The latest version of the Microsoft Image Composite Editor (ICE) comes with a few enhancements designed to make it easier for users to put together panoramic images not only from a collection of photographs, but also from video.
Users can already download ICE 1.4.2, which continues to be available free of charge from Microsoft Research, and as long as they have a video file at their disposal, effortlessly create a panorama.
The tool does offer some control over the result of the video to panorama conversion. For example, customers can select the start and end frames that will be used for the panorama, and even tweak the result by highlighting regions of the video that should be included in the final image.
“ICE supports most common video formats (avi, mov, wmv, and more). Of course the results can also be uploaded to Photosynth,” revealed Matt Uyttendaele
“Note that this particular feature is only available for ICE running on Windows 7 (for other versions of Windows this menu item will be disabled).”
In addition to this new feature, the software giant introduced an additional change designed to compensate lens vignetting.
Automatic Vignette Correction ensure that tones across a panorama are continuous even if the images used to put it together were brighter at the center compared to the periphery (the vignette effect).
Users of previous ICE versions are bound to notice an improvement in the way that various images are blended within the same panorama.
This is done by the new blending engine introduced in version 1.4.2, which does a little more than its predecessor.
“Previous versions did blending by applying a color adjustment to the panorama source images such that there would be minimal visible differences between them. In some cases, this strategy couldn’t adequately hide the seams,” Uyttendaele added.
“In the new version of ICE we still run the color adjustment step, but where this is inadequate, we also do an intelligent fade between the images.”Microsoft Image Composite Editor (ICE) 1.4.2 is available for download here.