“Sony Action Cam”

Mud in Trent Park

Mud in Trent Park from Adam Bowie on Vimeo.

Here’s a short video I shot yesterday morning to test my Sony Action Cam with the Joby Action Clamp and Locking Arm. I bought the Sony AS15 last year in a cheap deal on Amazon. In many respects, it’s highly specced compared with the Go Pro competition. My model has now been superseded by the AS30 and AS100, but it still has some great remote control abilities using a mobile app.

Where Sony is really lacking is in accessories. There’s just not a wide enough range on-sale, and what’s more even those that are being manufactured are really hard to get hold of. I never really understand why companies don’t put the effort into the various mounts, since you’ve got a captive audience. Again, Go Pro realise this and make a lot of their own accessories as well as having a wide range of third party mounts.

The Joby Action Clamp I used today comes with both a standard mount which will fit the Sony, as well as the bespoke Go Pro mount.

How did the clamp perform? Very well indeed. As you’ll see from the video above, I attached it to my bike in a number of places, and it held on well. Only once did something loosen, although that may have been the tripod mounting screw. Despite being made of plastic, it is really firm due to a clever locking mechanism design. Overall I’m very impressed, and I’m happy to put a camera on the end of it.

As a side note, this is the first time I’ve licenced some music from Vimeo’s music shop. I’d still love to be able to licence music that’s more famous for use in Vimeo and YouTube videos.

Kite Aerial Photography #3 – Christmas Success

What better day than Christmas Day to have a third attempt at some kite aerial photography? My first couple of attempts were disappointing to say the least. I’ve found it tricky to find both a location and enough wind to get the kite up supporting the camera, but not too much wind to cause me to fear losing the kite!

But today, with the wind at around 8-10mph (I bought a cheap anemometer), the weather was perfect. And what better way to walk off a Christmas lunch than fly a kite. I was also using my Sony AS15 Action Cam for the first time. This is a model that has been superseded now, but it was cheap in one of those Amazon deals before Christmas. And because GoPros have the market to themselves, you get better specifications from other manufacturers. This model will live stream to a mobile device via WiFi – something that only the most expensive GoPros offer. Although the camera lost contact if you wound the line too far, I was able to see what the camera was seeing on my mobile phone from the ground!

The downside is that for stills, the photos the AS15 takes are quite low resolution. There are a few more here.

But here’s a short video that begins to explore what’s possible. I’ve slowed the majority of this footage down to about 40% speed (the video is 30fps but was shot at 60fps, so this should be reasonable). But it might be worth using some of the slow motion functions in future, since the wind can cause the camera to bounce around quite a lot. When I played it back on a full-size TV, some found it akin to sea-sickness!

The other issue I had to cope with was condensation in the camera’s housing. You’ll notice a slightly foggy image in some of the shots. Something to keep an eye on in future.

Anyway, I’m pleased with the progress so far. But I really must invest in some way to get the line in and out faster, since my rig requires you to manually adjust the view from the kite!

Kite Over Sheringham from Adam Bowie on Vimeo.