02 Jan GoPro Fisheye – How do you remove Fisheye?
If you wish to take a photograph of a tennis court, a standard wide-angle camera should do the job. Try using the same camera to photograph a football ground. The chances are that you will miss a significant portion of the action. You need a lens with a very wide angle to incorporate the entire football ground. The GoPro cameras with the fisheye lens are your best bet under such circumstances.
What is a fisheye lens?
A fisheye lens is an extremely wide-angle lens capable of producing a strong visual distortion with the intention to create a wide panoramic or a hemispherical image. Using a fisheye lens, you can capture extremely wide angles of view, such as a football ground, or an entire range of mountains in a single frame.
Fisheye lenses use a unique type of mapping. It does not produce rectilinear images. On the contrary, it gives images a characteristic convex non-rectilinear appearance. In other words, the photos appear curved or bent. This characteristic is the speciality of the fisheye lenses.
The GoPro Cameras
GoPro cameras are renowned for their wide-angle look. These cameras use the fisheye lenses to create these stunning effects. If you look at the GoPro lens, you will find that it has curved edges. This arrangement helps to distort the light coming into the sensor of the GoPro thereby creating the fisheye effect.
The Fisheye lens – is it good or bad?
One has to accept that the fisheye lenses allow you to be creative. However, you do not get realistic images. The curved edges produce a distortion that a majority will not prefer. Therefore, whether a fisheye lens is good or bad depends on the user.
How do you get rid of the fisheye effect?
There are two ways to do it.
1. The Pre-Production stage
2. The Post-Production stage
Let us look at the methods in brief.
1. Pre-Production Stage – Changing the settings on the camera
• The Linear Mode
The GoPro lens comes with default settings that create distorted images. Yes, there is an advantage that it captures a wide angle of view. However, the fisheye effect can be disturbing. One way of removing the fisheye effect is to switch over the default settings of your GoPro Camera to the Linear Field of View (FOV). The models that support such an arrangement are the Hero6 Black, Hero5 Black, and the Hero5 Session.
If you observe the GoPro cameras, you will find four FOVs, the Narrow, Wide, Superview, and Linear. Choosing the Linear FOV can help you eliminate the fisheye effect. However, this method has its drawbacks.
Once you select the linear FOV for a particular shot, you do not have the option to revert to the fisheye look.
While the linear FOV eliminates the curved appearance of the images and presents a linear view, you can lose a portion of the pictures, especially at the edges.
This arrangement works well with time-lapse still photos but is ineffective when it comes to shooting time-lapse videos. Secondly, it does not work for all frame rates or resolutions.
• Use the Narrow or the Medium FOV
The Narrow or the Medium FOV settings can reduce the fisheye effect, but it is not as effective as the Linear FOV settings. The disadvantage is that you cannot capture the entire picture in the frame. Other than not being able to revert to the fisheye look, you find that the image does not have the desirable clarity./h4>
2. Post-Production Stage – Correct the fisheye distortion using video editing software
Under the circumstances, this method is the ideal way to do so. GoPro offers a simple solution to the fisheye distortion phenomenon in their video-editing software, GoPro Studio. Unfortunately, GoPro has discontinued the free download facility of this software program. Nevertheless, you can download it from an independent third-party source.
• Using GoPro Studio
The procedure involves the use of a lens adjustment to the converted GoPro CineForm file. Do so by giving it a smaller FOV. Let us see how to do it.
Step 1: View and Trim
a) Remember the file should come from a GoPro camera,and it should have the original file naming convention.
b) Select your clip and choose ‘Advanced Settings.’
c) Check out the ‘Remove Fisheye’ option and click on the OK button.
d) Add this clip to the Conversion list and convert it.
You will see that you have eliminated the fisheye effect,but you will not notice it now. You can do so in Step 2.
• Use the Adobe Premier Pro – An excellent alternative
a) Import the clip from your camera and drop it on your timeline.
b) Go to the ‘Effects’ tab and select ‘Distortion.’
c) Select the preset that matches your camera settings
d) Go to the Effect Control tab
e) Here you can change as well as notice the changes you make in real time.
You can also make use of other free or paid video editing software to remove the fisheye effect.
If you wish to go for creativity, have the fisheye effect intact. Alternatively, you can use the two methods discussed above to remove the fisheye effect and present a realistic image without any distortion.