Photo stitching is the process of combining several images with overlapping fields of view to reproduce a sweeping landscape. For example, during your trip if you took a series of overlapping images of a landscape and wondering how to combine them to produce a panorama or wide-angled, high-resolution image, then don’t be worried. Several photo stitching software available in the market as perfect solutions to your problem. Stitching your photos with such software is very simple. You don’t need expensive wide-angled lenses. You just need to ensure there are no misalignments or shifts in color and brightness in the series of photos you take. So why wait, purchase or download any of the software listed here and get going!
Image Composite Editor (For Windows, free)
Although the software is complex enough to handle difficult tasks, it’s very easy to use and it gets the job done in a matter of seconds. If you just need to stitch 2 photos all you have to do is go to file, new, select the 2 photos and that’s it – you don’t need to do anything else, it has a mind of its own which completes the job.
After that you can crop the image in any way you want to make it look perfect, like it was just one picture all along. You can then export it as a JPG, PNG or even to a PSD file, which can be edited with Photoshop (you have the option to export it as a flat or as a layered image). If you need it, the software gives you the possibility to save the final version as a HD photo, which can be very useful.
Hugin (For Windows and & Mac, free)
When you first launch it you get the feeling that this will not go as easy as planned – you’re right! Although we like and admire all the options available in Hugin, if you’re just looking to put two photos together and get it over with, this is not the right one for you.
Unlike Image Composite Editor, it doesn’t do anything by itself. You can launch it and click on Align, but you’ll get an error. You first have to add the control points so that it knows what the common parts of the photos are. Luckily, it doesn’t need too many, we managed to do it with only 2 control points and the result was “a very good fit”.
If you need to stitch photos that were taken at a different angle, probably this would be the perfect software for you as it has a lot of options regarding projection and field of view.
Autopano Pro (For Windows & Mac, free trial version, $130 to buy)
This is like a combo between Image Composite Editor and Hugin. You launch it, add the photos click on detect and you get what you were looking for – the two photos stitched into one, which you just have to save and that’s all. The funny part is that if you delete the final version and you click on detect again (so that it stitches the two photos again) you will not get the same thing. Out of 5 tries, we’ve got 5 different outputs, which is funny but weird at the same time. Well, at least one of them was good.
But if you don’t like the outcome or you need to get into details because the job is more complicated, you just have to click edit and a whole new universe pops up: projection settings, control points editor, color anchors, geometry and many more.
Unfortunately all the photos exported from the free version will have a watermark on them. In order to get clean photos you need to upgrade to the paid version, Autopano Giga, which is $130.
Autostitch (For Windows, Mac, Android & iOS, free)
By far the simplest software to use – you launch, click file, open, select the photos and then you watch how the magic happens. Not only does the software make the stitching by itself, but it also knows that you probably don’t need editing so it will export the final result for you and then open it so you could see it. The same thing happens even if you have 2 or 7 photos, just that it takes a little bit more time in the second case.
On the other hand, you have to crop it manually if the photos are a different size. So you’ll have to open it with paint or another photo editing software and do it yourself. I think there’s a solution to this, but it’s way too complicated. Even if it’s simple, Autostitch has some editing options: output size, blending methods, matching options and auto crop. The problem with this is that it asks you for Theta min/max and Phi min/max so all of a sudden Paint sounds great!
ArcSoft Panorama Maker (For Windows & Mac, 15-day free trial, $79.99 to buy)
ArcSoft Panorama Maker turns any series of overlapping photos of vast landscapes, city skylines, mountains ranges, lush forests, towering skyscrapers, and cascading waterfalls into dazzling panoramic pictures in just few seconds. The software has 5 auto-stitch modes: Auto, Horizontal, 360, Tile, and Vertical.
Simple three-steps do most of the work:
- One-click auto selection or “Auto-select by group” option selects an entire group of related pictures.
- Organizes and seamlessly stitches the photos into a panoramic masterpiece.
- Saves, prints, and shares or posts the output to the web The “360” stitch mode helps to quickly create and view 360 degree panoramas. You can create amazing 3D panoramas by saving the image in .MPO format.
PTGui (For Windows & Mac, free limited edition with watermark, Price starts from $109)
PTGui can stitch multiple rows of images into a panoramic image. It is sometimes more attractive compared to other software as it can create 360 degree cylindrical panoramas, “flat” partial panoramas and even spherical 360 x 180 degree panoramas.
PTGui can stitch rotated and tilted images. It can create gigapixel panoramas from thousands of images. PTGui has a Masking tool which allows full control over the final stitched result. The unique feature about PTGui is that it stitches most panoramas automatically, but also provides manual control over every single parameter. It also carries a spherical panorama viewer and a web publishing tool. The Batch Builder feature scans folders for panoramic images and stitches them automatically.
PanaromaPlus (For Windows, free Starter Edition, $28.5 to buy PanaromaPlus X4
PanoramaPlus X4 intelligently recognizes related images and seamlessly stitches together your photos and movie frames to create the final panoramic image. The stitching process works in two dimensions, creating vertical as well as horizontal panoramas. PanoramaPlus X4 can be used to make a panoramic picture from your favorite video footages. It will automatically split movie clips into still frames, and allow you to select the ones you want. It will then stitch them together to create an amazing panoramic photo.
PanoramaPlus has built-in editing tools which help you to crop your photos to fit any frame size, rotate stitched images, and straighten skewed pictures. With one click, you can send your panoramas directly to any installed version of PhotoPlus for advanced editing. It’s compatible with jpg, png, gif, tiff and all other popular file formats.
PhotoStitcher (For Windows & Mac, $19.99 to buy)
PhotoStitcher automatically aligns individual pictures and stitches them one by one into an eye-catching professionally-looking panorama. PhotoStitcher is a fully automatic image stitcher. You just have to snap some overlapping images, select the relevant images, and click the ‘Stitch’ button. You can crop the result with automatic cropping. You can also purchase a bundle of photo editing tools at $99.94 which consists of a combination of Inpaint, PhotoScissors, MultiView Inpaint, BatchInpaint, iResizer, and PhotoStitcher.
EasyPano Panoweaver (For Windows & Mac, free trial version, $99.95 to buy Standard and $299.95 to buy Professional)
Panoweaver can stitch any number of photos to create a panoramic image. If you are just using a normal digital camera with normal lens, it is also possible to get a beautiful panoramic image with Photo Stitching Software Panoweaver. Both Automatic photo stitching and manual photo stitching are supported in this photo stitching software. Automatic panorama stitching is applied when there are enough matching points between adjacent photos. When there are not enough matching points, manual photo stitching should be applied to insert matching points manually. Panoweaver can stitch several normal or fisheye photos into 360 degree panoramic images. To create 360 x 180 degree spherical panoramas, it is recommended to shoot fisheye photos and then stitch with photo stitching software- Panoweaver. Import source images into Panoweaver, select “Spherical Panorama” on the right panel, then click the “Stitch” icon to get a perfect 360 degree spherical panorama.
A cylindrical panoramic photo has 360 degree in the horizontal line, but less than 180 degree in the vertical line. To stitch cylindrical panorama, import source images into the Photo Stitching Software Panoweaver, select “Cylindrical Panorama” in the right panel, then click the “Stitch” icon to get a nice stitched photo. Photo stitching software Panoweaver has two editions, Professional and Standard. Professional and Batch can stitch both fisheye photos and normal photos, while Standard edition can stitch only non-fisheye photos.