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1st Cam advise

#1
What would any of you recommend for your first cam to use to record video? Would you go right for a Go Pro? I was just looking for something to add to my flying experience down the road.
 

RoyBro

Senior Member
Mentor
#2
That's not a simple question. Of course the gold standard for cameras is the Gopro, but which edition? And they start at $200.
How good are your flying skills? How deep are your pockets? Can you afford to crash a plane with a $200 camera on board?
You may consider something less expensive like an 808 #16 or #26. Or the Mobius, which records at 1080p but costs less than $100.
 
#3
There's also the wing cams from Hobby King.
I just got an HD cam for about $100. They have another for less.
I haven't used it yet. Just charged the battery yesterday. I'll set it up tomorrow.
 

Craftydan

Hostage Taker of Quads
Moderator
Mentor
#4
Flynn,

Buy the $7 cam. Buy a spare. Flight footage is great at any time, but unless you *NEVER* crash, the camera may be the first thing to die in a hard landing.

Buying cheap the first time out will let you experiment with mounting, angles, protection, and just get cheep crappy footage during the maiden of that plane you're not sure will fly.
 

Craftydan

Hostage Taker of Quads
Moderator
Mentor
#6
#7
Thanks for the replies guys. I think ill start off with the cam from Hobbyking. I just wanted to ask before buying something that was half the price of a Go Pro when I should've just saved another 100 and gone with the Go Pro.

iCrash, I'll look for your vid in the Video section.

Thanks again! You guys are awesome!
 

rcspaceflight

creator of virtual planes
#8
I have the HD Wing Cam from Hobby King that I bought for $40. It's a pretty good camera. The biggest issue that I have is that the audio and video don't line up, but that doesn't really matter when all you hear is the motor. Also, it can take a second for the camera to adjust to lighting, which can be annoying when you keep aiming the camera up at the sky, and then down do the ground. Apparently you cannot use it as an FPV cam while recording, yet there is a "hack" to force it to do so. If you just want to record stuff, it's a good camera. I'm really glad I bought it. I record most of my flights either with the camera on the plane, or I rubberband it to a baseball cap. It doesn't work very well on a hat because of the wide lens, the plane has to be close to be able to see it. But that's true with any camera that doesn't have a zoom.

If you're just going to record footage, buy something cheap. That way you won't be worried about breaking it. I always velcro my camera to my planes and it's been knocked off a few times but still works like new.
 

Craftydan

Hostage Taker of Quads
Moderator
Mentor
#9
If you're just going to record footage, buy something cheap. That way you won't be worried about breaking it. I always velcro my camera to my planes and it's been knocked off a few times but still works like new.
You've been luckier than I've been -- Broke mine on the second flight. :black_eyed:

Velcroed to the top, holding onto the battery strap. If I'd wrapped the strap around the camera, I'd have more flight footage today . . . .

I'll agree -- good camera in bang-for-buck. a step up from the cheapest 808s. The next step up from that, IMO is a GoPro. By the time you lay out $100 for a nice camera you're already accepted/minimized the risk of crash damage, so bite the bullet, spend the extra $$$ and get a truly nice camera.

Of course YMMV.
 
#10
I also recommend the $7 HobbyKing camera as a first cam. It absolutely isn't a GoPro but for the price of a large combo meal you can get a camera that you won't worry too much about so you'll use it everywhere. I've slapped it to the bill of a ball cap to film my first maiden:

And stuck it to my plane for easy inflight video


I'm now looking to step up to a 808 #16 with the D lens but I'll still be using this little gem too.
 

rcspaceflight

creator of virtual planes
#11
You've been luckier than I've been -- Broke mine on the second flight.
I tend to nose dive into fields. I thought I lost my camera a couple of times and I still have some dirt in it.

To Flynn, this is the camera I use. http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/...280x720p_30fps_5MP_CMOS_U SA_Warehouse_.html

When I bought it, I was able to get a deal on it because I was looking at the page for a while. Right now it has the pop-up again saying that it's on sale for $35.33 Just saying. It's up to you whether you want a cheap HD camera and a cheap camera. Or if you want to spend the extra money for a really nice one.

The video I wanted to share that I took with that camera isn't working, but here is a different video that I took with it:
 
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Craftydan

Hostage Taker of Quads
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#12
Yeah, that's the same one. looks like it's dropped ~$5 in price. Again, nice camera. Mine took the brunt of the crash on the lens, and now is no more.

If you go with this option, mount it *FIRMLY*. Separation from the airframe can lead to one last piece of interesting footage.
 

xuzme720

Dedicated foam bender
Mentor
#13
If you go with this option, mount it *FIRMLY*. Separation from the airframe can lead to one last piece of interesting footage.
Like this?

This was shot with my 808 and it was only velcroed on, but when it "landed" inverted, it knocked the whole foam camera pedestal off, velcro stayed stuck...the camera however still lives.
 

Craftydan

Hostage Taker of Quads
Moderator
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#14
. . . sorta, just not like this:


Was the 5th or 6th filght with this airframe -- Hotdogging it around at low altitude. Had it up and flying around the previous battery, but forgot to hit record. This flight was fine until that tree grew up out of nowhere. The plane had plenty of thrust to vertical out, but I hit the aileron which was WAY twitchier than I realized (expo can fool you!). Instead of pealing off, down it went . . .

Had MANY more flights with this plane, before the nose became mush, but that was the last that camera would ever see. building another one now -- I like airframes tougher than the pilot!
 

xuzme720

Dedicated foam bender
Mentor
#15
I would have thought mine would be worse than it was simply because of the height it was at when I lost it. I guess trees really do hate planes!
 

Craftydan

Hostage Taker of Quads
Moderator
Mentor
#16
I would have thought mine would be worse than it was simply because of the height it was at when I lost it. I guess trees really do hate planes!
What? No! Trees around here *Love* planes!

Right next to kites, it's their favorite toy to "play catch". They've even been known to move around the field and leap up to snatch one out of the air.

It's pilots who hate trees!

Now cameras on the other hand . . .

From your vid, looked like it flaired just in time for "landing". Lucky can be better than good . . .
 

xuzme720

Dedicated foam bender
Mentor
#17
Yessir! and as a sport kite pilot I try to keep all my flying gear out of their reach! :)
It's a tough task, as you know, since trees are fast little buggers, sneaky, too.

If you look closely in the vid, cows are also a threat...and I'll take lucky over good any day, mainly because...
I have to.
 
#18
I've actually put my GoPro back in the box. The thing is just too bulky and heavy if you keep it in it's normal housing and even if you don't, it doesn't exaclty have any good aerodynamic properties.

I also bought a cheaper FV(?) camera off ebay for about 30 bucks. The sound always seems out of sync, but it's small, light and easy to tape on to the glider. Charging it up is dodgy, but it does the job.
 

rcspaceflight

creator of virtual planes
#19
I aimed my camera straight at the prop once, looked horrible. Completely unwatchable. I have to have my camera mounted on the wing with less than half of the viewing area blocked by the prop. Then it's great footage.