- Our choice for the #1 Best 360-Degree Camera is the Insta360 X3.
- When choosing a 360-degree camera, you should know there are a variety of options including dual-purpose cameras.
- Some 360-degree cameras can stream live to keep your followers up to date on everything going on in your life.
No matter if you are a content creator or just someone who loves capturing the world around you, a 360-degree camera might be your new favorite gadget.
When you want (or need) a truly immersive camera experience, a 360-degree camera can be perfect for action shots or videos of your newest real estate listing. The latter is a really great use case for these camera types as they enable potential buyers to feel as if they are in a physical location even if they are only there virtually. Let’s take a look at the 6 best 360-degree cameras you can buy today.
- Best Overall: Insta360 X3
- Best for Virtual Reality Tours: Ricoh Theta X
- Best for Action Shots: GoPro Max
- Best Premium Option: Ricoh Theta Z1
- Best Dual Purpose: Insta360 ONE RS
- Best Value: Insta360 ONE X2
#1 Best Overall: Insta360 X3
When you want to come ready with the best 360-degree camera on the market today, the first place to look is the Insta360 X3.
This fantastic camera is a terrific way to capture 5.7K quality video in a 360-degree fashion, so you don’t miss any action. Powered by two 0.5-inch 48-megapixel sensors, you can ask a lot of the Insta360 X3, including capturing 72-megapixel photos and 8K time-lapses. With its standard shooting option, you utilize the 4K lens to grab shots at 30 FPS while making use of the X3’s 170-degree field of view.
Better yet, you can say goodbye to the selfie stick as the X3 doesn’t call for anything other than a steady hand. However, if you do decide to go the selfie stick route, the 360-degree lens on the X3 helps the selfie stick disappear from your footage.
Should you want to try your hand at slow-motion video, adjust the settings on the Insta360 X3 to capture footage at 3K 180 FPS. With this setting enabled, go ahead and make that first attempt at snowboarding down a mountain and capture your first big crash in slow-mo glory.
|Outstanding photo and video quality||Doesn’t offer huge performance leaps over its predecessor|
|Takes great low-light shots|
Check out the Insta360 X3 on Amazon today.
Best for Virtual Reality Tours: Ricoh Theta X
Even as virtual real estate listings might be an unexpected use of a 360-degree camera, the Ricoh Theta X delivers in a big way.
Capable of capturing more than 222 still shots on a single charge, the 5.7K quality footage on the Theta X is a great way to boost real estate listings. As you capture footage, the 2.25-inch touchscreen display makes it easy to frame and know exactly what you are going to capture before you start filming or grabbing stills. The 48-megapixel sensor can easily convert photos to upwards of 60-megapixel shots thanks to Ricoh’s 360-degree camera technology.
When you are filming, the Ricoh Theta X utilizes its magnesium alloy body to dissipate heat so you can keep capturing without fear of working the camera too hard.
No matter how many virtual real estate shots you want to take, the Ricoh Theta X offers 46GB of onboard memory, which is enough space for 11,500 photos taken in 5K quality. If you need more room for footage, rest assured the Ricoh Theta X is memory card-ready to take even more photos and videos of your listing.
|Terrific color touchscreen||Cannot capture RAW|
|Captures great still images||Short(er) battery life|
Take a look at the Ricoh Theta X on Amazon.
Best for Action Shots: GoPro Max
First released in 2019, the GoPro Max was one of the first cameras to really bring the idea of being able to capture 360-degree footage to the masses. Where the GoPro Max really stands out is that it is essentially three different cameras in one. The Max’s primary feature is being able to capture spherical footage but it can also double as a Hero-style camera to capture photos and video.
Finally, the GoPro Max can double as an ideal vlogging solution for capturing footage for YouTube, TikTok, or other social media platforms on the go.
Between panoramic photos, a 360-degree timelapse, GoPro’s excellent stabilization, and a premium audio experience across 6 microphones, the GoPro Max really stands on its own. Still, the Max’s best feature is being voice command ready, so you can say “GoPro, start recording” without touching a single button.
|Fantastic multi-purpose camera||Four years old so feeling a bit outdated|
|Waterproof up to 33 feet||Small screen|
Check out the GoPro Max on Amazon today.
Best Premium Option: Ricoh Theta Z1
- Dual one-inch CMOS sensors help eliminate flaring and fringing
- 360-degree images captured in 7K quality
- 360-degree video footage captured in 4K with stabilization
- Four-channel microphone for excellent audio capturing
Don’t let the price tag of the Ricoh Theta Z1 scare you off as this 360-degree camera offers outstanding 360-degree video quality.
The first standout feature of the Theta Z1 is its dual one-inch CMOS sensors and lens unit that eliminates any ghosting, fringing, or flaring that might pop up on competitor cameras. These features help the Theta Z1 capture 360 images with its 23-megapixel lens and stitch everything together to create beautiful 7K photos that truly pop. The same story goes for 4K videos as they look superb when captured with Ricoh’s excellent video stabilization.
Video stabilization with a 360-degree camera is a hugely important feature, especially for action shots and, fortunately, the Ricoh Theta Z1 does a lot right to keep things looking smooth. Regardless of what kind of footage you capture, the Theta Z1 offers 51GB of internal memory for capturing approximately 6,350 images or 110 minutes of 4K video. Of course, adding additional memory is as easy as adding a memory card.
The high-quality footage and capable battery also make the Theta Z1 ideal for capturing content for real estate, at a wedding, or even going live with 4K video streaming on YouTube.
|Excellent for real estate captures||Pricey|
|Class-leading low-light performance||Fast draining battery|
Take a look at the Ricoh Theta Z1 on Amazon today.
Best Dual Purpose: Insta360 ONE RS
- Two cameras in one with modular lens swapping
- 4K boost lens for wide-angle videos and 360-degree lens for creative captures
- Selfie sticks are removed by the 360-degree lens for drone-like footage
- 48-megapixel photos
Just like Clark Kent and Superman, the Insta360 ONE RS offers a few different identities, which makes it a great dual-purpose solution.
Right away the Insta360 stands out from the rest of the 360 cameras on this list thanks to its interchangeable lenses. Enabling two different cameras in one, you can hot swap between a 4K Boost Lens for capturing wide-angle 4K videos, or swap to the 360-degree lens for an entirely different set of creative possibilities. No matter which lens you use, Insta360 is highlighted by its FlowState stabilization, so videos look smooth without needing any additional edits after capturing.
When it comes to photos on both lenses, stills are captured using a 48-megapixel lens, which builds up to 6K video capture for widescreen videos, or even action shots. As is the case with the entire Insta360 lineup, the ONE RS is exceptional at making selfie sticks disappear so the footage looks as if it was taken by drone and not by hand.
Waterproof up to 16 feet, you have plenty of range above water and below to get the most out of the 1,445mAh battery.
|Multiple lenses open the door to lots of capture possibilities||Not everyone wants to bring two lenses on the go|
|Excellent editing software||Small screen|
Check out the Insta360 ONE RS on Amazon today.
Best Value: Insta360 ONE X2
Once a top choice for the best 360 camera around, today’s price of right around $400 helps make the Insta360 ONE X2 a fantastic value.
Don’t let the size of the Insta360 ONE X2 fool you as this pocket-sized 360-degree camera gives you great results courtesy of its 5.7K 360-degree captures. Photos also look great when you capture multiple 18-megapixel photos and have the camera stitch them together into one large 72-megapixel result. All it takes is one look at the final product to know the ONE X2 is capable of producing outstanding results for all of your 360-degree camera needs.
If it’s a video you’re after, the ONE X2 is feature rich in this area as well. You can start with 8K timelapse video footage or look for 4K slow-motion capture at 120 FPS (or 3K/180 FPS). When it comes to 360-degree footage, you can choose from two different capture methods.
The first and best result comes in with 5.7K quality at 30 FPS or 4K up to 50 FPS. If you shift gears and take advantage of the ONE X2’s Wide Angle lens, you get 2K footage at up to 50 FPS and are able to incorporate Insta360’s FlowState stabilization for super smooth video quality.
One final bonus is waterproofing for the ONE X2 up to 30 feet for terrific above and below-ground results.
|Fantastic value with lots of versatility||Requires smartphone for best features|
|Can create outstanding 360 captures||360 footage can drain battery in under an hour|
Take a look at the Insta360 ONE X2 on Amazon today.
What to Know Before Buying a 360-Degree Camera
As soon as you start shopping for a 360-degree camera, you’re going to need to make some decisions about what it is you definitely want. These types of cameras come in a variety of styles including pocket-friendly sizes like the Insta360 ONE X2, or dual-purpose cameras like the Insta360 ONE RS. Even as both of these cameras capture 360-degree footage, they go about it differently using different ways of stitching together photos, the ability to live stream, or how much battery life is available.
While resolution can vary between cameras, for the most part, once you hit 5.7K quality for 360-degree capturing, many of these cameras offer the same resolution. Where they differ is with non-360 footage where some may capture stills in 4K, 2K, or even 1080p. In addition, onboard editing features are also something to consider so your footage is ready to go right off the camera. For example, Insta360 cameras offer on-board editing right on the camera while the GoPro Max wants you to use a downloadable smartphone app.
The last consideration is to think through your biggest use case for any 360-degree camera. If you are looking to capture real estate footage and create virtual tours, that’s a very different purpose from an action camera that can handle rugged adventures.
Using a 360-Degree Camera: What It’s Like
Regardless of how you use a 360-degree camera, you are going to have a ton of fun, even if it’s for business purposes only. While the six different cameras on this list all differ in some way in how they capture footage, battery life, and ability to broadcast live, they all do something very similar in the end. Because of this, you really can’t go wrong with any option and you will find that no matter which camera you choose, you are going to discover new ways to capture adventures.
Having the ability to shoot 360-degree images is very different from traditional camera capturing with wide-angle, telephoto, or even macro shots. If you opt for a selfie stick, you open the door to even better footage as you can capture everything from a slightly different perspective beyond the reach of your arm. It might seem like a negligible difference, but the footage speaks for itself.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©treerawat wongrabiab/Shutterstock.com.