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Transcript: When/Why I use a Pro2/Pro3/AXIS, Z1, RS1, BLK360 for Matterport18211

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WGAN-TV | Tom Sparks (Sparks Media Group): When and Why I use a Matterport Pro2 or Pro3 Camera, Matterport AXIS Rotator, Ricoh THETA Z1, Insta360 ONE RS 1-Inch or Leica BLK360 (1st Generation) to Create Matterport Tours | Guest: Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks | Episode: 175 | Thursday, 2 February 2023 | | | @ScanYourSpace


Video: Matterport Pro3 Camera of a 2,053 SQFT House | Video courtesy of Sparks Media YouTube Channel | 26 January 2023 | Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks | | | @ScanYourSpace

Matterport Pro3 Camera
113 Scans including full front yard and backyard, and closets.
Time to Scan: Interior: approximately 50 minutes Entire scan | (inside and out): 1 Hour 15 Minutes | Matterport digital twin courtesy of Sparks Media YouTube Channel | 1 February 2023 | Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks | | | @ScanYourSpace


Video: Matterport Pro2 Camera of a 2,053 SQFT House | Video courtesy of Sparks Media YouTube Channel | 26 January 2023 | Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks | | | @ScanYourSpace

Matterport Pro2 Camera
52 Scans including peek into backyard, Four (4) 360 images in front and backyard, no closets.
Time to scan: approx. 45 minutes | Matterport digital twin courtesy of Sparks Media YouTube Channel | 1 February 2023 | Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks | | | @ScanYourSpace


Video: Matterport AXIS Smartphone Rotator of a 2,053 SQFT House | Video courtesy of Sparks Media YouTube Channel | 26 January 2023 | Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks | | | @ScanYourSpace

Matterport AXIS Smartphone Rotator
52 Scans including peek in back yard and front yard, no closets.
Time to Scan: 1 hr 30 minutes (including failures to align) | Matterport digital twin courtesy of Sparks Media YouTube Channel | 1 February 2023 | Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks | | | @ScanYourSpace


Video: Ricoh THETA Z1 of a 2,053 SQFT House | Video courtesy of Sparks Media YouTube Channel | 26 January 2023 | Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks | | | @ScanYourSpace

Ricoh THETA Z1
81 Scans including peek in front and back yard and closets.
Time to Scan: approximately 35 minutes | Matterport digital twin courtesy of Sparks Media YouTube Channel | 1 February 2023 | Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks | | | @ScanYourSpace


Video: Insta360 ONE RS 1-Inch of a 2,053 SQFT House | Video courtesy of Sparks Media YouTube Channel | 26 January 2023 | Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks | | | @ScanYourSpace

Insta360 ONE RS 1-Inch
65 Scans including peek in front and back yard, no closets.
Time to Scan: Approx. 35 minutes | Matterport digital twin courtesy of Sparks Media YouTube Channel | 1 February 2023 | Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks | | | @ScanYourSpace


Transcript: WGAN-TV Live at 5 | Tom Sparks (Sparks Media Group): When and Why I use a Matterport Pro2 or Pro3 Camera, Matterport AXIS Rotator, Ricoh THETA Z1 or Leica BLK360 (1st Generation) to Create Matterport Tours

Hi All,

(Transcript below / video above)

If you are thinking about getting started creating Matterport digital twins, you have many 3D/360 camera options (list below): (list of officially supported 3D/360 cameras as of 23 January 2023.)

1. Matterport Pro3 Camera
2. Matterport Pro3 Camera Acceleration Kit
3. Matterport Pro2 Camera
4. Matterport AXIS Kit [Motorized Mount (smartphone rotator)]
5. Ricoh THETA Z1 / Ricoh THETA Z1 51GB
6. Ricoh THETA X (likely to be officially supported soon by Matterport)
7. Ricoh THETA SC2
8. Ricoh Theta V
9. Insta360 ONE [replaced by Insta360 ONE X2]
10. Insta360 ONE X2
11. Insta360 X3 (likely to be officially supported soon by Matterport)
12. Insta360 One R - Dual Lens Twin Edition
13. Insta360 One RS 1"
14. Leica BLK360 (1st generation) [I predict Matterport will NOT support Leica BLK360 2nd generation]

Which 3D/360 camera(s) should you buy (and why)?

On WGAN-TV Live at 5 on Thursday, 2 February 2023, Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks will be my guest to help answer these questions:

=> WGAN-TV | Tom Sparks (Sparks Media Group): When and Why I use a Matterport Pro2 or Pro3 Camera, Matterport AXIS Rotator, Ricoh THETA Z1 or Leica BLK360 (1st Generation) to Create Matterport Tours

What questions should I ask Tom Sparks on this WGAN-TV Live at 5 show about 3D/360 cameras?



P.S. Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks was previously my guest on this WGAN-TV Live at 5 show.

WGAN-TV | 10 Pro Tips for Scanning with the Matterport Pro3 Camera | Guest: Scan Your Space (a Division of Sparks Media Group) Founder and CEO Tom Sparks | Episode: 171 | Thursday, 22 December 2022 | | | @ScanYourSpace

P.P.S. During this WGAN-TV Live at 5 show, I (briefly) talked with Virtual Tour Pro Course Creator Ben Claremont about 3D/360 cameras for Matterport ...

WGAN-TV | Best 360 Virtual Tour Cameras for Real Estate Photographers in 2023 | Guest: Virtual Tour Pro Course Creator and Virtual Tour Mentor Ben Claremont | Episode: 173 | Thursday, 12 January 2023 | Virtual Tour Pro Website | Save 15% with Coupon Code: WGANVTP


Save 15 percent with this WGAN affiliate link for Virtual Tour Pro course by Ben Claremont and WGAN Coupon Code: WGANVTP

Photo & Video Business Bootcamp (7+ hour course) is included in Virtual Tour Pro Premium.

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WGAN Forum Discussion: WGAN Cheat Sheet: Cost Worksheet for Matterport Pro3 Camera

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Transcript (video above)

Dan Smigrod: Are you thinking about getting started with Matterport? Are you wondering what camera to get? Then this show is for you. Hi, all. I'm Dan Smigrod, Founder of the We Get Around Network Forum.

Today is Thursday, February 2, 2023 and you're watching WGAN-TV Live at 5. We have an awesome, super-geeky Matterport themed show for you today and it's a long title, so I might need to take a deep breath to try and say this:

When and Why ScanYourSpace Founder Tom Sparks uses a Matterport Pro3 Camera, a Matterport Pro2 Camera, a Matterport AXIS Smartphone Rotator, a Ricoh THETA Z1, an Insta360 ONE RS 1" or a Leica BLK360 First-Generation Scanner to Create Matterport tours.

Here to talk to us about that is our subject matter expert, Tom Sparks, Founder ScanYourSpace, a division of Sparks Media Group. Tom, thanks for being back on the show to share your expertise with us.

Tom Sparks: Thanks for having me. Can you repeat the title? I didn't capture it. ;-)

Dan Smigrod: Yeah, thank you. ;-) Tom, for context for today's show, tell us about Sparks Media Group and ScanYourSpace.

Tom Sparks: Sparks Media Group is a real estate media provider. We provide everything from photography to 3D virtual tours, video, floor plans, property websites, virtual staging, everything else, and that's generally geared towards residential.

Then I created ScanYourSpace to cater to the industrial, commercial and hospitality industries to provide some of the same services.

Dan Smigrod: You provide Matterport?!

Tom Sparks: We provide Matterport as one of those services.

Dan Smigrod: Awesome. Your geographic coverage area? I know you are based in Suisun City, California – halfway between San Francisco and Sacramento – but I think your coverage area goes far beyond that.

Tom Sparks: Yeah. We're conveniently located right next to the Jelly Belly factory, where they make jelly beans. We cover all of Northern California, Southern California, parts of Nevada, Arizona, Texas, New Mexico. We're trying to expand outward.

Dan Smigrod: Awesome. What were you busy doing the last three weeks?

Tom Sparks: I lived in a house that was being listed in order to scan it with all these various devices we're going to talk about.

Dan Smigrod: You scanned a 2,053 SQ FT home, nearly 8,000 square foot lot, four bedroom, three bath in Vacaville, California with a Matterport Pro3 Camera, Matterport Pro2 Camera, Matterport AXIS Smartphone Rotator, a Ricoh THETA Z1, an Insta360 ONE RS 1".

You did not scan it with a Leica BLK360 first-generation, but we'll still talk about that scanner as well. You literally scanned the same house to create Matterport tours.

Tom Sparks: Maddening, isn't it? I also scanned the home with a couple of competitors as well. But for today's purposes, I think we'll focus on the Matterport maybe.

Dan Smigrod: That's awesome. I don't think it's actually crazy. I think for the We Get Around Network Forum community, you have really given the community a gift by being able to see side-by-side-by-side each of these Matterport tours.

They're available at: www.WGAN.INFO/SparksMediaGroup Think of that as a short tiny URL that gets to all of Tom's posts in the We Get Around Network Forum. I created that link because not only can you find the five Matterport tours created with the different cameras/scanners.

Dan Smigrod: Tom, you gave this other gift, which is you did this first-person video on each of your scanning.

You have, I want to say, a GoPro pinned to your chest. We can see your iPad. You've now embedded your iPad into the video. You've embedded your iPhone into the video for timing and you give commentary as you're scanning about what's working, what's not working, what questions, things that are bothering you, and what's generally happening.

If you're interested in seeing these five videos shot in real-time, five cameras, five videos shooting Matterport, they're all available at: www.WGAN.INFO/SparksMediaGroup I encourage you to go to Tom's YouTube channel – @SparksMediaGroup – All his videos are posted there. You get the benefit of also seeing the tours embedded in the: []

But Tom has created a lot of "how-to" videos for the WGAN community and they are awesome. Anyway, that's the context for today's show. I want to go through each of the cameras and just simply ask you when" and why do you use that particular camera to do Matterport?" Again, for context our audience today, "those that are thinking about getting started with Matterport and they're probably wondering which camera to buy."

That's really who we're speaking to today. The Matterport Pro3 Camera. Just one last thought before I ask you a question is, you run the show back on December 10, 2022 pro tips for scanning with the Matterport Pro3 Camera.

We're not going to do a deep-dive into the Matterport Pro3 in part because we did a full show together and we've done a lot of shows on WGAN-TV Live at 5 on the Matterport Pro3 Camera. But what's your take on Matterport Pro3 Camera? When and why do you use it to create Matterport tours?

Tom Sparks: Well, first and foremost, if there's outside spaces that we're going to scan, it's huge for that. That would be, I think, the main deciding factor on what to use. When I was doing the scans so we can talk about timing and everything, Matterport says the Pro3 is really quick and you can get stuff done a lot more efficiently. I've found that to be true in most cases, but sometimes not.

Tom Sparks: I think that the main deciding factor would be if a real estate agent or if a business wanted an outside space scanned, I would immediately go for the Matterport Pro3 Camera.

Dan Smigrod: The Matterport Pro2 Camera. When and why do you use a Matterport Pro2 Camera?

Tom Sparks: Most of the other time, I would use the Pro2 if it's a smaller space.

Dan Smigrod: Why is that?

Tom Sparks: Because I have the Matterport Classic Plan and so I like the benefit of uploading to the Matterport Classic Plan, keeping those links around.

Dan Smigrod: I'm going to refer our audience to the We Get Around Network Forum: Tom is talking about Matterport Classic Pricing. That pricing changed as of May 9, 2019. If you go into the search bar and you put in "Classic Pricing"...

You can read all about that. But if you're just starting out, Matterport Classic Pricing is not available to you. I'm going to see if I can ask Tom, "if you didn't have that Matterport Classic Pricing, when and why would you use a Matterport Pro2 Camera versus a Matterport Pro3 Camera?"

Tom Sparks: Well, I have several Matterport Pro2 Cameras, and so my photographers have the benefit of using them. They're a lot more cost-effective than the Pro3, so I'd use them in that regard.

Tom Sparks: I don't have enough battery testing experience to speak on the battery life of the Pro2 versus the Pro3, but I've done all-day shoots with the Pro2 and it's less than a long time.

Dan Smigrod: Battery is really not a consideration. Matterport Pro2 Camera is going to last you the whole day. Matterport Pro3 Camera comes with rechargeable batteries. I think you've bought four or five. That's a topic for another day. ;-)

So that you're not really hard pressed in terms of, "Oh gee, is the camera going to last all day?" I think the only thing I'm hearing is, "I would use a Matterport Pro2 Camera because we already have them and because we have Classic Pricing."

If somebody was new and they were trying to decide about getting started with Matterport, they had a choice between buying a Matterport 2 Camera for $3,400 or Matterport Pro3 Camera for $6,000. Is it worth the extra $2,600 to get a Matterport Pro3 Camera?

Tom Sparks: Well, as you're talking, I'm looking at a side-by-side comparison of a couple areas in this house that I did. if you do want to go into quality lightly here.

Dan Smigrod: Sure. What's your impression in terms of quality between the Pro3/Pro2 cameras?

Tom Sparks: Well, they look almost identical. From just looking at a tour standpoint, the window pulls are very similar. The coloring is very similar.

I can't see a huge difference. If you compare quality which is very similar, if you compare batteries, which aren't really comparison, then it gets down to pricing. Then you got [$6,000] depending on when you bought the Pro3.

Dan Smigrod: Matterport Pro3 Camera today is $6,000. If you get the Pro3 Accelerator Kit, it's $8,000. If you bought the Matterport Pro2 Camera today, it's $3,400.

Tom Sparks: Yeah. It would just come down to what your budget is and being able to scan outside versus inside.

Then again, another factor is when you're scanning inside where you have sunlight coming through; 'pouring' on the floor. You got those 'black marks' in the mini-map. You have to do a 360 View to 3D Scan conversion on the Pro2. On the Pro3, it handles it perfectly. A few less steps.

Dan Smigrod: It's less steps. We're primarily talking about residential real estate, but you shoot commercial and I imagine commercial spaces have very high atriums.

I imagine you've shot some warehouses that have had hundreds of thousands of square feet and quite a distance. Would that change your thinking about getting a Pro3 versus a Pro2 if you shoot large commercial office spaces, warehouse spaces?

Tom Sparks: Definitely. I did a shoot. It was maybe 40,000 SQ FT with the Pro2 a few years ago. From what I remember, I was there six, seven, eight hours. It was a long time. As you've seen from some of my recent videos, when I've done the test on how far you can scan in-between, you can go much further with the Pro3.

You have a lot less alignment issues. You can get that data of really tall ceilings or roof lines. This house that we did with the Pro3, you can see some of the roof from the front of the house where it's low and I didn't raise the tripod any additional height. I know some Matterport Service Providers have 30-foot tripods or whatever. I don't think I'm that bold enough to do that yet. There's a Pro3 advantage in that regard too.

Dan Smigrod: If you're just planning to shoot residential real estate, you're only planning to be inside the house and you're trying to decide between a Matterport Pro2 Camera, Matterport Pro3 Camera. You're not eligible for the Matterport Classic Plan.

It sounds like you would say get the Pro2: save a couple of $1,000. On the other hand, if you think you might start doing commercial spaces or you probably kick yourself as soon as you bought the Pro2 and realize you need to shoot outside and then you're going to feel stuck.

Tom Sparks: It just depends on what your business is. If the majority of it is residential, I would go with the Pro2 because you can always add a few. 360s outside with the Pro2 and that's sufficient enough for most agents. If you're doing outdoor spaces, connected spaces, larger spaces, I would pick the Matterport Pro3 Camera.

Dan Smigrod: Awesome. So Matterport AXIS Smartphone Rotator.

Tom Sparks: Is Matterport a sponsor of your show?

Dan Smigrod: No.

Tom Sparks: Okay.

Dan Smigrod: Tell me what you want to tell me. I don't care whether they're a sponsor or not. Tell me your honest opinion.

Tom Sparks: I wish I would have bought it on Amazon and used it within a couple of days so I could have returned it.

I bought four of them and I thought this is great. I can give them to all my guys and one of my photographers who was brave enough to try it out. He said, "this takes a long time" and I hadn't used it yet. So I didn't necessarily believe him.

I thought maybe … because everybody's scans at a different pace. But I tried it. It's painstaking. Painstaking in the amount of time it takes. Painstaking in the errors that you get from it. Phone overheats, got those kinds of errors. I just have an $80 paperweight and a tripod that I'll give my kid to play with.

Dan Smigrod: $80 paperweight. You didn't buy it with the tripod.

Tom Sparks: No. That's the one I'm going to give to my three-year-old.

Dan Smigrod: Anything good to say about the Matterport AXIS motorized smartphone rotator?

Tom Sparks: No. I hate the color from the Matterport tour. It doesn't look similar at all to real life of what the house looks like or even compared to the Pro2 or Pro3. It looks way off.

You can see that if you guys pull up a side-by-side comparison later on of all the Matterport tours that I did. You can see that. It took an hour and a half to shoot the space, which included a lot of failures to align. That probably could have been cut down.

Dan Smigrod: But I noticed on your tour shot with the Matterport Pro 3 that it was an hour and 15 minutes.

Tom Sparks: But that included the whole property outside too, because with the AXIS, I didn't do outside or closets with the AXIS.

Dan Smigrod: Really wasn't an apples-to-apples because you shot a lot less with the AXIS, but still took longer to shoot.

Tom Sparks: Yeah.

Dan Smigrod: Let me ask the question this way because, Tom, you're a professional real estate photographer, aerial, drone, Matterport, DSLR, et cetera, we "get it" that Matterport AXIS smartphone rotator is not for you. But if somebody owned a bed and breakfast – one location?

Tom Sparks: I would hire a professional to come scan those six or seven rooms in the bed and breakfast. ;-)

This is, I think, a good use for an agent who doesn't want to spend extra on marketing for a property, has a smartphone, is fairly tech savvy and wants to do maybe two or three listings a month or even a listing or two a month. They can do their own tour and call it a day.

Dan Smigrod: It wouldn't be too painful? I think, "Oh my gosh! I'm going to tie up my smartphone."

Dan Smigrod: Just my impression because I wouldn't put my smartphone on – This is a $10 tripod for Matterport. Comes in a beautiful box.

Instead of paying $80, you can pay $90 and you can get the $10 tripod. I was just afraid, like, "Oh my gosh! I'm going to lose my $1,000 iPhone Pro 14 Max."

Tom Sparks: I have the same phone and I trusted it on there only because I have insurance through Verizon. But yeah.

Tom Sparks: If you're just starting out, and maybe you don't have much of a budget, anybody who's in business has started at a place where they have to. Even contractors, you have to start with a regular screwdriver before you can get a power screwdriver.

Dan Smigrod: It would be sufficient to say, "AXIS is training wheels for Matterport. " If you're thinking about putting your toe in the water as a service provider, you are a professional photographer, sure.

Get a Matterport AXIS smartphone rotator, shoot a house, go through the whole process of uploading to the Matterport Cloud; process it, do some post-production on it and experience it.

But if you're planning to make a living, this is not the tool for making a living with that tool.

Tom Sparks: For $80, it's a small investment. If you haven't offered a 3D virtual tour to your clients, this is a good starting point. You can do one as a sample and then market that to everybody. As soon as you get two or three jobs, just invest in something more.

Dan Smigrod: In something more, which leads us to two other cameras that you used on-site: two 360 cameras.

The first one was the Ricoh THETA Z1. When and why would you use a Ricoh THETA Z1 Camera for Matterport?

Tom Sparks: Well, if I didn't have the Pro2 and I didn't have the Pro3, I would go with the Ricoh THETA Z1. I happen to have one because I benefited from the purchase of a competitor's camera system that included that.

I cannibalized it to use it for this shoot. It's nice. It's quick. It's pretty efficient. I'm just reviewing my notes here and the Z1 I did "peaking"... I call them peaks in the front and backyard where I don't do the whole yard. I just did a couple of scans. That was 81 scans. It took me 35 minutes.

Dan Smigrod: Versus the Pro3 of 113 scans, including all the outdoors in an hour and 15 minutes and the Pro2 at 52 scans.

Dan Smigrod: -That was, I want to say...

Tom Sparks: - 45 minutes?

Dan Smigrod: - 45 minutes, yeah.

Tom Sparks: -That included a "peak" in the front and backyard, as well. So 50 scans on the Pro2; 81 on the Ricoh THETA Z1.

Dan Smigrod: - So far I think what I heard was the Ricoh THETA Z1 was way faster than using a Matterport Pro2 or Matterport Pro3 Camera, and you could have used it on all your outdoor shots even though you just chose to do a little "peak" outside.

Tom Sparks: - Yeah, and I'll say just to compare apples-to-apples, I did break it down for the Matterport Pro3 Camera.

It took me about [25 minutes] to do the entire front of the house. I'm sorry. It took me 50 minutes to do the entire inside of the house with the Pro3. It took me an hour and 15 minutes to do the outside spaces and the inside spaces.

Dan Smigrod: - Another 25 minutes to add the outside?

Tom Sparks: - Yeah. It's quicker than using the Matterport Pro2 or Pro3 Camera for sure.

Dan Smigrod: - For clarification, the Ricoh THETA Z1 is quicker than a Matterport Pro2 Camera or Matterport Pro3 Camera.

Tom Sparks: - Yeah.

Dan Smigrod: -Okay. If you're just starting out as a real estate photographer, would you go with a – we should say – the Ricoh THETA Z1 is a $1,050 camera, and just as a little parenthetical, the Ricoh THETA Z1 actually morphed into the next-generation of it is the Ricoh THETA Z1 51GB.

If you're going to Amazon and you're Googling, let's say, "Ricoh THETA Z1" and you keep stumbling on the Ricoh THETA Z1 51GB. The Ricoh THETA Z1 51GB is the latest version of it, and the Ricoh THETA Z1 is a legacy camera. It's got the same name.

It's a little bit confusing, but if you're going to buy it, you really want the Ricoh THETA Z1 51GB, which we all still end up calling the Ricoh THETA Z1/ I'm going to ask you that question again. If you're just starting out today as a real estate photographer, adding Matterport to your service offering, would you go with a Ricoh THETA Z1, a Matterport Pro2 Camera or a Matterport Pro3 Camera?

Tom Sparks: - I'd go with the Ricoh THETA Z1. It has the most versatility. You can use it for Matterport, you can use it for other platforms. You can do regular 360s; you can do 360 videos, which I've been getting into more and more.

There is a slight issue with the coloring that I haven't quite put my finger on. I have a little color deficiency in my eyes, so I don't know how to describe this, but it's not quite the same as the Matterport Pro2 and the Pro3 Cameras. But, it's an overall good product. I'm looking at it right now and Yeah.

Dan Smigrod: - This is a little bit counter-intuitive. For clarification, sometimes people think, "Oh, well, a $3,400 Pro2 camera must be better than a $1,050 Z1 camera.

A $6,000 Pro3 camera must be better than a $1,050 Z1 camera. But the qualification I'd put it on and if you're just shooting residential real estate, which camera – and you still went for the lower price camera?

Tom Sparks: - Yeah. Because I'm thinking about, really, somebody just starting into offering [Matterport] virtual tour service.

When I first started, I didn't certainly want to spend $3,000 or $6,000 on a camera that I didn't know that I was going to make money off of, and so this is a good entry point, and if you find that you're getting swamped, you can always buy something more and then give this one to somebody else to add onto your team.

There are some differences too, I noticed as far as being able to zoom in and zoom out and the quality, you can't zoom in quite as far with the Z1 as you can with the Pro2 or the Pro3.

Dan Smigrod: -Zoom in not on the camera, but zoom in within the Matterport virtual tour.

Tom Sparks: -Correct. Yeah.

Dan Smigrod: -Okay.

Tom Sparks: -But yeah, it's a good camera.

Dan Smigrod: -If we didn't have a qualification, if I came back and said, "Well, yeah, I wanted to do residential, but I'm also interested in things like As-Built, AEC, BIM. I need E57 Files, Matterport MatterPak." I just threw a lot of jargon at you. Would that change your opinion?

Tom Sparks: -Yeah. If we're strictly talking about these levels of cameras for E57 Files, BIM, AEC. I actually reached out to Matterport and asked them to clarify their Level Of Detail – LOD – because on their website now to order an E57 File, it says their LOD is 200 and I'm assuming that's from the Pro2. era.

But because you can now order E57s from the Pro3, and you've been able to get them from the Leica BLK360 G1. Okay. I wondered if there was a higher Level Of Detail (LOD) and I'm going to put out a video with their answer to that. I don't know if I should give it away today.

Dan Smigrod: -No, don't give it away. Let's save it! That's a whole another WGAN-TV show and ...

Tom Sparks: -I'll put it out there about that. But I would pick the Pro2 because of price versus the Pro3, and then at the lower end of that, I'd pick the Leica BLK360.

Dan Smigrod: -Lower end. Meaning lower end choice.

Tom Sparks: -Lowering choice just because of how expensive it is.

Dan Smigrod: -Yeah, all right, we'll get to the BLK360 in a second. Let me see if I can just put a little big picture on it for somebody who's just starting out, if any of these things that I say don't mean anything to you: BIM, AEC, As-Builts, E57 File, Matterport MatterPak.

Then don't worry about getting the Pro2 or Pro3 or BLK360, the Ricoh THETA Z1 will be just fine. If and when you get to that level, then it will be timed to buy another camera and just for clarification, if you did want to order things like an E57 File or Matterport, MatterPak, you can't order that with a Ricoh THETA Z1 (or any 360 camera).

You really need to have shot it with a Matterport Pro2 Camera, Matterport Pro3 Camera, Leica BLK360 G1. I [did not] intentionally wanted half my audience to go away just on those words because it really looks like it can frighten anyone when you hear those terms, but if they don't mean anything to you. That's okay. That helps qualify you in order to say, "a 360 camera may very well be the right first choice camera for you."

Tom Sparks: -Okay.

Dan Smigrod: -The other 360 camera that you shot that same house with was an Insta360 ONE RS 1", and when and why would you use that camera? And maybe might even compare it to Ricoh THETA Z1 as a reference.

Tom Sparks: -Sure. I think just for today's purposes and every video going forward, I'm just going to call it the Insta360 ONE RS 1".

Dan Smigrod: -The Insta360 ONE RS 1". That works, we just rebranded the Insta360 ONE RS 1" [Tom: the name is about as long as the title of this video today.]

Tom Sparks: -I was disappointed in this. I had high hopes for it. It looks really cool. It comes apart in 1 million pieces and it looks great.

The video quality out of it is great. But that's not related to Matterport. Just speaking to Matterport, the coloring is similar to the Matterport Pro2 and Pro3 Cameras, so it beats the Ricoh THETA Z1 in that regard and it blows out the Matterport AXIS in that regard.

- But the window pulls aren't there as compared to the Ricoh THETA Z1. I'm seeing a lot of blown out windows, which I wasn't expecting from this. I don't know why. Maybe it's because it's the 1" sensor.


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Dan Smigrod: - Well, today is Thursday, February 2, 2023, and according to the Matterport Support website, this camera, the Insta360 ONE RS 1" as you referred to it, is still in Beta with Matterport. It's still possible that Matterport is 'tweaking it' ...

Incidentally, other 360 cameras that are in Beta are the Ricoh THETA X, the Insta360 X3, and as we're discussing, the Insta360 ONE RS 1". I think the jury still may be out on that because Matterport hasn't officially said, "we support the camera."


Dan Smigrod: It's just available in Beta. You're probably the first one who's actually been talking about the Insta360 ONE RS 1" in We Get Around Network Forum as it relates to Matterport. Aside from the color, was there any other consideration? The Insta360 ONE RS 1" is $800 compared to the Ricoh THETA Z for $1,050 so you could save $250. Your thoughts?

Tom Sparks: - Well, I did a very similar scan. Instead of 81 scans with the Ricoh THETA Z1, I did 65 with the Insta360 ONE RS 1", which included that front and back yard "peak" and no closets. I'll rewind and say with the Ricoh THETA Z1, I did do the closets.

All that with the Ricoh THETA Z1, it was 35 minutes and with the Insta360 ONE RS 1" it was also about 35 minutes, so timing is very similar.

Dan Smigrod: - Super-fast. It would save you $250, but you're still concerned about the quality. You were very happy with the Ricoh THETA Z1?

Tom Sparks: - Yeah. Now, if they can dial in those window pulls, it doesn't matter maybe to some people, but to me, just coming from a photography world and offering real estate photos, it's a big deal to have clear windows and be able to see out and not see just a white mess.

Dan Smigrod: - I'll just point out, we're not really going to discuss the other options here, but there is the Ricoh THETA X at $800, which is in Beta with Matterport. There is the Insta360 X3, $450. That's in Beta as well.

There is the Ricoh THETA SC2, which is $330. There are some other cameras to consider. There are other cameras that work with Matterport, but they're no longer sold, so Matterport supports them, but they're no longer available to buy them new, so we won't even talk about them.

Dan Smigrod: We went through the five cameras. You didn't shoot the space with a Leica BLK360 1st Generation. When and why do you use a Leica BLK360 1st Generation camera?

Tom Sparks: - Well, prior to the Matterport Pro3 Camera coming out, I would use it anytime I needed to do an outside space.

What I would do is combine Pro2 and the BLK360 on a Matterport tour. I've also used it to scan at I guess, a higher Level Of Detail to get more accurate E57 Files when I'm doing industrial spaces or commercial spaces, but for residential it was strictly, "do I need to scan something outside?" That was the determining factor. For me, the downside to [the BLK360]; it's just incredibly slow.

I didn't have any other complaints as far as the speed of it.

Dan Smigrod: - Quality of the images of the BLK360 1st Generation versus a Matterport Pro3 Camera?

Tom Sparks: - Not having a current frame of reference, I don't remember anything drastically different, but I did do a school one time and it was outside and inside spaces of the school and the quality was on par with the Matterport Pro2 because I did the Pro2 and the Leica BLK360 at the same space.

Dan Smigrod: - Interesting. Because I would have said the BLK360 image quality is just not as good as a Matterport Pro2 Camera or Matterport Pro3 Camera. I think probably for today's discussion, the price just blows everyone away anyway.

You are talking about $20,000, $22,000 for Leica BLK360. It solved the problem for you for doing outdoors, it solved the problem for E57 Files, Matterport MatterPak when you needed data files for clients, but if you're just starting out, the BLK360 is probably not an option.

It may only be an option for somebody who has a Matterport Pro2 Camera, Matterport Pro3 Camera and is making significant strides in the AEC space, As-Builts, outdoor elevations and is probably looking at that because they have a specific job and the Pro3 won't handle it. Good enough?

Tom Sparks: - Yeah. Accuracy for those E57 Files is huge. I've been working on a document to compare all the cameras and the accuracy and the BLK360 is a lot more accurate than the Matterport Pro3 Camera and the Matterport Pro2 Camera.

Dan Smigrod: - That's an interesting thing. If you're doing residential real estate, the accuracy of all these cameras is just fine, but if you start to move into commercial, then you probably need a Matterport Pro2 Camera, or Matterport Pro3 Camera, or Leica BLK360 G1 depending on what you're doing.

Tom Sparks: - Quick stats just to tease a possible future WGAN-TV show. Leica BLK360 is accurate, according to them, six millimeters at 10 meters.

Dan Smigrod: - Yes.

Tom Sparks: - Matterport Pro3 Camera is 20 millimeters at 10 meters.

Dan Smigrod: - Yes.

Tom Sparks: - The Matterport Pro2 Camera is 44-58 millimeters at 4.5 meters.

Dan Smigrod: - Yes. I would say if you're concerned about that level of accuracy, then a 360 camera is not going to cut it.

Dan Smigrod: The good news is you can today order floor plans either from Matterport or any third-party company to generate floor plans from 360 cameras or any of the Matterport cameras, but if you really do want to have an E57 File, a Matterport MatterPak, whatever those are, you can't shoot those with a 360 camera. Matterport won't provide that to you. Tom, let me go ahead and ask you through some filters, – some 'lenses' for perspective –

Dan Smigrod: "I'm thinking about getting started with Matterport. I'm trying to decide which camera."

Dan Smigrod: How about in terms of quality? You told me about these five cameras. Could you really tell the difference between them, six cameras?

Tom Sparks: - Virtual Tour quality?

Dan Smigrod: - Yeah.

Tom Sparks: - Well, Matterport Pro2 and Pro3 Cameras are very similar, like I said.

Tom Sparks: The Ricoh THETA Z1 is close to the Matterport Pro2 and Pro3 Cameras. The Insta360 ONE RS 1" was the blown-out windows and the coloring was slightly off. That might be attributed to it being in Beta mode. Matterport AXIS smartphone rotator is just no bueno [no good].

Dan Smigrod: - No bueno.

Tom Sparks: - No bueno.

Dan Smigrod: - No bueno. What I would suggest to our viewers or listeners is go to: www.WGAN.INFO/SparksMediaGroup Go look at all five tours that Tom looked at. I looked at all five of them, Tom, and truly, if you'd done a "blind taste test" with me and said tell me which we shot with which camera, I don't know that I could have done that. I could have told you that some looked a little better than others.

I could certainly tell, "Oh! This one had 360 Views outside versus 360 Scans," but generally, inside the house, walking around, I thought,"Wow! They're all pretty similar.".

That probably goes back to your point about, "Well, if you're just starting out, a $1,050 Ricoh THETA Z1 camera may cut it and let you shoot the space in 35 minutes versus maybe taking two or three times that."

Tom Sparks: - It's super-easy to nitpick things when you have that luxury, but there's a lot of factors. There's a budget, there's time on site.

Dan Smigrod: - Let's talk about it. We talked about quality. We really have touched on speed. You mentioned the two 360 cameras that you shot in a third or half the time of a Matterport Pro2 or Pro3 Camera.

Dan Smigrod: If you need outdoor scan data.

Tom Sparks: Well, you can use the Ricoh THETA Z1 and the Insta360 ONE RS 1" outside too. I just chose not to do the whole yard.

Dan Smigrod: Okay. But it's not the right tool to capture scanned data, that's a whole another discussion.

But truly, if you're shooting outdoors or you have outdoor elevations or great distance or accuracy matters or need an E57 File or Matterport MatterPak, you really have just really probably two options: Matterport Pro3 Camera and Leica BLK360, first-generation.

Tom Sparks: Sorry.

Dan Smigrod: To say parenthetically just yesterday. Wednesday, February 1, 2023, Matterport announced that they will support the Leica BLK360 second-generation, but they haven't announced – when – so if – when – matters, go with the first-generation, if you need the BLK360 second-generation and can wait, it's coming.

Matterport Support says they're going to support that camera. Tom, I'm so sorry. You were about to say something and I cut you off.

Tom Sparks: No, it's okay. I just lost my train of thought about what I was about to say, but that's fine.

Dan Smigrod: I was talking about outdoors, height, distance, accuracy, if you need a E57 File, a MatterPak.

Tom Sparks: Yeah, it was going to say I'm buying three Pro3s for the price of the first-generation BLK360, if it came down to it.

I like the Matterport Pro3 Camera. But it's interesting about the second-generation version that they're going to support that because there was some talk that because they have the Matterport Pro3 Camera, they may just say, "forget you, we don't need [Leica BLK360 2G] anymore."

Dan Smigrod: Yeah. I think what they've probably have overcome is to say, "well, the Matterport Pro3 Camera quality of the imagery is much better than the Leica BLK360 1G/2G, but if somebody needs the level of accuracy that the Leica BLK360 can provide, then Matterport will support it because the level of accuracy of a Leica BLK360 first second-generation way exceeds Matterport Pro3 Camera.

They're competing with each other, but they're not. They're competing in the sense that if you needed to go out and buy another camera and you had $22,000, you would go buy three or three-and-a-half Matterport Pro3 Cameras for

Dan Smigrod: $18,000 versus buying one Leica BLK360 scanner first-generation for about $20,000 or $22,000.

Dan Smigrod: A lot of our discussion has been around service providers that eliminated trying to build a business on that Matterport AXIS motorized smartphone rotator.

Matterport AXIS is training wheels to get started with Matterport, put your foot in the water, sure, spend the $80 but if you're a Bed and Breakfast (B&B) with one location, is there a thought there of which camera to go get or I certainly heard your bias was, "No! Hire a professional Matterport Service Provider to shoot your space? Don't take any time to try and figure out all this Matterport technology."

Tom Sparks: No, if Matterport can resolve that window pull/color and issue of the Insta360 ONE RS 1", I'd go with the Insta360 ONE RS 1" for $800.

But if it was a "right-now" thing, I'd say get the Ricoh THETA Z1 because it's very similar to the Matterport Pro2 and Pro3 Cameras, as far as virtual tour image quality. With that, B&B can take 360 photos if they want. They can update their virtual tour year round to show the different seasons, that kind of thing.

Dan Smigrod: Know that there's some other cameras out there that we haven't talked about still in Beta with Matterport, the Ricoh THETA X at $800, the Insta360 X3 at $450, the Insta360 ONE RS 1" and the Ricoh THETA SC2, which is out and is supported by Matterport for $330.

It is possible to get a 360 camera versus rotating your smartphone and perhaps get done with a little bit faster and not feel like you're putting your smartphone at risk, rotating around unless you're buying ...

Tom Sparks: I had another option we didn't discuss, the Matterport "use your arm" version 1.0 where we can take our phone and just do this.

Dan Smigrod: Yeah. I'm just going to say, "it's not an option!" I would be so depressed if anyone watching WGAN-TV Live at 5 said, "no, I'm just going to use the Matterport Capture app on my iPhone or my Android device and rotate it around."

I think that's a "party trick" for doing one 360. But as soon as you have a space of any size and you're trying to connect the dots, the Matterport AXIS motorized smartphone rotator would be worth $80.

Tom Sparks: Yeah, and I actually did that in an office space one time while I was waiting for somebody. I took my phone and tried the Matterport Capture app (free-hand) and it is painstaking to do it with your hand.

Dan Smigrod: Yeah, "party trick!" If you're a business and you've got 10,000 SQ FT, 5,000 SQ FT or 10,000 SQ FT, you just have your one space.

You heard us say, "hey, hire a professional Matterport Service Provider" and you say, "well, I'm geeky, I'm a photographer, it's like a hobby thing. I'll get it, I'll try it. Which camera am I buying? Am I buying a 360 camera, am I buying a Matterport camera?"

Tom Sparks: There's an argument to use the Matterport Pro2 Camera.

Tom Sparks: I can do roughly 3,000 SQ FT in an hour or so. That's a general average of open spaces or cluttered spaces.

Tom Sparks: You've got $3,500, $3,300 for the Matterport Pro2 Camera versus $1,050 for the Ricoh THETA Z1. You just have one store, I would probably say, "get a 360."

Dan Smigrod: (360 camera.) Keep in mind, I think buying a Matterport Pro2 Camera, Matterport Pro3 Camera is a little bit like buying a goldfish: as soon as you buy a goldfish, you need a tank and you need gravel, and you need plants, and you need a light, and you need an aerator, and you need food.

Tom Sparks: My fish have died over the years. ;-)

Dan Smigrod: Yeah, right. Even though we've told you the cost of what the camera is, we really haven't told you about everything else that you need, including a Matterport Cloud account so take that into consideration.

If you're really serious about the Matterport Pro3 Camera, WGAN does have a "cheat sheet" or cost worksheet that lists everything that you probably need to buy or want to buy. It's available free to We Get Around Network Forum members. It's free to join the We Get Around Network Forum:

Tom Sparks: Sorry, not to divert you off of that too much, but I have a video coming soon where I talk about equipment or accessory equipment such as tripods and monopods and that thing and there's a factor there too, because with the 360 camera you can get away with a lesser tripod or lesser monopod.

With something like the Matterport Pro2 or Pro3 Cameras or the BLK360, you would want something a little more robust so that it's not moving around too much. There's consideration there too.

Dan Smigrod: Subscribe to Tom's YouTube channel: @SparksMediaGroup It's an awesome channel! Tom does lots of "how to" videos.

Buy the gear that he recommends using his affiliate links; support his effort in terms of all the documentation that he's doing. Again, you can see all of Tom's "how to" videos in the We Get Around Network Forum:

Dan Smigrod: www.WGAN.INFO/SparksMediaGroup – which also includes those Matterport tour examples and Tom also writes about, well, I don't want to digress today.

I do want to go to one of the things that people might do if you're just starting out and say, "well, I'm going to get the Matterport Cloud Starter Plan at $10 a month, I don't need the Matterport Pro Plan at $69 a month." I would point – out maybe you have some other pieces here – on that Matterport Starter Plan, you can't use a Matterport Pro2 Camera or Matterport Pro3 Camera or Leica BLK360 scanner, so if you're getting a Matterport Starter Cloud Plan, you are limited to a 360 camera.

At some point, if you get a Matterport Pro Cloud account for $69 a month, you'll be able to move your tours that you shot that are in your Matterport Starter Account and migrate them to the other plan. But just keep in mind, because I get this question a lot to say, "well, I'm going to go buy a used Matterport Pro2 Camera and I'll get the Matterport Starter Plan for $10 a month because that's all I need.

I only need a couple of tours for my ... "Sorry, the Matterport Pro2 Camera doesn't work with a Matterport Starter Plan so you're at $69 a month. Just parenthetically, there are a lot of used Matterport Pro2 Cameras on the market today because there are a lot of Matterport Service Providers that are upgrading to the Matterport Pro3 Camera.

Two thoughts: 1) Go to eBay you can see how much used Matterport Pro2 Cameras are selling for today used, or 2) we have a private group in the We Get Around Network Forum for people buying and selling used Matterport Cameras and related gear.

You could probably get a great deal today on a used Matterport Pro2 Camera because there are so many Matterport Service Providers upgrading but that said, you won't be able to use a Matterport Pro2 or Pro3 Camera with the Matterport Cloud Plan that's $10 a month.

Tom Sparks: Sorry, just to add to that now that you've touched on it, but you cannot order BIM files or Xactimate files on a Matterport Starter Plan; only on the Pro and Business plans. Matterport schematic floor plans are less for the Pro and Business plans.

Dan Smigrod: Floor plans ordered via Matterport are a little bit less on the Matterport Pro Plan versus the Starter Plan. But again, just as Tom has pointed out, if you need Matterport MatterPaks or Matterport E57 Files, you can't do that on a Matterport Starter Plan; can't order BIM models.

You can order floor plans (or a Starter Plan). This is a little bit different from a year ago. You couldn't order floor plans that were shot with 360 cameras. Now you can, so all the ways that you can capture the Matterport tour, you can get floor plans for Matterport (though there are third-party service providers that have great alternatives for floor plans for Matterport.)

Tom, we've covered a lot of ground talking about Matterport Pro3 and Pro2 Cameras, Matterport AXIS smartphone rotator, Ricoh THETA Z1, Insta360 ONE RS 1" and Leica BLK360 scanner.

Did you have other thoughts about; if you were just starting out, words of wisdom or maybe things you would have done differently?

Tom Sparks: When I started out I got the Matterport Pro2 Camera, and I did that because that's what I saw Matterport was selling and I definitely wasn't going to buy the Leica BLK360 even though they supported it. I didn't know that when I started they were supporting other cameras, so I got the Pro2.

Tom Sparks: My mentality is, offer what the bar is. You could offer something less, but if you have the ability to offer the top tier product, do that. I've never offered to my clients anything less than tours created with the Matterport Pro2 Camera.

Now that I've had a chance to test everything, I might consider grabbing up a few Ricoh THETA Z1s and giving them to my photographers and saying, "now we can cover more area or maybe offer this service for a little lesser price because of the fact that you can scan incredibly quick with those two 360 cameras."

Because they're relatively inexpensive, I can get almost four Insta360 ONE RS 1" for the price of one Pro2 where I can get three Ricoh THETA Z1 cameras.

Dan Smigrod: It almost seems counter-intuitive that a Ricoh THETA Z1 – $1,050 – would be the right choice for a real estate photographer starting out because you would think, "Oh, the Matterport Pro2 Camera, the Matterport Pro3 Camera must be the right solution.

They're more expensive cameras." I challenge you to go look at the tours that Tom has shot and compare side-by-side each of the cameras, and I would really challenge you to say, "which tour was shot by a Ricoh THETA Z1 versus Matterport Pro2 Camera versus a Matterport Pro3 Camera.

There's a difference, but there's a whole nother conversation about "good enough" ... If you can shoot a tour in half the time or a third of the time that it takes, and oh, by the way, as you scale your business as a service provider and you need a lot more cameras, we're not talking about $1,050, talking $1,050 times "x" versus $3,400 or $6,000 times "x"... You have some additional thoughts on that, yeah.

Tom Sparks: Well, yeah. To your point when you said you were looking at all of them and you couldn't really tell the difference, it's a, I guess a game for me when I'm looking at 3D tours online – particularly on Zillow. I look and I see who doesn't trim the properties correctly and the "splatter" outside the house and they are rookie, that kinda thing.

But then I also go to the bathrooms and see what camera they use by looking in mirror reflections. Without [viewing the camera reflection in the bathroom mirror], I'm like, "I have no idea. To your point you said, "they all look very similar" I think.

But when I get in the mirror and I see a Pro2 Lite, I'm like, "huh, it doesn't have the regular Pro2." Or if I see a 360 camera I'm like, "huh." But having lived and breathed this now with this particular house, getting through that 2,000 SQ FT house in 35 minutes was huge.

Tom Sparks: If I'm just getting started with this, I'm going to grab a Ricoh THETA Z1 and go to town with it because I can knock out more houses per day.

If I have that business, then I can with the Matterport Pro2 Camera where I might be somewhere on site for hours. That house I scanned with the Matterport Pro2 Camera was almost 40, 45 minutes. But I know a lot of photographers, even some of my own photographers would have taken hour-and-a-half, two hours, probably doing the same house with the Matterport Pro2 Camera.

Dan Smigrod: I'm glad you mentioned Zillow. I know you shoot the Zillow 3D Home virtual tours, and I think it's a good point because my impression is you can only shoot, from a practical standpoint, Zillow 3D Home with a Ricoh THETA camera.

That may be a factor when you decide, "well, do I get the Ricoh THETA Z1, or the Insta360 ONE RS 1", or these other cameras that may cost less?" Just personally I would say, "well, I want to keep my options open because maybe I'm planning to shoot Zillow 3D Home virtual tours.

I really need to buy a Ricoh THETA camera, or I don't know whether I'm going to do that, but I just wanted to keep my options open and the Ricoh THETA line of cameras is probably the most supported camera of platforms that do integrations."

Tom Sparks: We should get Ricoh to sponsor us because we're giving them a lot of kudos. The Ricoh Theta Z1 checks that box – being compatible with Zillow at least for the floor plans and virtual tour.

You can do a virtual tour with your iPhone I believe, but when you want to get a floor plan with Zillow, you have to use the Ricoh THETA SC2, the Ricoh THETA V, the Ricoh THETA Z1, and the Ricoh THETA X. So I would get the Ricoh THETA Z1.

Then also, if you're going to dive into Planitar and get an iGUIDE PLANIX camera kit, you can buy the iGUIDE PLANIX Core which is just the base unit and attach a Ricoh THETA Z1 right on top of it.

Dan Smigrod: That would be another example where the iGUIDE PLANIX camera kit is built around a Ricoh THETA Z1 camera.

Again, if you decide you're going to do Matterport and then for whatever reason you move away from Matterport and you're looking at other platforms and you go, "oh, I could use my Ricoh THETA Z1 with iGUIDE PLANIX Core camera kit. I only already own half of what it takes to have that iGUIDE PLANIX kit."

Dan Smigrod: By the way, if you're interested in iGUIDE PLANIX camera kit to create iGUIDES – tell us about the video you shot on that one.

Tom Sparks: I don't know that I was there so much. I think I did a video, but I can't find it.

Dan Smigrod: You showed "how to" shoot with iGUIDE PLANIX camera.

Tom Sparks: At that house?

Dan Smigrod: I don't know if it was at that house, but I think you've done that video.

Tom Sparks: I've done the video on how to use them, yeah.

Dan Smigrod: You've done so many "how to" videos out there. If you and I go to www.WGAN.INFO/SparksMediaGroup – or we go to your YouTube channel – @SparksMediaGroup – we will likely find an iGUIDE PLANIX "how to" shoot video.

Maybe what I'm thinking, Tom, is that you did a video how to [remove/install the Ricoh THETA Z1 from the iGUIDE PLANIX camera kit].

Tom Sparks: No. I did an iGUIDE on the same house, and I've done "how to" videos, a walk-through with the iGUIDE.

I assumed that I did a walk through video with the iGUIDE at the same house. I can't find the files because I've been at this house every day and I have a ton of [video]. If I don't have those video files I'm going to go back though and redo it.

Dan Smigrod: Awesome!

Tom Sparks: Just to get the video.

Dan Smigrod: I really do – On behalf of the We Get Around Network Forum community, thank you for doing these side-by-side Matterport tours shot with five different cameras and recording in real-time the shooting experience.

Those videos are invaluable for anyone that is thinking about using any of the five cameras that we've just discussed to say, 'what is it like to shoot a house, a 2,053 SQ FT house, 4 bedroom/3 bath, using any one of these five cameras and see in real-time – from your point of view – what that experience was like. I think it's super-geeky, but it's really a super-gift for anyone that is actually trying to make a decision about buying a camera to get started with Matterport.

Then when you watch his videos and if you go to his YouTube channel, he lists all his affiliate links to buy all the cameras and stuff. So support Tom for doing what he's doing because it's like this gift that he's given to you to help you decide which camera is right for you (and then you have some affiliate links.)

Tom Sparks: I've done videos on walkthroughs of other houses, but it was really intriguing to me to be able to have that apples-to-apples of, "here's everything in the same house. You decide now that you have all the data, what you want to use."

Because when you're looking for a new product, if you're like me, I get on YouTube and I'm looking at drones. Then I get 70 different videos on drone reviews and by the time I'm done watching them all I just don't know what to get.

Dan Smigrod: Or you can just watch an hour of WGAN-TV Live at 5 with Tom Sparks and find out which camera is right for you. Tom, thanks for being a guest on WGAN-TV today.

Tom Sparks: Thank you, sir. I appreciate it as always.

Dan Smigrod: We've been visiting with Tom Sparks, Founder of ScanYourSpace, a division of Sparks Media Group. You can find ScanYourSpace: You can find sparks Media Group: If you want to email Tom: You'll find him in the We Get Around Network Forum: @ScanYourSpace

We did mention that his YouTube channel: @SparksMediaGroup and that you can see all his Matterport virtual tours and all of his videos ...

And all his "how to" videos that he's been posting to the We Get Around Network Forum at the short link: www.WGAN.INFO/SparksMediaGroup

Dan Smigrod: For Tom Sparks in Suisun City, California. I'm Dan Smigrod, Founder of the We Get Around Network Forum and you've been watching WGAN-TV Live at 5.
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dave3d private msg quote post Address this user
I’m sure others have lots to add but a couple of things here. A few years back we were hired to capture an outside area in the center of 4 high rise buildings.

It was walkways and garden paths that came from doorways in each building so alignment had to be perfect.

I spent 2 full weekends doing the capture. Told myself this was laboratory work and time spent was irrelevant.

I went through (or attempted to) with the Theta Z1, Pro2, and BLK360. Wanted to understand which to use, when, and why.

The walkways were lined with flowering plants, trees, seating, and in some areas small leafed shrubs which, depending on the walkway area have the same leaf size and shape and hundreds if not thousands of leaves.

The sun passed over the area throughout the day, and it was large. Maybe 300 ft across. So at that time this was a technical nightmare. The z1 works outside if you scan for a short period.

It uses photogrammetry so shadow position impacts alignment. It was a complete fail for a scan taking hours with the sun moving. The BLK wants line of site.

But if that site line narrows as it did on these walkways, and you don’t get a large area of scan overlap (plus 30% or more as I recall) and with so many points hitting same leaf shape by the thousands it too was a fail on alignment.

I ended up using the Pro2 arriving at dawn and dusk periods before infrared would kill alignment. Perhaps I’ll reshoot this with Pro3. I’m guessing it would be fine.

Point is there are, as you say, use cases for all these. BLK is 3 to 4 times more accurate than Pro3 if on high.

Don’t get too caught up in LOD. BLK may just squeeze into the 300s (6mm at 10m) neither Pro2 or Pro 3 get out of the 200s. Though the pro3 is 5 to 10 times more accurate than the pro2. (20mm at 10m vs 100 to 200mm at 10m)

It’s just when do you need that accuracy? A tight application window. And takes a long time to scan. Someone walks by? Start over…. BLK is poor in comparison to tour quality vs pro2 or pro3 image wise.

Z1 looks acceptable but obviously not as good (12 megapixel vs 134 on the pro2 isn’t it) if you want to extract photos. Then classic plan savings. I don’t think use cases are “all or none”. Some of these are having an understanding from experience what you’re up against after you see the space. Sun movement? Foot traffic? Capture overlap? Etc.

Also some folks who hire out capture want z1 for their work and even with z1 there are preferred lighting capture settings. So in doing capture for others the choice may not be yours at all.

Time for coffee, I see I’m rambling. We’ve done over a thousand scans and with that number you get your personal “feel”. I’m sure it varies based on the likes, eye, habits, etc. of the capture tech.

I’d see z1 as minimum entry but still not commercial due to photo quality as low, pro2 as entry (cheap now) with rapid capture, long battery life, great photos, but understand how to use it outside (360s or time of day), pro3 if you can afford it, do outside work, want less hassle to move around, BLK for large empty space if no pro 3 and for those instances where high accuracy was requested up front.
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