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Digital camera's suitable for off-roading


By Matt - Posted on 04 February 2007

NB: Originally posted elsewhere on the Global Riders Network and appears via syndication.

Tired of being unable to record my ignominy and new to the world of megapixel envy I'm after hints/tips/experiences from those wiser. I have a habit of bashing stuff up pretty quickly (mobile phones my speciality) and getting dusty and grimey for fun so are there any reasonbly hardy cameras out there that are reliable and half decent quality for not too much money?

Ta,
Matt.

And if anybody just happens to be heading orient ward...

Tags

i bought one of the new olympus digi cameras a while ago, 7 meg, waterproof and shock proof, about 600 bucks but have no complaints, i take it in the waves and ive dropped it a few times onto rock and its still sweet. all in all a good investment if you wanna take a few pics on the trails. hopefully i'll get out for a ride next weekend and ill bring it along.

Attach it to your bike? Or maybe tape it to your helmet for some wicked helmet cam?

I take a Canon ixus i5 with me quite often when riding, I have it on a belt pouch which has some padding. I think the important things are small size (less likely to get hit/bumped and less obtrusive to carry), and a good pouch/case that will protect it from bumps and dirt etc.

Hmmm... I used to take my Digital Ixus 500 everywhere. In a Lowepro case attached to my chest. You:ve have thought this was protection enough, but...

Last ride at the Oaks it carked it (jammed lens). Second time this has happened to me with an Ixus. I've replaced it with a G7 but that won't be going anywhere near the trails, given how the other Canons lasted.

Given this experience, IMHO, get something shock/waterproof/all weather as someone else has already mentioned.

Is that as a result of falling on it or something though? I have a Ixus 55 and I've carried it on several rides now, keeping it in my Camelbak and its survived so far, though I've never landed on my back, but I think if I did the camera would be the first to hit the ground.

I have trialed the kodak cs3** model of digital camera with video...I had made up a clamp for the bars with a 1/4" bolt (same as a tripod thread) this worked alright but as their was some teething promblems doing this...for instance the batteries would get shaken loose and the camera could sometimes swing around a little on the mount. I got some video of speeds over 40km/hr with this mount and its starting to blur out...but this was on fairly smooth firetrail..anything slower looks great anything which is technical is going to bang the camera around till it shutsdown..I did try it on the Oaks and it copped it at the start big time..the camera is fine but the thread on the inside of the camera came loose..
Have a look at the Oregon Helmet cam in Rebel...only $170 or so??

cheers
shane

Shane I was taken, impressed that is not taken for a ride, with the Oregon. The vid on their site I thought looked OK all be it a little short. We had a discussion about this one a couple of weeks back and Rob put up some links to vids that had been shot with it on xc trail. They look really shakey and get a funny looking compression thing happening. Don't know if this is the camera or if it is the file type that it has been converted to when posted, but would want to be looking at some more video before I bought it.

My 2 cents...
I think the cam will need to be mounted to the human body. Far too much shock otherwise, nothing will work in those conditions. If you had a remote pencil cam with the recorder in the backpack it would be ok.

I am working on a mount on the helmet like the skydivers use and am fairly convinced that on the body will provide the best environment for fragile gear I have and produce reasonable results.

Cheers

Shopbot is good for finding good prices, for example:
http://www.shopbot.com.au/p-18791-317747.html

Craig,

Lets get together. I'm looking at building a helmet mount for my Canon IXUS 55. Can't be that hard. And yes head mount is the ONLY way a cam can work on a mountain bike.

Catch Ya

Greg

It's been a while since the discussion in this thread, but saw this the other day to spark it:

http://www.dpreview.com/news/0706/07062001fujibi...

Sad to say I'm not that impressed with shots from the Olympus 770 (folding optics and other compromises can't help).

The 'Big Job' above has some very trail friendly features with more standard looking optics:

  • Robust body with a rubber grip
  • Big, easy-to-use buttons and menu systems
  • Waterproof, dust proof and drop proof – tested to 70cm
  • Fujinon 3x optical zoom lens (28-84mm wide angle)
  • Powerful flash, up to 10 meters
  • Large 3” LCD screen with reinforced glass coating

Will be interesting to see how this performs and how big it is... and if it's ever available here.

A simple and effective way I mount my light to my helmet is to glue velcro right around my light then use the other piece of velcro through 2 helmet vents and wrap it over the light/helmet cam. It's secure and fully adjustable and cheap. Fabric shops have it 50mm wide by the metre.
John

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