Skip to Content

How to Make 360 Video: A Comprehensive Guide

360-degree videos have become increasingly popular in recent years, providing viewers with an immersive experience that makes them feel right in the middle of the action. By capturing a full 360-degree view of the surrounding environment, these videos engage viewers like never before, offering a next-level experience in storytelling and content creation. As a content creator, learning to make 360 videos can significantly enhance your skillset and open doors to new creative opportunities.

Before you jump into the world of 360-video creation, it’s crucial to understand the basics of this immersive format. You’ll need the right equipment, such as a 360-degree camera, proper planning, recording techniques, and post-production strategies to create a high-quality result. In addition, you’ll want to consider the unique aspects of storytelling in 360 videos, ensuring viewers are captivated and guided through the experience.

Key Takeaways

  • Acquiring the proper equipment and understanding the 360 video format are essential for success.
  • Careful planning and storyboarding ensure captivating and immersive content for your viewers.
  • Mastering recording techniques, post-production, and sharing strategies maximize the impact of your 360 videos.

Understanding 360 Video

360 video is an immersive and engaging format that gives viewers the sensation of being in the center of the action. Instead of a flat frame, you’re surrounded by a spherical video, allowing you to look in any direction. This format is especially popular with virtual reality headsets but can also be enjoyed on smartphones and computers.

When creating a 360 video, the key is to use a 360-degree camera capable of simultaneously capturing video from multiple lenses. These cameras typically use two or more lenses that cover a wide field of view and then stitch the footage together to create a seamless sphere. There are various 360 cameras available on the market, each with its features and specifications. Choosing the one that best suits your budget is essential to your needs.

Once you have the right camera, it’s time to plan your shoot. Be mindful of your camera’s position; it will capture everything within its field of view. Ensure you don’t accidentally include equipment or people not meant to be in the shot. Additionally, consider the viewing experience from different angles, as your audience will be free to look around.

Filming for 360 video can be more challenging than traditional video formats due to the need for stable shots and careful staging. Although handheld shooting is possible, a tripod or monopod is highly recommended to minimize camera shake. Some popular techniques include using a camera drone for aerial shots or attaching the camera to a moving vehicle for dynamic motion.

Once you’ve captured your footage, it’s time to edit and polish your 360 videos. Specialized software is necessary for editing spherical video, as traditional editing programs may not support this format. You’ll need to stitch the separate camera feeds into a seamless video, stabilize the footage, and perform color grading and other post-production tasks.

Lastly, remember the platform where you will upload your 360 videos. Several video-sharing websites, like YouTube and Facebook, support this format and offer playback on various devices. Read up on the specific publishing requirements for each platform to ensure a smooth viewing experience for your audience.

Required Equipment


To create a 360 video, you need a specific type of camera known as a 360-degree camera. These cameras capture a full spherical view of the world around them, allowing viewers to explore the entire scene. A popular choice for beginners is the Insta360 X3, as it delivers excellent image quality and is relatively easy to use. Alternatively, the GoPro Max is another suitable option for capturing high-quality 360 footage.


While many 360-degree cameras have built-in microphones, you may want to invest in an external microphone for better audio quality. Spatial audio is essential for immersive 360 experiences, and there are microphones designed explicitly for capturing 360 sound. Look for ambisonic microphones that can record audio in all directions, allowing you to sync the audio with your 360 footage seamlessly.

Tripods and Mounts

A sturdy tripod or mount stabilizes your 360 camera during filming. Choosing a tripod with a minimal footprint is essential so it doesn’t appear prominently in your video. Also, consider using a monopod for a more versatile and portable solution, as it is designed to minimize camera shake and is easy to carry around. When mounting your camera, ensure it is at an appropriate height and angle to capture the desired scenes.

Remember to keep your equipment list concise and use reliable gear to produce high-quality 360 videos. Investing in the right camera, microphone, and tripod or mount can create immersive and engaging content for your viewers to enjoy.

Planning and Storyboarding

When you’re preparing to create a 360 video, the process begins with planning and storyboarding. Having a good reason to shoot your video in 360 is crucial, as this format asks the viewer to take a more significant role in experiencing the content. Here’s how you can get started with your planning and storyboarding.

First, brainstorm a story that works best for the 360 format. The story should provide an immersive experience that makes viewers feel part of the scene. This might involve selecting locations with high visual interest and considering which camera angles capture the surroundings best.

Next, create a storyboard, a visual representation of your video’s scenes, shots, and angles. Using simple sketches and short descriptions, map out the different parts of your 360 video. This will help you visualize the flow of your story and ensure you’re not missing any crucial elements.

In addition to your storyboard, create a shot list that outlines the specific shots necessary for each scene. For example, wide shots may be essential for showcasing the environment, while close-ups might be used to highlight specific objects or moments in your story.

With your planning in place, it’s time to consider the technical aspects of creating a 360 video, such as the specialist kit required. This may include 360 cameras, tripods, monopods, and potentially VR headsets for reviewing footage during production.

As you move through the production process, remember to stay flexible and adjust your storyboard and shot list as needed. This will help you adapt to any changes or unforeseen challenges during filming.

By creating a thorough plan and storyboard for your 360 videos, you’ll be well-prepared for a successful production experience, providing viewers with a unique and immersive experience.

Recording Techniques

When creating a 360 video, it’s essential to consider the recording techniques that will give you the best results. This section discusses camera placement, lighting, and audio recording.

Camera Placement

Choosing the right location for your 360-degree camera is crucial for capturing immersive footage. Position the camera at a central point to maintain a consistent distance from the action and minimize distortion. Remember that the camera will capture everything, so you should be in a location with a clear line of sight. If possible, set the camera at eye level to create a more realistic perspective for viewers.


Lighting plays a significant role in the quality of your 360 videos. Aim for even, diffused lighting to minimize harsh shadows and ensure consistent exposure across the scene. Be aware of potential glare or reflectivity from windows and other surfaces, as this can cause visual distractions and inconsistencies in the final video. If you’re shooting indoors, use softboxes or other diffusing techniques to create evenly-lit environments. For outdoor shoots, try to film in overcast conditions or during the golden hours (early morning or late afternoon) for the best results.

Audio Recording

Capturing high-quality audio is as important as video in a 360 video project. Utilize a spatial audio recording system to enhance the immersive experience for viewers, ensuring the sound matches the visuals. Invest in a microphone designed for 360 audio capture, such as an ambisonic microphone, for the best results.

Additionally, eliminating unwanted background noise is essential for creating clear, immersive audio. Pay attention to potential noise sources, such as busy streets or strong winds, and try to minimize their impact on your recording. In post-production, edit and fine-tune your audio to ensure a seamless, high-quality experience for your viewers.



During the post-production process, the first step is to stitch together the various camera shots to create a seamless 360-degree video. This process can be complex, and it’s crucial to get it right to ensure a smooth viewing experience. Remember to rough stitch every shot to create a 360 reference. Specialized software tools are available to help you stitch the footage together, such as Kolor Autopano Video, VideoStitch Studio, and Adobe Premiere Pro.

When stitching, you need to ensure that the video is aligned correctly and that there are no visible seams. Be cautious of parallax errors, misaligned images, and merging issues. Take the time to review your footage carefully and make adjustments as necessary.


Once the stitching process is complete, you can edit your 360 videos. This phase involves trimming, arranging, and combining the stitched clips to create the final video. In addition to traditional video editing software, you can utilize 360-specific tools like Adobe Premiere Pro or Final Cut Pro, which have dedicated features to handle 360 footage.

In the editing stage, consider the pacing and narration of your video. Ensure you provide enough time for viewers to explore the scene before moving on to the next. Be mindful of transitions and cuts, as abrupt changes can disorient viewers in a 360 environment.

Adding Effects

To make your 360 videos even more engaging and polished, you can add various effects such as text, images, or graphic elements. Be cautious when adding these elements, as they can either enhance or detract from the immersive experience. Use software tools like Adobe After Effects or SkyBox Studio to assist in this process.

Keep the effects subtle and well-integrated into the environment. Remember that in a 360 video, viewers are free to look around, so ensure your effects are placed appropriately and do not obstruct the exploration.

When adding effects, also consider spatial audio, which can significantly improve the immersive experience for viewers. You can use tools like Facebook 360 Spatial Workstation or Google Resonance Audio to create realistic audio that responds to the viewer’s movements.

By following these steps and utilizing the right tools, you can create a captivating 360 video that mesmerizes your audience and provides a truly immersive experience.

Exporting and Sharing

When you have finished creating your 360 videos, it’s time to export and share your work with others. This section will guide you through exporting your 360 videos into suitable file formats and then uploading and sharing them on popular platforms.

File Formats

Choosing the right file format is important when exporting your 360 videos. Popular file formats for 360 videos include MP4, MOV, and AVI. The choice of format depends partly on your intended audience and how they will view the video. Here are some recommendations for different scenarios:

  • MP4: This format is widely supported and is the most common choice for 360 videos. If you are unsure which format to choose, MP4 is a safe option.

  • MOV: Developed by Apple, this format is especially recommended if your primary audience uses macOS or iOS devices. Although compatible with other platforms, natively supported playback is more common on Apple products.

  • AVI: This older format is less common for 360 videos but is still widely supported. Sharing your video with people using older devices or software might be a good option.


After exporting your 360 videos in the desired file format, it’s time to share it with the world. Several platforms support and display 360 videos, allowing your viewers to immerse themselves in your creation fully. Two of the most popular platforms are:

  • YouTube: Uploading your 360 videos to YouTube is relatively straightforward. It requires stitching the 360 footage with dedicated software and simply uploading the video file to your account. YouTube’s algorithms will automatically recognize it as a 360 video and display it appropriately.

  • Facebook: Much like YouTube, Facebook has built-in support for 360 videos. Ensure your video file is formatted correctly, and then upload the video as you typically would for other content. Facebook will understand it’s a 360 video and enable the immersive viewing experience for your audience.

When sharing your 360 videos on these platforms, optimize your video title, description, and thumbnail to increase its visibility and encourage engagement from your viewers. Now, you are ready to showcase your 360 videos to the world!

Frequently Asked Questions

What equipment is needed to create a 360 video?

To create a 360 video, you’ll need a 360-degree camera, which captures the entire scene around it. Some popular options include the Insta360 One X, the GoPro MAX, and the Ricoh Theta V. you’ll need a sturdy tripod or mount to keep the camera stable during shooting. Finally, consider investing in a high-quality SD card to store your footage.

Which software is best for editing 360 videos?

Regarding editing 360 videos, the choice of software depends on your needs and skill level. Some popular options include Adobe Premiere Pro, which offers a dedicated workspace for editing 360 footage, and Final Cut Pro X, which natively supports editing and exporting 360 videos. For beginners, consumer-grade programs like CyberLink PowerDirector or Insta360 Studio provide a more straightforward editing experience.

How can I make a 360 video on my smartphone?

Creating a 360 video on your smartphone is possible using a 360 camera attachment, like the Insta360 One X or the Insta360 Nano. These devices plug into your phone’s charging port and capture 360-degree footage that can be saved, edited, and shared directly from your device. Some mobile apps like Google Street View allow you to create 360 images by manually taking a series of overlapping photos.

What are the best techniques for shooting 360 videos?

When shooting 360 videos, keep the camera steady and level using a tripod or mount. Position the camera at eye level to create a more immersive experience for the viewer. Avoid close-up objects, as they can create stitching errors and distortions. Additionally, consider the lighting conditions and minimize shadows and glare for consistent exposure throughout the video.

How do I properly export a 360 video for sharing?

When exporting your 360 videos, ensure that the video’s metadata specifies that it’s a 360 format. Most editing software will automatically include this information during export, but you can also use tools like the Google VR180 Creator to inject metadata if necessary. Choose a high-quality codec (such as H.264) and an appropriate bitrate to maintain the video quality while minimizing file size.

What are some examples of creative uses of 360 videos?

360 videos offer unique opportunities for storytelling and immersive experiences. Some creative uses include virtual tours of real estate properties or museums, interactive educational content, behind-the-scenes access at events or concerts, and virtual reality experiences that transport viewers to new locations. The possibilities are vast, and 360 videos offer an exciting way for creators to engage their audience in innovative and immersive ways.