360 spin from a 3D model

3D model with renderingMost 360° product spins are photographed on a turntable. But not all…

3D models can be turned into interactive spins, then embedded into your website using Sirv. The nature of 3D models permits them to be animated in ways that would be impossible using traditional 360 photography.

Examples

This animated coiled ring has a solid silver ball spinning within it. Displaying this product in a life-like 3D animation is perhaps the only way to truly show on screen how the product looks/feels in real-life. Created by Hockley Mint, it’s a super-smooth spin of 200 frames, so takes a little while to download:

These Samsung phones appear suspended at an angle, helping you see the buttons on all size, the width, the front and the back. Placing two phones next to each other at different angles helps give perspective as well as creativity. Incredibly detailed and textured, it’s hard to tell if these images were really generated from scratch as a 3D model. Created by 3DFuture, this demo uses 72 images:

This iPad animation shows exactly how a flip cover works on an iPad. Created by Apple, this is another smooth spin, using 92 images:

Embed a 3D model

Once your 3D model has been constructed in 3D modelling software (such as Blender, SketchUp, DAZ 3D or Rhinoceros), a set of JPEG or PNG images can be exported and uploaded to Sirv. Copy and paste the HTML to embed the 3D spin in your web page.

The model file itself is not uploaded to Sirv so the spin is not infinitely adjustable like true 3D. What Sirv delivers you is a spin that works on all browsers, mobiles and tablets with fast loading, image zoom and full-screen enlarge. By taking advantage of the image optimization options in Sirv, you’ll also ensure you’re serving your images as fast as humanly possible. WebP image format, resizing and compression can all help reduce load time.

How many frames

A Sirv animation can have up to 500 frames in it. Having that many frames makes a spin feel extraordinarily smooth.

While more frames feel smoother, we recommend keeping it below 100 frames so that users don’t wait too long for it to load.

360 photography versus 360 modelling

There are pros and cons of each method for obtaining the images for a 360 spin. Some factors to consider include:

360 photography360 modelling
User experienceOutstanding user feedback, very life-like experienceExcellent user experience if modelled well, like the examples above
Suitable forAll types of productPrecision products such as jewellery and electronics
SkillFor best results, requires a professional photo studio with specialist equipmentFor best results, requires a professional 3D modelling artist
Production time10 minutes to 2 hours2 hours to 8 hours
CostTypically $40-200 USD per productTypically $200-800 USD per product
Hiring a professionalProfessional 360 photography studios can be found around the world3D product modelling professionals can be hard to find


Credit: Thanks to 3D Future and Hockley Mint for the demos.