HDR plugin to automatically create EXR file. For VFX use

Hi all and thanks to Kasper for the awesome plug-in.

I’m no programmer but just a simple user and just got my Theta V for the only reasone to shoot on-set HDRIs .

I did some tests and so far everything worked fine like in the description.
Unfortunately I realized an issued when having a very bright spot, like the sun in the picture.
The brightest spot, which is out of the dynamic range and therefore should be just clipped white appears as a black dot. Also the tone values are way lower then those of the surrounding pixels.

tone_values tone_values_highlight_middle

Did anybody else run into this problem or is there already a fix?

Hi Benjamin,

yes I noticed this problem before. It is on my todo list. The problem is this is an error in the code used for creating the hdr image, and that is an external library so a bit harder to fix (it is in the opencv lib).

It happens when the darkest picture of the bracket has a full white (values of 1) part in it. usually this is the core of the sun. I always call this error “the black hole sun error”.

The theta V is not so great at making very dark pictures, lowest ISO 64 and shortest exposure is 1/12500 sec which is not enough for a full black image in very bright situations. One fix could be to add some ND filter to the camera by tapeing that on it. Not the best solution in my opinion. Also my hope is that the z1 is better at this because it has some aperture settings.

Anyway you got me thinking and I could use the full white values in the darkest bracket as the base for an alpha channel, then use this to fill in the black hole sun in the exr. I’ll try to see if this can fix the problem.

For now you will have to manually fix it in nuke or photoshop.

When I have a fix I’ll let you know!


I played around in nuke and it not so hard to fix.

You have to manually pick the maximum value for the core of the sun.


Thanks a lot for the quick answer.

I tried your nuke setup and it‘s really not so hard to fix the „black hole“ error. Unfortunately the setup depends on the picture so you have to adjust it always. If you have more than one bright spot (in reflections for example) you have to do every spot separately which is a little annoying.

Your idea of using the full white values as an alpha channel sounds good. I hope it‘s not to complicated to implement it.

Really looking forward to it.


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Authydra by Kasper Oerlemans now in the THETA Store.

Now with WebUI and File Management.

How to use?

Start the plugin by holding down the mode button for 2 seconds. The little led will turn white. And the wifi logo will turn Magenta.

Put the camera on chosen location (use a tripod, shooting handheld will lead to crappy pictures) Now either push the photo button. You have 5 seconds to run away and hide, else you are in the picture. Or connect you phone/laptop/tablet/… to the Wi-Fi of the ricoh theta and go to and choose your setting and press the take picture button.

The Wi-Fi logo turns greens and the theta makes picture taking sounds. Depending on your settings it starts taking pictures. When using the web interface you are taken to a page that shows a refresh button, when pressed it will show what the camera is doing.

After the picture taking the wifi logo will blink red and blue. You can now move or pick up the camera. It is busy merging the pictures. This takes about one or two minutes. When it is done it makes a sound and the wifi logo turn magenta again. The web interface will return to the settings page.

Use the web interface to download (and or delete) the pictures. Or connect camera to a computer to download the pictures.

Good to know It tries to keep the iso as low as possible but also the the exposure time, when exposure gets above 1 sec, it increases iso (until it runs out of iso and then increases exposure time again :wink: .) This version works with OpenCV 3.4.4 I ran into to some problems with 4.0 which I couldn’t fix right away. It also generates a tonemapped jpg, just for fun. Haven’t been able to get this jpg to show up in the theta ios app. Don’t know why maybe someone can help? If you want to build it for yourself make sure to change the file paths in the Android.mk file (in the app folder).


And for the developers here is the github repo: https://github.com/iamagod/Authydra
it is a few steps further along than the plugin version. There is an apk included.

The plugin version is the one submitted for the contest.

Mayor additions in the github version:

  • you get a preview of the automatic picture during the process, so you can see if you like the setup.
  • in the manage file menu the name of the jpg is a button. If you press it (and wait a while) you are taken to a 360 view of the image. (This all thanx to the kaleidoscope 360 script)
  • It has very alpha support for the Z1. I don’t have one yet so testing is a bit hard, but it should work as long as you don’t set the bracketing above 9 pictures. (I will try to add this to the plugin soon)
  • And of course quite a few fixes etc, also better jpg compression.

Main things still to do:

  • add an abort button
  • fix the black hole sun problem (if an element is overexposed in every picture, like the sun, it has a hole in it.
  • fully support and benefit from the Z1

Once I have add a few small fixes I will submit this version for the strore so that they are closer.

Please let me know what you think and if it works for you!


saw this on Facebook.


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Aah great! nice that they are picking up on it!

I’ve added some small fixes to the github, including limiting the z1 to 9 pics for now.

When you guys have the time, could you submit this version to the store as an update to the one in there right now?


Hi stefank,

the version on github right now has limited support for the Z1. Main limits are that it still only shoots in jpg and the max number of brackets is 9.
I still don’t have one, so testing was a bit complex, but this one should work.

If you are a developer you can test it out! We are going to submit it to the store but that usually takes quite some time. (3 weeks or more)

Let me know if it works for you!

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Hi Kasper,
thanks a lot for this awesome new plugin.

I did some testing and so far it works pretty well for me.
Only some little things I realized:

  • The quite popular reviewing tool djv_view isn’t able to view the EXRs anymore. With the HDR2EXR plugin it was no problem. However photoshop, nuke and maya are able to display them. So no big deal but I thought I share it anyway.

  • The problem that you have to restart the camera to see the changes (even if you delte pictures via web interface) still occurs and maybe you can add it to your to do list.

  • I really appreciate the zip file that ist created but when I transfer it to windows the “.zip” ending is missing and I have to put it manually. Again not a big deal though.

I did test the version from the plugin store so if this problems are already fixed just ignore my post. :wink:


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Hee Benjamin,

thanx for the feedback. Very usefull.

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I will be happy to test it out from the store (am not a developer as of now). If possible please give a small hint when it hits the store?

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@gcorner current version of Authydra is in the store now and supports THETA V.

new version with Z1 support, live preview, and the other features Kasper implemented was submitted to the store last week for technical testing by RICOH. I estimate it will take 2 weeks from now for the updated plug-in to be available in the store.

Do you have a Z1 or V?

The version in the store right now does have a web gui, but not the live preview. You can delete and manage all the plug-in media files on the camera with the web gui.

I helped Kasper with the testing. Here’s a screenshot of the GUI for the upcoming new version of Authydra that he submitted last week.

i have a Z1 - and try to wait because i know that a z1 seems sometimes hard to fetch as the time being.

These are the screenshots of the upcoming Authydra release gui working with the THETA Z1. Kasper had to cap it at 9 Z1 pictures, denoise 1 for now as he hasn’t received his Z1 yet.

I believe he’s going to improve it after he gets the actual Z1 camera.

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Congratulations to Kasper Oerlemans for winning First Place in the RICOH THETA Dream and Build 2019 Contest for Most Innovative Plug-in

Announcement on RICOH Site




Hello! When to expect Theta z1 camera support ?

The version with preliminary Z1 support should be in the store in a few days. It’s version 1.0.1.

The updated plug-in passed all technical tests for publication and the author, Kasper, is just waiting for RICOH to update the store listing.

There is still no update on the official site … Anywhere else can I download the version of the plugin with support for z1?