GigaPixel Panorama


[Ewout] sent us some info on this Automated Gigapixel Panorama Acquisition system.  The system automates the process of taking the large amounts of images required to do gigapixel panoramics. You tell it key information, like what lens, and what percent overlap you want and the system will calculate how many images it will take, as well as the gigapixel count. The results are quite stunning, no visible seams with fantastic detail.  Interestingly, this was created for a class in embedded system design (ECE4180) at Georgia Institute of Technology and so was our post earlier today on Digitally Assisted Billiards. Is Hack a Day part of the class curriculum? It should be.


  1. Andrew says:

    I want to mount my camera in a similar setup! =O

  2. pDitty says:

    wouldn’t work for objects that are close to the camera.

  3. dummsau says:


  4. Ewout says:

    We planned to create our own platform to rotate around the nodal point, since this would eliminate Parallax error. However, due to budgetary reasons we used a CCTV platform. As long as you’re not making a panorama of a distance far away such as a city scape the distortion is minimized.

  5. Ewout says:

    Edit on the previous comment…

    “As long as you ARE making a panorama of a distance far away such as a city scape the distortion is minimized.”

    Sorry for the error.

  6. icefox says:

    Wow, imagine how detailed a close-up image would look. Then Imagine what a pain in the ass it would be to make that work properly.

  7. jim says:

    Now just invent a system which can do this with long exposures whilst dynamically tracking a star field at night. I don’t know what purpose it would serve, but I’m sure it would be cool.

  8. bob says:

    All this shows is that advanced technology =/= good photographs.

  9. will d. says:

    now do the same thing, but with a large format scanning back camera:

    hello terapixels!

  10. TheFu says:

    Doesn’t Microsoft claim this is easy under Vista in their latest commercials?

  11. calebkraft says:

    the parallax issue can be resolved by simply making a quick extension that allows it to rotate around the focal point. It could be as simple as a scrap piece of wood extending off the back.

  12. Ewout says:

    But then you’re still not rotating around the focal point in both axes.

  13. aka-44 says:

    Stop posting flash-only content.


  14. hellofanengineer says:

    “Is Hack a Day part of the class curriculum?”

    I guess you could say it is since the class curriculum is right on topic with this website. A number of 4180 project have been on this website in the past. Also, I know a lot of current and former students (such as myself) love Hack-A-Day.

    Go hack-a-day and go jackets!

  15. jose says:

    Did anyone else find the naked woman in the apartment building in the middle?

  16. mattaphore says:

    That’s cool, xres has some really cool Yosemite Gigapixel pictures… you can even use em to plan your climbing routes :-P

  17. answr42 says:

    Very Nice! Gotta love the view from the south parking deck at north ave apartments!

  18. zack says:

    This looks like more amateur setup of gigapan. Check out

  19. neil says:

    Just buy a Red camera and stitch the stills together later…. i think that would be faster as well. Some of the projects on hack a day are completely impractical – this is one of them.

  20. pditty, Mounting a camera nodally will eliminate any parallax issues. I built a very similar camera head a few weeks ago. Mine is nodally mounted though it sounds like the one in this article has better software in that it figures out how many pictures are needed. Mine just takes an array of pictures that always have the same number of pictures per row. That isn’t necessary for rows looking close to straight up or straight down.

    Next step for my camera is to make it a digital slit scan… I’m not quite sure how to deal with all of the data that I would generate. Each picture will be about 300 megabytes without compression. I’m looking at embedded Linux computers because those processors can probably deal with that amount of info in a reasonable time.

  21. Chris says:

    Hey Neil, why don’t you get a life and appreciate a project for the accomplishment instead of trying to overcompensate for yourself, thanks.

  22. Ewout says:

    Hey neil — good luck taking 200+ images to stitch them later, this is why we built it. It’s not practical to do by hand.

  23. Beef Wellington says:

    Can you say “it’s Where’s Waldo time!”.

  24. Kamu says:

    This is great. I don’t know what the critics are on about ‘impractical’. Its fully automated, how isn’t it practical?!

    Source code is available, all that there needs to be now is a build log!

    Nicely done.

  25. After see this i just say this SUPERB

  26. Clare Love says:

    Ive done this with some success making a bracket from aluminum bar stock to allow camera to rotate around the “nodal point”. Biggest problem I’ve encountered is exposure. Brightness often varies over a tremendous range when you are outside on a clear day using sunlight.

  27. I keep reading sites that talk about losing weight or becoming fit, and seeing your information is encouraging, because it is not so easy as they say it is..

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