Lomography Spinner captures 360-degree panoramas with a flick of the wrist
By Darren Quick
June 10, 2010
Who said film photography was dead? Definitely not Lomography, whose Lomography Spinner 360-degree camera lets shutterbugs take a full 360-degree photo with a flick of the wrist. The camera uses standard 35mm film to capture super-wide-angle images that are four times longer than standard landscape pictures, with a standard 36-exposure roll capable of capturing around eight shots.
Unlike other more expensive 360 degree shooting options, such as the robotic camera mounts from GigaPan Systems, the Lomography Spinner takes a decidedly more low-tech approach. Holding the spinner in one hand and pulling the ripcord with the other will set the camera spinning around its axis to capture a 360-degree panorama in a split second – much quicker than taking a stitched panorama by lining up previous shots on a digital camera’s display (although it must be said, sweep panorama functionality has come a long way in a short time – the new Sony NEX for example, is incredibly smooth).
Since the images are four times as long as regular images and take up the entire width of the film – sprockets and all – you might have problems getting the film processed at photolabs with any kind of automated system. But for photographers with their own darkroom this device could produce some interesting images for those willing to experiment. You can check out some more examples in our gallery.
In addition to the 360-degree horizontal view, the camera features a 66-degree horizontal view with a 25mm fixed focus (1m ~ inf.) lens. It has a relative shutter speed equivalent to 1/125s ~ 1/250s and two aperture settings (f/8, f/16) for indoor and outdoor shooting. One thing it doesn’t have is a viewfinder since it is designed to be held at a distance... and pulling the ripcord while pressed up against a viewfinder would likely result in an injury.
The Lomography Spinner 360-degree is available from the Lomography website for GBP125 (approx. US$180).