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Pick of the Camera Reviews

(Click the pictures for reviews & links) 


Yi 2 - Best Budget 4K 

Gitup Git2 (My Pick)

Xiaomi Yi

Dazzne P2

DR02 D - Best Budget Dual Cam

Yi Ultra 2.7K
Mobius (also works as a Dashcam)
Polaroid Cube+
Sena Prism Tube

My favourite USB battery power Pack

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

2 x 2.1amp outputs. 8400mAh capacity.

Two digit Led display shows battery level


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.


RECOMMENDED CARDS (for action cams - see dashcams below)

CLASS 10 UHS-1 CARDS (For HD Cameras)


U3 CARD (For 4K cameras)




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'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%! 


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SJ1000 - At last...a good cheap action camera 

After years of fruitless searching and a not inconsiderable amount of money spent, I've finally found a good, cheap, 1080p waterproof action camera.

I get a lot of emails from people asking what action camera I would recommend for occasional use for paint-balling, mountain biking, etc - that costs around £50. Prior to today, my response has been that the cheapest camera I could really recommend was the Liquid Image Ego, but it costs£100.

If your budget doesn't stretch to £100 then there are very few action cameras to choose from. Perhaps the best camera from a very short shortlist is the the RD32II, but it suffers from a substandard mounting system and a non-standard video format. 

The SJ1000 changes everything. For about £60 you can buy a camera that is capable (under the right conditions) of producing video that rivals cameras costing over four times as much. I'm not suggesting that people throw away their GoPro HDHero 3 Black Edition cameras and get this instead...but if you are on a limited budget or don't see the point in spending £200+ on something you only plan on using a couple of times a year then this might well be the camera for you.

You'll have to do a bit of experimenting to get the mounting options to fit your requirements, but it's definitely worth the trouble when you see the video quality that you can get from this small camera. 



Click on your Country of Choice ... US UK AUS DE NL


Here is a folder of downloadable sample clips

I should mention that I haven't shot many 720p60 clips...and you'll only find 1080p on the bike.

The only thing I think that I forgot to say in the video was that when using it as a car DVR there is no gap between clips (as you expect nowadays) fact each clip repeats the last second of the previous one just to be sure.

UPDATE - 10 June 2013 - Answering a few questions.

First some bad news - The 720p60 mode turns out to actually be 720p30 (every frame is shown twice). I should have spotted this earlier, but I had only been testing the 1080p30 mode as that's the one I use. iMovie always converts 720p60 to 720p30 so that's why I didn't notice it before...apologies for that. Here is a link to a fast moving 720p clip I shot today.

Motion Detection mode - When this is on, the camera records 10 seconds of video and then stops until it sees another movement. If a movement occurs during the 10 seconds when it's recording then the timer is reset and it records for another 10 seconds. This way if the movement doesn't stop then the camera doesn't either....hope that makes sense.

The camera should be able to be mounted the right way up in a car if the correct mounts are combined....this is demonstrated in some of the ebay auction photos. 

File Sizes: 10 Minutes of video takes up 1.2GB in 1080p or 1.07GB in 720p modes.

The case floats in water and on it's own weighs 66.7g.

The camera itself is 7cm tall, 4.5cm wide, 3 cm thick at the bottom and 3.5cm thick at the top where the lens makes it deeper.

The timestamp can be switched off. I turned it off for the Night Time Driving clips and show this option on-screen 19:57 into the video.

I think the manufacturer may be a company with the snappy name of Shenzhen Hongfeng Century Technology Co. Ltd.

BATTERY LIFE is 2hrs 15mins (Could be 2hr 30 mins or more with the screen off)

UPDATE 29 August 2013 'NEW' FIRMWARE!

I know a few people have been waiting for this - so finally here is the updated firmware that fixes the screensaver bug. If the fact that the screen didn't automatically blank out wasn't an issue to you, I'd suggest skipping this update. If you want to update the firmware, you can download the file from the Files & Drivers Page. Updating it is very easy, but just in case you are's a quick video. Beware, if you somehow kill it, you are on your own.

Update 27 Sept 2013

Here's a link to another review of the camera by Tom Hardwick (he likes it).

Update 28/12/13.

This is a six month old review and a lot has happened since. You'll find the cases are improved, possibly the mounts too..and you now have the ability to turn the camera on when it's inside the case due to a different button arrangement. The current crop seem to have a 90º lens rather than the 140º on my camera. That means no fish-eye - but less FOV. I'm not doing any more videos about camera this but.....PLEASE READ THE COMMENTS...before posting a question that's been asked countless times before, it's the least you could do for all the kind people who have given up their time to elaborate on the features of this camera and posted their findings in the comments.  I'll give you a starter...NO IT DOESN'T DO TIMELAPSE...The way you can tell this is because there is no option for this on the screen when I go through all the menus in the camera...and it's the kind of thing I would have mentioned. I tend not to mention the things a camera doesn't do because we would be here all can't clip your toenails with this camera, it can't be used as a flotation device, it won't take x-rays etc..... 

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Reader Comments (1215)

Got mine from foxofer, it has 90 degrees and smooth in right side

March 14, 2014 | Unregistered Commentergamebox

Thanks for the review, what a great little camera this is, ok the mounts are crap, but for an extra 25 quid you can get all the 3rd party go pro mounts, helmet side, top, front facing & ski pole mount.

Took it skiing back in Jan, the mounts did let it down, the ski pole mount snapped on the first morning and there was no helmet mount or quick release barcket. After doing a bit of extra home work and getting the above mounts, Off skiing in two weeks with all the new ones.

March 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAndy

Hello to elinx
Do you have any news about the upgrade of lens? Did you receive it?
Thank you

March 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterGiorgosGR

For those who had problem with the format of the sd card i suggest to format in in FAT mode and cluster of 64Kb each.
I had that problem and I soved in that way.

March 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMattia

With my "custer size wrong" fault, i found that i had to Format at 30K...once i did this then all was well with my Micro cards..


March 15, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterjackobyte

Can someone tell me if a Class6 Micro SD would be fast enough for this camera ?
Maybe this has already be answered and Ive missed it in the previous email threads.

March 15, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterstu.R

Class 4 is fast enough for this bit rate. Anything else is overkill, but that's not a problem

March 15, 2014 | Unregistered Commentertom hardwick

About the experiment with a new wide angle lens.
I had ordered the lens from DX, but this was a dissapointment.
The lens has a filter, but the wrong one and the focus on the chip is to far away.
I got a purple real fisheye view (800mm on 100mm distance) with black corners.
The lens is longer than the original one, this means 2mm in front of the housing.
conclusion: not usable!
I have measured exactly the dimensions of the original lens and searched for a lens with the same dimensions and a IR blocking filter. I have found one with nr.: PL0011. A bit more priced, but cheap enough for a trial.
New round, new changes. Wil be continued over about 3 weeks

March 16, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterelinx

Dear elinx
Your posts are always useful and innovative.. we are looking forward to have your new feedback for lens in about 3 weeks
Many thanks

March 16, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterGiorgosGR

Here is the videosample of the DX lens

March 16, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterelinx

wrong link: sorry, but no edit possible

March 16, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterelinx

here s a link of a video i made this saturday with my car

sj1000 inside the uwh, no vignetting at all, no water inside, good quality of images

March 16, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterphiletcha

EUR 5.99 for the PL0011 is realy great. I hope it will fit. Good luck :)

March 16, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterdk

Hi there!

I just got my SJ1000 from Expansys. The first one I got died on me after i plugged it in the PC testing is as a webcam, and I just got my replacement today.

I am still exploring it and a lot of answers to my questions I can find in your review.. However I can't seem to find any information on how long should I charge my SJ1000 before I use it for the first time and how do I know if the battery is fully charge? is there any indication?

I looked for the information in the manual and online but nothing on it.

Please advise.


March 21, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMay FS

"However I can't seem to find any information on how long should I charge my SJ1000 before I use it for the first time and how do I know if the battery is fully charge? is there any indication?"

The first time you charge the SJ1000, connect it in the evening and remove it in the morning. After the first empty battery the indicator is working and will be green if the battery is full or red if its loading.

March 21, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterdk

I have read many comments about to correct the fisheye problem, does someone know the best video to replace the lens, and where to buy the new lens? Many thanks

March 23, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterkurt john

Check this VDO by Pinak Oza

March 23, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterTejjas

Is there a link on how to buy the non-fisheye lens. Is there a narrow and wide option and which is best? Thx

March 24, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterkurt john

Which is best? Depends what you want. Wider angles mean more distortion , that's all. They'll all be as sharp

March 24, 2014 | Unregistered Commentertom hardwick

Looks like I would like the 140 degree non-fisheye lens, might u have a link to buy. Thx

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterkurt john

The 140 degree lens isn't actually a fisheye in the true meaning of the term, but it still exhibits great gobs of barrel distortion. Any straight line that doesn't pass diagonally through the center of the frame will be bowed outwards.

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered Commentertom hardwick

Just came across this on eBay and decided to check out the review...

China has definitely come a long way in replicating subpar devices, that's for sure!

I am wondering, since I am going to be using this as my dash-cam for a motorcycle, I was wondering if I can hardwire the usb cable into the charge slot and have it constantly powered as long as my bike is on?


March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJustin

@ Tom,
Thx, That would be annoying to have the same problem, would you or another have the business or link to get the replacement for the 90 degree lens? Thx

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterkurt john

Just one question, I have not found in the manual the time for charging the battery.
The first time I charged it the red led was on and i stop the charge when it went off.
But when I switch on the camera, it was not in whole charge.
Can you tell me how many time you let it for a whole charge.
Thank you very much

March 26, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterYannbreizh

My findings about 1.8mm lens PL0011
Lens dimensions are the same as stock lens. but the lens is not usable also.
Focus is OK, no black corners, but again purple view and the lens at focus is 1.8mm outside the colored metal housing.
I have finished my experiments for now till someone comes with a proven solution.

March 26, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterelinx

thank you Elinx for all your efforts.. Do you have any video on youtube with the new lens? i would like to see the quality of video.

Thank you anyway

March 26, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterGiorgosGR

The orignal camera tested here was recording in MOV format, I also see camera's offered that record in AVI format. Does this mean these are not the original SJ1000 camera's or did the manufacturer change the recording format?
Should I go for the camera that records in MOV format and hope it is the real one?

March 27, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSimon

I use the SJ1000 as a very effective dash cam but have been concerned about its visibility from outside and its vibration when suction-cupped to the windscreen. I've cured both and have put up a post with photos here:

March 27, 2014 | Unregistered Commentertom hardwick

@tom hardwick

Nice installation. I think you should also post about it at

March 27, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterruss331

Thanks for the heads-up on that site Russ. I went straight there and posted it.

March 27, 2014 | Unregistered Commentertom hardwick

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