Insta360 One RS 1-inch 360 Edition review: The 360 camera you’ve been waiting for

Insta360 One RS 1-inch 360 Edition

MSRP $800.00

“Upgraded resolution, low light performance, and dynamic range in Insta360s best camera yet.”


  • Great low light performance
  • 6K high resolution sensor
  • A part of the One RS modular camera system
  • Rugged and waterproof
  • Reasonably lightweight and portable


  • Not fully waterproof and not using a dive case
  • A bit pricey

Over the past yr, I’ve been introduced to the world of 360 photography via Insta360’s many and varied latest cameras. Shooting photos and videos in 360 has opened up a wealth of latest creative opportunities by capturing every thing around me, enabling limitless possibilities via the magic of post-production. Nonetheless, in my experience, the one thing that has been holding these cameras back at the patron level has been image quality. Resolution, low light capability, and dynamic range have been limiting aspects within the cameras I’ve tested — until now.

The Insta360 One RS 1-Inch 360 Edition goals to unravel all the issues for which I’ve long critiqued such cameras. Because the name implies, the 1-inch 360 camera has a 1-inch sensor, or more accurately, two 1-inch cameras that every capture one hemispherical view. But that’s inappropriate. All it’s good to know is that the 1-inch 360 Edition is one of the crucial impressive cameras in its class.


The 1-inch 360 Edition comes pre-assembled with the battery and One RS core contained inside a bracket, on top of which the 1-inch 360 camera itself is clipped. Ergonomically, it’s comfortable and convenient to carry, and the controls will immediately be familiar to anyone using the One RS system. Even when not, it’s very straightforward, with easy touchscreen controls alongside an influence and record button.

A sealed power port is situated near the underside of the camera, and there’s a screw mount on the bottom where you’ll be able to mount it to a tripod or a selfie stick. The 1-inch 360 is compatible with Insta360’s invisible selfie stick, which works as advertised and could be very prime quality. The facility port is USB-C and will also be used to transfer data or plug in an external microphone. If the microphone is sufficiently small, it should even be invisible to the camera.

The Insta360 One RS 1-inch 360 Edition and accessories.Andy Zahn / Digital Trends

While the 1-inch 360 edition is larger than Insta360s other cameras, the shape factor is definitely very nice. I didn’t find it to be too big or heavy.

Image quality

While I’ve grown to be a fan of 360 cameras over the past yr for the incredible flexibility and artistic potential, my one grievance has consistently been that they often disappoint within the image quality department. The 1-inch 360 addresses this issue with a much bigger, higher-resolution sensor — and the outcomes are impressive.

On paper, the 6K resolution of the 1-inch 360 doesn’t seem much larger than the 5.7K of other Insta360 cameras (corresponding to the One X2). Nonetheless, in practice, that smidge of additional resolution could be very noticeable and leads to much sharper images than I’ve come to associate with 360 cameras. More necessary is the dimensions of the big 1-inch sensors behind its twin lenses. These let in significantly more light and offer a lot better dynamic range. This enables the camera to perform well in low light and high contrast situations.

example of where these improvements are significant is in a deep, dark forest on a sunny day. You’re filming in a dim environment, however the tree tops and sky overhead are very shiny, and there are a variety of intricate, fantastic details within the scenery around you. Previously, when filming with 360 cameras featuring smaller sensors and lower resolution, I discovered that they struggled badly to provide adequate results. Nonetheless, the 1-inch 360 handles these difficult conditions well and produces good-looking video.

In all honesty, this may be the perfect camera available for easily capturing the night sky.

One other example of where the 1-inch sensor shines is at night, recording star lapses. In all honesty, this may be the perfect camera available for easily capturing the night sky. It delivers truly spectacular results that may be tweaked and customised in post-processing. Astrophotography is a difficult business because it takes so long to capture even a brief time-lapse. Nonetheless, with the 1-inch 360, you’ll be able to create half a dozen different shots from the identical clip and have each appear unique by applying different effects and selecting various angles and zooms.

It’s an incredible feeling to film with a 360 camera and know that you simply’re going to get high-quality results.

Durability and waterproofing

If there’s one thing I don’t like in regards to the 1-inch 360 camera, it’s that it’s not fully waterproof unless you furthermore mght put it in an optional diving case. This can be a very minor gripe, because the camera is water-resistant and may easily withstand damp conditions as long as you don’t try dunking it within the ocean.

It’s also quite rugged, something I unintentionally put to the test within the early morning hours while recording a star lapse. A bird decided to make use of it as perch and ended up tipping the tripod over onto the sand and pebbles. It got here through in perfect working order apart from a number of minor scratches on the lens. These scratches didn’t affect image quality in any noticeable way. Nonetheless, it’s value noting that those great big lenses usually tend to incur accidental scratches in scenarios corresponding to this attributable to their sheer size.

The Insta360 One RS 1-inch 360 Edition modules dissassembled.Andy Zahn / Digital Trends

Software and connectivity

I’ve long been a fan of Insta360’s comprehensive and intuitive approach to enabling you to attach your camera to only about any device and edit footage. The Android and iOS apps are excellent, as are Insta360’s desktop application and Adobe Premiere Pro plugin. I used all these platforms while testing the 1-inch 360 and haven’t any complaints in regards to the experience. The Bluetooth and Wi-Fi system within the 1-inch 360 makes it effortless to hook up with your phone or tablet.


Insta360 rates the battery lifetime of the 1-inch 360 camera at 62 minutes of 6K 30 fps recording time. I discovered this to be roughly accurate, and while I wouldn’t say the battery life is especially impressive, it is kind of adequate. Star lapses use up the battery after roughly three hours, so in case you plan on filming a couple of star lapse per night, you’ll need to carry several spare batteries.

Insta360 One RS 1-inch 360 Edition Assembled with accessories.Andy Zahn / Digital Trends

I never bumped into any issues with overheating, though it did get quite warm once while I used to be editing footage while wirelessly connected to it from my iPad mini 6 in 90-degree heat. That basically qualifies as a stress test of the system, to which it held up admirably.

Price and availability

The Insta360 One RS 1-inch 360 edition is obtainable today for $800. That’s actually a reasonably penny, but given the sensor size of the camera and its outstanding capabilities, that cost is a bargain. There’s no 360 camera even near this price point that may rival it for image quality. An upgrade kit for One R and One RS system users is obtainable for $650, so in case you already own considered one of these cameras, you’ll be able to get the 1-inch 360 lens at a cheaper price.

The 1-inch 360 is a really impressive option as an all-in-one content creation machine.

Our take

The Insta360 One RS 1-inch 360 Edition on a mossy tree.Andy Zahn / Digital Trends

The Insta360 One RS 1-inch 360 Edition is kind of simply the perfect 360 camera you’ll be able to buy at once, by a substantial margin. It takes all of Insta360’s excellent software that creates stable, seamless 360 content, and implements it in a camera that gives a significant upgrade by way of resolution, low light performance, and dynamic range. The result’s a 360 camera that’s way more versatile than anything that’s come before. Add to this its compatibility with external microphones, and the 1-inch 360 becomes a really impressive option as an all-in-one content creation machine.

Is there a greater alternative?

Should you’re trying to spend less money, an Insta360 One RS with the older 360 module is an incredible option. The image quality isn’t nearly nearly as good, however it’s usable, and the camera is fully waterproof with no need external housing. It’s also smaller and lighter, which generally is a definite advantage. Also, you’ll be able to at all times reap the benefits of the modular One RS system and upgrade at a later point to the 1-inch 360 camera.

Insta360 One RS with 360 lens. Powered on with an image on the screen and a pond in the background.Digital Trends / Andy Zahn

One other potential alternative is the Insta360 Sphere, which attaches to a drone and may capture truly incredible aerial imagery while rendering the drone invisible in the ultimate footage. Nonetheless, bear in mind that you will want to even have a compatible drone to make use of that camera.

A competing high-end 360 camera is the Ricoh Theta Z1. Nonetheless, on condition that the Theta Z1 is way more expensive, records at a much lower resolution, and is overall starting to look very dated, the 1-inch 360 is the plain winner on this comparison.

How long will it last?

One among the good things about Insta360’s modular system is that it extends the lifetime of its products by enabling you to upgrade them incrementally. With this in mind, you may thoroughly give you the option to hold on the 1-inch 360 camera through several generations of Insta360 One series cameras and still be using it for a few years in the long run. On condition that this modular platform has been around for a number of years and appears to be each successful and passionately supported by Insta360, I’m confident it has a protracted life ahead of it.

The Insta360 One RS 1-inch 360 Edition camera.Andy Zahn / Digital Trends

Do you have to buy it?

Should you’ve been holding out for a 360 camera with the next degree of image quality, then that is that camera. Despite its high price, that is the one I’d recommend to most individuals involved in entering into 360 videography.

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