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Pick of the Camera Reviews

(Click the pictures for reviews & links) 

ACTION CAMS

Yi 2 - Best Budget 4K 

Gitup Git2 (My Pick)

Xiaomi Yi

 

 
DASH-CAMS (CAR DVRs)
 
A119
DR02 D - Best Budget Dual Cam
Yi

Yi Ultra 2.7K
   
    MINI CAMERAS
Mobius (also works as a Dashcam)
Polaroid Cube+
    HELMET CAMERA
Drift Ghost X

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.

UK & US LINKS & PRICES BELOW

RECOMMENDED CARDS (for action cams - see dashcams below)

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%! 

 
« New life for an old Maglite Torch | Main | Gtech AirRam Battery Powered Vacuum Cleaner »
Monday
Feb032014

The SJ4000 Action Camera Review

Winter isn't the best time of year to shoot an action camera review...especially when it's one of Britain's wettest winters on record. I haven't managed to get out on my motorbike for weeks...and as a result this action camera review features very little action. I'll try to upload some biking footage taken with this camera when conditions improve. Despite the lack of extreme action footage, hopefully this review can still help you to decide whether the SJ4000 fits your needs.

 

SAMPLE CLIPS

You can download sample clips HERE.

WHERE TO BUY

The SJ4000 has been renamed to the SJCAM SJ4000 and the links below take you to companies selling this product on ebay. Click on your country to find a suitable supplier for you.

UK   US   DE  AU   AT   BE   CA   CH   ES   FR   IE   IT   NL  

Here are some alternative suppliers

 

 

Foxoffer supplied me with this camera on behalf of the Manufacturer, Hongfeng Century. Foxoffer and HC saw my review on the SJ1000 and are interested in hearing your feedback about this camera as well, so if there is a feature you'd like to see included in one of their future budget cameras, be sure to let them know in the comments below.

I held back on releasing this review for a day so that I could pick up some of the original mounts made for this camera's doppelgänger. I wanted to test out the interchangeability of the original accessories with the SJ4000 versions, and I can happily confirm that the mounts that attach at the case hinge or onto the clip all work perfectly well...all the dimensions are the same. 

Anyone looking for a budget waterproof action camera with access to a wide variety of mounting options should put the SJ4000 at the top of their shortlist....and I can't think of what would go in second place.

UPDATE 1: FIRMWARE

Here's the Jan 2014 Firmware (DELETED). If you want to install it, download the zip file, unzip it, copy the FW96650A.BIN file to the SD card in the camera. Turn the camera on WAIT until it (eventually) boots up. You'll then need to delete the bin file from the card...the simplest way to do this would be to format the card using the camera menus...or alternatively attach the camera or SD card up to your computer and delete the file manually. Below is a comprehensive list of all the exciting features added if you install this update.

1) The yellow light now flashes when the camera is recording. 

UPDATE 2: MOUNTS

When attempting to attach this to my motorcycle helment I discovered that however hard I tightened the screws on the hinge mounts, they could still be feely moved. My solution to this was to use sandpaper on the disassembled hinges to roughen up the shiny plastic. They now work how they should. I will demonstrate this in a new video when I manage to finally take this out on my bike...but unfortunately as soon as I finished mounting the camera to my helmet another storm blew in, so it's not going to be today.

UPDATE 3: I've taken the SJ4000 out on the bike.

UPDATE 4: Firmware deleted - out of date.  All newly purchased cameras will have newer firmware than this with additional features. 

I've also done a new review of the SJ4000 WiFi model too. CLICK HERE for more info.

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Reader Comments (2007)

I'm hoping a future firmware update will allow for a continuous shooting rate of 0.5 seconds - as this gives a much better video effect IMHO.

February 6, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterQbedobedoo

MikeyP, I'd get this one for a cheap snowboarding camera rather than the Mobius purely for the mounting options...Joovuu do sell a waterproof case for the Mobius.
Moravec, I was emailed the firmware, let me install it at the weekend to ensure it doesn't brick the camera.

February 6, 2014 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

i almost took the plunge, i mainly want to use this camera for fpv it costs alot cheaper compared to the branded one, ofcourse a crash is nearly inevitable on rc so this will help solve that problem, unfortunately as stated on the video, it cant record while displaying a live output.. i hope a firmware upgrade can fix this soon.

February 6, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterjay

Hey Techmoan, thanks for the great reviews you make, I do love watching them :) I planned to buy an action cam last year, but then the time went faster than I could decide on one and order, but for this season (I would use that mostly for kayaking) I really would like to buy one.
Let me repeat somebody's question here again: you were very satisfied with the SVC200 in December - what do you think of comparing that with the SJ4000? I downloaded all the samples, and I know that the bitrate is higher at the SVC200 and another disadvantage of SJ4000 that the lens is wider and the captured movie a bit darker, but I have to admit that I like the video quality of both of them (maybe the SJ4000 could make a bit sharper video, but maybe the sky is more beautiful and detailed on the SVC200 recordings, and don't forget that the SJ4000 is cheaper than the SVC200). So it is hard to see major differencies and decide between the two for me :$:$

What is your opinion, which would you recommend if I don't want to sell it in a couple of weeks/month, just use it in the next 2-3 years?

(and again: let me say thank you for your great cheap action cam reviews, I do really appreciate your kind work and help to all of us, who follow your blog!)

February 6, 2014 | Unregistered Commentertankap

"1080p60 is only just becoming a standard on cameras that cost many time the price of this model...it will take a while yet before those specs trickle down to this price point.
February 4, 2014 | Registered CommenterTechmoan"


i know..did i told you that i bought the sj1000 after seeing your video? it is a very good camera except the ugliness of it when mounted somewere...this looks more to a ...well known camera so people accept its shape easily...

i would like to see the 1080p60 i a chinnese camera like sj5000 which will make the difference...i know i am asking for a lot but also in image stabilization,and remote controller or wifi app will be great (i would prefer a remote regadless that is a "no name " camera....

keep up the good job

February 6, 2014 | Unregistered Commentergeorge

Hi , I was asked where you could buy the panasonic hx-a100 for 97 £, it's in a nordic webshop called cdon.com, but it's only available in the danish and swedish version of the shop at this price, you can't find it in the EU version of the shop, if they will post to the UK I don't know.
They even have the rollei racy action full hd cam on sale at 55 £, it has an okay picture but the sound is not great.

The Hama HD action star ( the same camera as rollei bullet 4s/ aee sd19) you can find on the german amazon site , amazon.de they sell it at 96 € with a free postage option. on amazon.co.uk the aee sd 19 is sold for around 200 £.

Third time I try to post this here , don't know what happens, i get a message, your post has been poste and will be visible in a short time, but nothing happens.

Matthias

February 6, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMatthias

Hi , I was asked where you could buy the panasonic hx-a100 for 97 £, it's in a nordic webshop called cdon.com, but it's only available in the danish and swedish version of the shop at this price, you can't find it in the EU version of the shop, if they will post to the UK I don't know.
They even have the rollei racy action full hd cam on sale at 55 £, it has an okay picture but the sound is not great.

The Hama HD action star ( the same camera as rollei bullet 4s/ aee sd19) you can find on the german amazon site , amazon.de they sell it at 96 € with a free postage option. on amazon.co.uk the aee sd 19 is sold for around 200 £.

Third time I try to post this here , don't know what happens, i get a message, your post has been poste and will be visible in a short time, but nothing happens.

Matthias

February 6, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMatthias

Techmoan pls email me the new firmware! I dont care if it brick my machine, just send it.
My email: aim@nincsmail.hu
thx!

February 6, 2014 | Unregistered Commenteraim

when i want to record video, i have an error message "custer size wrong, please format".

i can take photo but not video.

someone have this problem ??

i use a 1 Gb microsd card

February 6, 2014 | Unregistered Commentermicleg77

Hello, very good review, I was really willing to get finally a good review about this camera and you finally made it.

Looking at the original sample videos downloaded at home, I see the quality of images are exactly the same as the SJ1000. I bet the sensor and the chip used are the same one in the SJ1000 and the SJ4000. If I am correct, the question would be: is it worth paying 50% more for the better mounting options and wider lense?

By the way, I think there is still a very "important" camera to be compared in this ranking: the Suptig or sdv500. This camera has been out for some time, and it seems as powerful as the SJ4000 or even better because is the same price but it records at true 720p 60 fms, and it has ALL the accesories of the SJ4000 too. But there is no downloable examples to compare for real its video quality.

Thanks techmoan and I hope to hear from a good suptig/ sdv500 review soon!

February 6, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterKirat

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