Slicer: Sliced Gigapixel Rendering and PTGui Template Multi-Apply

This software will automate 2 special tasks which are sometimes needed for advanced stitching:

  • Slice a gigapixel PTGui/Hugin project into small stripes to circumvent file size limitations.
  • Multi-apply a PTGui Project Template to all images in a given directory

Prerequisites: Windows (2000, XP, Vista) and NET 2 runtime
This software is provided "as-is". No guarantee for specific suitability or functionality at all. No liability for data loss!

Download: Current Version:
(Slicer Manual included in download file)
How it works:

Slicer: This is a tool to make rendering faster and circumvent file size limitations. Instead of rendering the complete horizontal FOV, a "viewing window" with a smaller FOV is used. The Slicer then generates multiple partial project files by "dragging" this "viewing window" through the panorama, only showing the actual region of interest you want to render.
This only works for cylindrical and equirectangular panoramas: As long as your pitch doesn't change, the distortion caused by the projection is independent of the panorama's yaw.
For rectilinear panoramas it makes a difference if you move the center of the panorama, so slicing won't work and the application will inform you about that.

Multiplier: If you have made many panoramas with a repeatable setup (e.g. a precision head or an automatic setup), it can be very time consuming to load each image set and apply a template.
The multiplier will do that for you in an automated way. Load the template project and point to the image directory. All images in this directory will be read in order, grouped and for each group, a separate PTGui project will be generated. Those projects can then be rendered in one go by dragging them on the PTGui batch stitcher.

Usage instructions:

Open your Gigapixel panorama project. The project should have defined all necessary output options (blending, output format etc.)

"Transfer control points" gives you the option to transfer the control points of the source project to the destination projects. This option is switched on by default.
Switching it off will generate smaller projects and give you the possibility to easily add your own control points without having to delete the existing ones first.

Gigapixel Slicing
(PTGui and Hugin projects)

Switch to "Slicer"-Tab and define number of parts the panorama should be sliced into.

Optionally, define overscan to enable better blending of critical image regions (you have to cut away those pixels after the rendering). E.g. defining an overscan of 1000 pixels will add 500 pixels on the left and 500 pixels on the right.

If you want to directly convert the slices to a complete HDView panorama, set the according option to have a batch file created that will do the job by running the batch after stitching has completed.

Now, generate the slices.

The sliced panorama projects are created in the input directory with an ending in the form xxx_slice00.
You can now drag the sliced projects onto PTGui batch stitcher or use the automatically generated Hugin batch file. The output images will be created in your defined rendering directory in the form xxx_slice00.


Hidden feature: If you want to define a non-standard number of slices or overscan, you can double click the number above the slider. Note: This number will not be checked for validity...

PTGui Multi-Template Apply
(PTGui projects only)

Switch to "Multiply"-Tab. All relevant parameters are already calculated according to your template project:

"Source image type" is a file filter for apply-able source images. You can use it to only select file types or to create a more complex search mask, e.g. "img12??.jpg" is also a valid filter criteria.

"Include subdirs on read": Subdirectories will also be crawled.

"Include directory name": If checked, all files will be referenced absolute, e.g. "c:\temp\img1234.jpg" instead of "img1234.jpg".
This option is automatically enabled if you include subdirs.

"Re-read EXIF date for images": All input images will be read and the EXIF date in the PTGui project file will be corrected, so all stitched panoramas will show the correct shooting date.

Now, start the multiplier.

The generated panorama projects will be saved in the directory of the input project.
The name is assembled from the first input image and the number of images in the panorama project, for example "img1234 with 4 images.pts"

Change History:
Changes in version
  • Multiplier fixed: Automatic stitching without pathname doesn't work, so pathnames are by default included.
Changes in version
  • Full automation for sliced gigapixel panoramas...
    multiplier and slicer: can automatically call PTGui Stitcher
    slicer: can trim the "overscan" back to original slice dimensions, can run HDMake to create a HDView panorama ready for upload
Changes in version
  • cached EXIF data can either be refreshed or deleted
Changes in version
  • Bug fixed: Some slice numbers caused program errors
  • A single PTGui project can be dragged onto the Slicer icon to start the application with the work file
  • Can now create a batch file which converts the sliced panorama parts for HDView
  • EXIF date for each image in multiplier is re-read. So all batch-created panoramas will show the correct date.

Changes in version (Download version

  • Bug fixed: New sorting method for multiplier: Files are sorted ascending by name.
Changes in version
  • Bug fixed: Sliced were generated in the position n-1, meaning that there was a blank area at the left and a missing image region at the right. This is fixed.
    Also, the numbering changed from 0-(n-1) to 1-n.
Changes in version (Download old version)
  • Multiplier added. This feature allows to apply a given template project to all images found in the source directory.
Changes in version (Download old version)
  • Overscan now works correctly
Known bugs:
  • Hugin/Nona will try to render images outside the current ROI. This means that all source images of the panorama are stitched, regardless their appearance in the final output.

To prepare/"assemble" a sliced panorama for (online-)viewing, you can use HDMake, a software made available by Microsoft Research.

Questions, feedback to: bvogl ()