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Pan3d - Panorama 3D scanner and viewer

Use Pan 3D to see stereo panorama images on the iPhone in 3D. Images can be imported and stored in the photo library, or created within the app using a novel stereo scanning scheme that takes a 3D panorama without any special lenses. Compatible with cardboard and other "side by side" stereo virtual reality (VR) image viewers.

Seeing 3-D

With the recent popularity of 3D viewers for gaming and other applications one assumes such devices are essential for viewing 3-D media. As it turns out, with a little training anybody can see 3-D without viewers, glasses, or other devices. Let's start by viewing the photo below in 3-D.

Hold your mobile device at arm’s length and look over the top of the screen at a distant object. Without lowering your gaze notice the two images now seem to overlap to form a third image between them. Keeping your eyes relaxed and focused in the distance, shift your attention (but not your eyes) to that third, middle image. When the correct gaze is achieved the horizontal and vertical bars will overlap to form a "+" sign and the image appear three-dimensional.


Viewing a 3D pan image

You can view pan 3D images by first importing the photo into your photo library. Open Pan 3D and tap the bottom import button to load the image and then rotate the device to reveal the pan viewer. The movie below shows an pan 3D image captured by Christian Richardt. You can change the look direction either by rotating your body or swiping the screen left/right to change the azimuth angle or up/down to change the elevation angle.

Capturing a 3D pan image

To create your own 3D panorama, hold the camera upright, tap the top camera button, and rotate 360 deg. to complete a circle. The stereo scanner generates a strip image with the same vertical field of view as the camera (about 64 deg. for an iPhone 6). Touching the screen reveals a parallax control. Choose minimum parallax for close up objects in rooms, the middle setting for typical indoor and many outdoor scenes, and maximum parallax for more distant vistas. The scan completes automatically, but in some cases it may be necessary to tap the camera button a second time to complete the scan. As above turn the device to view the scan in landscape mode. Tapping the screen in landscape mode reveals a button for saving scans in the standard 3D pan stereo format to the camera roll. Several outdoor scans are shown below.

If you have trouble seeing these in 3D pause the movie and repeat the above procedure for "seeing" 3D.

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