Insta360 ONE R: The world's first truly modular action camera has arrived

Written by Ned Soltz

If two heads are better than one, imagine how much better three heads are. That’s the essence of the Insta360 ONE R adaptive action co-engineered with Leica.

Insta360 has totally transformed the action camera design with an ingenious one battery, one processor basic unit with three swappable lens modules—a Dual-Lens 360, a 4K wide-angle module and a 1-inch 5.3K video 19mp still module co-engineered with Leica.

Switching between lens modules is as easy as popping off one module and installing another.

Insta360 has been known for its consumer, prosumer and professional 360 cameras which seemelessly created 360 video within the camera but with both software and app which allowed reframing, object tracking and stabilization.

ONE R goes beyond the original models in providing a full imaging solution for shots which benefit from 360 as well as those with action concentrated just in one specific direction. And for those shots, the choice of a 4K or 5.7K 1-inch sensor makes for amazing versatility.

The Dual-Lens module has a 5.7K sensor on two opposite lenses that allow a full real-time 360 preview on the camera’s touchscreen with additional functionalities of “Color Plus”, HDR video and low light enhancement.

The 4K head captures at 4k 60fps stabilized with up to 8x slow motion. It is reversable for either front or “selfie” shooting.

Insta360 ONE R front.jpg

1" sensor

The crowning achievement of the ONE R is the Leica co-engineered 1-inch sensor wide angle module.

Earlier Insta360 modules incorporated their FlowState stabilization which I can attest from using the Insta360 One X provides about the best stabilization I’ve seen in a non-gimbal camera.

Of course, it has voice control and its waterproof to 5 meters. But if you’re diving deeper, an optional Dive Case protects the camera to depths of 60 meters.

It incorporates an AI algorithm that Insta360 calls Auto Frame which identifies what it deems to be the best parts of a 360 video and recommends them to the editor.

Insta360 ONE R modules.jpg

Tracking is improved over earlier models with its Deep Track. Just tapping a subject in the view screen will keep it locked and center framed. Even if it is obscured by an obstacle it will resume the track when the subject reappears.

The invisible selfie stick from earlier Insta360 models works. This is a stick which is narrower than the distance between the two opposite facing lenses. Thus it creates the illusion of invisibility.

Additional modules

Additional modules will be available including a double-sized battery and an aerial module for drones which will make the drone on which it is mounted appear invisible for a true 360 aerial view.

Find out all of the details at Insta360.com.

But here are some quick specs.

All heads support LOG and HDR with video bitrates up to 100Mbps. The 4K and 1 inch modules record to H.264 or H.265 codecs while the Dual Lens 360 records to H.265. All heads offer JPEG o rRAW still capture. A variety of HD, 4K and 5K frame sizes are supported with the 4K module supporting HD at up to 200 fps.

Insta360 ONE R lens guards.jpg

The ONE R can be bought in various kit configurations or in separate modules to expand one’s system at a later point.

Pricing for the camera processor, battery and the Dual-Lens 360 plus 4K wide module is $479.99. The one-inch bundle of camera and 1-inch Leica module retails for $549.99.

The Dual-360 and 4K modules are shipping immediately. The 1-inch module should ship within a month.

I’ve been playing with a pre-release version of the Dual 360 and 4K modules and reviewers have been asked to hold off posting videos and stills until the release firmware and software become available in the coming days, I can say that this is really an entirely new way of envisioning the action cam.

Check out its website and sample footage from release firmware/software.

Tags: Production

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