10 Best Action Cameras

Last Updated October 2019
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Buying Guide for the Best Action Cameras

Eric Hewitt

If you love to capture yourself in action on your surfboard, on your bike, or at the edge of a cliff, action cameras are just your thing. They offer you instant high-quality videos and stills. There are several models of action cameras currently available in the market, and it can be difficult to select a suitable model. This buying guide will help you choose the best action camera.

Types of Action Cameras

Helmet Cameras: These types of action cameras are designed to be mounted on your helmet. Helmets are used in a number of outdoor activities, including, biking, cycling, kayaking, and rafting.

All-purpose action cameras: These types of action cameras can latch onto any surface, from steering wheels to handlebars. They provide you with a highly sophisticated option for recording smooth fascinating videos of your adventures.

What reviewers say

  • Brands: Most long-time users advise you to stick to well-known brands. This keeps you safe on all counts: in terms of reliability, durability, and availability of accessories.

  • Warranty: If you are investing a significant amount in any product, make sure that you also receive a reliable warranty from the manufacturer.

  • User manual: After going through thousands of action camera reviews, we find that most users recommend products that come with a detailed user manual with clear instructions.

Important Features

  • Check the resolution: It is a widespread assumption that the greater the number of pixels per inch, the better the resolution offered by the camera. Depending on your budget, you can go for higher resolutions, such as 4K. However, if you don’t already own a 4K TV or monitor, purchasing a 4K camera would not be of much use.

  • Check the frame rate: The number of frames (images) your camera can capture within a second determines its frame rate. The current trend is 120 fps (= frames per second) or more. However, it should be kept in mind that a higher fps puts more stress on the hardware, and is available only at lower resolutions.

  • Check the field of view: Most action cameras provide a field of view somewhere between 140 degrees to 170 degrees. You can choose between a narrow, medium, or wide view. A wider view would obviously provide you with fascinating 3-D images. Some high-end cameras allow you the freedom to switch to a narrow view, according to your convenience.

  • Check the mounting system: A good action camera should ideally come with a universal mount that snaps onto any support. Some of them provide additional mounts enabling use in different environments, such as cycling, surfing or biking. But, if you have a rather specific requirement, you may have to buy a separate mount.

  • Go for water-resistant and waterproof models: Currently, there are several models that are water resistant. A special waterproof housing is required in most cameras to protect them at greater depths. The special housing also protects your camera from dust and heat. It is better to check the manual as to the capabilities of your camera in extreme conditions.

  • Check the battery life: The actual performance of your camera battery can vary from the manufacturer’s specifications. This may be due to several reasons, including the type of use and the weather conditions. Shooting at a higher fps or using your Wi-Fi can drain your battery. Also, sub-zero temperatures are known to affect battery performance.

  • Check the memory: If you are an outdoors enthusiast, you will obviously require a lot of additional memory to capture your adventures. Micro-SD cards with fast processors are the best. Cameras that support the UHS-II (=Ultra High-Speed II) standard can deliver a writing speed of more than 250MB/s on an SD card.

  • Check wireless connectivity: Features like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and near-field communication are definitely attractive on an action camera. You can transfer your files easily over Wi-Fi. Additionally, you can control your camera remotely with your smartphone, or adjust settings.

Top-Rated Brands

GoPro - is one of the leading manufacturers of action cameras. They have established themselves as a market leader with their commitment to quality and service. They are very popular with outdoor enthusiasts and offer a wide selection of products.

Aokon - is another well-known name in this segment. They offer the best features at affordable prices.

eXuby - is a name to reckon with in the action camera market. Their products have made a place for themselves with their rugged design and sophisticated features.

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