The rise in popularity of 360 cameras paved the way for Insta360 to make a mark in this industry. Back then, the Shenzhen-based company was relatively unknown. But with the unveiling of 360 cameras with virtual reality integration, it suddenly became a household name. The company’s latest offer is Insta360 Pro 2.
While Insta360 makes a bunch of 360 cameras, this one sits atop its lineup along with the Titan as the company’s flagship professional camera models. The price might scare people off, but there is a bunch of reasons why it costs so much more than rival products. Before we proceed with our review, you first should understand that the Pro 2 is designed as a 360 camera for professional use. Hence, it’s unfair to compare it to entry-level products.
- FarSight Technology designed for long-distance monitoring
- Capable of live streaming use
- CrystalView technology for premium playback quality on 8K video
- Compatible with VR headsets using no more than 8k resolution
- Spherical spatial audio and HDR video/photos
- FlowState optical flow stabilization coupled with VR support
- Uses six F2.4 fisheye lenses to capture all angles and directions
- Offers 8K stereoscopic video capability
Body and Design
The Insta360 Pro 2 is not the bulkiest or largest 360 camera out there, but you will feel its weight. The size and weight are tolerable, especially when you consider the six lenses it carries, plus the small LCD screen. There’s also a battery and one microSD card slot for storage. The camera received audio through the four microphones situated between the four sets of lenses.
Design-wise, the Pro 2 looks and feels premium, thanks to its compact design highlighted by the aluminum alloy construction. You will notice some notches on the opposite ends of the device. Meanwhile, the top portion houses the vents and antennas intended for the GPS and WiFi. You also get several ports located on the bottom with additional vents. The camera provides maximum connectivity options, thanks to the LAN, USB, and DC ports.
Image and Video Quality
The image quality of the Pro 2 is remarkable within this price point. One of the things I noticed about the first generation Insta360 Pro was the inferior output when shooting in low light environments and high contrast scenarios. These issues are no longer present in the new model.
The image and video qualities have considerably improved when compared to the old model. For one, the dynamic range renders scenes, unlike any other 360 camera I previously tried. There are many entry-level 360 cameras out there but do not expect them to provide you with the best quality, especially when there is no ideal lighting. It is why the Insta360 Pro 2 is classified as a professional 360 camera.
The output of the Insta360 Pro 2 gives you a reason to invest in a high-end VR headset. It also makes sense for professional VR content producers to use the 360 camera as it delivers the best possible virtual reality content without any compromise on the quality. Moreover, the color output is a level above the consumer and entry-level cameras, especially when it comes to grading and flexibility.
The Pro 2 offers maximum video resolutions and frame rates. It can handle 8K stereoscopic at 30 fps as well as 8K monoscopic at 60fps. The independent micro SD card option for each lens allows the camera to capture superb 360 videos of up to 120 Mbps. Those numbers may not be significant for amateurs, but professional VR content producers will appreciate the three-folds improvement.
Software and Storage
One of the most notable improvements in the Pro 2 is the addition of individual cards for storage intended for every lens. The previous model’s offloading method is simple since the camera stores all its recordings in one SD card. It means that the second generation is more flexible when it comes to storage. Storage options integrated into the Insta360 Pro 2 include a USB hub accessory and optional card reader. You can convert the camera into a proxy card reader when you link it to your PC.
The Insta360 Stitcher is another nifty addition to the camera as it allows for a short learning curve. It is a built-in app that helps a first-time user to familiarize the interface and navigation. The app is user-friendly since you only need to drag and drop the files from your camera or the memory card. You can immediately choose the stitching options applicable to your objectives. The bottom line is that Stitcher technology gives you guaranteed results in less time.
The FlowState stabilization feature of the Insta360 Pro 2 is made possible by the 9-axis gyroscope. The result is much-improved camera stabilization. It is a critical addition to this product since it is what separates it from other professional 360 cameras. This technology can work with 3D, too. Keep in mind that the Insta360 Pro 1 cannot do the same for 360 video production.
Insta360 Pro 2 takes the cake when it comes to innovation. It is how a professional 360 camera should be. Its predecessor offered a lot of impressive stuff, but this one takes virtual reality integration into another level. For professional VR content producers and filmmakers, the collection of advanced features that permit improved stabilization and camera control adds convenience and the likelihood of better output.
The Chinese camera giant Insta360 nailed it with the Pro 2. The integrated technology and upgrades will put any casual shooter in awe, especially when it comes to producing VR content. For someone searching for a 360 camera with high standards, then the Pro 2 deserves a consideration.
- FarSight technology allows for long-distance monitoring and easier shooting jobs
- Stabilized footage out of camera cuts shooting time
- Compact and lightweight construction
- Immersive audio track through the premium microphone
- Some people might find it expensive
- Small sensors have a limited dynamic range
- No protection for the lenses, making them prone to damage