Autopano Pro - Panorama Editor - Control Points Editor

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The following tools are used for editing control points:


Control points editor tool


PRINCIPLE

The control point editor lets you manually correct the links and control points in order to obtain an optimum placement of your images. Indeed, sometimes the automatic mode poorly positions or excludes images. This can be easily corrected with the control point editor.


PRESENTATION OF THE INTERFACE

The active control point editor interface uses 2 windows:

  • The Panorama Editor window
  • The Control points Editor window


Control points Editor windows


PANORAMA EDITOR WINDOW

Panorama Editor window


Panorama editing area

Meshing of the editing area

The mesh appears above the preview of the panorama and lets you view the links between images and their quality. It also lets you select the images and links. A color code lets you quickly see the state of the links:

Good quality link (RMS lower than 5): Good quality link.
Average quality link (RMS between 5 and 10): Average quality link.
Bad quality link (RMS more than 10): Bad quality link.
Modified and unoptimized link (the RMS value is not very important): Modified and unoptimized link.


Selecting images

When you select an image, the editor displays them as superimposed and the red lines show you all the related images.

Selecting image example


Selecting links

When you select a link, it is highlighted in red. You can select more than one link, the display of the mesh will change based on the selection.

Selecting link example


Stitching information

The assembly information window groups all the general information such as the number of images, the number of links and the control points plus the quality of the assembly (in the form of an average estimate).
The assembly quality information can be displayed in 5 different ways, according to Autopano’s calculations of the source images:


When the assembly quality is good, only the RMS is displayed. If the assembly is less good or bad, it is possible that a list of the worst links is displayed, letting you quickly correct them. Another possibility is to obtain sub-panoramas. This means that certain images that are normally linked are no longer linked. The list of sub-panoramas lets you quickly create the missing links so that they can be corrected. If one ore more images is not linked, a list of orphan images (without links) will be displayed. When you change/delete links or control points, the message displayed warns you that optimization is needed.
Information window excellent stitching quality Information window bad links are present Information window sub-panoramas are present Information window images have no links Information window optimization required


Tools

Tools window
  • The slider is used to hide links to visualize and identify the worst links.
  • Clear displayed links icon Clear displayed links: This button is used in combination with the cursor.


  • Full optimization icon Full optimization: Lets you optimize the whole panorama.
  • Quick optimization icon Quick optimization: Lets you only optimize the latest changes.
  • Optimization settings icon Optimization settings: Provides access to the control point editor settings.


CONTROL POINTS EDITOR WINDOW

Control points Editor window


Control points editing area

The control points editing area is divided into 2 windows where 2 images selected from the list can be viewed and the different tools could be used to edit the control points.


Selection list

The selection list is divided into 3 closely related parts:

  • All of the images selected in the image list will display a list of links or control points that the images have in common with other images (according to the selected tab).
  • The links tab displays the list of common links when you select one or more images.
  • The Ctrl Point tab displays the list of common control points when you select one or more images.


List of images

Lets you quickly see if an image is properly connected to another.
A redundant image can be deleted with the use of the delete key.
Selecting all of the images will display all the links between all of the images.


List of links

Lets you see the links and their RMS quality.
The links can be deleted with the use of the delete key.


List of control points

Lets you see the control points and their RMS quality. The points can be deleted with the use of the delete key.


List of images List of links List of control points


Toolbar

Control points Editor toolbar


Enable Views icon Disable Views icon Enable/Disable Views

This tool lets you decide whether to display or not to display the images in the control point editing area.


Vertical Window layout icon Horizontal Window layout icon Window layout

Lets you change the display of the control point editing area.


Synchronize Views icon Synchronize Views

Lets you synchronize the display of images in the control point editing area. This is useful to simultaneously view the images when the zoom level is high.


Optimize the panorama icon Optimize the panorama

Lets you confirm the changes to the control points/links done in the editor. The preview of the panorama then adjusts according to the constraints you have to define.
The optimization can be adjusted in the control point editor settings.


Quick Optimization icon Locally optimize the panorama

Lets you only optimize the latest changes. The preview of the panorama then adjusts according to the constraints you have to define.


Add auto control points icon Adding control points to the selected areas

After having selected 2 overlaying images (the 2 images have similar details), draw a rectangular with the help of the mouse on the 2 images in the control point editing area.
The control points will be automatically calculated and displayed.


Example of adding control points to the selected areas


You can also delete control points by selecting an area and pressing the delete key.

Example of removing control points to the selected areas


Add manual control point icon Add manual control point

The adding of a single control point lets you precisely define the control point (and not an area like the pervious tool).
For this reason, you have to define the same point on 2 images with the help of the mouse and the zoom tool active in the control point editing area. The created control point will be displayed in blue.

Example of adding manual control point


Delete selected control point icon Delete selected control point

This tool is opposite to the single adding tool and lets you delete control points singly. Just select a control point and click on the "Delete selected control point" icon. You can also delete a point with the 2 previous tools, select the point and then press the delete key.


Add control point using geometric analysis icon Add control point using geometric analysis

Geometrically analysis the panorama to find the new control points. Uses the images’ common positions to find the overlapping areas. If the 2 images overlap and there are no control points, the algorithm will try to add them.


Clean bad control points icon Clean bad control points

This tool works together with the control point editor setting tool tab. According to the setting used, the algorithm saves or deletes the points that have a value that exceeds the defined threshold on a pair of images or on the entire panorama.


Optimization settings icon Optimization settings

The control point editor setting window is divided into 2 tabs: Optimization and tools.


Optimization tab
Optimization settings, Optimization tab

Optimization presets
These presets correspond to the pre-configurations of different optimization stages that can be viewed in “advanced settings”.
By default, the most appropriate profile is automatically selected depending on the content of the group of images.

  • Quick: Simple optimization. The result may be disappointing if the panorama contains a lot of images or bad links.
  • Strong: (default) This is the best choice in the majority of assemblies. It has a good calculation time/assembly quality compromise.
  • Gigapixel: Suitable if your panorama contains a large number of images (more than 100 images).
  • Fisheye: Select this profile if your image was taken with a fisheye lens.
  • Custom: This is enabled when you manually change the parameters and they no longer correspond to a profile.


Lens distortion correction

  • Enabled : Turns distortion correction to be applied to each photo of the panorama.


  • Focal calculation : Sets the method for calculating the focal length.
    • Automatic : (default) Autopano decides by itself what kind of focal calculation to apply, depending on the content of the group of images.
    • Force different : Allows to force a different focal length for each photo of the panorama. Useful if the panorama contains photos with different focal length, or if the focusing has moved.
    • Force identic : Allows to force an identical focal length for each photo of the panorama.


  • Distortion calculation : Sets the method for calculating the distortion of the lenses.
    • Automatic : (default) Autopano decides by itself what kind of distortion calculation to apply, depending on the content of the group of images.
    • Force different : Allows to force a different distortion calculation for each photo of the panorama. Use in case you change your lens during the shot (if the group contains photos taken with different lenses).
    • Force identic : Allows to force an identical distortion value for each photo of the panorama. Use when shooting was made with the same lens.


  • Distortion model : Sets the distortion model of the lens(es).
    • Automatique : (default) Autopano decides by itself what kind of calculation to apply, depending on the content of the group of images.
    • 1st order : commom distortion, Barrel distorsion or Pincushion distortion
    • 2nd order : more complex distortion, Barrel distorsion, Pincushion distortion or mix of Barrel/Pincushion (mustache).
    • 3rd order : Further complex distortion. Few lenses still get this type of distortion (not very useful in practice).
    • 1st order + optical axis : commom distortion, Barrel distorsion or Pincushion distortion + calculation of the optical axis (the difference between the center of the lens and the center of the sensor).
    • 2nd order + optical axis : more complex distortion, Barrel distorsion, Pincushion distortion or mix of Barrel/Pincushion (mustache) + calculation of the optical axis (the difference between the center of the lens and the center of the sensor).
    • 3rd order + optical axis : Further complex distortion. Few lenses still get this type of distortion (not very useful in practice) + calculation of the optical axis


Options (Advanced settings)

  • Use grid position: This is only available if you have imported pictures taken with the help of a pan head via a Clauss or Papywizard import plug-in. This option re-uses the coordinates provided to pre-position the images.
  • Assume row/column shooting: Active for panoramas coming from a Gigapan head. This method requires high precision in the shooting matrix.


Optimization stages (Advanced settings)

1) Local approach: Lets you pre-position the images locally.
Strong algorithm: Intelligently validates the local approach calculations. This changes in the assembly if the calculations seem wrong (false links).


2) First optimization: Looks for the ideal position of each image simultaneously.


3) First lens distortion correction: Corrects lens distortion (very useful for short and medium focal lengths).


4) Clean up control points or links:
Keep only control points below this error (RMS): Useful in cases where quality counts.
Keep only the N best control points: Useful in cases where only the number of control points per image count.
Remove links below this error (RMS): Useful in cases where the quality of the links counts.


5) Final optimization: This is the same main optimizer as in step 2 that is retrieved (if it has not already been) or retrieved again (to account for deletions of step 3).


6) Final Lens distortion correction: Corrects lens distortions again if Step 4 was performed (cleaning links/control points).


Tool tab

The tab lets you set the control point editor tools. This tab works together with the Add/Delete control points by geometric analysis tool.

Optimization settings, Tool tab

CP detector quality
Sets the detection quality when a control point is added to an area with the Add control point tool. The default value is inherited from the value used in the initial detection of the panorama.

  • Detection quality:
    • Low: Good compromise between the quality of the control points and the detection speed.
    • Standard: (default) Increases the density of the points at the expense of the detection speed.
    • High: Very slow, reserved for desperate cases (….but think about it all the same before giving up).
  • Number of points / Image pair: Influences the number of control points exported to Panotools as well as on the detection quality. 50, the default value, seems to be the best choice in the majority of cases.


Geometric analysis
Lets you set the control point Add tool based on geometric analysis. This tool does an analysis and tries to find geometric correspondences between images that currently overlap in the panorama.

  • Find control points where none exist: Looks for control points in overlapping image pairs but that do not have control points between them.
  • Find control points everywhere and merge with old CP: Looks for control points and control points existing amongst overlapping image pairs.
  • Find control points everywhere and remove old CP: Looks for control points in all overlapping image pairs and replaces the existing control points with the detected points.


Bad control point cleaner
Lets you set the control point Delete tool based on geometric analysis.

  • Keep only control points below this error (RMS): Useful in cases where quality counts.
  • Keep only the N best control points: Useful in cases where only the number of control points per image count.
  • Remove links over this error (RMS): Useful in cases where the quality of the links counts.


Help icon Contextual help

Click on this icon to activate this tool. Click on the icon of your choice to view information about its use.








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