Action Cameras

Rednaxs60

Well travelled
Been looking into action cameras for our trip to Tuktoyaktuk. There are cameras available for every budget and requirement imaginable. It's like asking a question about the best tires for the Himalayan, or should I buy a Himalayan, information overload.

I would also like to take some video footage of the roads I ride on to send back to my friends in Ontario that ride off the beaten track. For us old guys, this would be like our youth when our parents would take us on holidays, take lots of still photos, and then upgraded to the 8 mm type cameras and such. When we got back home, invites were sent out to family and friends ot come over so we could annoy/regale them with our trip.

I had the pleasure of having to transit a washed out logging road similar to this pic:
washed out logging road.jpg
I think the road I was on was significantly worse considering it was the first time I tried a road like this. Was not going to stop to get a photo, had a hard enough time keeping the Himalayan upright with a pucker factor of 200%.

Stills for the day were good. We were on the other side of the Diversion Dam. You can see an old railway trestle bridge that was used when the dams were being built:
Lower Diversion Dam 1.jpgLower Diversion Dam 2.jpgOld Tressle Bridge.jpgWatershed.jpg

Onto the action cameras. I realize that there is no perfect camera and that is how I looked at each unit.

The gold standard, GoPro line, and not inexpensive. Latest model is the 10, but there are a lot of good reasons to purchase an older model depending on your requirement. Have found a 10 that is reasonably priced locally, private sale no sales tax. Makes it even better.

Looked at the 8/9 as well, and have these booked marked for later.

Looked at the Akaso line. Lots of good units depending on the requirements. Looked at the cost difference between the GoPro and these units. When the difference is within $100.00 CDN, the GoPro becomes a prime contender.

There are a lot of units that rival the GoPro for my present requirement(s) such as the Insta360 Go 2, DJI Osmo Action, Inst360 One X2 and on.

I have narrowed the choice(s) to the Insta360 GO 2 - approximately $430.00 CDN, GoPro 10 - found one for $300.00 CDN, a GoPro 8 for $350ish CDN, even a GoPro 9/7. I have read about and watched videos on more cost effective units such as the Akaso and such. Lots of good info, but are not in the same league.

I do like the Insta360 GO 2. It has a lot of features that suit what I want to do and can be installed in a variety of locations. I think it is more versatile for a non-blogger. This is a good video to watch, not so much for the what it is, but what it was asked to do. Starts at the 13.23 minute mark:
The Insta360 GO 2 has a memeory issue, depending on how you use it. Thinking the 64 GB unit would be the best way to go, but is some $113.00 more than the 32 GB.

This is tempered with the cost. There will be some accessories needed regardlessof the unit I purchase.

More to follow.
 

sendcleanpants

Getting there...
Location
Greenport, NY
Not speaking from experience using gopro on the bike (new to me) but just back from 10,000 miles in the jeep through the southwest and Baja. I went with Gopros, had used a GoPro8 heavily the previous year. This year I added a GoPro 9 and the new remote which I mounted to the steering wheel. It was able to trigger both cameras. I plan on mounts on the bike for the two cameras and use them likewise. My best suggestion is that a simple big-button remote at your thumb makes triggering/stopping easy and safe. Eyes don't even leave the road for a second. Any Gopro v9 or higher can share a remote (newest version of the remote) with multiple cameras, and will work backwards to v8.
 

Rednaxs60

Well travelled
Thanks for the info. There is a GoPro 8 here in town, probably get for $300.00 CDN, not a bad price. A GoPro 9 for $510.00 CDN, too much of a spread in price I think considering I have read that the 8 is still a very good camera, good attributes, and would probably meet my requirements.

The Insta360 GO 2 has some very good attributes, far better than the GoPro 8. Having mentioned this, there is a price difference, and as you mention, the GoPro 8 is still a good action camera, so it's still a contender.

Information on the remote?

Haven't come to a decision yet, but I will decide soon. Have to do a bit of research on how to operate one of these and how to mount, lots of info on the net regarding this.
 

petespace1

Well travelled
Location
NSW Aus
Strangely enough I have been looking for a camera too. I still have my GoPro Hero3 from years ago that still works well and lives on my handlebar, but was looking for something that will take a mic wired into helmet without the large box that the New GoPros need to take a mic. Still looking. Don’t want to pay GoPro level prices $500+, but not interested in cheap plastic +/- $100 ones either. (Australian $).
Looking for decent build quality - price wise more midrange.
Anyone have any experience in mid range action cams? 1080p is fine for my needs. But need good cabled external mic.
Thanks in advance.
 
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Rednaxs60

Well travelled
That's exactly what I am interested in, but the camera has to meet my requirements. Browsed a number of forums I am on; ADVrider, V-Strom, Gold Wing, CX 500/650 forum, and of course this one. I don't expect I'll get into blogging as I have mentioned. I want to be budget concious, and will be, but need to balance what I need, want to do, and get the best bang for my dollar.

The Akaso line of action cameras are widely used, and can be middle of the road, or not, regarding price. I have seen one action camera being used that gives the fellow what he needs and the cost is less than $70.00 CDN on Amazon. Does what he wants. I bought a bike cam for my motorcycles with two cameras, front/rear. Very inexpensive units - one was $30.00 CDN, the other around $60.00 CDN, but did the job I wanted at the time.

I have gone the route of being budget concious, but have found that a few extra dollars up front pays off in the long run, hence my last post. I have done the buy inexpensive, doesn't work so I buy again at a higher price point, repeat as necessary. Gets expensive after a while and there are units collecting dust.

Having mentioned the above, I have set myself a budget, and decided what features are really necessary, and can I get the features that I feel are most important in the budget I have.

Video stabilization, remote on/off as has been mentioned, reasonable video clarity - most people seeing what I may produce won't be able to discern whether the colours are as they should be, somthing like viewing various TV sets. Amount of battery life, do I need more batteries? Not too concerned about the cons of a unit, nothing out there is perfect, nor without fault. Support from the company is important, accessories too. The Akaso units come with a good number of accessories, but the camera has to be considered foremost.

I haven't heard back from the person about the GoPro 10. Good unit at a price I can accept - $300.00 CDN. Will wait until the end of week, then go after the GoPro 8. The Insta360 GO 2 with 32 GB internal memory would be good and is priced close to what I may be able to get a used GoPro 8 for, but would prefer the Insta360 GO 2 - 64 GB unit - but more dollars to be spent.

Even though some of the YouTube videos are very complimentary about some cameras, I get the feeling sometimes that certain cameras, no matter how good, will be used for the fun of it. Serious blogging will still be done with the gold standard - GoPro models, or the big brother to a certain unit such as the Insta360 one X2 supported by the Insta360 GO 2.

I do like the video comparisons because these should be true representations of the specific camera feature. I don't get too wrapped up by the way the material is presented by the person doing the video.

Where am I going from here, and what am I going to do? Can't rightly say, but I will take the romance out of this requirement, keep to my guns regarding my requirements and budget.

I will also consider the manufacturer; GoPro, Insta 360, DJI, and such. Want to make certain that investing in a specific product line is a good idea. Gets expensive to move from one manufacturer to another.

Cheers
 

Rednaxs60

Well travelled
Was thinking about the GoPro 8 and 10 last night, and the comment by sendcleanpants above. Buying the GoPro 8 for say $300.00 is a good deal here in Canada, checked out some other cities where I have friends/family who would pick up a unit for me. The Insta360 GO 2 with accessories near where my sister lives in Ontario has an asking price of $400.00 CDN. The big brother Insta360 one X2 is the same price.

Spending $300.00 CDN on a GoPro 8 and then having the 10 come available at $300.00 CDN would almost make one buy it as well. Don't know why you would want 2 GoPro units, but we all like a good deal, hard to resist.

Lots of options.
 

Rednaxs60

Well travelled
Just when I thought I was out of the woods and had a clear understanding of the camera that can meet my requirements, another enters the mix.

An older style Garmin VIRB. Set for sale over on ADVrider forum - one elite, one just the VIRB - package deal. Good in the day, still hook up to a ZUMO GPS, and relatively good quality video. May be an option.

Been reviewing the osmo action. Has all the features I require, but the price is still up there.
 

Rednaxs60

Well travelled
One camera or two? For the trip to Tuk, a second camera in the ar would be nice. Brother and Sonya could take videos and pictures on the fly, I could do the same on the Himalayan. Riding the backroads of Vancouver Island and getting a different perspective of the ride would be nice, mount one facing forward, one side facing.

Having an action camera will be like many other hobbies/interests, good until something better comes along.
 

Rednaxs60

Well travelled
Last question to the inmates. GoPro 7 Black (used) or the Garmin Virb Ultra 30 (new)?

Both are same price. Reason for considering these two units is availability, not a lot of choice up here.

The Garmin VIRB Ultra 30 will pair with my Sena communicator without any additional softwar/hardware. Voice commands, reasonable video stabilization, good video software. Should be used in the waterproof case, but using an external battery pack requires modification of the waterproof case - don't intend to use it underwater. Video quality reasonable for what I want to do. No reports of camera freezing in use. Nice feature is the G-metrics. Older unit, discontinued, but Garmin does support the video software, and has accessories available.

GoPro 7 - has voice command, has bluetooth so may connect to my SENA communicator - if not will have to come up with a solution. Better video stabilization, video quality good for my requirements. Has been reported freezing and requiring on/off toggle. Have viewed a video that a software update contained a fix for this. Most use an aftermarket software, this unit is discontinued.

Both fit the requirement - don't want to do the helmet install at this point. Decision to be made.
 

Rednaxs60

Well travelled
Going to go with the Garmin VIRB Ultra 30. Have a text out regarding these units. Had a text discussion with a friend, and his recommendation was the Garmin over the GoPro 7. Older technology, new units, lots of potential for my requirement(s).
 

Napom

Well travelled
Location
Northern VA
Strangely enough I have been looking for a camera too. I still have my GoPro Hero3 from years ago that still works well and lives on my handlebar, but was looking for something that will take a mic wired into helmet without the large box that the New GoPros need to take a mic. Still looking. Don’t want to pay GoPro level prices $500+, but not interested in cheap plastic +/- $100 ones either. (Australian $).
Looking for decent build quality - price wise more midrange.
Anyone have any experience in mid range action cams? 1080p is fine for my needs. But need good cabled external mic.
Thanks in advance.
If your looking for a decent miked camera that takes good video and has a wired Mike - look at the Sena Prism. My main complaint with mine was the switch took some convincing to get it to slide, but some WD-40 cured that. Also getting it lined up right on the helmet for the right shot has been tricky, but then I am too lazy sometimes to check the field of view through the app. They are a good inexpensive option.


I just picked up a used GoPro Max 360 off eBay last night for $285. A steal if it is in the condition the seller says it is and it comes witht he GoPro Remote . . . So I am looking forward to playing with that once it gets here.
 

Rednaxs60

Well travelled
Plan B. Tried to get a couple of Garmin VIRB Ultra 30 units, but no repsonse from queries, time to move on. Did a Kijiji Canada wide search for units, found a fellow in Kamloops who is selling two complete Osmo Action units/kits, with a bevy of attachments and such. It is a good camera as well. Will fit the bill nicely. Had a chat with the seller last night, got a good feeling about doing this purchase because of the talk with the seller, and got a lot of additional information.

The seller explained why he was selling, what was going to be part of the sale, and price is reasonable. He has done several videos and I went to his YouTube channel to view.
 

Rednaxs60

Well travelled
Disected the video about hacking for bluetooth. The Osmo Action camera needs an adaptor to use an external mic such as this - on order:

Adaptor.jpg
It has a 3.5 mm jack.

The fellow in the video used his SENA backpack for the GoPro 4. It just provides a bluetooth connection to the SENA communicator, and has quite a few connections and the wire length is a quite a bit. Went on Amazon and found this small, inexpensive bluetooth receiver. Has a 3.5 mm jack to plug into the camera adaptor. Should work the same:

Bluetooth Receiver.jpg

Will also look for a short 3.5 mm male to male wire for better mounting options - may come with one. Only require the camera to receive, don't need to transmit from the camera.
 

petespace1

Well travelled
Location
NSW Aus
Just to throw more in the mix …
1) Drift Ghost XL with upto (stated) 9 hours battery life. Good helmet mount option too.
2) Akaso 7LE action cam
 

Rednaxs60

Well travelled
Christmas came early, Osmo Action Camera units arrived yesterday, one day early according to the post. This occupied my afternoon. Lots of extras - most I'll never use. The cameras:

Cameras.jpg

The camera on the right is in an aluminum housing, Smallrig is the make, rather substantial. I was surprised at the size of the camera. Expected it to be bigger for some reason, first time I have had or seen one.

There are two kits:

Osmo 1.jpgOsmo Action 2.jpg

containing a bevy of attachments, camera housings, selfie stick, PGYTECH tripod, Ulanzi video light, small floaty stick, 5 batteries - 2 DJI, 3 NEEWER, NEEWER charger, external audio mike adaptor, head band, clip mount, two suction cup mounts, 1 inch mount that clips into the plastic strap connector, handlebar clamp, set of FREEWELL lens filters, and an array of USB cables. Lots of other minor items as well. Most of what I received will probably not be use.

Charged the batteries. Used the charger and did in camera charging.

Did a couple sample videos in where I was drooling over the purchase. Used a small SD card - will get 250 GB Sandisk Extreme, maybe a 400 GB, transfered the files to my computer and was able to view with the computer video program. There is a video editor program that I tried to use, but no joy yet.

Read up on what size SD card and what SD cards are recommended. One web site was quite good and the author was using a 400 GB Sandisk Extreme SD card with no issues.

Have order a couple of Ram mount 1" ball adaptors for cameras - 1/4 20 thread:

1 inch ball adaptor.jpg

This will allow me to connect the camera mounts to the Ram mounts.

Should be receiving the items that will allow me to have bluetooth comms with the camera(s) tomorrow. Will be doing test videos and trying to get a handle on the video editing software over the next three weeks on the Spyder and Himalayan.

Pretty much done here. Video editing software is my next challenge with the camera. Have started looking into this.
 
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