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GoPro’s VR camera is ready to ship, but you probably can’t afford it

GoPro is finally ready to start shipping its long-awaited Omni 360-degree camera – but it’s seriously expensive.

The GoPro Omni begins shipping to pre-order customers on August 17, and even new customers too. But it doesn’t come cheap, setting buyers back a ludicrous $4,999 (£3,800+). Fortunately, most of that cost can be sourced to the six GoPro Hero4 Black cameras bundled with the rig. If you already have six of those cameras, then you can pick up the standalone rig for a less painful $1,499 (£1,150).

So what actually is the Omni? It’s basically a six-camera capture rig that lets you create 360-degree spherical content for virtual reality platforms. At its price, you’d only expect buyers to include professional filmmakers and enthusiastic hobbyists. But hey, maybe if you’ve got a spare four grand in the coffers, an Omni could be yours.

But let’s be fair, you get a little more than just a camera system, as GoPro explains:

Omni is so much more than just a six-camera capture rig designed for GoPro cameras. Omni is an end-to-end content creation ecosystem that, by accelerating the time from capture to publish, will allow content creators to capture and publish more, higher-quality content.”

What does that actually mean? Well, the hardware is pretty powerful, for a start. You’re getting perks like pixel-level synchronisation for clean stitching, error-proof shooting, heat dissipation, versatile power options (external battery pack, for instance), durable, modular parts, and impressive metadata/SD card management.

The rig also comes with GoPro’s custom-built Omni Importer software, which makes it easy to preview, stitch, and publish content that you’ve filmed on the Omni. Just plug your SD cards into your USB hub, and the Omni importer does the rest. Its features include instant stitch previews, shot renaming, shot trimming, colour correction, stabilisation, and plenty more.

Sounds great right? Better start checking down the back of the sofa for spare change…

Related: Best Camera 2016

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Will you be putting the Omni rig on your Christmas list? Let us know in the comments.

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