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Old 02-15-2013, 11:01 AM   #1 (permalink)
Donutz
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
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Default Drift 1080p Helmet Cam

I originally bought a Contour Roam a year or two back. Got an excellent price, and couldn't pass it up. The Roam had some problems, though. For one, there's a problem with the microphone that's a known issue and isn't being adequately addressed by Contour. The bigger problem I've found though is the inability to review your videos. In one case, I took an entire day's worth of vids with the lens rotated upside-down. In many other cases, several videos would be unusable because of crap on the lens and I wouldn't know about it until I got home.

At one point I considered buying a small cheap notebook computer to keep in the car for reviewing videos on the mountain, but really that's just throwing good money after bad. So I looked around and found a demo unit being sold for cheap at Launch Helmetcams. Again, couldn't pass it up.

This is the older Drift camera with the smaller screen -- 1.5"x1.5", as opposed to the 2x2 on the new Ghost. Still, completely acceptable for a tryout and I figure if I really like it I'll end up getting the high-end unit.

Initial Impressions
The Drift and the Contour are almost exactly the same size and weight, which is probably not coincidence. They have the same types of mounting options available, i.e. goggle mount, helmet mount, handlebar mount, etc. While the Roam has a large easy-to-use switch on top, the Drift has a remote on/off unit that you can wear like a watch. The buttons on the remote are big enough to manipulate with gloves on. Both units beep when starting and stopping. One small downside of the Drift is that you have to turn it on using the small menu button on the unit before it will obey the remote. But it doesn't draw much on standby so you could probably leave it on all day. There's an option in the settings to have it turn off automatically after a certain inactive duration.

Both cameras have rotating lenses, but only the Contour has the alignment lasers. Both cameras are rated as waterproof to a couple of meters, as long as you don't get nuts. They both use the same MicroSD card, although I think the Contour is pickier about brand and type (just from comments made on the forum).

I will be testing the Drift this weekend, weather allowing, and will post some sample videos and my impressions of the camera in use. The big question will be whether being able to review the video right away will make a practical difference.
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