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Pint-sized LucidCam shoots 4K photo, 2K video in 3D and 180 degrees

Announced on Thursday at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the LucidCam from Lucid VR combines stereoscopic video with virtual reality, 180-degree recording. The device itself isn’t much larger than a phone and promises to be a truly portable solution for creating 3D VR content. While it can shoot still photos at 4K resolution, video is limited to 2K, although it will record at up to 45 frames per second, splitting the difference between the standard 30 and 60fps.

In a way, the LucidCam is very similar to other dual-lens VR cameras. Rather than placing the lenses back to back, as with the Samsung Gear 360 or Ricoh Theta S, the LucidCam puts them side by side. This means it can’t capture full 360-degree spherical video, instead making due with hemispherical 180 x 180-degree footage. Some may not wish to call it true virtual reality, then, but Lucid VR seems content to trade 180 degrees of coverage for true stereoscopic 3D. With an optional waterproof case, users can even take the camera up to 12 meters underwater.

“We are on a mission to make true virtual reality in 3D as easy to create as a click of a button so people can produce high-quality immersive experiences the way they see them,” said Lucid VR CEO Han Jin in a statement. The LucidCam will automatically stitch footage from the two lenses and users can watch it immediately in 3D on their phones using a VR viewer.

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Users will also be able to live-stream HD footage, a feature that Lucid VR hopes will make for engaging and personal live content that friends will want to watch. From traveling to attending a music concert, Lucid VR wants to help people easily share their experiences in 3D and VR in a way that makes viewers feel like they were there.

The camera is on display at CES and developer kits are available now. The final product is expected to ship in the second quarter of this year. Customers can pre-order the LucidCam today for $399.