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This is the excellent USB power pack I use when I travel.

2 x 2.1amp outputs. 8400mAh capacity.

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What SD CARD should I buy?

If you want an SD Card for your camera - these are the ones I use and recommend. 

I'd strongly recommend not to buy any SD cards off ebay - I've heard about too many issues with counterfeit cards - often sold on by unwitting resellers. My inbox regularly gets messages from people who bought a £150 camera then cheaped out and bought a £3 memory card on ebay - Then when it doesn't worth they blame the camera! It doesn't make any sense. Good memory is cheaper than it's ever been - see the links above.

A lot of HD cameras will not work properly with cards larger than 32GB (cards over 32GB are usually SDXC rather than the SDHC standard used by 32GB cards. SDXC cards use the ex-FAT system rather than FAT32 - in short they are a different standard). - so don't just buy the biggest card you can afford - read the specs in the manual to see what it accepts.

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CLASS 10 UHS-1 CARDS (For HD Cameras)

 

U3 CARD (For 4K cameras)

 

 

SPECIAL DASHCAM CARDS

The SD card in a dashcam is re-written over, more frequently than in other types of cameras. Some manufacturers void their guarantee if an SD card was used in a dashcam. So, no surprise, there are special High Endurance SD cards made just for dashcams...here's some.

 

VERY IMPORTANT. These links take you to the product, however Amazon have three different ways of selling. There's Amazon Direct - This means that you are only dealing with Amazon themselves, then there's other sellers that use Amazon's facilities - these show as Fulfilled By Amazon and finally there's Market Place sellers that advertise on Amazon, but operate independently.  I strongly recommend that you only use the first...the Amazon Direct - Sold By Amazon option. Even if it appears that you are paying a couple of £/$ more it is more than likely you are comparing the price of a real item against the price of a fake.

To give you an idea of the extent of the fake goods problem. In a 2016 survey by Apple - 90% of the 'Apple' chargers sold through Amazon - using the other the two methods..which includes the "Fulfilled by Amazon" option -  were found to be counterfeit....90%! 

            

 
« Liquid Image Ego Review - Part 2 | Main | Self powered HDMI splitter. »
Monday
Aug272012

A look at the Honda NC700X DCT Motorcycle

Quite a few people asked me to make a video about my new motorcycle, so here it is. This was a very complicated video to make, production was spread over a couple of months using numerous cameras and there was a lot of unused footage from false starts. In the end it didn't really turn out how I planned, but then again, I didn't have a plan, so that might be the problem. Nevertheless, there are some nice on-board camera shots in the video, so there is definitely some enjoyment to be had.

I suppose the biggest problem I encountered when making the video is that I absolutely love this bike, it feels like it was custom made for me, so it's very hard to be impartial and find fault with it. That's not a bad problem to have really. 

Making Of - 

The Sony HX100V shot the exterior shots of the bike. The footage taken of me on the bike chasing after the camera was the Xdreme, but it was heavily zoomed in, making it rather low def. The onboard footage was broken down as follows. The Sony MHS-TS20 shot the dashboard, the Ego took the footage from the front left of the bike where the shock absorber is in shot and everything else was done with the wired bullet cam HD-VC93. I did try to do some commentary whilst I was driving, but the sound was a bit overblown, peaky, and rambling, so I chose not to use it. 

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Reader Comments (46)

@Techmoan,

You'll never get a job on Top Gear...

Thank goodness! I'm not into cars or motorbike but I watched your review anyway because your style is always no-nonsense and to the point in an entertaining way. I can't speak for petrolheads but if I were looking at buying my first motorbike, yours is the sort of review I would appreciate, not that of an overpaid, over-opinionated presenter on an over-rated motoring program (Hear that mad fluttering noise? That's the feline well and truly amongst the feral avians!)

Happy biking, and watched out for us human-powered two-wheelers. No stopping in the ASL though, that's for us only! ;-p

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAlasdair

Alasdair. I remember back in the 80s when topgear reviewed cars rather than played with them....there was a nice old chap with a grey beard who did the odd motorcycle review. I say old, he was probably about my current age. I understand how difficult it must be for TV shows to keep their audience entertained, with the short attention spans that people have nowadays. I think this is where things like YouTube fill a gap, rather than trying to entertain everyone, you can make something for a very small but engaged audience instead.

August 28, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

The guy's name is Chris Goffey I remember him well, Top Gear was a bit stuffy in those days but I never missed it all the same.

Techmoan,

Great review of the new NC700 I really enjoyed it...so Honda have a VW type DSG gearbox in bikes now I wonder how long until the Fireblade and CBR600RR get one then launch control will appear on road bikes...0-60 in 2.5 sec anyone.

I had a seat on one a few months back in my local Honda dealers, very comfy its the modern day CB500 ( I recently just sold mine after four years I miss it already ) the salesman told me something quite interesting he said the engine is basically half of a Honda Jazz car engine not the usual bike engine as it has quite a low rev limit.

Have fun on your new bike...

Klippie.

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKlippie

As a Honda Pan European owner I found your review very interesting, especially using the transmission. I might have to buy one before my knees give out from paddling my heavyweight Pan ST1100 around the supermarket car parks.

But what I really want to know is what cameras you used? I fancy filming some of my biking antics.

I'm interested particularly in the Mini 1080p HD wired "bullet" camera you tested a while back. You mentioned that you would use it in this review.

How does it compare with the Xdreme and Ego cameras that you've tried since, and maybe even the Keyfob 808#16 now that there's a Mk2 version with wide angle lens. Did you manage to get decent sound/voice recordings while on the moving bike?

Perhaps you could list what cameras you used to the scenes/timeline in the review of your luvverly new bike - and yeah, I think I'm a bit jealous of it.

Sorry to hijack the bike comments section. Anyway, I'm just up the road from you in Morecambe so I'll give you a nod when I'm passing on my metallic blue flying Pan.

I enjoy your work, so keep it up and I'm sure it will lead to greater things some day.

August 29, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Pan

Hi! Nice review and nice bike. Enjoy it!

Matt, I use a 808 #16 (lens D) to record my bike rides... When I got the type A lens the video lacked the... 'punch' or 'speed factor' wide angle lens show. But it was pretty sharp.

The Type D lens is pretty nice, it shows a lot of scenary, it gives you a better look of the speed you are riding at... But everything gets a little softer, maybe too much for my liking.

I'd also like to know which cameras where used for the onboard shots.

Sorry for the OT.

August 29, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCalvinH

In the end I kept it pretty simple with the cameras. I used five different cameras to shoot the video footage. The Sony HX100V shot the exterior shots of the bike. The footage taken of me on the bike chasing after the camera was the Xdreme, but it was heavily zoomed in from the original frame, making it rather low def. The onboard footage was broken down as follows. The Sony MHS-TS20 shot the dashboard, the Ego took the footage from the front left of the bike where the shock absorber is in shot and everything else was the wired bullet cam. I did try to do some commentary whilst I was driving on the bullet, but the sound was a bit overblown and peaky (and rambling), so I decided not to use it. It's easy to talk too loud when you can't hear yourself.

August 29, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Oh tosh! I typed a lengthy comment and it's vanished into the ether.

In short, what camera would you recommend for use on a bike? I'll buy you a burger if we ever meet at Rivington Barn.

Hmm, I'm having trouble with the text editor on this page... last post missing and this one doesn't like backspacing?

August 29, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Pan

Techmoan,
How funny that this review showed up in my iGoogle this week. I follow you for your excellent and entertaining tech reviews, but oddly enough I was wondering about this very bike and the features of the DCT. I was searching the web and all the reviews tested the manual version and only mentioned the DCT without further details.
I'm not interested in the bike as much as I was curious about how the DCT works. I recently acquired a Yamaha FJR 1300 AE (1300AS on your side of the pond), which works more like a manual transmission with a little person hiding inside operating the clutch.

Once again thanks for another excellent and timely review,
Kirk

August 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKirk

This site has a lot of technical issues...none of which I understand. When it comes to choosing a camera, there are a few things to consider. The main two are budget and mounting location. Cheapest is the ACT20, for helmet mounting I'd go for the Wired Bullet Cam, and for best quality (if you can find a way to mount it) the Ego.

August 30, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Thank you very much for this nice review.
I'm interested on your owner's point of view, and the very clear explanations about how the automatic dual cluch transmission works on the road.
Usually I don't find all the answers to my interogations in the motorcycle or car specialists reviews. Yours is a very usefull complement.
Now I know that this bike and that transmission fit my needs.
I'm going to order my NC700 ABS+DCT this weekend. Probably the S model (lower seat and a little bit cheaper than X model).

Keep up the good work!
Daniel, France

August 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDan

Another great review. The automatic gearbox should make it much more comfortable to drive - especially in traffic or around town where you usually have to shift a lot. For the same reason I prefer cars with automatic gearboxes to the ones with manual gearboxes. Lets be honest - manual gearboxes are yesterdays news. Noone voluntarily kickstarts his motorcycle any more - why would you want to shift?

This motorcycle will also be a great solution for people who have problems with their left leg. There are quite a view people out there who cant drive regular motorcycles because they are handicapped (injury, diesease, whatever). These people usually have to pay lots of money to have their bikes modified. And even then or because of that - these modified bikes are hard to drive and noone else (without handicap) would want to use them. So - a modified bike is also unsaleable - making it a dead investment.

The Honda NC700X DCT will be a game changer. It lags a hydraulic stand though. A hydraulic stand would make it perfect.

August 31, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterwillydilly

I left a long comment few days ago, but it seems that it has never appeared.
Anyway, thank you very much for this very nice review.
Your owner's point of view is very useful, in complement of TV and magazines road tests.
I'm convinced that it's a very clever bike.
So mine has been ordered (NC700S ABS-DCT grey). Delivery expected 1rst week of October.

Daniel, France

September 1, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDan

Dan, Sorry about that, my website seems to be categorising non-spam as spam and putting comments into a naughty folder. Good luck with the bike.

September 1, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

@WillyDilly, you'd be surprised, truly, there are numerous folks out there that still prefer the 'old school' way of things, Classic bikes, (kickstart only) are more popular than ever and lots of people, having seen the transition have realised how much they miss a kickstarter, (nothing more annoying than prodding your starter button to get a feeble chug and stop) One of my bikes is an Enfield Bullet, right foot gearchange and kickstart, I wouldn't have it any other way, theres a charm and elegance to machines like this that no modern bike has. The honda is innovative, but it won't completely replace manual transmission just like auto trans cars haven't replaced manuals, (in the UK, there is a tiny percentage of auto to manual cars).
Techmoan, I remember too when top gear used to be a good review program, rather than a means of allowing three grown men to play silly buggers with expensive cars and expensive locations, (lucky sods), it's good for mindless entertainment but certainly no longer a TV magazine, I miss the good old format with William Woolard, Chris Goffey, (beardy guy), Tony something, forget the surname but he did rally coverage then a little later we had Tiff doing the flash fast stuff, Vicki Butler henderson doing allsorts and Steve berry, (who sounded like one of your kinsmen), doing some very entertaining bike reviews.
Then Clarkson arrived, hmmmmmmmmm.

September 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMike

Regarding the old bike chap that I remembered from Top Gear. It was in the William Wollard, Chris Goffey era...pre Steve Berry and I'm pretty sure it was Frank Page. I have a memory of him with his grey beard and black leathers riding a bike, and I thought he was a pretty cool old gent because of it. The only clips of him on YouTube show him reviewing terrible old cars, so it must be something he did dry occasionally, perhaps once or twice a season.

September 3, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

hi i loved your review on your bike, its a nice machine, what camera did you use to film it? i want to get a camera for when i go out on my bike, do you have any recommendations on which one to get?

September 24, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterjohnny

Have a look at one of the earlier comments where I gave a breakdown of what cameras were used for each part of the video.

September 25, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Thanks for a really informative and detailed review, you've got just the right balance of technical info and real-world user experience. Well done and I hope the bike serves you very well.

One small thing you maybe interested in, Honda have had an issue with a few of the chains fitted to this new design because of a supplier problem. It appears they'll be contacting effected owners pretty soon, but take a look and if your chain is stamped "RK" rather than "RK Japan" or "DID Japan" you may want to call your dealer.

September 27, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPoldark

Thanks for the info. I've just had my 1000km service today and I'm sure they checked it...but I'd seen this info on the forums and checked myself before I left and luckily it's a DID chain.

September 27, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

I enjoyed reading your review! I am waiting for my "NC700X DCT TypeLD" to be delivered in mid October. I placed my order in August. I just wanted to drop a note in relation to the note by Daniel, France, who wrote "... the S model (lower seat ... than X model)." The TypeLD (meaning "low down") of X has exactly the same dimension as S including the height of seat. This model is assembled once your order is received, requiring at least two months before delivery here. Kakip, Japan

September 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKakip

I had no idea the TypeLD option existed...and I'm sure that most other people didn't know about this either. Honda could probably do more to promote this as I'm sure it would attract more buyers, in particular female riders who are usually a bit shorter.

September 28, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

If many people are not aware of the NC700X TypeLD, it might be a model for the Japanese domestic market only, at least now, which was announced on June 7, 2012, here in Japan. Generally speaking the Japanese have shorter legs, and so do I. There are three variations, all of which are assembled upon order:
- NC700X TypeLD
- NC700X TypeLD<ABS>
- NC700X TypeLD Dual Clutch Transmission<ABS>
Mine is the third variation.
Source: Honda's website (in Japanese language, partially English alphabet)
http://www.honda.co.jp/news/2012/2120607-nc700x.html

Kakip, Japan

September 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKakip

Hello TechMoan,

Superb video review you made here.

As Daniel from France mentionned, there's a slightly more sporty version available in the NC 700S for about GBP 500 less with the same DCT gearbox.

Or if you like a more comfy version, you can get the scooter version, named the NC 700D Integra, for about GBP 750 more.
It is said to give a serious challenge to the Yamaha T-Max 530-ABS which costs about GBP 8.200 vs. 6.800 for the Integra.

Regards,

Nestorius

October 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNestorius

Hi,

Just wanted to say than you for your review. It's great to see a detailed impartial review such as yours. I will be looking to test drive this when I get a chance. Wonder if these will start hitting the pre-owned market soon, it would be great to pick up one with some depreciation on the price.

Anyway, thanks again.
Sundeep.//

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSundeep

There seem to be quite a few low mileage manual gearbox versions on the market. I think it's possible that some people couldn't get on with the unusual gearing ratios on the manual.

October 10, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Your excellent video review was instrumental in guiding my purchase - I now have a new NC700X DCT and, so far, am very pleased with it.
I don't know if you have discovered this for yourself but the little rectangular compartment at the bottom of the helmet storage tank is the place to store the handbook. Good idea isn't it.....all you need is a little handbook to tell you where to find the handbook! This info has come from the jolly nice Honda Blackpool people. On the other hand it could just be a gateway to another universe.
Safe riding
Jonathan Broxholme.

October 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

I'd love a review on your open faced helmet and maybe a comparison to a regular full-faced one, with it's advantages and disadvantages.
The reason why is that i got an old full faced one with my 24 yo 125cc used bike and it's not really my size, also the visibility is pretty poor, so i was thinking of getting an open faced one (with a big visor like yours).
But it's the middle of winter so i'm not expecting anything anytime soon.

Cheers,
Joe

December 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJoeGP

I don't think I'm really the right person to review the Schuberth J1. Bike helmets are very personal things and what suits one person will not fit another. I ended up with the J1 because it was the only helmet that would fit me comfortably. I tried virtually every flip up helmet on the market (I need flip ups because of wearing glasses). Most of them didn't fit, only the really expensive £500+ models came close. I then found that open face helmets usually fit me comfortably, but I wanted as much protection as I could get in an open face, hence the Schuberth J1 with it's chin bar. Its probably the safest and quietest open face helmet available today and it has a sun visor too which was something else I wanted. The visibility is great...but it lets a bit too much air in around the top of the visor which is a problem in the rain and in cold weather. If it broke I'd buy another one...it is pretty expensive though. I imported mine from Germany to save money.

December 10, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Well that was already a great help, exactly the type of stuff i wanted to know, specially because i wear glasses too.

I just had a look size wise for open faced helmets online and ironically the Schubert J1 was the only one big enough, it might actually be 1 size too small, so i think my dream for good visibility just went down the drain since the J1 costs more then my bike did.

Did you try all these helmets on at the store or ordered them and sent the bad ones back ?

Oh and thanks for the quick reply.

December 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJoeGP

I tried the helmets on over the course of a year or so when visiting different bike shops and shows. Most helmets go to XL or XXL, but its the shape that's the issue...which I why you always need to try them on. I liked the look of the Shark Evoline Flip...but it was agony even in an XXL.

December 11, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

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