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Wednesday
Aug222012

Liquid Image EGO Review (2 part review)

Here is part one of a two part review of the Liquid Image EGO 1080p sport camera. (Part 2 here)

Over the next two weeks I will spend more time using the camera and then post the final part of the review, together with some downloadable sample.

This is the first time I've split a video review in this manner. I did this because I wanted to give myself more time to perform all the tests that a camera like this warrants, as well as discover any quirks and idiosyncrasies it may exhibit.

If there is anything specific that you want to see in part 2, please put details in the comments and I'll see what I can do.

I bought this camera from Amazon, it cost me approx £120.

PDF Manual on the Liquid Image Site (not much other info there though).

Here is a gallery of all the set-up menus from the Actionconnect app.

 

Update 27 August 2012

I took the Ego out on the bike yesterday and got some really nice looking video. I'm very impressed with this camera.  I'm currently working on my review of the bike and then on the final part of the Ego review...but if you want to see something from the Ego now - you can download a clip using This link. This clip was shot in 1080p30 with a 90º FOV and the plastic protective shield was on. The clip has been trimmed for length using MPEG streamclip (but not re-encoded).

PART 2 OF THIS REVIEW IS HERE

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Reader Comments (65)

Nice review again Mat!

Does changing the FOV setting reduce the fish eye effect? Be good to see samples of that in part 2.
Also I imagine you will include answers to normal boring old questions such as can it charge and record at the same time?
I fear that loop recording is not an option with this camera? Bit of a shame that.

Great review again, can't wait for part 2!!

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJim

I need to test the FOV setting and see if it works and if it retains the setting after powering off. All the other things...I need to find out myself and then I'll be sure to include the answers to these in part 2. I'm pretty sure that looping the video is out of the question though.

The things I've left out so far traditionally add another week or two to the production time of each video...especially when it comes to waiting for decent weather to go out on the bike.

August 22, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Am I right in assuming it does not do PAL Frame rates only NTSC (30/60)

If so this is a big mistake - as when mixed with 25P footage it will have ghosted frames

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermatt

Matt You are correct. 1080p 30 and 720p 60 only. That's why I didn't mix any footage in with the review that I'd already shot and edited at 1080p 25.

August 22, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

If you have time, can you let us know how long it will continuously shoot shoot video while on the battery, and does it gracefully shut down and end/save the video if you let it run out of battery?

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPigmyPuncher

That's exactly the kind of thing that will be in part 2 because of the length of time it takes to accurately determine.

August 22, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

some questions

Is it possible to switch of the LED in front?
Is it possible to switch of the sounds?
Memory usage per Video time?
Charge and record at the same time ?
Maximal size of the SD card?

the a lot and regards

August 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSam

Sam 1, 2 and 5 are covered in the video (No, No and 32GB). 2 & 3 .....in part 2

August 22, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Looks to be the start of a great new review. Good stuff so far. What I would like to know is:

1) Sound quality. Also is it stereo or mono sound?
2) Video jelly effect. A lot of these camcorders exhibit varying degrees of jellyvision. Would like to see some reasonably fast panning on say a fence with vertical slats to see how pronounced the effect is.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGeoff

Thanks for this great new review (as usual)!

As I understand, the smartphone application can be used as a remote control. This is a very useful feature for action scenes.
Do you have an idea about the WiFi antenna range? Inside (through walls) and outside?

Can't wait for the 2nd part of the review.
Specially for onboard footage! ;-)

Daniel, France

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDan

Great review!

Looks very promising. Let's wait for the second part of the review. Can't wait to watch that bike-onboard-test.

Thank you very much!

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCalvinH

Mat,

Just a quick question you could maybe answer in part 2.

Will it charge via a 12V car cigarette charger?

If it does and it can charge and record at the same time, this might be a far better option for my R&D project i emailed you about a few weeks back. The 1080p bullet cam has the drawback of having a lot wires going all about the place, where as this camera with it wifi connectivity to a smartphone would eliminate all that by using the smartphone as a viewfinder.

It looks to be a great little camera, but that fisheye effect worries me a bit, hope changing the FOV would sort that out as i have seen sample footage on youtube with both the fisheye effect and another video that had no fisheye effect at all.

Look forward to part 2 and to get a look at that new bike!!

Regards,
Jim.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJim

It will charge with a 12V USB charger. All USB chargers will supply 5V regardless of what the other end is plugged into, car, bike, house, solar panel...etc.

Before any smart alec wants to school me about amps etc....let's just keep this basic...no need to go into that now.

I will be looking at FOV in part 2.

August 24, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Well it's mono, you can see that in the specs, however I'll be testing the performance of this in part 2. I'll try and find some way of testing CMOS wobble.

August 24, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

I've uploaded a video sample to mediafire and added a link to the bottom of the blog post.

August 27, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Wauw, really nice quality! I like the colors, are they realistic?
Your suspension is working hard. :-)

August 27, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGerrelt

It was a lovely day and the sky was blue, I suppose it's possible that the colours might possibly be a tiny bit oversaturated...but it looks about right to me.

August 27, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

I too am interested if the Ego can charge and record at the same time, if you could test this for part two that would be great

August 29, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDave

I got my very own EGO from Amazon this week, am very impressed by the quality of the video !

That said, I sorry to report the WiFi "view finder" doesn't work with my setup: EGO cam serial A0000367 version 2.1.4.0 (*), Action Connect version 2.1.9 and Samsung Galaxy Ace GT-S5830i running on Android 2.3.6

After sending an email to Liquid Image they responded quite fast, the last thing they did was sending me a firmware update voor the cam, it's now running on 2.2.1.0, but the "shoot" mode in ActionConnect still doesn't work, i.e. shows a black screen with just the phone's wee notification symbols.

Quite a pity because the main reason for buying this cam was it's ability to place it in a cramped space (model railroad layout) and get the correct frame for stills through the smartphone.

Anyone else has this problem ( and hopefully solved it...) ?

cheers, Leo.

August 31, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLeo Starrenburg

@Leo. I have an old Android phone and tried to connect to the Ego without success....I assumed that it was the phone's fault. Would you be so kind as to email me the firmware you got, so I can test it out. Mat@techmoan.com

August 31, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

It's on my site Mat, again thank you for your help !!!

I did go out today and bought a brand new tablet, a Samsung Tab2.
When I went to the GooglePlay store to install the ActionConnect app, the store deemed the Tab2 not compatible, would Android 4.0.3 be too much for it ?

Fingers crossed for updates :-)))

cheers, Leo.

August 31, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLeo Starrenburg

hey there,

got one more request.

i really would like to see some video taken with not that much light. I'm not talking about a night video but something in bad light conditions!

thx a lot ! you are doing a great job!

regards

September 1, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSam

Got my red ego today from Amazon. Works like a charm.
Some first day comments. Operation with buttons only is stiff.Need to check every time if recording started.
Great quality material.

example of 720 , 60fps link with ego
https://plus.google.com/u/0/116590443392082367419/posts/1R9yhK4t7g8

September 1, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJMO

Sam,

Low light test has been done today. I've all the footage I need now...it just needs editing together (I say Just, it's probably about 12 hours work).

September 1, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Thx a lot!
I really appreciate it!

regards

September 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSam

Great review as usual. Looks like this camera will be above average.

September 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTom

Great first video. I'm looking forward to part 2 to see what your overall view is. Not sure if this was asked, but will the Go Pro Adhesive mounts work with the Ego ? I can't seem to find any additional mounts currently for sale for the Ego from Liquid Image. How did you mount it to your motorcycle in the test video, as I would like to do something similar.

September 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterscooter

The mounting brackets look incredibly similar to the brackets for the GoPro, of which I have a variety of mounts for already. It would be incredibly fortuitous (and shocking) if they in fact compatible. Do you know if this is true?

September 5, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterdevon

Hi. I bought this camera for a reason it's perhaps not designed for....I'm a short documentary maker about sustainable living and take 3-10min video clips out in the 'field' - this may mean while covered in mud building an earth-oven or covered in cow shit reviewing milking techniques. I got the Ego because I thought it would be incredibly useful to have such a small, no-bother camera. I don't need high-quality video as all my edited stuff goes to youtube so can't be big files anyway.
So far I have been totally happy with not having a viewfinder/display screen and like the hand-held convenience. (people also dont seem to be as bothered by being filmed from such a discrete piece of equipment so I get more realistic, vibrant interviews. However, I am absolutely gutted about the fish-eye effect that seems to pervade everything. I am not particularly technical so I am hoping maybe there is a setting to change or something. Otherwise this would write the camera off for me completely. I read several reviews of this camera before making the decision to buy and I didn't see one mention of the fish-eye quality. I'm feeling a bit like a dumb-blonde having bought something I don't totally understand.
Help would be much appreciated if any one knows if the fish-eye can be changed. Regards, Emma.

November 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEmma

Got the Ego as a Christmas present; I had put it on my list largely as a result of your thorough review. I haven't used it yet, at least not the way I want to (on a motorcycle, when the snow clears out in a few months).

Someone asked above if you can charge it and record at the same time. It looks like the answer is "no," because the Power / Mode button doesn't seem operational when plugged into a USB slot.

I noted that the instructions make no mention (and certainly don't show a picture) of actually inserting a micro SDHC card -- they only tell you to make sure it's inserted properly. Bit of a disappointment. I looked inside, to see which side the electrical contacts are, and managed to get it right. The instructions also don't tell you that when charging via the included USB cable the light blinks red, and then it turns a solid green when charging is complete.

By the way, my included firmware is 2.2.1.2. This, for an Ego purchased in the U.S., in December. The Action Connect is iPhone version 3.0.0, and looks a little different from the older version you show: it adds an "Info" button (for Action Connect, not the Ego).

In this part 1 of 2 video, you note that you hold down what you called the "power" button, for a bit, to start the Ego's Wi-Fi. Actually, you meant what the manual calls the "Shutter / Select / Wifi Start & Shutdown button"; the "Power / Mode button" is the other one. If you or someone else has already noted this, sorry for the duplication.

The test I did so far was to have the Ego record my monitor, sitting on my desk, while I was re-watching your part 1 video Came out very nicely.

Thanks again for your time and effort.

January 4, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBill Pollack

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