Ricoh’s new Theta V 360-degree camera offers 4K video recording capabilities and Surround Sound, something which is a little more of a unique package when you compare the Theta V to other similar camera options that are out there on the market. In addition to a number of improvements with the Theta V over previous Theta models from Ricoh, the company is also introducing software plugins which will be available for connection to the Theta S companion app that you’ll use to connect the camera to a mobile device, and these software plugins will further enhance the Theta V with new functions that aren’t already available with the camera out of the box.
As it stands there is only one plugin at the moment, coming from Ricoh, and it allows you to remotely play back the 360-degree footage or images captured with the Theta V, though you will need a wireless display adapter which is a separate piece of hardware. If you have this though, you’ll be able to mirror that content onto TVs and monitors. Through the Theta S app you can connect the Theta V to a smartphone using Bluetooth Low Energy, and the camera has about 19GB of internal storage according to Ricoh, which it boasts will allow for storage of up to 40 minutes of 4K video footage or 4,800 still images.
Something to keep in mind is that shooting with 4K video is going to drain the battery pretty fast, as the Theta V is only rated to last up to 65 minutes if you’re shooting in 4K continuously until the battery dies. If you’re just taking pictures, then you’ll get about 260 images out of the camera before you need to recharge it. That said, most consumers will likely do a combination of both 4K video capture and still images, so battery life will vary from user to user. In addition to the Theta V camera, Ricoh is also announcing a couple of accessories for it, which are an underwater case to keep the camera dry and safe while you use it under water, and a 3D mic accessory that plugs into the bottom of the camera that was designed for use during outdoor video capture, or during events like music performances where the audio is especially important. Both the Theta V and the and the 3D mic accessory will be available for presale as of today at $429.99 and $269.99 respectively, and the underwater case will go for $199.99 and will be on sale in October. The camera itself can be pre-ordered directly from Ricoh or through Amazon, and while Ricoh does state the 3D mic accessory is available today as well, it’s not listed on the Ricoh site, nor is it on Amazon, so consumers may have to wait a bit for that.