DETU Twin 360-degree 3K live streaming camera review
The DETU Twin 360 camera made its debut at CES in 2017 and for the past month-or-so I have been giving it a whirl.
Using your mobile phone to take 360-degree panoramas is all very good, but they generally just take still images. Well, there are attachments such as Motorola’s natty 360 Mod for their V2 Play. But, I digress.
The DETU Twin 360 camera boasts dual f/2.0 fisheye lenses. These are capable of capturing 3K video footage in mp4 format. It can also capture 8-megapixel photos.
It looks pretty good, but how does it perform?
DETU Twin design
When I first got word of this camera I was quite taken by the design.
It’s uncomplicated, non-intimidating and clean-looking. Furthermore, it is really compact measuring just 4.72 x 1.81 x 0.94 inches. It only weighs 98 grams, too.
At the top of both faces of the DETU Twin you’ll find the 180-degree lenses.
On the back, beneath the rear camera is a small microphone, and below that is the shutter button for taking photos or videos without the app.
On one side is the power button with a status light just above it. Below that is the Wi-Fi button. That’s how the camera pairs with your phone.
At the bottom of that same side is a small flap. Beneath this is a micro USB port for charging the 360 camera and a slot for a microSD card.
On the bottom of the DETU Twin Camera is a standard tripod mount and another microphone. Nice touch.
The DETU Twin Camera’s body is made of a thick soft-touch plastic. The lenses are also encased in thick plastic.
Overall, the 360 camera feels roadworthy. Even more-so as it also comes bundled with a little protective pouch.
DETU Twin performance
The DETU Twin Camera’s videos and still images can be uploaded directly to Facebook, Twitter and YouTube from within the 360 camera’s companion app.
You can also use it to livestream 360 video to Facebook and YouTube. These options are attractive for those vloggers on the go.
Through the app you can choose between four different shooting modes: Fisheye, Tiny Planet, VR and Source Mode.
Don’t worry though, you can easily change your mind after the video has been saved.
Shooting can be managed via the DETU 360 camera app, which is available for both iOS and Android. This stitches all footage from each individual source in real time. You can, of course, use DETU’s computer software to do the same if you’d rather.
Grabbing a 360-degree image straight from the app will give you this view.
However, putting it through the desktop software to export as a flat image gives you this. Not entirely sure what’s happened to my legs though 😮
The options include exporting for use with VR headsets.
The DETU Twin app
The camera app is really simple to use. Flicking between the views via the icon in the bottom left-hand corner is self-evident. Sharing direct to your socials is fairly simple too.
Exporting the files to your desktop machine gets a little more confusing, however. It appears that the camera captures multiple versions of the same thing. Knowing which one to sling over to the computer software isn’t obvious and, in this, I am still trying to figure it out. However, those snaps above have been selected using my hafhazard method, so not all bad.
Videos are also similarly simple. If you have yet to come across this kind of viewing experience, upon playing the video place your cursor on the video then click and drag to alter your viewpoint.
Granted, I have only squirted small videos directly from the app. For larger files I have waited til back at base and used a laptop. Still, this is all hassle free.
The DETU Twin’s live stream function works fine. So, fairly happy with all of that.
Audio quality isn’t at all bad. Even when lumbered with being placed in a cramped rehearsal studio with a noisy band, clarity is better than I was expecting.
Image quality from the DETU Twin, however, is a tad disappointing sometimes.
Where the images or video are stitched, is more than obvious. I realise that I may be expecting too much, but this is something I feel worth mentioning.
If I was holding the camera in my hand, you get a great view of my arm. However, even when mounted on a tripod, you get to see that too.
It also doesn’t seem to enjoy low light. This is somewhat expected though if I’m honest.
The video above was captured in an extremely dimly-lit recording studio’s control room. The image isn’t awful but, at the same time, nor is it great.
The camera does run hot. This was most evident when using it indoors for any length of time for testing.
I have been assured that this is well within expected parameters. I must admit, even when hot, the Twin’s performance was never hobbled. Apparently the reason for this hotness is the chipset and battery have had to be placed close together. A familiar tale of many smartphones as we demand thinner devices.
Will this affect its longevity? Only time will tell. However, DETU does look like it’s a company who knows what it’s doing.
Regarding that battery – stamina is pretty impressive. You can easily get an hour’s-worth of video capture from a single charge. I’d dare say 90 minutes is possible.
DETU Twin review conclusion
The DETU Twin is a thoroughly accessibly camera. I can see most people being able to use this device straight out of the box.
Pairing between smartphone and Twin via Wi-Fi is effective and the app is reasonably intuative.
It is also a very compact and neat package. I was able to pack it and a mini tripod easily when attending events, even with a bag already full of stuff I take to the day job.
Image-wise, I am more prone to use the camera for video than stills. For photos I can slowly spin around with my phone and sling that up on Facebook quite easily and not get me or my hand in shot.
Livestreaming is an absolute bonus. However, you do need a decent amount of light.
If you are looking for an easy and smartly-packaged way in to the world of 360-imagry, especially video, then the DETU Twin should be on your shortlist.
DETU Twin price and availability
The Twin 360-degree VR camera is available for pre-order on Amazon.co.uk for £220.