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Old 04-07-2012, 05:08 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default HD Video Cams-which one is at the top

Drafit HD, Contour, GoPro.....any others...Is there any one that is better than the other performance wise, ease of use etc? Seems like the market is getting hammered with all brands jumping on board the point of view style video vision. Before I make a purchase, just wanted to get some opinions of what you guys have used, hated and liked.
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Old 04-07-2012, 05:25 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I got the drift HD and love it so far, i like how it doesn't stand out like a brick on my helmet like the go pro does. In saying that i believe they are all very similar in features and quality, you could really go on for days comparing them all but i think it comes down to ease of use, quality of picture and then extra features.

Im sure anyway you go you will be happy.
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Old 04-09-2012, 10:14 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Drift hd here too. Love it.... Easier to use for sure, much smaller too.
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Old 04-09-2012, 10:20 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I had the original Contour and it was a good camera but the Hero2 takes much better video. I do agree that it is goofy looking but comparing footage it seems to look the best. The mounts for the contour seem to be shit. I broke several and my buddy broke one every time he used his contour gps. Cant really go wrong with any of them they all work well.
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Old 04-09-2012, 10:26 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I hemmed and hawed for a while before buying. Ended up with a Contour Roam. It's VERY easy to use, lots of mounting options and angles due to the rotating lens. The fact that it's already waterproof is nice too as you don't need a clear plastic bubble case for it when snowboarding.

Battery life on the roam is very good. I've taken several hours of video over a day on several occasions, and while there's no real battery meter, it's never run out yet. It's nice to be able to just click it on as I'm strapping in, and turn it off at the bottom.

If I had to pick again I'd probably get the Contour + (plus) as it takes a higher framerate at 720P, and I think the video looks better.

Looking forward to trying the countour while kayaking this year! Will be cool to get some underwater shots during rolls!
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Old 04-09-2012, 10:27 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I forgot about battery life. On my contour two batteries would basically last a full day of recording. I would swap batteries at lunch time. On the Hero2 I barely get a full day of recording at 720x60fps out of two batteries.
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Old 04-09-2012, 10:31 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I have two batteries for our drift and have never changed it mid day. Have had the camera on for 8+ hours and taken 4-5 hours video on the one extended life battery while on 720 w/ 60fps
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Old 04-09-2012, 11:19 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I am a GoPro user. However, I do not think the GoPro is fundamentally better than the other cameras - in fact, I think they are generally pretty similar and it all depends on personal preference.

Pros of the GoPro (sorry, bad pun):
  • Picture quality is excellent for the Hero 2 in all conditions (at least as good as any of the other cameras) and very good for the Hero (for the Hero less so if it is dark)
  • Wide range of accessories (both OEM and 3rd party - e.g., the Wasabi Power charger and battery set is an excellent addition)
  • By far the most widely used camera where I ride (primarily Japan) and among my friends, so easy to find parts/exchange mounts/etc.
  • Cheap (paid $130 for my Hero last year)

  • Battery life not great - I get at most 2 hours out of one battery on the mountain
  • Slightly more bulky than some of the competitors (especially if paired with one of the extra backs for extended battery, LCD screen, or WiFi connectivity)
  • Needs the housing for all applications/mountings
  • Cannot rotate the lens/adjust the angle of filming

Again, I think it is all about personal preference. Check which camera has the features that are most important to you and see whether you can live with the drawbacks: In my case, I valued video quality, compatibility with what everybody was using, and price - and I could live with the battery life (I just carry 2-3 spare batteries with me) and the slight bulk (I do not use any of the extended backs and I actually prefer the center mounting on my helmet to having something on the side).
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Old 04-09-2012, 11:41 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Can you have live preview viewable from smartphone or other "screen" with Countour or Drift, or other action camera? I saw this Wi-Fi bacpac thing on GoPro site: GoPro Wi-Fi BacPac & Remote I think about ice fishing and putting the camera under ice to see, if there are any fish.
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Old 04-09-2012, 11:48 AM   #10 (permalink)
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The drift has a built in screen you can scroll through and view pics and videos
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