Exploring 360° video with Final Cut Pro X
I saw an interesting music video today from Bjork – another 360° ‘VR’ video, which prompted me to find out how to create 360° motion graphics using Final Cut Pro X.
If you view this video with the Chrome browser on YouTube, you can drag within the video to look around – left and right, up and down:
Use the cog settings control to increase the resolution to 2160p-4K.
I made this video by scaling a still equirectangular panorama down to 4320×2160 and importing it into a new 25p Final Cut Pro X project.
I then overlaid text on top, animating some of it.
Here is the ‘flat’ video – scaled down to HD from 4K:
Where I wanted text to appear ‘behind’ the initial position – where the left and right edges of the panorama meet, I created two copies of the same title, so it wouldn’t be cut off by the edge.
I exported the video as an H.264 encoded mp4 scaled to 3840×2160 with a data rate of 30 Mbps (more on YouTube’s video upload specs).
For YouTube to recognise that this 4K video was designed for 360° video, I opened the Final Cut output file with Google’s 360 Video Metadata application. The simple UI has a single button:
I clicked ‘Inject and save’ and saved a new file which I uploaded to YouTube.
Looks like I made my graphics too large, but if you avoid moving too far up or down on your background, overlaid graphics should work OK.