As of right now, it seems that wearable Point of View (POV) cameras, are gaining more and more traction in the market. Nothing made that more clear than the somewhat recent success of the GoPro Hero. In response to this success, Sony decided to dip its own toes in the water, and came out with the new, Sony Action Cam.
As of right now, there are two different versions of the Action Cam. You have the WiFi connected version, and the non WiFi, which go for about $270, and $200 respectively. The more expensive version, is actually highly recommended, because it can sync up with your smartphone, but nevertheless both work fairly well, and act as functional wearable technology, that get the job done.
As far as the device itself? It’s pretty decent, but put your pens away, because this thing is certainly nothing to write home about. On the whole, I’d say the video is pretty sharp. It allows for 1080p recording, and up to 60 frames per second, which is certainly nothing to joke about. Also, if the camera is set at 720p, you can set the camera to 2x, or 4x slow-modes, which can be great for anyone who wants to watch their videos in “slow-motion”. Occasionally though, some things might seem a little off, color-wise, but nothing to be too overly concerned about, most things come out just about right.
One thing that’s rather annoying about this camera, is that it’s extremely difficult to figure out whether it’s actually recording or not. The only way you can really tell, if you physically take it off, and look at it, and then of course, you have to put it back on again. What a pain. However, this won’t be much of an issue for people who choose to connect to the camera using their iOS app. They’ll find it easy, and fluid, and you’ll be able to tell at all times whether you’re recording or not, by looking at the phone. So, if you have an iPhone, then can definitely have a solid camera here at the $270 price-point, because you’d be mostly avoiding what turned out to be one of the major drawbacks of the Sony Action Cam.
One other minor issue with this device, is the mounts… I would think mounts wouldn’t be the hardest thing to figure out at this point, since they aren’t really all that technically advanced, but I stand corrected. I found the headband mount kept slipping off my helmet, it was just too loose. I found the same problem with the mount that went on the handlebar, it was just a tad too loose there to, which might sound like a small problem, but I assure you, this is VERY annoying to mess with when you’re trying to ride a bike, without crashing into anything at the same time. It can also harm the quality of the footage itself, unfortunately. On the other hand, if you don’t plan on mounting it on your bike, you’ll find that the camera is very portable, and easy to take with you on the go, just don’t try to mount it anywhere…
Overall, I have to say, this is a pretty decent video camera. The quality of the video it records is mostly good, albeit the aforementioned coloring issues, but those are barely noticeable to the untrained eye. Still, this camera is far from being a game-changer, but so long as you’re not planning to mount it on a bike, it’ll definitely get the job done.