Action Cameras do exactly what it says on the tin, they sell action cameras. Thanks to the huge popularity of the GoPro in recent seasons and the immense quality and ease of use of their latest camera the GoPro HD Hero 2, filming of skiing and snowboarding has never been so popular.
Whether you are on a family holiday and want to document your youngster's first steps on skis, heading to the park to film some friends perfecting their skills or are about to drop into a huge powder line, the new range of action cameras make it easier than ever. The HD cameras come with every attachment you can imagine, from your helmet, to your chest, skis or even specialist poles. The new wave of cameras also offers an incredible standard of 1080p filming for an affordable budget.
For the last few seasons professional skiers and snowboarders alike have been using first the Go Pro HD Hero and now the GoPro HD Hero 2 to film sections of their films, including the mega-budget Red Bull sponsored films 'The Art of Flight' and 'That's It, That's All'. Recently über snowboarder Travis Rice announced a change of allegiance to CONTOUR, this move just shows how GoPro's grip as market leader is beginning to slip. Though it remains to be seen how many people will chose to walk away from the popular and easy to use GoPro range — especially as they are the market leader for price, quality and ease of use.
So, whether you are filming a family or friends trip to the slopes or a professional athlete, these modern cameras offer an affordable way of taking home professional quality filming — depending on the person using the camera of course!
Action Cameras offer a variety of head cameras and here are two of their most popular:
GoPro HD Hero2
GoPro have fast become the most popular choice with action sports enthusiasts looking to film their favourite sports due to the fantastic picture quality, great accessories and ease of use. Whether cruising down the mountain mid-winter on skis, charging down the mountain mid-summer on a bike or hitting a huge barrel off Hawaii's coastline, you will see these bad boys in use everywhere.
The4 GoPro HD Hero2 outdoor edition is particularly popular due to its amazing array of attachments and the waterproof/snow-proof casing you can use. There are easy straps to attach the camera to a helmet, beanie, head, chest or wrist, meaning you can take a whole variety of angles at minimal effort. Ideal for a day on the slopes, there are also attachments for your skis/snowboard and some people even buy the mini ski pole which is great for getting footage of yourself.
The picture quality of the GoPro is just awesome. We have recently started using one for our own trips and the ease of use, the 1080p quality and the fish-eye lens have made for some fantastic footage. But enough of what I think about the GoPro, here's a little clip of the Winter X-Games in Tignes taken on the HD Hero2:
The Drift HD is the first camera to really compete with the GoPro. The latest camera from Drift Innovation is 25% smaller than previous offerings, can shoot in 1080p and offers a 300 degree rotating lens— which can make for some pretty interesting shots. The new Drift HD also has a waterproof casing, like the GoPro, ideal for keeping the camera safe on the slopes, and a wrist mounted remote — great for easy use when getting on/off of chairlifts etc.
It might lack the gadgets, but the picture quality is still pretty good and if you are looking for a camera that will live on the side of your helmet with minimal fuss, then the Drift HD could be a winner. Here's some footage taken on the Drift HD, shot in the powder Mecca that is Revelstoke, Canada (sorry about the sound track):
Another camera re-gaining popularity is the Contour helmet cam. CONTOUR, as mentioned before, are now working with Travis Rice — the brains behind of a lot of Red Bull's snowboard related filming and stunts. Though the Contour is on action cameras books, I'm not as familiar with this piece of kit. The reviews are raving about the 1080p filming and its lightweight appeal while strapped to your head.
Though Contour have been around for sometime, they had fallen behind both GoPro and Drift, but their latest camera, along with their new tie-ups with Travis Rice and their subsequent use in plenty of Red Bull footage, is bound to create a stir. Here's a clip from Mr Rice and his latest offering to the world of snowboard, the Red Bull Supernatural, so you can judge Contour for yourself.