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Make 3D virtual tours using any camera you want - Metareal Stage11494

Montreal, Canada
ysabelc private msg quote post Address this user
Matterport supports a few 360 cameras besides its own proprietary camera. But if you really want to make use of everything Matterport has to offer (ie. schematic floorplans, matterpak files, etc.), then you'll need to own either a Matterport Pro or a Leica.

But with Metareal Stage, whether you have a 360 camera, a DSLR, or a smartphone camera, as long as you can shoot 360 panoramas with it, you can use it to build 3D virtual tours.

We, the Metareal team, are very proud of this feature. But you might wonder why.

Is camera choice really that important?

We'd say the answer is a definite yes. Because if you have the freedom to use any camera you want, you can:

1. Own your own photos and tours

If you're using a Matterport camera, Matterport actually owns your photos and tours, not you.

It doesn't matter how beautiful your photos are, or how much work you put into them. If the copyright doesn't belong to you, your photos can legally be taken away at any time.

And because the company owns your photos, you’ll have no choice but to keep using their software to access all your past projects.

But if you're able to use whatever camera you want, then you won't need to be tied down to any system. You can store your photos wherever you want and use them however you want. And if you decide to upload them to Metareal Stage, you'll still retain complete ownership of all your content (you can read our TOS here).

2. Save time on site

The Matterport Pro isn't really a normal camera. It’s more accurate to call it an infrared or laser scanner. Same with the Leica.

And if you want your location to be captured correctly, you’ll need to scan every few feet when using those devices.

It can also take several hours or even days before Matterport is done processing your scans. If you made a mistake while shooting, you won't know until long after you’ve already left the site.

Then you’d have to schedule another shoot, and pray that this time there won't be any more errors. It could be that by the time you’re done, your deadline is already past, and your clients are breathing down your neck. You might end up offering them a discount just to appease them, and saying goodbye to your profit.

But with Metareal, using any camera you have, you can take as many or as few photos as you want, at whatever distances you need.

And if you end up taking flukes (which is less likely, since you’ll probably be using a camera you’re already familiar with), you’ll see it on your screen instantly. Then it’s as easy as simply retaking that pano before wrapping up your shoot.

3. Get what you see

Ever tried capturing bright sunlit spaces, or shiny, transparent, or black surfaces with a Matterport camera? If you have, then you know just how tricky that can be to do.

There's post-processing to think about too. With scanners, you can’t really touch up your photos before turning them into tours. No way to edit brightness, contrast, exposure, or any other important setting.

If you use your own camera though?

Whatever you see on your viewer, that's what your panorama is going to look like in Metareal Stage. During shoots, you’ll know how to best adjust your camera settings to your lighting too. And afterwards, you can polish your photos in Lightroom or Photoshop before turning them into Metareal tours.

4. Keep your costs down

A Matterport camera costs thousands of dollars to buy, and thousands of dollars more to stay subscribed and make use of it.

Metareal will let you use any camera you already own. There may be a few additional costs, like a new panoramic head for your DSLR if you don't have it yet, or a 360 rotator if you want to use your smartphone.

But that cost is going to be nowhere near what you'd need to buy one of Matterport's supported cameras.

5. Offer customized packages

Because you can customize the number and quality of your panoramas with Metareal Stage, you can offer custom packages to different customers.

Does your client want just a quick and affordable virtual tour? Then just shoot one panorama per room, give the photos a quick touch up, and speed build the tour.

Did your customer hire you to build virtual tours for their own high-end clientele? Then pull out all the stops: shoot from every important vantage point, give your photos top-notch editing, meticulously trace each object and room in your tour, and voila. You'll have a virtual tour to wow even the 1%.


When it comes down it, we believe there’s no good reason to pick a 3D virtual tour builder that won’t let you use any camera you like.

If you'd like that freedom for yourself, be sure to check Metareal Stage out at

P.S. We're offering freebies for WGAN members! Don't forget to activate them on your account!
Post 1 IP   flag post
BrokerBruce private msg quote post Address this user
It would be great if a user could utilize the arrow keys for a continuous move in any direction rather than moving dot to dot. I shoot my own Matterport and think using the arrow keys make a much more realistic "walk through" tour. I do like being able to input
info slides into the tour as your example shows.
Post 2 IP   flag post
Montreal, Canada
ysabelc private msg quote post Address this user
Hey @BrokerBruce! We're actually going to add keyboard navigation with our next update. If you visit our FB User group, you'll see a short preview of it. Update should be released in a few weeks.

Also, the info slide you're seeing is currently the default intro for all tours. But we're also planning to introduce customization to that in a month or two.
Post 3 IP   flag post
BrokerBruce private msg quote post Address this user
Ok, great! I'll be checking it out when it's announced,
Post 4 IP   flag post
Las Vegas
VTLV private msg quote post Address this user
Wow, I just stumbled onto Capture the World with Dee & Metareal this am for 30 minutes on Metareal. The product looks like an amazing alternative to Matterport tours!

Time to take another hour long dive deeper into this with WGAN-TV Metareal episode where I bet Dan dove into some deep waters with more questions.

Thank you to @DeeJ & @DanSmigrod for pumping this info out. We may get busy and miss some topics and new tech from time to time. I appreciate seeing fellow members on the network taking the time out to share.

Post 5 IP   flag post
Gerhard private msg quote post Address this user
@VTLV Yes also been keeping an eye on them @DeeJ for president loved the show.

Also remember too Like and Subscribe.
Post 6 IP   flag post
Montreal, Canada
ysabelc private msg quote post Address this user
@BrokerBruce Keyboard navigation update now live! More details here:
Post 7 IP   flag post
BrokerBruce private msg quote post Address this user
Yes, I saw it earlier. Thanks for the heads up on it.Looks like some other interesting updates as well. I'm still on the sideline, haven't made any move yet but yours would be on the short list.
Post 8 IP   flag post
Expertise private msg quote post Address this user
Ok, so you can edit image files before creating your Metareal tour. Great. My friendly suggestion you then would be to consider the following for your example tour... assuming you want to impress people.

A- level your tripod/camera so that the initial thumbnail doesn't look a funhouse.

B- apply some White Balance correction and adjust saturation carefully.

C- Use a better camera?

This is embarassing...
Post 9 IP   flag post
Montreal, Canada
ysabelc private msg quote post Address this user
@BrokerBruce You're welcome! We aim to release updates at least once a month. If you have any suggestions on what we should work on next that would make Stage fit your needs better, just let me know!

@Expertise Yeah this is one of the first tours we shot, so we know there's some room for improvement. If you check our gallery, you'll see newer tours that might be more to your taste
Post 10 IP   flag post
Expertise private msg quote post Address this user
You probably should lead with one of those then.. assuming you want prospective customers to think you care about quality work. Just spitballin' here.
Post 11 IP   flag post
Montreal, Canada
ysabelc private msg quote post Address this user
@Expertise Noted!
Post 12 IP   flag post
North Palm Beach, FL
hometakes private msg quote post Address this user
@ysabelc Not a smart move having to wait for your approval into your Facebook group before being able to see the posts in the group. People want access immediately and not have to wait whenever you check your page to see who's waiting for approval and approve them. Its no wonder why you only have 107 members in your group after 2 years. I'd seriously think about changing that.

I believe you have the chance to grow extremely fast if you made your pricing much better than Matterport. You've got the 'No Limits' on the number of hosted tours correct for $39 a month. But build your own tours? I dont think anyone wants to take the time to build the tour themselves (with dollhouse view of course). Do them for a flat fee of $15 (your should be outsourcing that part if you are using manual labor to build the tours) and I think that your sales will boom! I'm curious, why have you not built this so that the cloud builds the tour? Why is it a human that has to build it? Your Pricing right now works out to be much higher than Matterport if the tour is made by you or am I missing something? If I were to do 100 panos (equivalent to 100 Matterport Scans allowed before a price increase) it would cost me $200 for you to build the tour for me on your Premium Plan, correct? With a a flat fee of $15 to make any size tour, you could easily charge $99 per month instead of $39.

PS. You said "@BrokerBruce Keyboard navigation update now live! More details here:". I click on your tour and still could not use the keyboard arrows to move around the tour. I must say, i do like your prototype tour version on your website.
Post 13 IP   flag post
Gerhard private msg quote post Address this user
@hometakes true about Facebook. That is why I don't even go on Matterports MOUG anymore, It is controlled and censored by the CIA or the CCP. To many blind sheep on there.
Post 14 IP   flag post
Montreal, Canada
ysabelc private msg quote post Address this user
@hometakes As indicated in our FB group name, it's the "Metareal Stage Users Group", so we only let verified users join the group. So if you haven't signed up yet, we can't let you join. Otherwise we get too many spam accounts joining, which isn't good for anyone. We believe this verification is important to keep the quality of discussion in the group high. Signing up to Stage is free anyway, so it's not really a barrier to entry.

As for building your own tours, you actually don't have to. As you can see in our pricing page, you can have us build the tour for you, and we'll charge you depending on your subscription plan & the number of panos. If you're a Premium user, for example, we'll charge you $2/pano. (Do note that our prices are in Canadian dollars, so in USD that's about $1.44/pano). And if you're an Enterprise user with a lot of tours being built per month, we can negotiate a deal so it'll be even more affordable for you.

Here's the estimated amount of money you can save in USD in a year if you use Metareal instead of Matterport (This is if you ask us to build the tour for you. If you build your tours yourself, the savings are much much higher since you only have to pay for the subscription plan):

(Full pricing comparison table here)

For the keyboard navigation, could you link me to the tour where keyboard nav isn't working? It could be that that tour hasn't been upgraded to the latest version yet, which is where the keyboard nav update came in.
Post 15 IP   flag post
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