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Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
11/27/18 8:14 a.m.

I need to replace my GoPro 1 and I can't make heads or tails of the dozens of cheap action cams available. What are the good ones? I'm going to use it on the car for autocross, in the shop for videos on building models, and for school to film mock counseling sessions. I have a new laptop, a good desktop for processing, and a modern smartphone for bluetooth control plus a bunch of GoPro accessories (but I'm not married to any of it, just fyi if it helps narrow down choices). I'd like to spend $100 or less. 

pinchvalve
pinchvalve MegaDork
11/27/18 8:33 a.m.

GoPro Hero Session.  You can get them on sale for not too much, ($149 at Target)  they don't require a housing (though ones are available) they offer WiFi and they are small enough to mount anywhere.  The battery life is excellent, especially without the WiFi, and they connect to an iPhone or computer easily.  GoPro stuff just plain works, I have no desire to deal with some off-brand.  You also get all of the many mounting options from GoPro.  

The downside, which is shared by many GoPro models, is that if you want to plug it in for a longer recording session, say to a PC or external power pack, you lose the waterproof option. 

 

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH MegaDork
11/27/18 8:35 a.m.

If I had to buy new today, without my collection of existing action cam gear affecting my decisions, I'd get an SJCAM, easy choice. They have cases compatible with GoPro mounts.

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
11/27/18 9:13 a.m.

In reply to pinchvalve :

Is the UI easier than the original GoPro 1? Is it just a button to start/stop or can you do it with the phone/bluetooth? I have no qualms about GoPro, mine has served me really well, I just don't want to spend $500+.

Ed Higginbotham
Ed Higginbotham UberDork
11/27/18 9:17 a.m.

GoPro came out with a kind of lower tier Hero model. I think it's just called the Hero 2018. I would say stay away from it though. My dad got one and the touch screen failed on the second track weekend. It still records video and everything but settings can't be changed as they are only accessible from the touch screen for some reason.

Dave M
Dave M Reader
11/27/18 9:47 a.m.

SJCAM ordered! I can't pass up a deal like that, even if it is a POS....

Stefan
Stefan MegaDork
11/27/18 11:50 a.m.

Yi ActionCam is $97 for the moment:

https://www.amazon.com/YI-Action-Recording-Waterproof-Included/dp/B076BSQXPD/ref=as_li_ss_tl?s=photo&ie=UTF8&qid=1526418217&sr=1-1-spons&keywords=yi+4k&psc=1&linkCode=sl1&tag=mytrcomyour09-20&linkId=e493f50b659ea202c7302c09dcccfdd7&language=en_US

You can stream directly to YouTube or Facebook via WiFi and it interfaces with AutoSport Labs RaceCapture solution.

The TrackAddict phone app can interface directly with GoPro, Garmin or 360fly cameras, if that is any consideration for you.

Otherwise I use a cheap "4K ActionCam" from Groupon and add the data overlay via RaceRender after capturing data via TrackAddict.

Compared to earlier GoPros I've used, the interface is much better, batteries are replaceable with spares easily acquired and most come with a ton of accessories.  Some use GoPro style mounting, most come with adapters.

I would suggest a couple of things to pick up if you want to do autocross video:  A decent triple suction cup mount and some tethers to keep the camera from falling completely off and causing an issue for the other competitors.

Here's a video I captured from the front of my car using a clamp mount on the screw in tow hook:

 

red_stapler
red_stapler Dork
11/27/18 12:23 p.m.

The biggest complaint that I have about my Hero Session is the wind noise.  I won't buy another action cam unless it has connection for an external mic.

Stefan
Stefan MegaDork
11/27/18 1:12 p.m.

In reply to red_stapler :

Use a sealed case with a small hole drilled in it and foam added over the top/inside and the wind noise will be greatly reduced.

An external mic is awesome, but they can suffer from the same issue or worse.

ShinnyGroove
ShinnyGroove New Reader
11/27/18 1:59 p.m.

I got this AKASO 4k camera off of Amazon for $120 to replace my Hero 3+, and frankly I'm amazed at how good it is.  Touchscreen interface is dead simple, works with all my GoPro accessories, and comes with a bunch of it's own accessories that would have probably cost $200 if the were GoPro.

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07CKV9FRX/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o03_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Floating Doc
Floating Doc Dork
11/27/18 2:29 p.m.
ShinnyGroove said:

I got this AKASO 4k camera off of Amazon for $120 to replace my Hero 3+, and frankly I'm amazed at how good it is.  Touchscreen interface is dead simple, works with all my GoPro accessories, and comes with a bunch of it's own accessories that would have probably cost $200 if the were GoPro.

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07CKV9FRX/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o03_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I have that same camera. It shuts off every time I try and shoot video in my car. I don't know if it's the battery overheating or what. I've tried it with four different batteries, no luck.

BTW, my GoPro hero 4 black locks up all the time too. In 12 autocross events between both cameras, I have video of three runs.

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
11/27/18 2:43 p.m.

In reply to ShinnyGroove :

That does look good. What's the benefit of this one over the AKASO Brave 4?

ShinnyGroove
ShinnyGroove New Reader
11/27/18 3:40 p.m.

^ I'll be honest, I have no idea.  I just went for the one with more/better reviews.  That's certainly not good news about it shutting itself off though.  I've only used it for mountain biking so far, no issues yet.

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
11/27/18 4:05 p.m.

Òne thing I haven't seen mentioned yet - if you use a tool like Harry's lap timer, make sure that whatever camera you purchase is compatible with it. I know GoPros are compatible with HLT, not sure about other tools.

Stefan
Stefan MegaDork
11/27/18 5:02 p.m.

In reply to BoxheadTim :

I wrote the following in my post:

" The TrackAddict phone app can interface directly with GoPro, Garmin or 360fly cameras, if that is any consideration for you. "

Jus' Sayin'

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
11/27/18 6:34 p.m.

In reply to Stefan :

Reading comprehension, I haz it. Occasionally.

TIGMOTORSPORTS
TIGMOTORSPORTS Dork
11/27/18 6:44 p.m.

In reply to ShinnyGroove :

Reading this has my interest. I'm looking at getting something like this over the next couple of months.

StillNoCones
StillNoCones New Reader
12/3/18 9:09 p.m.

Ive used the Akso EK7000 for the past 2 seasons of autox / hpdes. Currently listed at $60 on amazon. For me it was a great deal and well worth the money. Compatibile with GoPro mounts, wifi capability, comes with a handy remote, and can do up to 4k (though ive never tried it).

I usually run a seperate microphone recording setup for audio however, the sound quality on almost all actions cams leaves a lot to be desired. 

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01HGM33HG/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_t7EbCbP8FX4XM

Heres a video with the cam 

https://youtu.be/lkNKkYvfql4

Knurled.
Knurled. MegaDork
12/3/18 9:20 p.m.

Go Pro.  Not 2 or 3 or 4 but original recipe.

 

My Hero died.  I was without in-car for a while.  Then I went to the RXNC and lent my car to someone for the price of one of his GoPros, probably because he assumed he would win a Go Pro 3 by taking a class win in my car.  Again.  But then some guy won my class with a Miata and got the 3 instead.

 

Whatever, the GoPro that I got from him still works.  And I bolt it to my helmet because cameras bolted to the car make for useless video when the car is usually not pointed where the course goes.

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
12/3/18 10:08 p.m.

I bought the V50 4K Pro Native based on the recommendations here and the reviews of other AKASO models. I went with it for the external mic and versatility it looked to provide. Here's my first video with it: Messing with Hot Wheels

TIGMOTORSPORTS
TIGMOTORSPORTS Dork
1/11/19 6:32 a.m.

In reply to ShinnyGroove :

What I like about this one that I see, is the remote control watch that comes with it. Anything you don't like or also like/recommend about it?

I see Walmart also has it for $120 with free shipping:

https://www.walmart.com/ip/AKASO-V50-Pro-Native-4K-30fps-20MP-WiFi-Action-Camera-EIS-Touch-Screen-30m-Waterproof-Aujustable-View-Angle-Remote-Control-Sports-Camera-Helmet-Acces/500746182

 

 

Dave M
Dave M Reader
1/11/19 6:47 a.m.

The SJCam is here, I will post some video after I put it to the test (first up is SCUBA, not driving)....

Toebra
Toebra Dork
1/11/19 11:51 a.m.

I got a Midland video camera for $50 with a bunch of accessories from Radio Shack when they went teats up.  Has served me well.  It does not have a screen to review video, about the only downside

Best accessory is a mount that lets you clip it to a ball cap, but it came with a little waterproof plexiglass box, mount for helmet, one for handlebar/rollbar.

ea_sport
ea_sport Reader
1/12/19 8:45 p.m.
Stefan said:

In reply to BoxheadTim :

I wrote the following in my post:

" The TrackAddict phone app can interface directly with GoPro, Garmin or 360fly cameras, if that is any consideration for you. "

Jus' Sayin'

I’m not really tech savvy so pardon the noob-ish question. How exactly does the interface work? I’m also in the market for a new aurocross camera since my old Groupon special died. I learned that I want camera with external mic, the ability to control it (turning on and off) remotely preferably from a phone app and ideally the ability to overlay some data logging or obd2 data. What’s the most cost efficient action cam with those asks in mind?

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
1/17/19 12:31 p.m.

Update: My AKASO V50 4K Pro Native has broken. The external mic cord literally pulled out the entire guts of the mini-USB port. Looking at the reviews, this is not an unusual issue. I'm not very happy, obviously. Amazon is sending a replacement that should be here tomorrow. 

I'd really like something in between this camera and a GoPro. Why isn't there anything in that $200-$250 range?

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