I just wanted to investigate if anybody has had any success in creating a pano with a 50mm lense available to them....i currently use an 8mm sigma but don't have that option right now. how many pictures are required (best indent ring) and will it successfully stitch together in PTGui? as I'm used to the usual six with my normal gear which works quite well. Any help or suggestions would be great!
Depending of your cam-lens-combi - please add this data always when you are asking for stitching and settings - around 6 rows and 20 stops. Of course it stitches nicely.
With the number of rows and pics the amount of stitching and photoshopping will rise. Choose a quiet place without a lot of people or something else moving around. Begin without bracketing. One go will be around 100 shots, so take a bigger CF card.
Mangojuice, As you are using 6 shots with your Sigma 8mm, I assume you have a 1.5/1.6 crop camera. A 50mm lens (no "e" on the end, BTW) therefore has a field of view of around 16x24 degrees. For a full 360x180 panorama, you will need more than the 100 shots suggested by Heinz. You could manage with 9 rows: 5 rows of 30, 2 rows of 20, and 2 rows of 12. Add 2 for zenith and nadir to give a total of 216 shots - a daunting prospect!
PTGui will be able to stitch the images ok, but there are complications due to the limited depth of field available. Using a fixed focus position as you probably do with the Sigma lens is not practical. When you tilt down towards the nadir, you will need to focus closer to the camera than for the horizontal shots. This changes the lens fov, so you need to optimize using individual lens parameters.
I have only used the 50mm lens on my Canon 40D for partial panoramas for printing purposes. It works well, as in this example: http://www.johnhpanos.com/wimpole2-large.jpg (jpeg 5MB). This was taken with 3 rows of 7 shots.