LG 360 Cam review:

LG's cheap 360 camera a great start, but not as strong at the finish

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LG 360 Cam

(Part #: LGR105.AUSATS -SIL)
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3.5 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good The LG 360 Cam is an easy-to-use and comparatively inexpensive 360-degree point-and-shoot camera. It's compact and its clever case doubles as a handgrip. Its mobile app lets you preview and review your shots as well as control the camera. You can shoot with just one lens at a time for non-360-degree images.

The Bad Requires a microSD card that's not included. Photos and videos have to be downloaded to your phone or computer before they can be viewed. The battery is built in. No editing options for photos or video in the mobile app or desktop software. Limited photo- and video-sharing capabilities.

The Bottom Line The LG 360 Cam makes it easy and relatively inexpensive to capture 360-degree photos and video, but simple editing and a lot of sharing options aren't part of the picture yet.

7.6 Overall
  • Design 8.0
  • Features 7.0
  • Performance 8.0
  • Image quality 7.0

The current crop of 360-degree cameras have one thing in common: They're expensive at upward of $350. LG's 360 Cam is the one exception at the moment coming in at a more reasonable $200 (£200, AU$400).

A low price is a convincing argument when trying to get a lot of people to adopt a new technology. That's almost impulse pricing for a gadget like this, and I imagine for some it will be cheap enough to pick one up for the hell of it. If you like wowing your friends and family with the latest tech, the 360 Cam will definitely do that.

Instead of a ball like Samsung's Gear 360 or a box like the Nikon KeyMission 360, this two-lens camera looks very similar to Ricoh's Theta cameras, though the LG is short and stout, not long and slim. A plastic sheath securely slides over its lenses, protecting them when you slip it in a pocket or toss in a bag. And when you're ready to shoot, just remove it and use it as a handgrip by clicking it onto the camera's bottom.

lg-360-cam-01.jpg
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The LG 360 Cam lets you capture spherical video and photos for less than the competition.

Sarah Tew/CNET

The camera's lenses each have an angle of view of 200 degrees -- ample coverage for stitching together for a single spherical image. A quick press of the shutter release just below the lens snaps a 16-megapixel 360 selfie (5,660x2,830 pixels) or a slightly longer press starts it capturing some 2K-resolution video (2,560x1,280 pixels). But before you start snapping, you'll need to pop in a microSD card for storage: It supports cards up to 2TB (should those ever exist), which isn't included.

Without a screen and just two buttons -- the shutter release and power -- you'll have to use the LG Cam Manager mobile app to do anything beyond simple photo and video captures. Available for iOS and Android, the app gives you control over the camera and lets you preview and review your shots.

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