lens.
    which lens is best choice for 360*180 QTVR :
    Sigma 10mm Fisheye
    Sigma 4.5mm Fisheye
    Canon 10-22
    thank you so much
    i’m waiting ….

  14. Enrico says:

    Sorry for my bad English , i need Help from you !
    I have a canon 40d with 10 22, i lime panorama shot, but not really golf result indoor.
    How many shot do you do for best shot ?
    It s the sigma 8 16 better ?
    For a nice result with .mov . ( nadir and zenith ) i have to’ use other software differen than pt.guy ?
    Tank s

  15. Boris says:

    Hi Carl,
    I’m on the market for a fisheye to go with my Nikon D90. Mainly I want to use it to make panoramas, and also just as an effect lens.
    It seems that you need less shots with the 4.5mm to cover the full sphere, but you probably pay for that with a lower resolution, right?
    Would you personally recommend the 4.5mm or the 10mm?
    Best, Boris

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