Designed to attach to helmets, bike handlebars, drones, cars, dogs and almost anything else you can think of, action cameras are small, rugged and capture dramatic footage of your world.
Olympus is the latest to join the action camera race with the TGTracker, the newest addition to its long-running TG-series of Toughbranded cameras. Drop it, freeze it, or submerge it to 30m underwater, no protective housing required. The stellar feature set is what makes it stand out from the crowd – a 204-degree (f/2.0) wide-angle lens, a Truepic TM VII processor that can handle 4K video at 30 fps, a 8-megapixel CMOS (1/2.3) sensor for stills, 5-axis image stabilization, built-in Action Track Sensors, GPS, and Wi-Fi. Handy extras like the LED headlight and the tilt-out monitor help you nail difficult shots. Watch out, GoPro!
GoPro Hero 4 Black
Everyone’s favorite tiny action camera, the GoPro Hero 4 has gone where no GoPro has gone before – it played second lead to Matt Damon in Ridley Scott’s The Martian. Even NASA astronaut Terry Wirts took a GoPro outside the International Space Station and filmed two of his extravehicular activities. If price is not an issue, this is the best action camera in the market today. Capturing 4K Ultra HD video and liquid-smooth slow motion at up to 240 frames per second, the Hero4 also grabs 12MP photos at 30 frames per second, offers new low-light settings and sports built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth features to allow you to use your phone or tablet as a live video remote for your camera, offering full control of all functions and settings, playback and sharing. It also comes with a huge ecosystem of mounts and accessories for every possible use.
Price: Rs. 43,900
If you’re looking for a fun, pocket-sized, nofrills device that you can instantly shoot with, the Polaroid Cube+ is one of the best bargains in the market. Don’t even bother comparing it to the GoPro, as it offers a basic feature set including 1440p video, 8MP camera for stills, a 124° wide-angle lens and Wi-Fi. And yet the video quality is surprisingly good for the price you pay. The magnetic base is strong enough to adhere securely to any iron or steel surface.
Sony Action Cam X1000V
Sony’s answer to GoPro brings its expertise in imaging to action cameras in this solid offering, the X1000V. It comes packaged with a watertight housing that allows it to be submerged down to 10 meters; has the ability to shoot 4K video at 30fps or slow-motion Full HD 1080p footage at 120fps; has electronic image stabilization to compensate for vibration; and a stereo mic with improved wind noise reduction and live streaming capability via Ustream. For some extra cash, you can also pick up the X1000V with the live view remote designed to be worn on your wrist, for a live view of the action as well as recording controls.
Price: Rs. 39,800
GoPro HERO4 Silver
If you want a GoPro but cost is a factor, the GoPro HERO4 Silver provides excellent quality and features for 20 per cent less than the Black. The only significant difference is the video quality – the Hero4 Black can shoot 4K video at 30 frames per second, while the Hero4 Silver’s maximum quality is 4K video at 15 fps. The Silver offers a built-in touch display LCD screen that new users will find especially useful while navigating the controls.
Price: Rs 34,900
Garmin VIRB XE
For snorkelling enthusiasts, Garmin’s VIRB XE is a great option, with its waterproof design that allows it to withstand water submersion to depths up to 50 meters without an external housing. The glass lens is also hydrophobic, to help avoid droplets forming on the lens when removing the camera from water. This action cam offers support for 1440/30p and 1080/60p video recording and features ‘G-Metrix’, which uses integrated GPS and other sensors to track your movements in real-time and displays it all in powerful gauges, graphs and more.
Price: Rs. 31,000
An action camera for the adventure enthusiasts who love capturing footage but hate editing, the TomTom Bandit quickly finds video highlights in hours of footage and makes a film with an automatic “shake to edit” function, without having to download any footage. The camera is waterproof to 50 meters without the need for additional body housing, and they haven’t skimped on the hardware specs either. Similar to the Garmin VIRB XE, one of the key features of the Bandit is its use of built-in sensors that record and visually present your movement data in videos.
Price: $450 for Adventure Pack that includes: Backpack Mount, Dive Lens, Basic Surface Mounts, Adapter for GoPro Mounts, Anti-Rotation Clip, Microphone Windshield.