The best action cams of 2017

best_action_cams

What is the best budget action cam? What is the best small waterproof camcorder? Which one is the best choice under 100$? Which one has wifi, gps or the remote control? Which have a good video quality even in low light? In this article we try to find out what is the best choice among the many action cams on the market, describing the video quality, photographic quality, features, functionality, advantages and disadvantages, to help you to choose the best action camera that fits your needs. In fact, as we will see, there’s not the perfect action cam out there, but you should choose the best one for your needs and your pockets.

In 2016/17 were presented a lot of 4K@30fps action cams, so we will analyze them and 2k cameras and then 1080p cameras for every need and price.

We are giving away TWO Firefly 7S (worth 71$ x2) completely for free to TWO of our readers.
Join the contest before 2016, November 28th clicking here.

We made a clear list of the best action cams on the market, with their characteristics, such as the presence of the wifi, gps, stabilizer, weather they’re waterproof , video and photo resolutions, if they have GPS, bluetooth and wifi, and a remote controller, the quality of videos and pictures shot, even in low light conditions. With this comparison you can have a better idea of what’s out there and make a more informed choice.

After the tabs you will find some impressions, videos, comparisons on the action cam described, with some of ours and other users’ opinions.

The action cams we compared are: GoPro Hero 5 Black, Xiaomi Yi 4KGitup Git2, SJ5000X, GoPro Hero 3+, Sony AS20 and AS30V, Sony AS200V and X1000V, Xiaomi Yi, Garmin Virb, Drift Ghost-S, SJ4000 wifi, SJ5000+.

GoPro Hero 5 Black

hero5_black_lcd-300x207Price:
429$

Read our GoPro 5 Black review

Live view screen: Yes, Touchscreen
Remote control: Optional (bluetooth)
Wifi: Yes
GPS: Yes
Bluetooth: Yes
Stabilizer: Electronic with gyro and accelerometer
Waterproof: 10m without case, 60m with case (optional)
Picture resolution: 12mpx
Video resolution: 4K@30fps | 2K@60fps | 1080p@120fps | 720p@240fps

Recommended: high quality 4K video action cam with a good gyro stabilizer, touchscreen, bluetooth remote control, GPS, voice control, waterproof, 3 mics, external microphone | stable and sharp videos, with good quality stereo sound

Pro:

  • Value for money, GoPro quality
  • High quality gyro stabilization
  • 4K@30fps
  • Toucscreen LCD Display
  • Wifi / Bluetooth / GPS
  • Waterproof without case up to 10m
  • Excellent Video and Photographic Quality
  • Bitrate up to 60Mb/s
  • Good quality stereo audio with 3 mics, external microphone
  • Voice control
Cons:

  • No waterproof case included
  • No accessories in the package

GoPro Hero 5 black Review:

The brand new GoPro Hero 5 Black has many new features like a 2″ touch display, electronic stabilization, GPS, it is waterproof up to 10m without case, voice control, and a new “Remo” waterproof remote control. Besides, there’s no difference with gopro 4 regarding video resolutions, as it can record 4k@30fps videos, and can shoot 12MP photos and it uses the new Ambarella A9SE chip – while Gopro 4 mounts the older A9 – so it’s the best hardware out there. It costs 429$.

It can record videos with many resolutions, 4K@30fps , 2K@60fps, 1080p@120fps, 720p@240fps perfect for 6x slow motions. Pictures have a 12MP resolution.

It has a big 2″ touchscreen display, where you can see what you are recording or shooting, change options and features, and playback videos. Menu is very easy to use. There are 9 functions: Photo, Photo timelapse, Photo timer, Continuous shot, Video, Video timelapse, Slowmotion video, Loop video, Video + timelapse photo.

HERO5 Black is waterproof to 33ft (10m) without the need of a housing. If you need to go deeper, there will be a new underwater case for diving for up to 60m / 196ft. It features voice control, 12 commands to start / stop video, shoot a photo, change options etc. just using your voice. It has GPS to geo localize your pictures and videos. Gopro 5 can shoot RAW photos. RAW photos provide the most flexibility when using advanced photo editing software. WDR photo mode captures both added detail in shadows and highlights in the scene.

It features a 1160mAh battery that promises to record up to 100 minutes at the maximum 4k@30fps resolution, and above all a 6-axys Gyro stabilizer that removes vibrations and undesired movements using a gyroscope and a accelerometer. Talking about the audio, Gopro 5 has 3 microphones for a superior stereo audio quality and can use an external USB-C microphone.

Read the complete Gopro Hero 5 Black review

Our vote for GoPro Hero 5 Black*: 4.6 / 5

GoPro 5  features an excellent hardware and every functionality you can imagine on a action cam: 4k@30fps, touchscreen LCD display, gyro stabilizer, bluetooth remote control, GPS, voice control. With brand new Ambarella chip, waterproof shell, 3 microphones, 4k@30fps is probably the best choice for a very good price.

Amazon US  Amazon UK 349£

 

Gopro 5 Accessories:

Waterproof Case 60m | RC control

This is a video test we made, comparing Gopro 4 black, Gopro 5, Xiaomi Yi 4K, Gitup Git2.


Xiaomi Yi 4K

Xiaomi-Yi-2-4kPrice:
189$ with coupon: GBIT22

Read the Xiaomi Yi 4K review

Live view screen: Yes Touchscreen 2.19″
Remote control: Optional (bluetooth)
Wifi: Yes
GPS: No
Bluetooth: Yes
Stabilizer: Electronic with gyro and accelerometer
Waterproof: 40m with case (optional)
Picture resolution: 12mpx
Video resolution: 4K@30fps | 2K@60fps | 1080p@120fps | 720p@240fps

Recommended for: high quality 4K video action cam with a good gyro stabilizer, touchscreen, bluetooth remote control | stable and sharp videos, with good quality stereo sound

Pro:

  • Value for money
  • High quality gyro stabilization
  • 4K@30fps
  • Toucscreen LCD Display
  • Wifi / Bluetooth
  • Top Class Hardware
  • Excellent Video and Photographic Quality
  • Bitrate up to 60Mb/s
  • Good quality stereo audio
Cons:

  • No waterproof case included
  • No accessories in the package (but you can adapt gopro accessories)
  • No external microphone

Xiaomi Yi2 Review:

The brand new Xiaomi Yi 4k has the same video resolutions than GoPro 4 black, max 4k @ 30fps, and it uses the new Ambarella A9SE chip – while Gopro 4 mounts the older A9 – and the new performing 12MPSony IMX377 sensor  with a dimension of 1/2.3″ so it”s the best hardware out there.

It can record videos with many resolutions, 4K@30fps , 2K@60fps, 1080p@120fps, 720p@240fps perfect for 6x slow motions. Pictures have a 12MP resolution.

It has a big 2.19″ touchscreen display, where you can see what you are recording or shooting, change options and features, and playback videos. Menu is very easy to use. There are 9 functions: Photo, Photo timelapse, Photo timer, Continuous shot, Video, Video timelapse, Slowmotion video, Loop video, Video + timelapse photo.

Besides, it has a wifi 2 times faster than the Gopro one, that reaches 3MB/s download speed, a 1400mAh battery that promises to record up to 120 minutes at the maximum 4k@30fps resolution, and above all a 6-axys Gyro stabilizer that removes vibrations and undesired movements using a gyroscope and a accelerometer – and GoPro 4 doesn’t have one -. Talking about the audio, Xiaomi Yi2 mounts 2 microphones for a superior stereo audio quality. And all of this for 249$! (199$ with coupon code below)

Xiaomi Yi 2 is on pre-sale at Gearbest right now at 249$, the best price of the web.  But if you use the coupon code YI4KIT  you will pay it just 199$.

Read the complete Xiaomi Yi2 4K review

Our vote for Yitechnology Yi 4K*: 4.4 / 5

Xiaomi Yi 4K features an excellent hardware and every functionality you can imagine on a action cam: 4k@30fps, touchscreen LCD display, gyro stabilizer, bluetooth remote control. With brand new Ambarella A975SE chip and Sony IMX377 sensor, this action cam can really be the GoPro 4 killer, and it costs less than half the price of the GoPro 4.

Gearbest black 199.99$ Amazon US Amazon UK

Yitechnology Yi 4k black for 189$ with coupon GBIT22

Yi 4k for 189$

Xiaomi Yi 4k Accessories:

Waterproof Case [Coupon: GBXYWF] | Leather case [Coupon: GBXYPU]

SJCam SJ7 Star

sjcam-sj7-starPrice:
173$ with coupon: 21off or GBCE

Read our SJCam SJ7 Star review

Live view screen: Yes Touchscreen 2″
Remote control: Optional (bluetooth)
Wifi: Yes
GPS: No
Bluetooth: Yes
Stabilizer: Electronic with gyro and accelerometer
Waterproof: 40m with case (included)
Picture resolution: 12mpx
Video resolution: 4K@30fps | 2K@60fps | 1080p@120fps | 720p@240fps

Recommended for: high quality 4K video action cam with a good gyro stabilizer, touchscreen, bluetooth remote control | stable and sharp videos, with good quality stereo sound

Pro:

  • Value for money
  • High quality gyro stabilization
  • 4K@30fps
  • Toucscreen LCD Display
  • Wifi / Bluetooth
  • Top Class Hardware with Ambarella A12 Chip and Sony IMX117 Sensor
  • Excellent Video and Photographic Quality
  • Good quality stereo audio and external Mic
  • RC Control (optional)
Cons:

  • No GPS
  • No waterproof without case
  • A bit expensive

SJCam SJ7 Star Review:

SJ7 Star can record native 4K@30fps videos – we remind you that SJ5000X and M20 record interpolated 4K videos from 2880×2160 resolution to 3840×2160 – and 1080p@120fps, being equipped with 12MP Sony IMX117 sensor, the same used by GoPro in the Hero 4 black, and with Ambarella A12 chip and features a 166° Wide-angle Lens, f=3mm, F/2.5 aperture.

SJ7 Star aims to appear as a premium action cam, so it has a cool and elegant design with a full metal body. As all SJcams it features a 2″ display that in this cam it is also touchscreen, a new feature for SJcam, very useful to change options and navigate in the menu, to see what you are recording and to playback videos and photos..

SJ7 star features a built-in Electronic Image Stabilizer (EIS) for smooth videos without vibrations and shaky videos. It uses a Gyro sensor combined with a Acceleration sensor to perceive and stabilize vibrations and shaking during a motion.

SJ7 has built-in wifi that allows you to connect the phone to the cam using the app SJCam Zone (iOS / Android). SJCAM SJ7 Star can be controlled by a remote control, very similar to the SJCAM M20 one. Perfect when you put the cam in places you can’t reach with your hand, like the helmet, kayak, outside the car or other places. You can start/stop recording, take a picture, change mode, turn off wifi and even turn off (and on?) the cam. SJ7 can be used with an external microphone, and this is again something new for this brand.

All of this for 199$, but with the coupon code 21off you can get it for just 157$.

Available @ Gearbest from end of january

Coupon code:  GBCE (-13%) or 21off (-21%)

Read our SJCam SJ7 Star review

Our vote for SJCam SJ7 Star*: 4.3 / 5

SJCam SJ7 Star features an excellent hardware and every functionality you can imagine on a action cam: 4k@30fps, touchscreen LCD display, gyro stabilizer, bluetooth remote control. With brand new Ambarella A12SE chip and Sony IMX117 sensor, this action cam can really be one of the protagonist of the 4K action cam world, and it costs way less than half the price of the GoPro 5, and 50$ less than Yi 4k.

Available @ Gearbest from end of january

Coupon code: GBCE (-13%) or 21off (-21%)

 

SJ7 Star Accessories:

RC control

ANDOER AN7000 & AN8000

Price:
114$ with coupon: 12AN7000

Read our Andoer AN7000 review

Live view screen: Yes 2″
Remote control: Optional (bluetooth) [works with YI remote] Wifi: Yes
GPS: No
Bluetooth: Yes
Stabilizer: Electronic with gyro and accelerometer
Waterproof: 60m with case (included)
Picture resolution: 12mpx
Video resolution: 4K@30fps | 2K@60fps | 1080p@120fps | 720p@240fps

Recommended for: high quality 4K video action cam with a good gyro stabilizer, bluetooth remote control | stable and sharp videos, with good quality stereo sound

 

Pro:

  • Value for money with excellent hardware
  • Very effective Gyro stabilization
  • 4K@30fps
  • LCD Display
  • Wifi / Bluetooth
  • Top Class Hardware with Ambarella A12 Chip and Sony IMX117 Sensor
  • Excellent Video and good Photographic Quality
  • RC Control (optional – you can use YI remote)
  • Many accessories included
Cons:

  • No touchscreen
  • No external mic (AN8000 has ext. mic.)

AN7000 & AN8000 Review:

Andoer AN7000 is exactly the same cam than Thieye T5e, with a better software for stabilization. It has exactly the same hardware than Thieye T5e and Andoer C5, 12MP Sony IMX117 sensor, the same used by GoPro in the Hero 4 black, and Ambarella A12 chip and features a 170° Wide-angle Lens, f=3mm, F/2.5 aperture. It can record native 4K@30fps videos and 1080p@120fps, being

This action cam records excellent and sharp videos with natural colors, and shoots very nice photos. It really surprised me when i tested it! But what surprised me most was the stabilizer, you can see it in action in this video. AN7000 features a built-in Electronic Image Stabilizer (EIS) for smooth videos without vibrations and shaky videos. It uses a Gyro sensor combined with a Acceleration sensor to perceive and stabilize vibrations and shaking during a motion. It’s quite good, almost as effective as Git2 and SJ6 ones.

AN7000 has built-in wifi that allows you to connect the phone to the cam using the Andoer Camera app (available for iOS / Android). It can be controlled by a remote control, optional and still not available (but I tested it with Yi remote and it works, you just need it to pair it with the cam). Unfortunately it can not be used with an external microphone.

All of this for 126$, but with the coupon code 12AN7000 you can get it for just 113$ from Camfere.

AN7000 @ Camfere Amazon US for 149$ Amazon UK for 156£

Camfere coupon code:  12AN7000 (113$)

Andoer has just released a new cam, AN8000, it has exaclty the same hardware, but a different shape, and it comes with a Remote Control, and supports external microphone! We didn’t test it, but probably it has the same video quality (chipset and sensor are the same). So maybe you prefer to get AN8000 instead, it costs just 15$ more.

AN8000 @ Camfere

Camfere coupon code:  AN8009OFF (125$)

 

Read our Andoer AN7000 review

Our vote for Andoer AN7000*: 4.1 / 5
Our vote for Andoer AN8000*: 4.2 / 5

Andoer AN7000 features an excellent hardware: Chip Ambarella A12 and sensor Sony IMX117, that allows the cam to record native 4k@30fps. It features LCD display, gyro stabilizer, bluetooth remote control (you can use the YI remote). This action cam records excellent and sharp videos with natural colors, and shoots very nice photos. This is probably the best choice around 120$, the video and photo quality is much better than Git2, SJ5000X, Firefly 7s, slightly better than SJ6, and quite as good as Xiaomi Yi 4k. The stabilizer works really well. And the price is surprising: just 113$!
AN8000 is exactly the same cam, same chipset, same sensor, but comes with a remote control and supports external microphone. Besides, it doesn’t have the threaded hole on the bottom.

AN7000 @ Camfere AN8000 @ Camfere Amazon US for 149$ Amazon UK for 156£

Camfere coupon code:  12AN7000 (113$) / AN8009OFF (125$)

ThiEYE T5e

Price:
109$ with coupon: Thieyet5e

Read our ThiEYE T5e review

Live view screen: Yes 2″
Remote control: Optional (bluetooth)
Wifi: Yes
GPS: No
Bluetooth: Yes
Stabilizer: Electronic with gyro and accelerometer
Waterproof: 60m with case (included)
Picture resolution: 12mpx
Video resolution: 4K@30fps | 2K@60fps | 1080p@120fps | 720p@240fps

Recommended for: high quality 4K video action cam with a good gyro stabilizer, bluetooth remote control | stable and sharp videos, with good quality stereo sound

Pro:

  • Value for money with excellent components
  • Gyro stabilization
  • 4K@30fps
  • LCD Display
  • Wifi / Bluetooth
  • Top Class Hardware with Ambarella A12 Chip and Sony IMX117 Sensor
  • Excellent Video and Photographic Quality
  • RC Control (optional – yi remote)
Cons:

  • No touchscreen
  • Low light videos are not so good
  • Gyro is good but not as good as Andoer AN7000, Git2 or SJ6
  • No external mic
  • Few accessories (Case, Mount, spare Battery)

ThiEYE T5e Review:

ThiEYE T5e can record native 4K@30fps videos and 1080p@120fps, being equipped with 12MP Sony IMX117 sensor, the same used by GoPro in the Hero 4 black, and with Ambarella A12 chip and features a 170° Wide-angle Lens, f=3mm, F/2.5 aperture.

This action cam records excellent and sharp videos with natural colors, and shoots very nice photos. It really surprised me when i tested it!

ThiEYE T5e features a built-in Electronic Image Stabilizer (EIS) for smooth videos without vibrations and shaky videos. It uses a Gyro sensor combined with a Acceleration sensor to perceive and stabilize vibrations and shaking during a motion. It’s quite good but not as effective as Git2 and SJ6 ones.

T5e has built-in wifi that allows you to connect the phone to the cam using the app ThiEYE HD (iOS / Android). T5e can be controlled by a remote control, optional and still not available (but I tested it with Yi remote and it works, you just need it to pair it with the cam). Unfortunately it can not be used with an external microphone.

All of this for 119$, but with the coupon code Thieyet5e you can get it for just 109$.

Available @ Gearbest Amazon US Amazon UK

Gearbest coupon code:  Thieyet5e (109$)

Read our ThiEYE T5e review

Our vote for ThiEYE T5e*: 4.0 / 5

ThiEYE T5e features an excellent hardware: Chip Ambarella A12 and sensor Sony IMX117, that allow the cam to record native 4k@30fps. It features LCD display, gyro stabilizer, bluetooth remote control. This action cam records excellent and sharp videos with natural colors, and shoots very nice photos. This is probably the best choice around 120$, the video and photo quality is much better than Git2, SJ5000X, Firefly 7s, slightly better than SJ6, and quite as good as Xiaomi Yi 4k. And the price is surprising: just 109$!

Available @ Gearbest Amazon US Amazon UK

Coupon code: Thieyet5e (109$)

In this video a comparison among SJ6 Legend, Git2, SJ5000X and Firefly 7s:


SJCam SJ6 Legend

Price:
126$ with coupon: 20off (-20%)

Read our SJCam SJ7 Star review

Live view screen: Yes Touchscreen 2″, front status
Remote control: Optional (bluetooth)
Wifi: Yes
GPS: No
Bluetooth: Yes
Stabilizer: Electronic with gyro and accelerometer
Waterproof: 30m with case (included)
Picture resolution: 16mpx Panasonic MN34120PA
Video resolution: 4K@24fps (interpolated) | 2K@30fps | 1080p@60fps | 720p@120fps
Bitrate max.: 35Mbit/s
Battery: 1050mAh
Autonomy at 1080p 30fps: 1h20m

Recommended for: high quality 2K video action cam with an excellent gyro stabilizer, touchscreen, bluetooth remote control, external microphone | stable and sharp videos, with good quality stereo sound.

Pro:

  • Value for money
  • High quality gyro stabilization
  • 2K@30fps
  • Toucscreen LCD Display and front status display
  • Wifi / Bluetooth
  • Good Video and Photographic Quality
  • Good quality stereo audio and external Mic
Cons:

  • No 4k (it’s interpolated and 24fps)
  • No waterproof without case
  • Low light videos are noisy

SJCam SJ6 Legend Review:

SJ6 Legend can record interpolated 4K@24fps videos – interpolated 4K videos from 2880×2160 resolution to 3840×2160 -, native 2K@30fps and 1080p@120fps, being equipped with 16MP Panasonic MN34120PA CMOS sensor,and Novatek 96660 sensor (the same of SJ5000X, Git2, Explorer Pro, SJ5000X, M20, Firefly 7s etc.).

Video and photo quality are very good, better then all other cam equipped with Novatek 96660, and almost as good as ThiEYE and Yi 4k. Videos are sharp and have natural colors and a good definition. Gyro stabilizer works very well, it is effective in every situation, probably the best together with git2 and sony cams.

It features a 2″ touchscreen display, very useful to change options and navigate in the menu, to see what you are recording and to playback videos and photos, and a small front status display.

SJ6 Legend features a built-in Electronic Image Stabilizer (EIS) for smooth videos without vibrations and shaky videos. It uses a Gyro sensor combined with a Acceleration sensor to perceive and stabilize vibrations and shaking during a motion and is very effective, probably the best together with Git2 and SJ5000X.

SJ6 has built-in wifi that allows you to connect the phone to the cam using the app SJCam Zone (iOS / Android). SJCAM SJ6 Legend can be controlled by a remote control, the same used by the SJCAM M20 and SJ7. Perfect when you put the cam in places you can’t reach with your hand, like the helmet, kayak, outside the car or other places. You can start/stop recording, take a picture, change mode, turn off wifi and even turn off (and on?) the cam. SJ6 can be used with an external microphone, and this is again something new for this brand.

All of this for 154$, but with the coupon code 20off you can get it for just 126$.

Available @ Gearbest Amazon US Amazon UK

Coupon code:  GBCE (-13%) or 20off (-20%)

Read our SJCam SJ6 Legend review

Our vote for SJCam SJ6 Legend*: 4.0 / 5

SJCam SJ6 Legend features good functionalities: 4k@24fps (interpolated) and real 2K@30fps, touchscreen LCD display, small front status display, excellent gyro stabilizer, bluetooth remote control. With Novatek 96660 chip and new Panasonic MN34120PA CMOS sensor, this action cam is probably the best action cam equipped with Novatek 96660 sensor (SJ5000X, Git2, Explorer Pro, SJ5000X, M20, Firefly 7s etc.) for video and photo quality, and gyro efficiency. This is the vest sjcam, until the SJ7 will reach the market. And the price is very good. The best cam together with ThiEYE t5e in a price range of 100-130$

Available @ Gearbest Amazon US Amazon UK

Coupon code for gearbest: 20off (-20%) [not valid]

We are giving away TWO Firefly 7S (worth 71$ x2) completely for free to TWO of our readers.
Join the contest before 2016, November 28th clicking here.

 

Watch this video test: Gitup Git2 vs Xiaomi Yi vs Firefly 6S vs SJ5000X:



Gitup Git2

Git2-300x300Price: 139$ 104.99$ @ GearBest (coupon code “Gitup2”)

Read our Gitup Git2 full review

Live view screen: Yes, 1.5″
Remote control: Yes (optional – buy for 14$)
Wifi: Sì + Bluetooth
GPS: No
Stabilizer: Yes, Gyro
Waterproof: Yes | 30m case
Photo resolution: 16mpx
Video resolution: 4K (2880×2160) at 24 fps | 2k at 30fps | 1080p 60fps / 30fps | 720p 120fps | 480p 240fps
Bitrate max.: 26 Mbit/s
Battery life at 1080p 30fps: 1h 20m | 950mAh

Recommended for: 4k  24fps interpolated videos, 2k at 30fps and 1080p @ 60fps videos | LCD screen to see live, playback and change settings | wifi | excellent Gyro stabilizer | wrist remote control for just 14$ | External microphone (optional) and good audio quality | Skiing, mountainbiking, general sports

Pro:

  • value for money 139$ 104.99$ using coupon code GitUp2
  • 2k and 4k videos (interpolated from 2840×2160)
  • wifi
  • quite good video quality, 4k 24fps (2840×2160), 2k 30fps and fullHD at 60fps
  • nice 16mp pictures, thanks to Sony Exmor IMX206 sensor
  • Very effective Gyro stabilizer
  • audio stereo + possibility to use external micro usb microphone
  • LCD 1.5″ back screen, to see live, playback and change settings
  • wrist remote control
  • waterproof case and a lot of accessories included, plus full compatibility with gopro accessories
  • same size and button position of gopro 3+ and 4
Cons:

  • few light videos are not so good (as in most action cams)
  • only 950mAh battery (compatible with SJcam batteries)
  • there’s no official App, but you can use Finalcam or FNcam
  • Cam with Ambarella chip are better

 

139$ 104.99$ at Gearbest using code GitUp2  139$ 109.99$ at Banggood using code Gitup Amazon US for 139-149$ Amazon UK 105£

If you buy it from gearbest, put it on the shopping cart and then use the coupon code GitUp2, price changes to 104.99$!!

Gitup Git2 review:

This cam has similar hardware features to SJ5000X and FireFly 6S, has the same Novatek 96660 chip and an excellent Sony Exmor sensor (16Mpx IMX206). The combination allows you to record video up to “interpolated” 4k resolution at 24fps, or 2K at 30 fps, or 1080p at 60fps. It allows you to take good photographs at 16mpx. The visual field is the classic Fisheye at 170 degrees, typical of most action cam. Read our full review of Gitup Git2

Positive notes of this action cam are the back 1.5″ LCD screen that allows you to see what you are recording, playback videos and photos and easily change settings, and the audio that has a very good quality. This cam records a very good sound, definitely better than other cam of the category (SJ5000X, Xiaomi etc.) almost reaching GoPro and Sony quality, but additionally it allows the use of external micro usb microphones, useful in many conditions such as. in motor bike, in which you can place the mic in a wind-sheltered spot. See eg. this microphone.

Another interesting feature is the possibility to use a simple Wrist Remote Control to start and stop recording of videos or to take pictures. You can find the remote at GearBest for just 14$.

One thing that makes this cam really interesting is the presence of the Gyro Stabilizer , a hardware component that stabilizes video when they could be shaky, for example during a bike session, running, or even just walking. The stabilizer works really well, although not as the Sony’s Steady Shot. It works much better than in SJ5000X and slightly beter than in Firefly 6S.

Many other features are really useful to use the Git2 as a dashcam, like the Cyclic record, the Motion Detection that allows you to start recording when the cam detects movement, useful, for example on skis, by bike or motorcycle and in the car, a G-sensor useful in case of accidents, it stop deleting files in Cyclic Record mode to keep the file in wich the accident is. It also has the possibility to turn on and off the action cam when you plug in the mini usb, useful in the car.

Included in the package you will find the waterproof case and many accessories and mounts.

Videos are of excellent quality in good lighting conditions, good quality in the backlight and in shaded areas, decent at night. Videos have a bit rate of 29Mb/s that is quite high, although not as Gopro 4. This means that the videos are less compressed than SJ4000 ones eg. that has a 15Mb/s bit rate and than SJ5000 which has bitrate of 24Mb/s or Xiaomi Yi that has a 25Mb/s bitrate.

The battery is 950 mAh and allows you to record just over an hour and twenty minutes at 1080p 30fps, but the additional batteries cost really a little, and are the same of the SJ series.

There is not yet a dedicated App to control the cam via wifi, but you can use the Finalcam or FN cam Apps.

This is a valid alternative to SJ5000X and FireFly 6S, they have the same chip, same Gyro stabilizzer, similar Sony sensor, same video risolutions. Git2 has a better audio quality and the possibility to use an external microphone and the wrist remote control. Also Git2 Gyro stabilizer works better than SJ and Firefly. Firefly 6S has no monitor. Here you can watch a comparative video among the 3 cam and GoPro 4. We suggest to buy Gitup git2, rather than the other 2.

Read our Gitup Git2 full review

Our vote*: 3.4 / 5

Excellent action cam, probably the best under 150$, records excellent interpolated 4k videos and 2k or 1080p @ 60fps videos, has an LCD screen, very useful Gyro stabilizer, excellent audio quality, wrist remote controle and a very low price.

Get it on GearBest 139$ 109.99$ at Banggood using code Gitup Amazon US for 139-149$ Amazon UK 105£

If you buy it from Gearbest, put it in the shopping cart and then use the coupon code GitUp2 to pay it 104.99$!!

Watch this video: SJ5000X vs Git2 vs Sony AS200v vs Elephone Explorer Pro


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SJ5000X
SJ5000X_Elite1Price: 139$ | 143$ | 101£ | 159€ | 107$

Live view screen: Yes
Remote control: No
Wifi: Yes
GPS: No
Stabilizer: Yes (Gyro)
Waterproof: 30m with case (included)
Picture resolution: 12mpx
Video resolution: 4k @ 24fps | 2k @ 30fps | 1080p 30fps | 720p 60fps

Recommended for: good video and photographic quality | good gyro stabilizer | lot of accessories included | 4k  @ 24fps interpolated videos, 2k @ 30fps and 1080p @ 60fps videos | LCD screen to see live, playback and change settings | wifi

Pro:

  • Good video quality, much better than SJ4000
  • Really good photographic quality, real 12mpx pictures with Sony IMX078 sensor
  • Good Gyro stabilizer for sport videos
  • Wifi
  • 4k@24fps (interpolated), 2k@30fps, FullHD @60fps
  • Many accessories included
  • 2″ LCD screen
  • Dashcam mode
Cons:

  • Price in Europe at the moment may be too high (159€ against 145$ in USA)
  • Audio, still not so good (much better from firmware 1.25)
  • Old hardware. Ambarella chipset is slightly better

SJ5000X review:

SJ5000X Elite Edition has been realeased on November 2015, and it has a lot of new features upgraded from SJ5000+, as 4k video resolution (interpolated) @ 24fps and 2k @ 30fps, a very good 12,4Mpx Sony IMX078 image sensor, Novatek 96660 chip, wifi. It mounts a gyro stablizer that works pretty well for more stable and steady videos without annoying vibrations, even in sport situations. It has a 2″ rear screen where you can see live what you’re recording, cheange settings and playback yur files, and wifi. Important hardware and quality improvements, and correction of bugs (SJ5000+ used to freeze often), that allow us to say it is probably the best budget action cam of early 2016 around 100$, together with Gitup Git2.

In the first version of this post at the end of 2015 we said this cam had a lot of problems and that it was not such a good choice, for instance the gyro wasn’t working properly, colors were reddish, audio had a very low quality, pictures were flat, reddish, dark and not sharp. With the latest firmware updates, above all the last one, v1.25, almost all these problems were nicely solved. Gyro stabilizer now works pretty well (see videos below in the article), colors are natural – good greens for the plants and intense blue for the sky – exposure changes are well managed even in back light, pictures are beautiful even in difficult lightings, shaded areas are well exposed, audio got really better (but still not excellent as git2). Besides there are a lot of new options in the menu, like the volume setting in the audio section, shutter speed and more. We can now say that SJCAM worked hard to get the best from its good hardware. So now we feel to suggest this cam, as we did for the Gitup Git2.

Strengths of SJ5000X are definitely the presence of a live screen, gyro stabilizer, wifi and many accessories in the package , besides the fact that this action cam is compatible with GoPro accessories. It has a excellent dashcam function that records loops videos and turns on and off by itself when connected with the cigarette lighter of the car. It also has timelapse and burst mode.

The maximum resolution for pictures is 12 MP (4032 x 3024 px). SJ5000X has also these features Time Lapse – photo lapse and video lapse -, Self Timer and Burst Rate, 3 to 10 pictures in a second.

See this comparative video SJ5000X vs Gitup Git2 vs Sony AS200V vs Elephone Explorer Pro. Very good stabilization for SJ5000x, Git2 and Sony, colors are natural, vivid, real, exposition is well managed, in shaded areas probably the best is the SJ5000X, it produces clear videos even under the trees with low light. The sharper videos seem to be the ones recorded with Sony and SJ5000X. I think the best pictures are the SJ5000X ones, they are always well lit and with vivid and natural colors, even in back light.

Probably it is the best choice for action cameras under 120$ together with Gitup Git2. It has a lot of winning points, good video quality, excellent photo quality, (interpolated 4k@24fps), 2k@30fps videos, 2″ rear screen, good gyro stabilizer, a lot of accessories, a very good price (119$ from gearbest, 150$ on Amazon), many options. Probably the only defect of this cam is still the audio, low volume althought you have 3 volume levels in the menu now.

Our vote+: 3.5 / 5

SJ5000X Elite:
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Xiaomi Yi
xiaomi-yi-hd-camera_1Price: 77$ | 54£ | 59$ @ gearbest (coupon code XiaoMiYi)

Live view screen: No
Remote control: Optional (with live view)
Wifi: Yes + Bluetooth
GPS: No
Stabilizer: No
Waterproof:40m with case (optional)
Picture resolution: 16mpx (real)
Video resolution: 2k 2304×1296 30fps | 1080p 60fps / 30fps | 720p 120fps | 480p 240fps

Recommended for: those looking for a inexpensive action cam but with an excellent quality for both video (2k 30fps and full hd 60fps) and photos (16mpx) with stereo audio | who wants to register in 2k with just 77 $ | those who want WiFi and bluetooth

Pro:

  • Good value for money
  • Shoots 2k videos @ 30fps
  • Wifi /bluetooth
  • Good video quality
  • Good 16mpx pictures, thanks to Sony Exmor R sensor
  • Stereo audio, medium quality
  • Good shots with few light
Cons:

  • Few accessories in the box
  • No lcd screen
  • Waterproof case not included, optional (15$)
  • No stabilization

Xiaomi Yi review:

This was probably the bestseller among budget action cams in the range from 50 to 80 $, now it’s a bit old and has no stabilizer, but has still a very good video quality. It combines an excellent price (69$) to a high video quality – comparable to gopro 3 silver – and also great photo quality, thanks to a 16mpx Sony Exmor R sensor, a sensor also mounted on sony action cams and some cameras. Since August 26, 2015 there is a new firmware that allows you to record in 2k at 30fps, with a bitrate of 15Mbps (perhaps a bit low, but you can increase it by script). The video quality is definitely superior to SJ4000, SJ4000+, and it is on a par with the SJ5000 +, indeed probably is superior to the latter in many conditions, especially in difficult light (with little light sometimes the quality is superior even to the GoPro 3). The only flaw is the lack of an LCD screen, an underwater case (it is optional and costs 15-20$) and accessories (if you use the cam with the case on, it is compatible with GoPro accessories). It also has wifi so you can see what you are recording on smartphones live. It also has Bluetooth and recently you can find out there a remote control from about 15$. On the internet there are simple tutorials and mods to shoot videos at 2k 30fps with 35MB/s bitrate or to manually change ISO and exposition.

This action cam is positioned just below the high-end GoPro (4 Hero and 3+ Hero black and silver), and significantly above the direct competitors of the same price range, as well as the SJ4000, SJ4000+, SJ5000, Sony AS30v. Probably the video and photo quality is similar to the Sony AS200v. The videos are well defined and detailed even when enlarged, and the excellent processor working with the Sony Exmor R sensor make an excellent job even in low light conditions or in changing light / shadow conditions, managed very well without unexpected leaps of exposure.

The battery is 1010mAh, and lasts about 100m recording at 1080p30. The audio is stereo and if you do not use the housing it is of average quality , but is ruined if you use the cam moving ina a motorcycle, bike or running fast. The Xiaomi Yi can be controlled via Wi-Fi with a free App , available both for Android and iOS. Here are some uncompressed video shot with the Xiaomi Yi (download it to your PC from the top menu to see the full uncompressed quality). Unfortunately the Xiaomi Yi doesn’t have a LCD screen to see what you are recording, not even a small screen to see the settings, you must then change them using the app on a phone or tablet. Another shortcoming is the lack of the waterproof case in the box, but it can be < href=”http://www.amazon.it/gp/product/B00Z5DHG5E/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=3370&creative=24114&creativeASIN=B00Z5DHG5E&linkCode=as2&tag=blogfotografico-21″ target = “_ blank”> purchased separately at 18 $.

If you want to enter the world of action cam on a budget this is perhaps the best choice , the video quality is truly amazing, especially considering the price, too bad the lack of the screen but even the GoPro Hero 4 black doesn’t have one. At this price it is really a bargain, you can find it on Amazon US at 77$ or see below the links for other countries. Simply purchase the waterproof cover and some accessories to have a complete action cam. With inexpensive adapters you can use all the accessories for GoPro.

Our vote*: 3.2 / 5

Almost certainly at the moment the Xiaomi Yi is the best action cam in the economic range and the only one that allows you to record in 2k to a very low price. It also makes great pictures at 16mpx.

Xiaomi Yi:
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Gearbest.com*

* use coupon code XiaoMiYi to get it @Gearbest for 59$!

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Sony AS200 v
Sony_AS100V-vs-gopro-4Price: 198$ | 244£ | 224€

AS200v on Amazon | AS200v

Live view screen: No | Yes on the optional remote control
Remote control: Optional (with live view)
Wifi: Yes
GPS: Yes
Stabilizer: Electronic Advanced Steadyshot
Waterproof:5m with case (included)
Picture resolution: 8.8mpx
Video resolution: 1080p 60fps / 30fps | 720p 120fps | 480p 240fps

Recommended for: those who want a high quality video action cam with a good optical stabilizer, and wireless remote control | who wants stable and sharp videos, with quality stereo sound

Pro:

  • Good quality
  • Excellent quality Steadyshot stabilization
  • Full HD 1080p 60fps
  • Wifi / GPS
  • Good Video Quality
  • Pretty good Photographic Quality
  • Pro mode that records with S XAVC professional codec with bit rates up to 50MB / s
  • Stereo audio quality, jack for external microphone
  • Optional remote Live View Wi-Fi LVR1, with live screen
  • Splash proof even without case
Cons:

  • No 2k or 4k (do you really need it?)
  • Few accessories in the package (but you can adapt gopro accessories)
  • No screen
  • Shape, unusual and sometimes annoying
  • Menu very difficult to use

Sony AS200v Review:

With AS200v Sony created the ‘almost perfect’ action cam. The AS200v has a great video quality, almost unbeatable. The AS200 performs better than the AS100v and AS30v in low light , and the stabilizer works best “amortizing” even more vibrations and movements rash than the already good AS100. The video quality is much better then AS100v and AS30v if you compare the video and photo definition (especially recording in Pro Mode up to 50mb/s), and the colors, that are natural and vivid. If you want the 4K, Sony X1000v has the same characteristics of AS200v with the added option of recording in 4K.

The Sony AS200 is recognized by many as the best action cam regarding the video quality, definition, clarity even better than the GoPro 4 silver, especially considering the excellent stabilization of the AS200 that creates really fluid videos. Watch this video AS200v vs GoPro 4 : the images speak for themselves (see the part of the footage shot in the snow and the part with stabilization on)

Sony AS200v has wifi and can be controlled by a smartphone or tablet using Sony’s App. It can also be used with the Live View remote control that allows you to control up to 5 Sony cams simultaneously and to see live on your wrist what you are recording , a very good option, especially if the cam is placed on the helmet or in not accessible areas, and Sony is the only one that provides this accessory – others have the remote control with 2-3 buttons to operate the cam and in which you can only see if the recording is active. The AS200 also has GPS that keeps track of your routes. Thanks to the editing program provided by Sony, you can see the route you took and visualize your path drawn directly in the video and see live where you are in the drawn path. AS200v also has the Pro Mode , which lets you record using XAVC S professional codec, with a higher bit rate up to 50mbs, which keeps better details and allows modifications without loosing quality when editing videos. (To use this mode, you need a micro sd card of at least 64GB).

The Sony AS200v has excellent Zeiss optics, a CMOS sensor Exmor R for photos in 8.8mpx – real resolution -, records FullHD 1080p 60fps or 30fps videos, or 720p and 480p at 120fps to 240fps for good slowmotions. It has an excellent electronic Steadyshot stabilizer that works really well, and has been further improved from AS30 and AS100, when comparing videos made by Sony with the competitors, in certain conditions the difference is embarrassing, the Sony seem mounted on a steadycam, videos of competitors are wobbly and blurred (see this video and this ).

This action camera is splashproof and waterproof in light rain conditions even without its case, allowing to shoot videos even in the rain without worrying about getting wet. To go underwater the housing is needed, which in any case is included and can be used up to 5m underwater. For shooting underwater beyond 5m there is an optional Marine custody.

The Sony AS200v is sold alone at 248$ or combined with the remote control at about 348$ .

In conclusion, the Sony AS200v is an action camera with a high quality video, with a very affordable price, wifi, gps, improved stability, waterproof, gives the ability to have a live remote control. In short, it has everything, and works very well, missing only the 4K resolution (see Sony X1000v).Once you have the remote control and accessories, you can use them with other Sony cams, even simultaneously, as they are also compatible with previous (AS30v, AS100v) or higher models, such as the X1000V that has the same video quality but can record 4K videos.

Our vote for Sony AS200v*: 3.4 / 5

Very good video and stabilization quality, much better than the GoPro 3+ and  as good as gopro 4 Silver for video quality. Vivid, natural colors. Excellent even under changing light conditions. Outstanding stabilizer.

Sony AS200v:
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Live view kit:
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SJ4000 wifi
sj4000_QumoxPrice: 99$ | 53£ | 90€| 52$

Read our SJ4000 wifi review

Live view screen: Yes
Remote control: No
Wifi: Yes
GPS: No
Stabilizer: No
Waterproof:10m with case (included)
Picture resolution: 12mpx (interpolated from 3.5mpx)
Video resolution: 1080p 30fps | 720p 60fps (30fps real)

Recommended for: those who want to enter into the world of action cams with a cheap product that has decent quality | those seeking a second cam | who wants to make a purchase a cam that includes many accessories

Pro:

  • price
  • wifi
  • decent video quality in daylight
  • many accessories in the box
Cons:

  • fullHD 30fps
  • bad quality in shadowy situations
  • no remote control
  • no stabilization
  • colors are too cold

SJ4000 wifi review:

SJ4000 wifi is an underwater camera made in China introduced with a great success at the beginning of 2014, especially among those approaching for the first time to the world of action cams with a small budget, then among young but people not only, and has allowed many users to buy a cam with less than 90$ , that had a decent video quality, a lcd screen to see what you’re recording, and a great range of accessories for virtually any use, and compatible with gopro accessories. It has also wifi, that adds the ability to control the cam by a smartphone and also watch streaming videos you are shooting or in playback . The strengths of the SJ4000 wifi are therefore the price, the rear screen, ease of use, the amount of included accessories , the waterproof case included in the price, and even after all the video quality that is pretty decent in good daylight conditions . The problems arise when you are in changing or shadowy light conditions , when the sun is in the shot for example. Also in low light does not behave well as other competitors like the Sony or the GoPro, but it remains a bit too underexposed, but actually I do not think that it is purchased for shooting indoors videos, so this is not a big problem. Colors are slightly cold – but you can correct them in post production – and are too much contrasted.

This cam is therefore recommended to those who have a limited budget but still looking for a good product especially in daylight. For those who use it often and has already familiar with this world or want a better video and photo quality, you may want to look elsewhere, especially Xiaomi Yi or Sony AS200v or GoPro 3+ or 4. Pro: with just 100$ you get everything you need including accessories.

Read our full SJ4000 wifi review

Our vote*: 2.5 / 5

Cheap, but with a decent quality. Video quality is lower than the Xiaomi Yi, that is even cheaper and record 2k videos, but the SJ4000 has a rear screen and many accessories included.

Since June 2015 there is also the SJ4000+ plus, which records in 2K 30fps and in Full HD at 60fps and is sold at 135$. It uses a gyro for stabilization.

Pro:

  • 2k 30fps
  • wifi
  • good video and photo quality in daylight
  • many accessories in the box
  • gyro stabilization
Cons:

  • quality in shadowy situations
  • no remote control
  • colors are too cold

 

SJ4000 wifi:
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Camfere 51$ Coupon code: SJCAM10 (10% off)

SJ4000 PLUS:
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We are giving away TWO Firefly 7S (worth 71$ x2) completely for free to TWO of our readers.
Join the contest before 2016, November 28th clicking here.

SJ5000+
sj5000+Price: 143$ | 101£ | 159€

Live view screen: Yes
Remote control: No
Wifi: Yes
GPS: No
Stabilizer: No
Waterproof:10m with case (included)
Picture resolution: 12mpx (interpolated from 3.5mpx)
Video resolution: 1080p 30fps | 720p 60fps (30fps real)

Recommended for: who liked SJ4000 but want better video quality at 60fps and much better photographic quality

Pro:

  • Good video quality, superior to SJ4000
  • Really good photographic quality, real 16mpx pictures with panasonic sensor
  • Wifi
  • FullHD 60fps
  • Many accessories included
  • LCD screen
  • Dashcam mode
Cons:

  • Price in Europe at the moment may be too high (159€ against 145$ in USA)
  • Videos shot in low light are not too good
  • It gets very hot and sometimes crashes
  • No stabilization

SJ5000 Plus review:

After the success of the SJ4000, SJcam decided to produce a new cam providing it with quality components, such as Ambarella A7LS75 chip, also present in GoPro 3 + and Panasonic CMOS image sensor for photo . The result is a cam with a video and photographic quality definitely superior to SJ4000 but with a higher price, 50-60$ extra. Strengths of SJ5000 + are definitely the presence of a live screen, wifi and many accessories in the package , besides the fact that this action cam is compatible with GoPro accessories. It has a excellent dashcam function that records loops videos and turns on and off by itself when connected with the cigarette lighter of the car. It also has timelapse and burst mode.

Videos shots with the SJ5000+ are sharper than those with SJ4000, with more vivid and natural colors. But what distinguishes it most from SJ4000 is the photo quality, with pictures in real 16mpx, much more beautiful than those taken with the SJ4000 at 3,5mpx interpolated at 12mpx, this is possible thanks to the excellent Panasonic photo sensor of the SJ5000+.

There are also two other cheaper versions: SJ5000 and SJ5000 wifi , which are not PLUS and there are the same components of the SJ4000, as a Novatek chip that is much cheaper and less powerful, so we not recommend them.

Our vote+: 2.7 / 5

SJ5000+ PLUS:
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Sony AS20 | AS30 v
Sony_AS30vPrice AS20v: 178$ | 119£ | 168€
Price AS30v: 249$ | 129£ | 169€

Live view screen: No | Yes on the optional remote control
Remote control: Optional (with live view)
Wifi: Yes
GPS: Yes (only AS30v)
Stabilizer: Electronic Steadyshot
Waterproof: 5m with case (included)
Picture resolution: 11.9mpx
Video resolution: 1080p 60fps / 30fps | 720p 120fps | 480p 240fps

Recommended for: who wants a cheap cam but with quality and excellent optics, stabilized | those who wants WiFi and an optional remote control | who wants stable video and excellent sound

Pro:

  • high quality Steadyshot stabilization
  • max resolution is Full HD 1080p 60fps
  • wifi / GPS
  • Quite good Video Quality
  • Superior quality stereo audio, jack for external microphone
  • excellent shots in low-light conditions
  • optional remote Live View Wi-Fi LVR1, with live screen
Cons:

  • No 2k or 4k (do you really need it?)
  • few accessories in the package (but you can adapt gopro accessories)
  • No live screen
  • Menu is difficult to use

Sony AS20v – AS30v Review:

Sony AS20 and AS30v are two excellent action cams, replaced by AS100v and AS200v, therefore sold at a great price, from € 140 (AS20) to € 170 (AS30). The video quality of the two is really good and similar to the AS100v, which costs around 100 € more. The AS30 performs better in the low light than the AS20, and slightly worse than the AS100. We personally like more the look of AS30 between all three, the videos are ready for publication without editing with natural colors, while those of AS100 are too neutral, almost dull, and need editing in postproduction (see this video ). AS30 and AS20 are both wireless action cams and can be controlled by smartphones or tablet with Sony’s App. Can also be used with the Live View remote control, that allows you to control up to 5 Sony cams simultaneously and see live what you are recording , a great thing especially if the cam is placed on the helmet or in not accessible areas, and Sony is the only one which provides a waterproof remote control with this possibility. The AS30 has also GPS that keeps track of our routes and shows them on the videos, if you like. Both have Zeiss optics, a good quality CMOS Exmor R sensor for photos with 11,9mpx, they record FullHD videos, 1080p 60fps or 30fps , and 720p 120fps for slow-motion. Both have the Steadyshot electronic stabilizer that works really well. When we compare videos shots with Sony action cams with the others brands, under certain conditions the difference is obvious and embarrassing, Sony seem mounted on a Steadycam, the others are wobbly and blurred (see this video, this and this: Garmin virB vs Sony AS30v ). These Sony have quite high bit rates for movies, up to 28MB / s average in higher quality. To go underwater is required the included waterproof case, useful up to 5m. The battery is 1240mAh, and shots for about 2 hours without wifi, 1.5 h with wifi and gps. The audio is stereo and if you do not use the case it has a good quality . You can also connect an external microphone. Sony HDR-AS30V and AS20 can be controlled via Wi-Fi with the free software PlayMemories Mobile , available for Android and iOS. Here you will find a uncompressed video shot with AS30v (download it to your pc from the top menu).

They are 2 cameras with a high-quality video recording, with a very affordable price, wifi, gps, stabilization, possibility to use a live view remote. They have almost everything needed, except the 2k or 4K. Once you have the remote control and other accessories, you can use them with other Sony action cams, in case in the future you want to upgrade to better models, eg. AS200v or X1000V that shots 4K videos.

Read our Sony AS30v review.

Our vote to AS30v*: 3 / 5

Our vote to AS20v*: 2.8 / 5

2 really good action cams with stabilization and good video quality. They are quite cheap. These are old models, but still working fine. Video quality is better then SJ4000 but slightly worse than Xiaomi Yi and Sony AS200v.

Sony AS20v:
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Sony AS30v:
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GoPro Hero 3+ Black
Gopro_hero3_blackPrice: 369$ | 285£ | 399€

Live view screen: No
Remote control: Optional
Wifi: Yes
GPS: No
Stabilizer: No
Waterproof: 40m with case (included)
Picture resolution: 12mpx
Video resolution: 4K 15fps | 2,7K 30fps | 1080p 60fps | 720p 120fps

Recommended for: those who want to take advantage of the gopro quality at a price slightly lower after the release of Hero 4 | those who want high resolutions up to 2.7k 30fps | semi-professionals and advanced video makers

Pro:

  • Resolution up to 4k 15fps and 30fps 2.7k
  • WiFi
  • Market of used products
  • Audio-video quality
  • Availability of aftermarket accessories
  • Optional remote control
  • Shooting in low-light conditions
  • Protune mode
Cons:

  • high price
  • no live view screen
  • no stabilizer
  • no GPS
  • mono audio
  • Battery life, approximately 1h

GoPro Hero 3+ Black edition review:

GoPro Hero 3 + Black Edition does not need any introduction. It’s been the reference action cam of the last two years despite the exorbitant price. Its success is due to a massive direct and indirect advertising campaign and to the resulting popularity among sportsmen and also to its indisputable video quality . With such a high price you would expect at least the electronic stabilizer, or GPS, or a good amount of standard equipment. Instead it comes with minimum accessories, and original ones cost a lot. GoPro does very well both in daylight conditions, and in shadowy conditions , not bad even in low light, but the Sony AS200v can be even better. It shoots 12mpx good quality pictures , and it has nice features as time-lapse and burst mode, to take from 3 to 10 photos in one second. The audio is good but it is mono , while Sony for example have stereo audio. Basically you pay more than the competitors, and it is because of the higher resolution (4k comes at 15fps which is unusable due to the low frame rate, but you can use the 2.7k at 30fps) and of its popularity, which also implies a good resale value of used products.

It has wifi with a good app. Doesn’t have a rear lcd screen to see what you are recording, but you can use your smartphone via wifi.

If you do not have budget problems can be a good choice, but if you have problems to spend so much money and not interested in resolutions higher than FullHD 1080p, you can look elsewhere, especially the Sony AS200v and Xiaomi Yi. With the money you save you can buy a lot of accessories.

Our vote*: 3.2 / 5

The landmark until 2014, today is too expensive, better see the gopro 4 silver that is even cheaper and has lcd screen

GoPro Hero 3+ Black edition:
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GoPro Hero 4 Silver:
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GoPro Hero 4 Black:
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We will continue to update this article whenever there will be a new interesting action cam to be included in the list, so we ask you to tell us your favorites in the comments.

Here we show you some interesting videos of comparative between 2 or more action cam included in our list (if you have other interesting videos link it in comments) – obviously the quality of youtube does not do justice to this cams, but can be used to get an idea.

Comparison between:

  • GoPro Hero 3+ Black
  • Sony Action Cam 2 (HDR-AS30V)
  • JVC Adixxion GC-XA2
  • Garmin VIRB Elite
  • Drift Ghost-S
  • Ion Air Pro 3


Sony AS200v vs GoPro Hero 4 silver


GoPro Hero 3+ Black vs Sony AS30 vs Sony AS100 vs Panasonic HX-A500:


Sony AS30 vs Sony AS100:


Do you have a different cam action from these showed in the article and you want to advise other members? Write it below in the comments and in the future we will add it, if possible.

You have one of these cameras and you want to report a value, a defect, a feature not mentioned in the article? Report it in the comments!


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57 Comments

  1. chirag

    You have written YI has no image stbailisation, whereas the sj4000+ 2k has gyro, and then in conclusion you dont mention cons of YI as having no stabilisation, whereas you mention this as con in sj4000+.

    Reply
    1. mork

      Thanks for writing. Actually I didn’t do the SJ4000+ review, but the SJ4000 wifi review. That’s why i didn’t mention the gyro. You’re right, i forgot to put the absence of stabilization in the Yi cons, but i mentioned it on the review, as you said. I forgot to put it also into SJ5000+ cons. Now i fixed both reviews and added a small pro-cons table for the SJ4000+.

      Reply
  2. RT

    You should add the new sony AS50 – new menu, new lens, better stabilization, better buttons layout, comes w/ included underwater case.

    Reply
  3. Chang Felde

    Still, “action camera” isn’t synonymous with GoPro anymore. Nearly a dozen companies offer models, some with fancy features or tempting prices that GoPro can’t match. Our favorite budget action cam, the

    Reply
  4. humaid

    what about sjcam sj5000 & M10 & M10+ & M20 ?
    i am a night diver which cam you recommended for me within 100$ to 150$ ?

    Reply
    1. mork

      M10+ and M20 are very good cams, but i didn’t test them personally so i can’t judge them properly. I would recommend SJ5000X or Gitup Git2, very good cams.

      Reply
  5. Aaron

    Great review! Im really new to this, but this review really helped and now im in between the Sony AS200V & GoPro4 Black. I prefer quality regardless of price difference. Thanks you sir!

    Reply
    1. mork

      Happy to help! Good choice, but if you don’t need it soon, you can wait to see if the Xiaomi Yi 4k is a good choice too.

      Reply
  6. Dave

    Out of the SJ5000x elite and the GitUp Git2, which camera would you prefer and why? I’m struggling to pick between them. I’d be mainly using them to record a bit of sport and travel.

    Reply
    1. mork

      I prefer video and photo quality of he SJ5000X, but probably the Git2 is more complete, better audio and gyro, more functions, rc controller, ext mic. And with update 1.5 video quality got better with the new Colorful option

      Reply
    1. mork

      I think sj5000X but it has a bad audio. M20 seems to be a good option too. Also Firefly 7S, Git2 and Explorer Elite are very good (they all are quite similar, with same chip and similar sony sensors)

      Reply
  7. Shafieq

    Which one is better? Yi 4K or Sony AS200V? And how about Yi 4K or GoPro Hero 4 Silver regardless of price difference? I really confuse to choose the best one for me. I love photography and videography. Really need your help. Thank you Sir! Love your review.

    Reply
  8. derek

    was planning on buying either yi cam , m20, or sj 5000x. Can you please tell me which is better in terms of pic and vid quality? dont care bout accesorries and will mainly use it for getting pictures and less of video time

    Reply
    1. mork

      Hi, fo photos i would buy one with the screen, so no the Yi. M20 or SJ5000X have quite the same quality, M20 has the remote and slightly better audio, but a different shape. I like a lot SJ5000X but has a very bad audio.

      Reply
      1. derek

        well we would be relying on the app since we will be using it mostly for selfie like photos and will be using the monopod alot so screen would not be an issue for us. So brush it aside would you still go for the sh5000x?

        Reply
  9. Daggy

    I think I want the Xiaomi Yi 4K but the link to gear best doesn’t ship to Australia. Where is the cheapest place to buy online that will ship to Australia?

    Reply
  10. kangethe

    hi, i’m looking for an action cam but i see that this top 10 is not integrated with the other recent reviews you made. what camera between 70 and 120 dollars would you recommend? great website btw

    Reply
  11. Craig

    I am looking for the camera that has the best color and brightest picture (iso) for underwater use. Do any of them have red filters available, along with clear uv for everyday use…
    lastly, good or better battery available as accessory.

    Reply
  12. Bruno

    Hi, at first thanks for the many reviews.
    I would like to buy a camera especially for the pictures (underwater too). Should I buy the Yi 2 4k or the new sj7?
    There are not too much comparing shots between these two cameras.
    Thanks a lot!

    Reply
    1. mork

      Hi, SJ7 is still on presle, so there are not videos out yet. I think Yi 4k will be better for videos, it has a better chip (ambarella A9 vs ambarella A12). About pictures, Yi2 has Sony IMX377 , while SJ7 has IMX117, and so YI4k should be better.

      Reply
  13. aziz

    Hi.how about eken h8r?
    I would like to buy a camera especially for the pictures (underwater too). Should I buy the Yi 2 4k or the new sj7 or eken h8r?
    There are not too much comparing shots between these three cameras.
    Thanks a lot!

    Reply
      1. dayan

        Confused between Git2 and Firefly 7s. Gyro is best in Git2 but the quality of images are dulled and not that bright as in the Firefly 7s. Which one would you recommend for motorcycles travelling?

        Reply
    1. mork

      They are good cams with a good stabilizer (Git2 has a beter gyro). You can even consider Firefly 6s, it doesn’t have a screen but on the quadcopter you won’t probably need one. If you want to use the cam also on different situations you could consider SJ6 legend. 71$ for the Firefly 7s is a good price, you can find it here: http://shrsl.com/?do7x

      Reply
  14. OsTester

    thieye T5e NOT recommended!
    1. You will stuck with fisheye recording : there is NO fov options to correct the lens distortion.
    2. Watch out your car: Tends to get very hot, so do not leave it running in in sunny day.
    3. according to http://www.thieye.com/features_T5e.html only H.264 Profile Level 4.2 maximum 2,048×1,080@60https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H.264/MPEG-4_AVC not real 4k
    4. Waterproof case easily broken.
    5. with so much problems the camera will not survive long enough, or will fail in action and you will lose the moment.
    6. Andoer C5 Pro camera is H.264 Profile Level 5.1 , and do not have these problems, with the same price.
    7. Better save your money for the real thing YI 4K. High quality materials, big company with support. right now 199$

    Reply
    1. mork

      Hi, if you don’t want 4K as you said later I would suggest SJ6. Good stabilizer (almost as git2), very good image and video quality. Maybe SJ7 star will be better but i still didn’t test it. Yi 4k is slightly better than SJ6 for video quality (not so much actually), but not for stabilization. Just i wouldn’t recommend Git2, it’s 2 years behind.

      Reply
      1. Wooyek

        Thank you! Perhaps I will wait few weeks to see how the SJ7 turns out, but it’s most helpful that you put Git2 out of equation – it was high on my list, but mostly based on older reviews. Also saving money by not choosing Yi2 is nice, as stabilization is definitely my no 1 priority.

        Reply
  15. miguel

    Looking for a cheaper action cam than the Gopro. Yi 4k is still a bit much for me to spend. Was considering thieye T5 but then came across andoer c5. Both of these are in my price range. which would you recommend between these 2 or is there another in this range I should be considering? Thanks in advance.

    Reply
    1. TechFunology

      Hi, I would recommend Thieye or Andoer AN7000. C5 has some bug, while AN7000 works well (I tested both). Andoer AN7000 and Thieye t5e are exactly the same (chipset, sensor, bluetooth) but in my opinion an7000 has a better stabilizer.

      Reply
  16. Samuel

    Hello TechFunology,
    Thank you for this very enlightning article!
    I am looking for a good all-around camera for photo (mostly) and video.
    I’ve been able to narrow it down to either the Andoer AN7000 or SJ6 Legend but I’m having a hard time deciding between the two. The better camera of the AN7000 over the touchscreen of the SJ6…
    Could you help me make the right choice?
    Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Samuel

      Perhaps most important, does the AN7000 have a way to correct distortion due to the wide angle lens, like the SJ6 does?

      Reply
      1. TechFunology

        No, all cams with Ambarella A12 doesn’t support this function. Some had it, but it caused the cam to crash so they had to remove the option in the latest firmware updates (SJ7 for instance)

        Reply
  17. Am

    im looking forward to buy either thieye t5e or sjcam sj6 legend because both are in my price range. which one do you think the better choice

    Reply
    1. TechFunology

      Hi, consider also AN7000, identical to T5e but probably more stable. t5e/an7000 have a better video quality, sj6 have a better stabilization. It’s your choice 😀 I would buy t5e/an7000, but for example if you use it only on bicycle, sj6 would be a better choice.

      Reply
    1. TechFunology

      In my opinion Yi 4k (plus and normal) and then SJ7. I didn’t test Garmin virb 30 but i think this is very good, and also Sony X3000.

      Reply
    1. TechFunology

      T5e or AN7000. Now thieye has a 3.5 jack, so you can use external microphone. If you are interested in this function, get T5e, else AN7000

      Reply

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