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I am getting ready to purchase a Camera for the side x sides. I am looking for opinions and prices on the different camera's? So what do you think is the best bang for the buck?
 

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If price is most important, I'd go with GoPro HD. I use a Race Optics HD camera. I had a video posted on here about it. It's a little more expensive but is in a league of it's own when it comes to features... I've also used an iPod nano to shoot action video. The video quality is not as good but with 4" of duct tape, you can mount it anywhere!
 

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I just received a GoPro HD as well as a Race Optics HD system...I am going to be doing a writeup on both. Straight out of the box, the Race Optics system seems to be a great unit. Granted the GoPro does allow you to purchase an add on that allows you to see what you are recording as well.
 

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I got the 960 for $165 shipped from Ebay. New in the box with all the accessories. Sometimes I am not sure if I am on or off, but I like it for the $.

 

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Video Camera

RZR Ray,
I looked at the top three and I ended up with the ContourGPS camera.

Here is what you will see out there:
ContourHD $250
ContourGPS $330 at Costco now for only $300
Drift HD170 $330
Drift HD170 Stealth $350
GoPro HD Hero 960 $180
GoPro HD Hero $300

There are other verisons and some other cameras out there but these seem to be what you will find most of the time. And you can find better prices then I posted above but this is the basic going price. I would get a HD camera because if you go back and watch it on most anything you will see a big difference and you can always record in low quality.

FYI MicroSD memory cards are about $100 for 32 gigs, Less for SDHD cards. Fry's had great prices. (you want high speed, class 6 to 10 for MicroSD. 32Gig and Class 10 is as fast & big as it gets). Another thing it can take a long time, like hours to move video around from camera, computer, to website.

Most people are going with the GoPro because they have the best advertising. But from what I can tell the video is very simular all all of them.

The mounting is good for all of them and getting better by the day, but the GoPro has the biggest profile if you mont it on your helmet. The Contour and Drift will allow you to rotate the lens for easy mounting. One note on mounting is watch my videos and you will agree the rear roll mounts are the best way to go for stable shot.

GoPro will soon allow you to buy a plug in view finder but the Contour will now allow you to use your iPhone & Android to view what the camera sees (not during recording and mybe 6fps) and make changes to the settings on the camera, and the Drift goes one further with a built in viewfinder that will allow you to not only see what your shot and ajust the settings but also watch the video you just shot (I like that).

ContourGPS not only does video but also tracks your postion so wile watching your video on there website (contour.com) you can see your position on Google Earth at the same time in the corner of the screen. (You can see this on my first 4 video links below using flash, sorry no iPads)
One down side to the Contour.com videos is you need flash so if you post there no one with iPhone or iPad will be able to see it. But you can always post on youtube.com with out any problem, just no Google Earth in the corner of the video.

Drift has a remote record button that will save battery and memory for when you need it.

My first choice would now be Drift Stealth, then ContourGPS and then GoPro HD. You might also want to rent one of each before you by because you might find out you really like one or the other for some reason.


Here are some videos I shot with my ContourGPS cameras.

The first four links have the video on the Contour.com website and the others are at youtube.com. Looks like Contour.com does not show up like youtube on this forum but like I said you can post the same video on youtube.com.

Go full screen on the contour.com videos and have fun with the Google Earth (Zoom in and out, move the map)

If you like my videos feel free to give a thumbs up on the sites. Thanks

Contour >> FILE0006 by flyingbryan

Contour >> Can Am Commander, Hungry Valley 02A by flyingbryan

Contour >> Suction Cup Mount by flyingbryan

Contour >> FILE0009 by flyingbryan

http://contour.com/stories/file0005--111


 

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Great links that you have researched out FB....thanx for everything ...Lance

...sent with TapaTalk...please excuse brevity & no smileys
 

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Yes the viewfinder is a must!
(GoPro will have a plug in viewfinder soon, but that will bring the cost up a little)
The rotating lens is a huge plus on the Stealth and ContourGPS. When mounting you don't alway have a level spot for the camera and there is not a lot you can do from there but get a large bracket to level the camera back up, or if you have a rotating lens you could just mount the camera flush.

Now if you are only going to get one camera and mount it on a roll bar you could get away without a viewfinder but even that you will have to make a couple of trial runs to get it right.

I have already had a number of videos that had the view set too low, at a angle, or off to one side a little. And if I have had a view finder I would be using those videos but they will never see the light of day because of no view finder. It can be especially hard to get it right on a helmet mount for any camera.

The videos I did shoot were without a view finder and you can see it very clear what I am talking about on the suction cup video, and there are others that were bad enough I just deleted them.

The GoPro was my first choice, but I couldn't get past the shape and no view finder. There was no reason to go in that direction without any other benefit other than it is advertised on everything. I have used other helmet cameras in the past that plugged into a Arch's DVR and I would get back with 2 hours of video that was unusable all the time.

The Stealth was not out at the time so I was all over using a iPhone to set up the view on the ContourGPS camera. I am just getting up to speed with the iPhone app on the ContourGPS but it has it's issues. I have four cameras and for now on this first version you have to connect each camera in the bluetooth settings, then go to the Contour App to use it. Then it logs its self off after a couple of minutes even if you are not done, so you have to log in again. And you can't view or delete recorded videos on the camera.

With all that said when the Stealth came out with a clean looking black camera with a view finder built in that is perfect!
The best part is you can mount the camera out of reach and start & stop the recording only when needed with the included remote. YouTube and other online video sites will only allow 2 Gigs or 15 minutes at a time so you really don't want 30 minutes long videos that later have to be cut. Not to mention your computer will slow way down when working with large video files so you want to keep them short if you can. I have 6 Gigs of Ram on my desktop and I am going to up it to 64 Gigs of Ram soon just to work with the videos.

I have not used the Stealth or GoPro so I am just going by the features. I would say rent each camera and you can see what works best.
 

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Thanks, a lot for sharing your knowledge. I was leaning toward the Contour to use with iPhone and iPad. After what you have said, will probably go with Drift Stealth. I only plan to get one camera now. I like the way you split screen. Is there a program that you use or does it come with camera?
Thanks, John
 

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I ended up buying a Drift SHD170 STEALTH 1080p.
  • Maximum Video Resolution: 1080p High Definition
  • SD Memory Capacity: up to 32GB
  • 25 / 30 / 50 / 60fps in 720p or 25 / 30fps in 1080p
  • Still Photo: 5 megapixel with Photoburst Mode
  • Digital Zoom Support: Yes (in 720p and WVGA mode)
  • Lens Angle: 170° Fully Rotatable Wide Angle Lens
  • LCD Screen: 1.5″ Colour TFT
  • Remote Control: Wireless RF (5m range) Hands Free Video and Photo
  • Mounts: Multiple Mounting Design
  • Audio: Built-in Microphone & Speaker
  • Menus: User Friendly Control Panel in 7 Languages
  • Sensor type: CMOS
  • Water Resistant
  • Video resolution: 1080p, 720p & WVGA
  • Video format: H.264
  • File format: .MOV
  • 25 / 30 / 50 / 60fps in 720p or 25 / 30fps in 1080p
  • Video format: 16:9
  • Lens Rotation: 300°
  • Recording Angles: 127° in 1080p, 170° in 720p & WVGA
  • White balance: Auto
  • Exposure: Auto / Manual (advanced users)
  • Zoom: Digital x4 (in 720p & WVGA mode)
  • Remote range: 10 ft. range
  • Built-in Microphone
  • Inputs: Optional External Microphone
  • AV Output: HDTV out (cable included)
  • Battery: 1110mAh rechargeable lithium-ion/ Optional 1700 mAh Li-ion rechargeable.
  • Power-Save option saves batteries by powering down the screen
  • Built-in memory: 32 MB
  • SD memory capacity: Supports memory cards up to 32 GB
  • Photo resolution: 5 Megapixel
  • LCD screen: 1.5″ colour TFT
  • Lens focal range: 0.5m to infinity
  • Dimensions: Camera – 133 (L) x 50 (D) x 33 (W) mm / Remote Control 52 (L) x 40 (W) x 13 (D) mm
  • Power: Camera – DC 3.7V / Remote control: DC 3C, 1x CR2032 battery (included)
  • RF: Receiver (Camera): 433.92MHz ISM band / Transmitter (Remote): 433.92MHz ISM band
  • Weight: Camera – 138g / Remote control – 19g
  • Operating Systems: Compatible with Windows XP & Vista; Mac OS 10.2
  • Box Contents:
    • Stealth HD170 Action Camera
    • Remote Control
    • Handlebar Grip
    • Goggle Mount
    • Head Strap
    • Helmet Grip
    • Universal Clip
    • Velcro Strap
    • Industrial strength velcro adhesive pad
    • Component Cable for HD playback on TV
    • USB Cable for downloading to a computer
I made an offer of $250 including shipping and they took it. No card included.
 

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Thanks, a lot for sharing your knowledge. I was leaning toward the Contour to use with iPhone and iPad. After what you have said, will probably go with Drift Stealth. I only plan to get one camera now. I like the way you split screen. Is there a program that you use or does it come with camera?
Thanks, John
Sorry took so long to reply. I used a program on the computer to do the split screen. I was going to see which one because I demoed about every one out there and don't remember off hand which one I ended up using on that one. I will take a look and see if I can figure it out in the next couple of days.

One thing I just came across is that you can do some simple video editing, like taking clip from a longer video, rotate, color, lighting, stabilize video (works good), change to black and white, add types of transitions, and add music with volume control (but no one you have ever heard of and you can not add you own music there editor).

I did find there are limited to how much you can put in one video but I we t up to about 10 clips and 5 transitions.

I am looking at real player editor today and went with Adobe for my main editor. If you have a Mac with Final Cut that is the best but I don't have a Mac or I would go that route.

Here is a video of what you can do with YouTube Editor. It does have limits on what you can do but good for easy Editing. Music is not my first choice but just seeing what it works like.


You may have seen this video clips before but this is just to show how you can put them together.

Hey let us know how you like the Drift Stealth.
 

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How long is the battery life on the Contour HD or Contour GPS?
I got a extra batter for each of the four cameras I got and I would say they last on the low side about 1 1/2 hours when recording most of that time. Or on the high side 3 hours if not recording much but camera is on. I am sure if you turn off the GPS you will get better times and just turn the camera off if you are not going to be using it for a wile. But batteries are only $30 so it is worth having at least one backup. But I would say in all the cameras the battery life would not be all that much different.

Another thing is it takes a couple of hours to charge back up the batteries when all the way down.
 

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Farmer John, I might have to sell my cameras and get the Drift if it works out for you. Let me know how you like it. Great list you put up, and where did you get it for that price?

Get the Class 10 (speed), 32 Gig (Size) cards, you will be happy you have the space. By the way that is as big as it gets for Micro SD cards and as fast as they get too. If you go into Staples they have memory cards they don't say the speed, they are "Class 4" and you need at least Class 6.
 

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I'm with Bryan ... I run a class 10 in my GoPro Hero Wide (standard def) and it makes a huge difference over the other less quality cards. The video is much smoother due to the quicker write capabilities.
 

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I'd like to see some vids done on the Stealth as well, but I want/need something that can go for closer to 3 hours for sure. I was looking at ways to plug in the car power cord as an accessory in the commander to record as much as the 32gb card would do and then bring it home and build my individual videos and/or montages from each race/trip in CyberLink PowerDirector. The two videos I posted on YouTube with text and sound were done in CyberLink and they were "easily" done on either Vista or Win7. It also supports a number of transitions unlike some of the other editors.
 

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Did you see what Farmer John put on the specs?

Battery: 1110mAh rechargeable lithium-ion/ Optional 1700 mAh Li-ion

That might be something to check into.

The ContourGPS camera can not be powered by a cord wile recording, I just tried and it shuts down when the power cord is plugged in.
 

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Did you see what Farmer John put on the specs?

Battery: 1110mAh rechargeable lithium-ion/ Optional 1700 mAh Li-ion

That might be something to check into.

The ContourGPS camera can not be powered by a cord wile recording, I just tried and it shuts down when the power cord is plugged in.
My Race optics came with a cigarette lighter plug for unlimited battery.
 
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