Quote: George & Tony, I'm going to have to give the Arcsoft product a try. I'll test it against CS3 and see if it works better for the panos I put together.
I could be wrong, but it seems to me if you're real careful about the pan -- exposure, overlaps, keeping everything level -- then the software doesn't have to do as much to make the blends. Am I right or is that just wishful thinking?
Tony's advice is all good. I would just add that you should not use a polarizer because it causes uneven sky colors and I would stress that it really helps to lock the exposure to the brightest part of the scene. If you let the camera automatically meter the different panels, it can lead to real problems for the software.
If you try Panomaker4 make sure you use the Pro version. It has the manual capability to adjust the stitching which I feel is really mandatory. It's really funny sometimes (rarely) how the software will freak on something that looks pretty straight forward.