Helmet / bike camera (merged) mega threadfest...

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by AJ2, May 14, 2002.

  1. darkstarmoto

    darkstarmoto Am I evil? Yes I am

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    Will do...this is going to be my 1st POV camera so it might take me a bit to figure out how everything works. The main feature that really did it for me was the ability to leave it in loop mode and tag anything up to 5 minutes old to save instead of shooting hours of footage and having to weed thru it all in order to find "that moment". Of course there's also the 2way remote...something so simple but still so genius. As I understand it I can have it running in loop mode and shoot still photos at the same time, also very high on my list.

    The only reason I never got a POV before is my friends have GoPro's and I found it really annoying to keep being asked to check to see if the things were recording...nothing wrong with the footage quality, just annoyed it couldn't be easier. We're planning to do a ride in Coloardo next spring and I wanted something stone stupid easy to work with. Hopefully this is it.
  2. munchmeister

    munchmeister Grow'd Up Mini Trail

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    The VIO POV has a remote and mine has the loop mode which I love for the very reason you give: time. I've been shooting photos for decades but video is all about time. And the time it takes to go through long video clips so you can assemble a reasonably watchable one is, well, painful. Of course, having a really, really fast computer and intuitive software helps the editing process. But the loop mode enables you to capture that great curve and canyon you just went through 5 minutes ago. Yes. 5 minutes ago. It is pretty cool. What you end up with is meaningful clips and you can pick and choose among those, then assemble your video. The remote on the VIO POV, in clip mode, also works well. Just hit the button when you want to record a few secs, then hit stop and you have a clip. Not a fricking hour of footage no one wants to see.

    But, I digress. :evil

    The VIO also has a screen. Again, I agree with your point. "Didja get it... didja get it???" If you don't have a screen you won't be able to answer that until you get home. Not acceptable to me. I gotta have a screen. If I need to re-do the shot, I want to know before I get home. :deal

    Anxious to hear more about this unit. :ear
  3. NordieBoy

    NordieBoy Armature speller

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    As does the new GoPro.
  4. munchmeister

    munchmeister Grow'd Up Mini Trail

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    No doubt, it is a competitive world and it is nice to have all these choices. The Hero 3 Black with its LCD Touch BacPac shows up at about $490 in the shopping cart. That's a bit more than the Drift, but it might be a better value since it comes with the familiar GP shell case making it waterproof. Some of the comparo's on YouTube are helpful if ya haven't bought yet. I'm still waffling. :1drink
  5. max384

    max384 Bandaided

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    I just ordered the Sony Action Cam with Wifi. It was a tough choice, as there are now so many new 'action style cameras' available now. Budget was certainly a factor for me, so although there seems to be plenty of shortcomings to the Sony, for what I plan to use it for, it seems the Sony has the most bang for the buck. I also liked the video quality on this camera when watching comparison videos with the new GoPro white and silver editions.

    I'll report back once I get a chance to put the camera through its paces.
  6. munchmeister

    munchmeister Grow'd Up Mini Trail

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    :ear
  7. nibby

    nibby Been here awhile

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    Hi Darkstar. Any updates on the Drift Ghost? I'm in the same position as you and have narrowed it down to the GP3Black and the Drift.

    I'm favouring the Drift at the moment for the better battery life/rotating screen to allow me a few more mounting options, form factor and price.

    There doesnt seem to be (or I cant find it) a lot of video from what I would call normal users out there for the Drift yet? I dont really trust the Professional editing that they show you on the Gopro or Drift sites.

    I know the GoPro on spec alone is the winner but I'm thinking about it as a user and will I really need the extra spec the Gopro allows. Probably not as I wont use the 4k option or film higher than 1080/30fps really because of the storage and amount of time it takes to edit/upload etc.

    Also when watching friends clips of a ride on something like yourtube I always forget to set it to HD so always watch at a lower res anyway :lol3

    Cheers
  8. darkstarmoto

    darkstarmoto Am I evil? Yes I am

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    Ahh yes I do owe a review. Well right out of the box I think it's pretty brilliant! Now take that with a grain of salt as I also have no experience using any other system myself. My friends who do own GP's have compared the Ghost and they are impressed with the ease of using the Drift system and having the positive feedback of the colored LED's to tell you which mode and wether it's running or not. I haven't been out on a ride with it yet but I do intend to mount it in my car for a better outdoor action test. Just the few practice vids I made indoors aren't bad at all but a static background is pretty easy to shoot with any camera... Check back and I hope to have a more informative review with video from a novice user to compare against all that glossed up pro stuff.
  9. nibby

    nibby Been here awhile

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    Excellent, thanks. Cant wait for the review :clap

    Hurry though, I need a camera soon :evil::lol3:wink:
  10. Storm Shadow

    Storm Shadow Thread Ninja

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  11. darkstarmoto

    darkstarmoto Am I evil? Yes I am

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    And for those that waited so patiently. Here's my review (please remember I'm a 1st time POV camera user so be gentle).

    The Good:
    The new Drift Ghost HD is really a very nice camera. The menu's are intuitive and easy to navigate. Changing settings is quite simple and easy to understand. The size of the camera is easily manageable and makes mounting options easy to work with. All in all even with the sunlight and shadow transitions the camera did a good job.

    The mount options available cover lots of ways to get the angles you'd want to capture. I only used the bar mount version in the sample vid below mounted to a magnetic CB antennae during a charity drive event I was leading. I did complete my helmet mount but haven't shot any vid from it yet...brr...too cold out still. I can say the easy click in and out way Drift uses to engage the camera to the mounts is super easy to use and secure. At about 100mph the magnetic mount let go and the camera was banging around behind my cage for a minute or 2 while we found a safe place to stop and put the antennae back on the car. For a second I was thinking I just threw my new camera down the road for sure and was really relieved to find it was still safely attached to its mount.

    I didn't set the quality higher than 960-30fps-127° POV because I was worried I might fill the 32GB Class 10 card before the event was over. Well...that proved to be a miscalcualtion on my part, I barely even used a 1/4 of the available card space. I guess for some reason I thought I'd be running it a lot more than I did. I wish I would have tried the tagging option instead of just turning the cam on and off to see how that worked.

    Battery life was excellent (IMHO) I never drained the main battery or needed to use the spare I had fully charged and ready to go. Again, I only shot a few hours worth of video over the course of 4 days, but the meter on the LCD display never showed using more than 1 bar. The camera was mounted right in the airstream and it was cold out! I brought it inside the car when I knew we'd be slabbing for more than an hour and remounted it atleast 10 minutes prior to hitting something I knew I was going to want to catch to give it time to acclimate to the temp.

    The Bad (or still undetermined):
    The 1 problem we had was with the wifi app from Drift. I don't think the issue is with my iphone5 since it has performed flawlessly since I got it. I had tested the app a few times before the drive and never had this happen, but during the drive I found the app completely froze up a few times. This required completely shutting the phone off and resetting. Then you had to re-establish the wifi link, ect...just a bummer since we missed a good section I really wished I had captured, the app said it was recording but it wasn't. I'm hoping Drift releases an update for the app soon to address this. We also had to try a few times to establish the wifi link. The phone recognized the camera but failed to link to it on a few tries, then would work on like the 3rd try.

    The app itself is really nice otherwise, and retains all the functions available from the menu on the camera itself. Actually it's even easier to use than the camera menu. Using the phone to line up the shots was excellent but does not continue to show live action once you are recording (not a big deal if you know the shot is lined up) and really even at 127° POV it was pretty clear I wasn't missing anything unless someone completely left the road.

    So anyway...here's my weak attempt at my 1st POV video. I think the site itself made the quality look worse because playing it back directly from the camera card looks much better. I'll be sure to use 1080/30 next time or still use 960 and up the frame rate to maybe 50. Oh please note I dialed out the sound from the camera..I left the mic sensitivity on high (not a good idea if you're moving) so it was all wind noise instead of exhaust note which I wanted to capture.

    http://vimeo.com/58463791

    FOOT NOTE: It was also pointed out to me that there might have been dust on the lens, you might see the dust cloud behind the car following me, I'm sure I was throwing up the same dust cloud. May explain some of the quality issue. Next time I'll mount the camera inside the car and ensure the lens is perfectly clean, then try using both 960 & 1080 for quality comparison.
  12. marchyman

    marchyman DR and GS

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    My old Contour HD (the 720p one, not the later 1080p version) destroyed an 8G card. When I put another card in the device I discovered that the USB connection can charge the battery, but I can't talk to the camera which means I can't set any configuration options.

    My Drift HD is still working, but the large capacity battery never reports a full charge. I suspect it is gone as this is the second battery that's had that issue. The normal battery does not last all that long.

    I looked at the new GoPro 3 now that it's been out a few months. The user reviews are savage! A high percentage of "the camera locks up every 5 minutes". If the camera doesn't lock up the complaints are that the battery might discharge over night even with everything turned off. And battery life when using Wi-Fi is reported to be abysmal.

    I'm hoping that these are mostly software issues that will be repaired in future firmware updates. I'm going to need something that can handle the water this summer... my grandson is learning how to swim. :clap
  13. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junkie

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    I have an HD3, battery life is short, plan on an hour per battery. I don't use the wifi so I'm not sure how that effects the battery. First batch of batteries I recieved with the cam were junk, GP replaced them and the new set works normally. Many users are relying on the computers USB port to charge their batteries, it doesn't provide enough juice to fully charge a GP battery, a 1a wall charger is needed. I had the lockup/shutting down issues also so I sent the cam back and they replaced it, new one is fine.

    I purchased it as they were announced, I think GP had some bugs in the first run of those cams, many users reported similar expierences. GP was excellent about getting my issues resolved though.

    THis is quick vid I recently shot at 1080P/60FPS, edited and stabilized with Sony Vegas Pro. Stabilization zooms the video somewhat, clairity suffers. The higher resolution on the new GP means I can stabilize and still have a decently clear picture, unstabilized is super sharp.
  14. marchyman

    marchyman DR and GS

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    Excellent. I'll be looking to get something come April and the H3B is currently the top of my list of potentials.

    Nice!
  15. max384

    max384 Bandaided

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    I've been using the Sony Action Cam for a couple of months now. So far, I've been very happy with the battery life. I have been putting in a fresh battery and then running it all the way down and keeping track of how long the battery lasts. All tests were done in 30fps 1080p. Five trials were done with each. All of the tests were run with a single Sony battery that came with the camera. All tests with wifi on were done with my phone turned on and the camera actively transmitting the picture feed to it the entire time (other than if I was interrupted with a phone call or text or something).

    Wifi on:
    Average: 122 min
    Standard Deviation 16 min
    High: 142 min
    Low: 102 min (this was the first time using the battery; the next lowest was 113 min)

    Wifi off:
    Average: 163 min
    Standard Deviation 3.5 min
    High: 166 min
    Low: 157 min

    I also bought a few cheap (~$7 each) Chinese-made batteries off of Amazon for spares. I didn't keep track of usage times as stringently, but they're lasting about 75% as long on average.

    The picture quality is as good as any of the GoPro videos I've seen on YouTube. Though, the colors are slightly different between the GoPro vids and the Action Cam. I actually like the colors on the Sony a bit better, but not enough for it to influence my decision either way. The wifi is awesome! It has a VERY minimal lag time and makes lining up a good mount spot pretty easy.

    The biggest downside to this camera is mounting options. THEY SUCK for helmet mounting! I just so happen to have mine mounted to my helmet. Once the 3M sticky mount is mounted, there is absolutely no adjustability at all. If you don't get it positioned properly the first time, you've got to remove it position another mount. If you have RAM mount stuff and mount it on the bike, it's great for mounting. Just get a universal camera mount RAM ball thingie (sorry for the technical jargon :lol3) and then you have a full array of RAM mount options. But I don't personally like video shot mounted to the bike. I like the look of the camera mounted to the helmet so that I can actually see what the rider is seeing.

    So far so good. I'll report back later once I use it more and actually put together some decent videos.
  16. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junkie

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    Tou could get some go pro mounts and arms (available seperately) and a GP tripod mount, reverse the tripod mount and add in a 1/4" stud to attach to your tripod mount on the sony. It should work, the GP mounts are really tough. I agree, I don't care for bike mounted vids most of the time. Allot of vibration too.
  17. Zombie025

    Zombie025 Been here awhile

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    Hi, i'm having the same problem with my contours, did you find any solution (beside buying another one:D)?
  18. Pampero

    Pampero Verbose Adventurer

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    I don't have a lot of time spent on my 1500 (Contour Plus) but so far so good. I prefer the form factor over the Go Pro and a lot of the others . I knew going in the color balance wasn't the best, but it's good enough for my purposes. I got a new one in a box for $150.00 when the Plus 2 came out, so
    I reckon I didn't pay too much for it. At the standard going rate for them, I wouldn't be as thrilled and would probably have picked up one of the last of the Hero 2s, which I found as cheap as $180 (plus tax). But I do prefer the Countour's overall design, In practice the IQ, with the exception of color balance being on the cold side, is about equal to the other better HD packages (probably absenting the Hero 3 Black) and better than most. I hope it holds up for me; I'm not interested in adding another addiction to the hobby (buying another camera).
  19. max384

    max384 Bandaided

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    That's a good idea. Mine is actually mounted where I want it, so I don't need to adjust it. But I may look into this when I get a new helmet.
  20. Craneguy

    Craneguy British Hooligan

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    I have the Contour Roam, and you change the configuration options in the software and they are saved to the SD card if it's in your PC. You might give that a try. It's why you have to let the camera format the card before using it.