The Manfrotto Pixi Pano360 is a small motorised head that has been designed to allow the user to create panoramic videos and timelapse videos with either a camera or a smart phone. It can be controlled remotely using the included remote control or the Pixi Pano360 application. It supports mobile phones, action cameras, compact system cameras and DSLR’s. Inside the package, you get a mobile phone attachment, an action camera attachment, a microUSB cable a carry pouch. Manfrotto are currently selling this for £129.95 on their website here.
In terms of build quality, the Manfrotto Pixi Pano360 is a solid little device. It’s mostly metal on the outside with only a ring of plastic at the top. It’s also quite small in terms of size, which means it fits nicely in a bag or even a pocket. A small carry pouch is also included to keep it in when being carried around.
It makes use of a standard 1/4 inch thread on the top, meaning it is compatible with basically all consumers photography equipment I mentioned earlier. On the bottom side is a 1/4 threaded hole for attaching it to a tripod such as the Manfrotto Pixi mini, although it will work with any other standard tripods. I should mention that despite showing you an image with the tripod attached, there isn’t one included in the set.
Powering the Manfrotto Pixi Pano360 is a built-in rechargeable lithium battery. I have so far only had to charge this battery once and that was on the day I received it just to ensure the battery was full. The battery is charged using a microUSB cable which is connected via the port on the back of the device.
The included remote control is quite small, so small in fact it has a key ring to secure it to your keys. It is home to six buttons, two of which are in the center and four which run around the edge. The two center buttons are used for turning the motor left or right, while the edge buttons include the panorama button, the video button, the on/off button and the video button. There’s also a small LED status light and the remote is powered by a CR2032 battery.
Pairing the remote with the Manfrotto Pixi Pano360 is a quick and simple task. You start by turning the Pano360 on and then turning the remote on. The next thing is to press the power button on the Pano360 once more so it flashes between blue and purple and then lastly push the power button on the remote and the pairing is done.
One slight concern is that while Manfrotto does warn against forcefully moving the motor by yourself as it could cause damage, it’s rather easy to accidentally move it while trying to tighten an attachment to the top thread.
During my usage of the Pano360, I have found the attached device can sometimes work slightly loose from the top thread. It’s not a major issue, but perhaps some sort of grip in this area would prevent this.
I have been using this with a smart phone attached and have to say the overall feeling is that it’s a pretty good product when it comes to taking panoramic images. I’m no photographer or filmmaker myself but have found it to produce great results, when the conditions of use are good. For example, it’s really quiet, which of course is quite important when you’re trying to record a video. It’s also quite smooth in its movements with no jumping or shaking. In windy conditions, it’s a bit more troublesome, particularly when on a tripod, when you start to notice the wind giving it a bit of a push about.
Overall I have found the Manfrotto Pixi Pano360 to be a decent little gadget. It’s easy to use and is really well made. COming from Manfrotto, I wouldn’t expect any less. It isn’t without its flaws though, although admittedly the flaws are easily outweighed by all the good things.
- Small size
- Premium build quality
- Easy to use
- Comes with attachments
- Attached devices can become slightly loose during use
- Hard not to accidentally move the head while attaching a device