An action camera is like an adventurer’s shadow. It’s there throughout
all the action and accompanies you in all the conquests for fun you’re making.
This is why when buying one, you should get one that is reliable and that ensures you don’t miss a moment of the fun. To do that, there are a couple of things you should keep in mind, and in this article, we’ll dive into them.
Of course, before you start to think about the action camera you’re going to buy, you have to consider your budget.
Now let’s get to the specs.
How To Pick an Action Camera – Full Guide
Strong build of the action camera
Action cameras are used to capture adventures, so the more durable their build is, the better. Most action cameras come with a waterproof feature, some even offer dustproof, freezeproof, and shockproof features, and of course, in this case, the more features it has the better.
This indicates how many pixels there are in the footage you will view.
The more pixels, the clearer the image details are. The choice used to be between standard definition and high definition, but now it’s between HD and 4K.
4K resolution delivers about four thousand times the resolution of HD, though the footage has to be viewed on a 4K screen, so if you don’t have a TV or PC screen that supports 4K resolution, you’re better off with an HD camera.
Generally, you should look for 5 megapixels as a minimum, but it shouldn’t be your main focus. Pay attention to the size of the aperture and keep in mind that the smaller the size, the better.
Also look for special features like dual lenses and optical image stabilization, and the size of micron pixels where the bigger the size, the more light the pixel can endure and so the brighter the image will look and the better performance the camera will deliver in dim-lit situations.
Image stabilization has become essential in our modern day and age. A good video or image can be completely useless if it’s shaky and blurred.
There are 2 types of stabilization; either electronic/digital or optical. Optical IS (OIS) can be more expensive than electronic but it is more efficient.
OIS can compensate for 5 types of movements if it has 5-axis stabilization or 3 types of movements if it has 3-axis stabilization.
A high-quality flash can be essential for low light conditions like nightclubs and pubs. You might want to look for a dual LED or a Xenon type flash.
Dual LED is twice as bright as the standard and is still cheaper than Xenon, but of less quality, and might blur moving images.
While Xenon flash is the brightest in the market and delivers the best quality for images shot in low light, but it’s very expensive and drains battery life.
LCD screen size
This is so that you can see the images you’re capturing and videos you’re recording.
The viewfinder can be a better option as often the LCD screen can be difficult to see in some bright lights, due to the glossiness of the screen.
This refers to the shape of the recorded image expressed as width:height. Standard definition video traditionally has a 4:3 aspect ratio and high definition video traditionally has a 16:9 aspect ratio.
White Balance and Exposure Modes
White balance and exposure modes allow you to take better pictures outdoors, whether it’s landscapes or portraits of someone in the sun.
So controlling white balance and exposure will let you prevent over-exposed shots and washed out backgrounds.
Max Recording Time With Included Battery
The longest duration you can record with the battery that is included with the action camera depends on a lot of factors, but it gives you an idea of how durable the battery life is so that you can be prepared with extra batteries and a fully charged battery if necessary.
Built-in Memory and External Memory
A large storage space is needed to keep all your footage and images and not have to delete anything due to running low on memory. You should look for an action camera with a sufficient built-in memory, and if it has the flexibility to expand the storage space by adding an external memory that would be perfect.