Is there an alternative to Photosynth? RRS feed

  • Question

  • I'm wondering if there is an alternative to Photosynth out there where I can upload panoramas to be converted into interactive displays? Also the ability to create the equivalent of synths in the form of 'spins', 'walks' etc would be awesome. I am at my wit's end trying to upload a panorama from ICE to Photosynth. It simply will not work, no matter what I do. Ive been trying to sign in via ICE with my pano all day yesterday and the previous night with no luck whatsoever. I would have made well over 50 attempts. I can sign into this forum and the Photosynth website using the same account with no problems.

    I did notice the option to change my password which I did. And it sent this code to my e-mail address which I copied and pasted into the appropriate space in the sign up section and also typed in my new password. And it confirmed that my changing of the password was successful. I then tried to sign in again (with the new password) and once again, I'm greeted with the message "Could not sign in." I'm using the 32 bit version of ICE with Windows 7.Turning the computer off and then on again makes no difference - I always get the same result when I try and sign in.

    Today, I downloaded all the necessary software on to a laptop running Windows 7 and 64 bit (with the 64 bit version of ICE.) I created the panorama on this laptop with ICE and then tried to export it to Photosynth. Still won't work. Yet again, I get the message "Could not sign in." No reason given. I tried some more but no luck.

    So to rephrase my original question, is there another website out there that can create similar virtual experiences like Photosynth? I really want to make my panoramas interactive. And also experiment with 'spins' etc. I would have liked to give Photosynth a try but it won't let me. So looks like I'll have to seek alternatives.

    Thursday, February 26, 2015 4:32 AM

All replies

  • To create spins or walks you upload your images directly to the photosynth.net website, you do not need ICE for those. Apart from spins and walks, there is also the option for panoramas. These behave similarly compared to panos uploaded through ICE. Maybe this would be an option until the login issues are sorted out? https://photosynth.net/preview/upload/
    Thursday, February 26, 2015 8:42 AM
  • Thankyou Chrysler. Looks like uploading spins and walks etc would be more straight forward compared to a panorama....hopefully. I followed that link you gave and I note that it says: "Drag at least three photos into the box" Though surely a stitched panorama would be considered a single photo? Well it has become one (combined) photo file rather than several photo files.
    Thursday, February 26, 2015 10:25 AM
  • I do echo Chrysler's comments, regarding uploading Tech Preview photosynths to Photosynth.net (Spins, Walks, Walls, and Panning synths) via the link he lists above.

    I would note, though, that photosynths and panoramas are two different beasts.

    A photosynth doesn't attempt to merge the photos into a single fused image as a panorama does.
    A photosynth thrives on parallax between foreground and background, whereas a panorama needs minimal or no parallax for clean stitching.

    Also, a 'Panorama' style photosynth in the Photosynth 2 Tech Preview is a single row or single column of photos, so there's no sense of being able to look up and down in a largely horizontal pan or vice versa like you could stitch multiple rows or columns together with ICE.

    (An original photosynth created with Photosynth's desktop application would allow you to link as many rows and columns of photos panning around as you wanted - and even zoom in and out between shots - as long as you overlap your shots enough, but again it won't merge all of your photos into a single image like a panorama will.)


    Separately, if you would like to try it, ICE does export to HD View, which was Microsoft's panorama viewer for ICE before there was ever the option to export to Photosynth.net.

    When you get to the 'Export' stage of ICE 2, then choose the 'Deep Zoom' option.
    I would put the image quality up to at least 85% before exporting and I'd also select 'HD View (Windows only)'.

    'HD View Silverlight' won't work on mobile devices.
    Even on Windows or Mac desktops and laptops HD View Silverlight doesn't project the panorama around you as you'd expect, so having this as a fallback option for people who haven't yet installed HD View isn't really useful to me.

    You'll need some web hosting that allows you to upload a folder structure which is preserved on the server if you want to share your panos online.
    (Dropbox is an example of free hosting that does this.)

    I will admit that this option won't work on mobile devices or Macs the way that Photosynth's panorama hosting will, but for Windows users with HD View installed it will actually be superior to Photosynth.net's panorama hosting.


    Regarding your troubles on signing into ICE, before checking a previous thread this morning while looking up this link I would have said that it sounded to me like troubles with having two-step verification enabled on your Microsoft account but on the thread with my previous answer Eric Stollnitz from Microsoft says that that shouldn't affect ICE 2.

    If you'd like to try signing into ICE with a test account that I've created to rule out any quirks with your account, drop me a line at the address on my Photosynth profile.

    Thursday, February 26, 2015 10:26 AM
  • I followed that link you gave and I note that it says: "Drag at least three photos into the box" Though surely a stitched panorama would be considered a single photo? Well it has become one (combined) photo file rather than several photo files.

    That is the Photosynth 2 Tech Preview form for uploading photos to create a photosynth.
    It doesn't accept a single stitched panorama, although I have requested this feature on the Photosynth forum.

    Likewise the original Photosynth desktop application asks you to place a minimum of three photos into the window to begin calculating your synth and it is for creating photosynths, not panoramas.

    Thursday, February 26, 2015 10:31 AM
  • Thanks Nate. That worked. I was able to sign in with your test account. So it seems like there is some issue with my account, I gather.

    Thursday, February 26, 2015 5:10 PM
  • I don't suppose anyone can recommend a good size file (in terms of megabytes) for a single photo (within a batch of photos) for a synth? Last night, I tried to upload a bit over 2gb worth of photos to Photosynth. I left it running all night long and into the morning and they were still not uploaded. There is no status bar or anything like that to indicate progress. Just some floating bubbles.

    I want a good balance between quality and upload speed. I still want to allow zooming in on the images and retain detail and sharpness within the synth. At the same time, I don't want to have to wait 15 hours or 30 hours etc for the upload to take place. The FAQ does not recommend dropping the photo res below 1.5 megapixels but I'm not sure how that translates to megabytes. Would that be 1.5 megabytes?

    By the way, each photo in my current batch is 13.4mb.
    Saturday, February 28, 2015 12:32 AM