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How about yinz with the nifty helmet cams giving us some info on what your using.
I'd like to invest, but want to know what works, what's clear, what can take abuse....
 

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what did ya find?

Where/what did you find for information? I am just now starting to try to educate my self on the whole helmet cam idea. The website posed just up there only shows three options (that I saw). I know that has to be others. I haven't spent much time searching for helmet cams on here and I will be spending more, but is there some good info and comparrisons written about here?

thanks.
 

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Samsung

I have a Samsung SC-X105L. you can get them on Ebay for around 200-300 bucks. It comes with the helmet module. You will need extra batteries and memory sticks though. You can pick up both cheap on Ebay also. It works pretty good, you cant beat its size though, not much bigger than a cell phone.
 

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definitely think hard about your application! Most all the how-to's and reviews are focused on making high-quality XC videos in dry conditions.

I had a samsung for over two years and loved it- extremely durable, easy to use and very small. The kind of thing where I could keep it in my pack and throw it on whenever I wanted. (lots of videos and info in my link below)

Recently I had a bout of UGI, plus I wanted something better for filming my young daughter. So I sold the samsung, bought a sony dcr-hc85, a viosport 3, LANC remote, and otterbox case for the camera. Then I had to do a bunch of customizing to get the cables set up, in a way where I'm not worried about disconnections.

I am sure this new set-up will be way better in terms of quality & versatility. But, it takes up about 10x as much space, weighs about 5lbs total, so therer's no way it's going to be a "keep it in my pack and throw it on whenever I want" deal. Plus the file sizes are HUGE.

I considered strapping a camera directly to my helmet- no way I'm going to do that on our local wet free-ride trails. The camera would get muddy and eventually crashed on.

remote helmet cam is the way to go if you crash often, ride in wet conditions, or ride FR trails IMHO.
LANC remote is key for ease of use.
Buying some stuff used helps keep the price down.
A PVR with a viosport or 20/20 helmet cam woudl be a great comprimise if you don't need regular video ability.

I have no regrets and am stoked to make more videos this year!
 

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I've been using helmet-mounted remote lenses since 2001 and I have to say, I'm looking for
a way out. Oh sure, in the beginning I was quite happy with the results. But as time has
progressed and HD is becoming more prevalent, the compromises in video quality rendered
by a remote lens make the footage less and less attractive.

If you want details on what I mean by compromises, I'll expand. Suffice to say, the exposure
and white balance is less than optimal. And this is true with even the lenses that sport the
"best" Sony chipsets.

I'm now looking for a way to get the actual camera lens onto the helmet; be it with or without
the body of the camera. Mounting the camera on the helmet is fraught with issues. If the
helmet is not tight, the weight of the camera will cause issues - the helmet will shift and
move. A full face helmet does wonders to alleviate this problem at the expense of being
hot. (I live / ride in TX)

If the camera is mounted on top of the helmet, it is susceptible to damage from low hanging
limbs and obstacles. If the camera is mounted on the side of the helmet, there will be a
balance problem requiring neck tiring counter-weight.

So, now I'm looking at the idea of modifying a camera by pulling the optics and chip
out and mounting only these components onto the helmet. Basically, what I want is a
gutted camera in a modified, smaller package that has all the capabilities in terms of AE
and focus but none of the weight and size needed for the battery and transport. This would
be small enough to mount on the helmet with the benifits of the remote lenses - in terms
of weight and size - while providing a much higher quality picture. I'll just power the lens
and chip and feed its output to the AV-in of a "mule" camera that is carried somewhere in
or on the camelbak.

I have an older Sony that has a transport problem that will be cannibalized for the prototype.
 

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Sounds interesting... I've had similar thoughts myself. I'm actually surprised that Sony has not done a full function "remote cam" - basically what you describe, a good lens, (3ccd?)chipset etc, but with the recording part separate via cable.

I have a couple Sony cams... maybe when I get the time I may also try canibalizing one...

On another note, I just tried out the waterproof version of Xtreme Reacalls helmet cam system - very good for the most part.

I will post a review with samples and photos shortly...

CJS
 

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I just ordered an Archos 404 (which has a 30gb hd) and the Archos helmet camera (VGA). The recorder is on sale at Circuit City for $199 and the camera I got at Buy.com for $117. The 30gb hd should be good for about 30 hours of video. They claim the battery lasts about 4 hours. I may pick up a spare just in case. I've been eyeing this setup for a while now. I like the idea of a small "pen" camera and the small digital recorder but didn't like how all the other helmet cameras needed their own battery and adaptor cables. This setup seems perfect. I'm really excited to try it out! Keep an eye out for an extensive review sometime this summer.

Kevin
 

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DVD quality video is recorded at about 1gb/hr. That is why you can fit about 4 hours of video on a 4.7gb DVD. Others who have used the Archos for helmet cam recording didn't have any problems so I suspect I won't either. If I mounted it on my handlebars then it might skip. In my pack it should be ok. If it doesn't work out I still have a kick ass 30gb media player for under $200.
 

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woodsguy said:
I just ordered an Archos 404 (which has a 30gb hd) and the Archos helmet camera (VGA). The recorder is on sale at Circuit City for $199 and the camera I got at Buy.com for $117. The 30gb hd should be good for about 30 hours of video. They claim the battery lasts about 4 hours. I may pick up a spare just in case. I've been eyeing this setup for a while now. I like the idea of a small "pen" camera and the small digital recorder but didn't like how all the other helmet cameras needed their own battery and adaptor cables. This setup seems perfect. I'm really excited to try it out! Keep an eye out for an extensive review sometime this summer.

Kevin
Do you have the unit yet. any preliminary reviews? I've been looking at this for some time now and was wondering: How it worked?
If it worked well?
Pros?
Cons?

It seems less expensive than the other systems out there.

I'd also love to hear a review of the Xtreme Recall unit. More expensive, but worth it? (I despise anything that describes itself as Xtreme)
http://www.xtremerecall.com/Products/Xtreme_Helmet_Cam_Package.htm
About $650.00USD ... Plus you have to add about $800.00 CDN for the Sony DCRHC96 MiniDV Camcorder
http://www.sonystyle.ca/commerce/se...&productId=1002330&navigationPath=32080n32081

I think a good middle gound is the Viosport Cam3 package. Comes with the Sony DCRHC96 camcorder for about $1040.00 USD but no protective casing or protective beachball air bag like with the Xtreme Recall unit.
http://www.viosport.com/store/customer/ourgear.php?page=complete_kits

I'm waiting for some suggestions before pulling the trigger.
 

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iscariot said:
I'm waiting for some suggestions before pulling the trigger.
Hey Iscariot,

Here's the set-up I went for recently...
viosport adventure cam 3 $279
viosport 1.6 Lanc remote $60
slightly used sony dcrhc-85 camera off eBay: $275
otterbox off eBay: $25
so about $640 altogether.

One thing I really like about the viosport, is the optional cable harness that goes directly to the sony input- no adaptors. The LANC reemote is killer too- I did 7hrs of riding last weekend, repeatedly turned the camera on/off, started recording only during the good parts, the whole set up worked great and I never took it out of my pack, just used the lanc remote all day.

I did some mods to the otterbox case, so the cables connections & camera are all totally protected. I'll post some pictures at some point. I am really happy with the set-up so far! The video quality is excellent- the viosport 3 looks nearly as good as video shot using the lens on the sony.

Check out this video
(r-click to DL)- this was last weekend on the 'shore in north vancouver BC. The video quality was good enough, I was able to compress the file twice as much and it still looks good- so 30mb for 6 minutes. The uncompressed video looks awesome.

I used to use a samsung sc-x-105l- the new set-up is %100 better in terms of video quality, and just as easy to use. The only downside is, the camera and box aren't small or light- probably 3-4lbs.
 
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