Cycling always gives a soul-cleansing and wholesome experience. I mean what can be more joyful than cycling along the beach, in the countryside, across the mountain road, or to explore a new city? The incredible views are best enjoyed during cycling. And if you can capture these precious moments on camera, what can be better than that?
To click and shoot these outstanding cycling experiences, bicycle helmet cameras have evolved. Most helmet cameras capture HD and 4k resolution videos that will leave you in awe. You can get such footage too if you get the right bicycle helmet camera. To choose my own helmet, I had to do research and experiment with different products. But you need not worry. I got you.
To eliminate all the hassle of searching and testing, I am writing this article. This would have all the necessary information that you need to know to get the best bicycle helmet camera. This will make your decision-making process easier!
So hang in there!
Types Of Bicycle Helmet Camera Sensor:
Bicycle helmet camera image sensors are different. The two main categories are CMOS and CCD. The shapes vary too. Some are square-shaped action cameras, while others are cylindrical. Here, the basic introduction about both CCD and CMOS bicycle helmet camera sensors:
1. CCD Bicycle Helmet Camera Sensor:
The full form of CCD is a charge-coupled device. Cameras with this sensor give an analog signal output generally using 12 VDC power. This sensor does consume more power but provides high-quality footage and pictures. The color sensor in this is better than the CMOS sensor.
2. CMOS Bicycle Helmet Camera Sensor:
The abbreviation of CMOS is a complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor. CMOS sensor is energy efficient consuming only 5 VDC power. The size of the CMOS sensor camera is small too. The video frame rate is higher in CMOS cameras and offers a more dynamic range. New-era bicycle helmet cameras mostly use CMOS sensors.
CCD & CMOS Bicycle Helmet Camera Sensor: A Complete Comparison Table
Here is a comparison table to mention the differences in specifications of CCD and CMOS image sensors:
|Parameters||CCD Bicycle Helmet Camera Sensor||CMOS Bicycle Helmet Camera Sensor|
|Power Efficiency||Less efficient||More efficient|
|Limit Of Detection||Low||High|
|Cost||More expensive||Less expensive|
The question often arises which one is the best image sensor for bicycle helmets. Honestly speaking, it depends on what you want. You can look into the differences to decide which one you would like.
But generally, in today’s time, most bicycle helmet cameras use CMOS image sensors. It is energy-efficient, lightweight, and provides a high frame rate with better detection.
7 Factors To Consider While Buying Bicycle Helmet Camera:
By now you have understood that choosing a bicycle helmet camera can be challenging. As a lot of options are available in the market, getting the best one is difficult. But it becomes way easier when you know how to choose.
In simple words, you have to look into several factors while buying a bicycle helmet camera. If you search for a camera that more or less matches these criteria, then you can handpick the best one. To pick the compatible one, you need to have the knowledge and know the factors.
Here are such 7 factors that you need to consider while choosing a bicycle helmet camera:
Shooting in motion is mostly challenging unless the camera has an image stabilization feature. Though most cycling cameras have image stabilizers, not all have the same efficiency. Also, depending on your cycling discipline, you can choose a camera with a compatible stabilizing power.
If you cycle in the mountain, the images can be blurry and shaky due to the bumps and elevated roads. Similarly, in bumpy and damaged roads, village paths, or rocky areas, videos and images won’t be clear if the stabilization is not powerful. But on plain roads, you may not need strong stabilization. However, it is never a good idea to buy a camera with low stabilization.
These cameras either use Gyro or optical technology for image stabilization. While optical technology uses lens mover, gyro detects electronic movements to stabilize images. Choose a camera with excellent stabilization to get the best out of your bicycle helmet camera.
2. Image, Video, And Audio Quality:
Now, what is the point of having a bicycle helmet camera that gives poor image and video quality? And if you want to capture ambient sounds clearly, you would need a camera with the high audio quality too.
You should choose a helmet camera that supports HD or 4K resolution images and videos. However, 4K cameras require more memory and you need to have specific devices to edit that footage. I suggest that if you don’t need 4K quality, an HD camera would be enough. Check the device by clicking and shooting to ensure the quality. You can watch review videos too to know the video and image resolution.
If you are an adventure lover, you may love to record audios too. I do love going to mountains and calm places to capture the soul-cleansing views and the ambiance of sounds like birds chirping leaves falling, flowing waterfall, etc. These soothing sounds can be recorded only if the camera has a top audio quality. Look for this feature if you want good audio along with a high-quality video and image.
3. Size And Weight:
The size of the camera would matter when you mount it on your helmet. The weight would matter even more. The camera must not feel like a burden to you.
If the size and weight are too big and heavy, it won’t be comfortable for you. The camera size should be compatible with the helmet size. Similarly, the weight has to be less so that you can carry it easily.
So, choose a lightweight and small-sized bicycle helmet camera. Avoid buying a bulky one.
4. Battery Life:
Battery life is a crucial factor to consider. When you go for a long ride in the mountains or a city tour, you would need a helmet camera with long battery life. However, the battery of a high-quality camera can last a maximum of around 4 hours.
Battery life often depends on the image sensor and resolution. Also, try turning off the camera when it is not shooting to save up battery charge. Try keeping a power bank with you if you are out for a long time.
If you regularly go for long rides, you must choose a camera with long battery life. This will reduce the hassle of charging the battery frequently, and you can get a solid backup during a ride.
5. Field Of View:
In traditional photography, the field of view is known as focal length. It is basically how much area can the camera capture. For example, if the field of view is 160 degrees, it means that the camera would cover 80 degrees from either side of the lens.
Helmet cameras mostly offer a field of view between 140 to 170 degrees. But other cameras are offering a higher field of view covering a large area. Some even cover 360 degrees. But the photos and videos may look unusual and you would need editing to make them publishable.
Wide-angle images often show distortion. Check if the camera has a distortion control setting or not. Choose the one which minimizes distortion so that you get a clear and stunning wide-angle image.
If you are not a person to regularly transfer data from the camera to a storage device, you have to look for a camera with high storage capacity. In that case, go for a camera that has 64 to 128 GB storage capacity.
But if you are careful about transferring data, a storage of 16 GB or 38 GB would suffice. It totally depends on how much storage you would require and how frequently you transfer the data.
However, I always prefer to buy a camera with high storage capacity. Keeping a storage backup is safe even if you don’t always need it.
If your helmet camera supports Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, it offers ease of use. It facilitates data exchange. Also, you can use several services with this connectivity facility. Some cameras also support mobile apps and integration with software.
Most modern helmet cameras provide GPS support. It would add locations to the image and some even add a geotag.
I always love a camera with maximum connectivity facilities. This just makes the further processes easier after shooting or clicking.
Besides all these factors, I would suggest you get a waterproof camera. It is better if you get a waterproof helmet camera.
What Is The Best Helmet Camera For Cycling? [5 Top Brands]
A lot of brands now manufacture top-notch bicycle helmet cameras. Choosing among them can be difficult sometimes. Though I will mention the ways of selecting a bicycle helmet camera in the next part, it will help you to choose the perfect one for yourself.
However, below I mentioned some top and trusted brands, from there you can easily buy the best helmet camera for cycling. Remember that each brand makes different kinds of helmet cameras. They have different specifications. So here, I will be mentioning the perks of the brand only:
GoPro is a famous company for action cameras. They offer stabilized and 4K resolution footage and images. You can shoot slow-motion videos too. The audio quality is crisp and clear. The body is waterproof even without a case. The devices from GoPro come with a lot of accessories that make the process even more convenient. The devices also support in-built GPS.
DJI is a good competitor of GoPro. The audio and video are of outstanding quality and the CMOS sensors capture videos and images without distortion. This is because the frame rate is high. DJI devices provide HDR support. They allow you to use filters too. These come with accessories too and are waterproof without the case.
Sony is always a reliable camera company. Its action cameras are top-notch too and perfect for cycling videos. They offer 4K footage and image and can be connected to Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and GPS. The image and video quality is premium. The video stabilization with Sony cameras is outstanding. Different viewing angles are added too.
Olympus is especially known for its integration and connectivity systems. The brand offers an app for easy operation. It offers connectivities like GPS, Wi-Fi, temperature sensor, and many more. The camera shoots high-quality video even in low light. The stabilization is good enough in Olympus devices.
Gramin is famous for its integration facility with mobile phones and desktops via app and software. Besides, the devices are weatherproof. The audio quality is one of the best and the video is of HD quality. Besides, the devices offer Bluetooth, GPS, and Wi-Fi connectivity. The cameras are waterproof too.
Is It Safe To Use Bicycle Helmet Cameras?
The concern of safety always comes while using a bicycle helmet camera. Many people assume that the mount would make accidents worse due to the sudden impact. But the case is not always that.
The truth is only a few mounts are impact-resistant. Most helmet mounts are not impact-resistant and they would break or fall off easily. If they break, they might hit your head through the vents or they would simply get detached from the helmet.
Don’t mount the camera at the front end of the helmet. Place it in the middle so that it doesn’t hit your forehead or eyes. The injury would be less if you place it correctly.
Therefore, the safety would depend on the impact resistance of the mount. Also, position the camera at the center to avoid major injuries.
Is It Legal To Mount Bicycle Helmet Cameras?
Many people are often confused about the legalities regarding mounting a bicycle helmet camera. For this confusion, many people take the risk of holding a camera in one hand while cycling with the other hand. But do you need to do this? No.
There is no hardcore rule of law that can stop you from mounting a camera on your bicycle helmet. There is no legal obligation as such. The only condition is that you can’t distort the shape of the helmet or make extra holes to fix the mount. If you distort or damage the helmet, it would be risky. The durability and impact resistance of the helmet would be reduced.
Unless you destroy the helmet or make holes, you are good to go. There is no legal obstacle. But if you distort the helmet to mount a helmet camera, it is illegal as safety is compromised.
How To Mount Bicycle Helmet Camera?
Mounting a bicycle helmet camera is easy if you know the right way. It has a proper system to fix it correctly so that it doesn’t fall off. You can either fix it with adhesive or mount it using straps.
Place the helmet camera mount at the center of the helmet. As bicycle helmets have vents, it becomes easier to mount the camera. You need to look for vents through which you can pass the straps. Now pass the straps through the vents, tighten them well, and bring the straps back.
You can see clips on the mount. Now secure the straps into the clips using your thumbs. Make sure that the helmet straps are tight. But it shouldn’t put pressure on the vents. Now you are done with fixing the mount. After that, place and fix the camera on the mount. Let it sit on the screw and then tighten it properly.
Mounts that use adhesive are easy to fix on the helmet. Apply the adhesive on the area where you want the camera to be. Now place the camera mount on the adhesive and fix the camera on it.
Both the processes are pretty easy. Aren’t they?
Average Bicycle Helmet Camera Price Range Of Different Brands:
Here is a chart mentioning the average price range of bicycle helmet cameras of different brands:
|Bicycle Helmet Camera Brands||Price Range|
Remember that this is the price range for a few brands. You will get different qualities of bicycle helmet cameras within this range.
Now you have a complete idea about bicycle helmet cameras. You are just a step away from buying a camera and capturing outstanding footage and images during cycling.
Get ready to hold back the moments you loved during cycling by mounting a bicycle helmet camera today!
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