View Full Version : Can't seem to get even one good pano..... extremely frustrated

09-06-2008, 06:41 PM

I purchased a NN5 L about a month ago and I'm having difficulty putting together the illusive pano. I've downloaded umpteen different programs with no success in creating even one pano. I was really hoping this would be easier and more enjoyable but it doesn't look that way at this point. There seems to be lots of sites offering information on this and that but I've yet to see one definitive tutorial that covers all the bases. It's like trying to organize a soup sandwich!! Exposure is confusing as well. Should you meter for the brightest part of the whole deal and bracket with 3 shots or 5 or 7 or 9. How many stops in between? I rented a 15mm fisheye lens this weekend and the panos I've attempted are all distorted and it's as though the software doesn't work correctly. I'm definately NOT willing to futz with EVERY photo in photoshop and spend hours to create one photo worth keeping. Actually I was hoping to create a profitable sideline as I've seen such wonderful panos ( QTVR'S ) on the web. Am I missing something.... or is it really THIS difficult to create a decent pano? If so, I'm losing interest fast!! Any helpful input would be appreciated.

nick fan
09-06-2008, 08:51 PM
what camera are you using?
15mm fisheye is not easest lens to use on 1.6x sensor.


John Houghton
09-07-2008, 12:10 AM
Don't try to run before you can walk. Forget about bracketing shots for the moment. Use the same exposure and white balance settings for all the shots (to make blending easy). I suggest that you download PTGui and try this tutorial: http://www.johnhpanos.com/ptgtut.htm Use the 8mm fisheye images that accompany the tutorial for the first time through. Once you have got the hang of things and have generated a decent output, try your 15mm images, but specify the lens type as fullframe fisheye and leave the crop settings at their defaults.


09-07-2008, 04:28 AM
Am I missing something.... or is it really THIS difficult to create a decent pano? If so, I'm losing interest fast!! Any helpful input would be appreciated.

Nothing is difficult when you know how to do it.......

However every technique has a learning curve and making pans is no different.

John Horton is an master in the 360x180 field and very many, otherwise skilled photographers, have been guided by his tutorials to become at least very proficient.

If you want to progress take his advice, swallow it whole, and you will soon be wondering what all your original problems came from.... Don't try short cuts or other peoples methods until you have a good understanding of his whole methodology and can produce excellent pans every time.
Do not think you can produce Pans with auto every thing... chance suggests that this may work from time to time... but I for one would not care to rely on chance.

09-07-2008, 05:53 AM
Thanks everyone for the kind responses.... I'm using a canon 5d along with the rented lens. I'll be working on an indoor pano today and taking it step by step while documenting what goes well and what doesn't. Thanks for the advice on bracketing the shots... I'll keep it simple at first. Also, does anyone have the lower rail setting for the 5d.... therre appears to be some descrepancy to the number given in the camera settings guide. Thanks for the help and I'm always open to advice. Have a great day!!

Oh...... I'll be purchasing a lens for panos soon and I'm looking for some recommendations on what would be the best all around lens for panos. The sigma 15 ( or is it 14 ) mm seems to be the top contender at the moment. I want to be able to extract the exif info from the images when working to take advantage of any software that might help out along the way. Thanks again!!!

John Houghton
09-07-2008, 06:47 AM
Also, does anyone have the lower rail setting for the 5d.... therre appears to be some descrepancy to the number given in the camera settings guide.

You can check the lower rail setting very simply with a plumb line. Only takes a minute. See http://www.johnhpanos.com/epcalib.htm


10-04-2008, 06:47 AM
Aussie Ninja,

That is a great little walk through you just gave. I will be getting my NN5 in a few days, so I will follow your directions and see how things go.

What are you using to set your white balance when not using the pre-sets on the camera.

I have been looking at these to help me with the white balance.


Here is a good article I found


10-06-2008, 06:19 PM
Thanks for all of the help and suggestions. Time for a new approach. I think I'll just buy a panoscan and be done with it. No more workaday stitching! Just a perfect result every time. Seriously, I guess I'll have to purchase the ptgui software so I'm able to save projects as well as use the panorama tools stitcher as an option. Has anyone had any success with templates and the nodal ninja? Has anyone got a template for the 5d and the sigma 15mm ex dg lens? Any suggestions for setting the indoor exposure? I guess taking an incident reading might be the best way as that seems to work well outside. I've found that white balance is a snap with the expo disc or the whibal card. I have a couple of panos I could post for critique or possible suggestions as to what I might address while stitching. Thanks again for the help and suggestions as it's really helped me out quite a bit.

01-14-2009, 05:04 PM
Before you buy more software you might want to try Microsoft's new ICE software (free download) just load all your frames in the order you shot them and let the program analyze, stitch and assemble it for you....

The MS instructions aren't the best but a little time with the program gets you pretty close.

good luck and keep working at it until you get it down. it just takes time.

John Houghton
01-15-2009, 12:24 AM
ICE can produce nice results - blending is very good - but it doesn't work very well for fisheye lenses. Manual control is lacking; when the stitching is poor, there is little you can do to help it get a better result.