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VholdR ContourHD Helmet Cam Review

Record HD video on your head and share it online in seconds with VholdR's new ContourHDTM, the world's first HD wearable camcorder. At just under $250, the Contour HD was designed with the needs of outdoor enthusiasts in mind. This durable camera provides amazing video clarity (choose between high definition or high action), ease of use, and a host of mounting options and accessories.

Highlights of the ContourHD:

  • HD (1280 x 720) at 30 fps SD (Actual 29.97)
  • SD (858 x 480) at 60 fps (Actual 59.960)
  • 135-degree wide angle lens
  • MicroSD/SDHC up to 16GB (2GB included)
  • Internal microphone
  • Fits VholdR TRailTM mount system
  • Easy EditTM software
  • Quick Start guide
  • Read the full review after the jump!

Table of Contents for Review of the Contour HD

What You Get

Included in the box, you will find the following:

  • VholdR Contour HD wearable camcorder
  • MicroSD card (2GB)
  • Goggle mount
  • Flat surface mount
  • Rechargeable battery (up to 2 hrs)
  • USB cable
  • Quick start guide

The VholdR Contour HD Wearable Camcorder

Pros

This was the obvious next step in helmet cam technology and boy does it look nice. The 720p video at a smooth 30 frames per second will please even the most demanding videophiles, as will the amazing color rendition, excellent exposure, and great contrast.

An Improved image sensor and video processor ensure that colors are as rich and vibrant on video as they are in real life. In addition to powerful video settings and enhanced color saturation, the ContourHD is also equipped with a 135-degree fisheye lens to record the entire scene without over-distorting the video. The color quality in the Contour HD has improved significantly.

The standard definition mode on the ContourHD is really cool! It is actually just cropped from the full frame size so the field of view is 90 degrees, the same as the original VholdR. The video is still wide screen, with a resolution of 848x480, which surpasses most other helmet cams in the market. The best part about SD mode is the fact that it records at 60 FPS, which makes for an incredibly smooth video. It looks very different and it's really quite hard to describe what the sensation.

So that users have a wealth of video to choose from, the Contou rHD has an internal microSD memory card that easily stores up to eight hours of HD footage and is compatible with up to 16GB memory cards. The ContourHD also features an upgraded microphone that records all of the action, without the wind noise.

VholdR not only designed the ContourHD to capture exceptional quality video, they also designed the camcorder for ease of use. The camera features a single, oversized record button, which you can slide forward to begin recording and slide back to stop. A rotating 192-degree lens and two lasers help users accurately align shots. Users simply rotate the lens until the lasers are lined up horizontally.

Capture HD video anywhere and from any angle with this versatile camcorder. The ContourHD is compatible with VholdR's TRailTM Mounts, which provide a variety of options, including mounts for goggles, handlebars, helmets, and vehicles. Included with the camera are the helmet mount and goggle strap mount. The helmet mount is super versatile and can be attached to most helmets and hard surfaces. The goggle strap mount provides cool point of view and is very convienent to use.

With all of these features, users might expect a delicate or cumbersome camcorder. However, the revolutionary Contour HD is light (4oz, 116g), compact, and durable. The camcorder's water-resistant body is made of anodized aluminum and rigorously tested to withstand dirt, dust, mud, and snow. Additionally, the ContourHD is impact, shock, and vibration resistant, and the all-in-one design of the Contour HD means that users don't have to fumble with multiple wires.

The audio has also been greatly improved on this model. Wind noise is minimal and you can hear most ambient sounds. For those of you ninjas hoping to record without making a sound, you're in luck. If you start the camera up with the switch set to record, there will be no beeps confirming power up, recording, stopping etc.

Another cool upgrade from the VholdR is the car charger. This handy little device can charge your ContourHD off of any 12 volt power source while recording. Paired with an 8 or 16 GB card, you could record some serious footage!

The ContourHD makes it as easy to share videos as it does to record them. Thanks to VholdR's Easy EditTM software (PC and Mac compatible) users can easily edit, upload, and share their videos with friends, family, and the world.

Cons
The VholdR Contour HD wearable camcorder is equipped with numerous features and upgrades to ensure that outdoor enthusiasts and adventure-seekers capture the best footage in HD. However, there are some limitations. As with most camcorders, battery life is an issue; the ContourHD is no exception. While the camcorder features a rechargeable lithium ion battery, testing revealed that the Contour HD only had approximately two hours of battery life. To avoid missing any shot, backup batteries are a great idea. Take advantage of Helmet Camera Central's 25% off spring accessory sale and order backup batteries with your pre-order today.

While the ability to capture 60 frames per second is exciting, it isn't particularly useful for distributing video footage because YouTube and DVDs do not support 60 frames per second. VholdR's video sharing portal will support 60 frames per second. For those not using of VholdR's sharing portal, a potential solution is to stretch out sections of the video to 30 frames per second resulting in super smooth slow mo.

VholdR ContourHD Documentation

A quick start guide is included with the ContourHD.
Download a PDF Version of the guide here

H.264 Codec Settings

The basic codec settings for the VholdR Contour HD are as follows:

High definition video: h.264 1280 x 720 @ 29.970 fps

High action video: h.264 848 x 480 @ 59.960 fps



Sample Video Clips, RAW and Unaltered
Sample Video - Compressed for the Web

 

 

 

 





Sample Video Frame Grabs

ContourHD Frame Grab
{FRAME_DESCRIPTION}




Recording Capacity

The VholdR Contour HD is microSD/SDHC compatible (includes 2GB). You can expect the following recording times:
High definition: 30 min/GB
High action: 60 min/GB

Battery Time

The VholdR ContourHD runs on a rechargeable lithium ion battery and can record up to two hours.

Warranty and Support

Twenty20 offers a 180-day warranty, ensuring that the Countour HD is free from workmanship and materials defects. Helmet Camera Central is here to assist with any issues that may arise with any products that have been purchased from us.

Software

The VholdR ContourHD comes with Easy Edit software, which allows you to easily edit their footage and upload it to the Web with a single click.

Summary and Recommendation

The VholdR Contour HD is nothing short of extraordinary. As the world's first wearable all-in-one HD camcorder, the ContourHD is lightweight, yet rugged enough to withstand the elements while capturing exceptional quality video, regardless of the angle. The included Easy Edit software makes editing and sharing videos easier than ever. The ContourHD is recommended for outdoor enthusiasts interested in capturing adventures in HD and sharing them with the world.

Contour HD Unboxing:



Pricing

Helmet Cam Central Price: Discontinued ( View the newer Contour HD 1080p here )



We Review and Sell Helmet Camera Systems

Helmet Camera Central was born as a result of our helmet cam experiences from our video consulting business, Two Brothers Video. Helmet Camera Central is a resource designed to help people find objective and pertinent information about helmet camera systems. Since 2005, we have reviewed numerous helmet camera systems with an unbiased and objective point of view. Our reviews focus on the functional and usability aspects of helmet camera systems. Since we use helmet camera systems in addition to selling them, our reviews result from actual day-to-day experiences with the products. Ease of use, reliability, and quality are our top priority. Rest assured, the helmet camera systems that we recommend and sell at HelmetCameraCentral.com were chosen for good reason: they rock! There are many systems out there, but the ones we recommend provide exceptional quality and services for the best return on your investment.

We are also here to answer your questions and help you choose a helmet camera system that meets your needs. If one of our recommended systems is a fit for you, you can find it at HelmetCameraCentral.com. And if our recommended systems do not fit your needs, we will put you in contact with the right vendor to find the best solution.



Change Log
04/27/09 / Erik / Version 1.1
** Added Comparison Chart
04/24/09 / Erik / Version 1.0
** First Draft.



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  29. obtrunco Says:

    The videos are nice generaly (especially contrast) but this contour HD as compared with the 1080p version, both do the same thing. Otherwords, only the middle area of the video is at its sharpest and degrades towards 360 degree of peripheral. Also it’s very easy to accidentally open the battery compartment when trying to reach for the record switch. Volume is too low, would be nice if you could understand speech within 8 ft distance. Would be awesome if it could see down to 1 lux.

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