In the last few years, helmet cameras have become increasingly popular. Helmet cameras, also sometimes called action cameras, can be easily attached to helmets and other things.
This was/is quite revolutionary when you consider that just a few years ago, no private person could film their own zipline ride through the jungle. Wanting to capture experiences like this is quite normal. Therefore, it is not surprising why more and more people are interested in a helmet camera.
In our big helmet camera test 2021 we want to help you find the perfect helmet camera for you. We have compared different types of helmet cameras and listed their advantages and disadvantages. In our guide you will also find everything you need to know before buying a helmet camera.
- 1 Weekly newsletter with the best personal finance tips
- 2 Summary
- 3 The Best Helmet Camera: Our Choices
- 4 Buying and evaluation criteria for helmet cameras
- 5 Decision: What types of helmet cameras are there and which one is right for you?
- 6 Guide: Frequently asked questions about helmet cameras answered in detail
- Helmet cameras are extremely small and robust cameras that are mounted on the head. They make it possible to record unique experiences from a first-person perspective without having to use your hands.
- Due to the ever-increasing popularity of small action cameras, questions about safety and the legality of filming with helmet cameras are very present in the media.
- The possibilities of filming created by helmet cameras are endless and inspire not only extreme athletes but also ordinary consumers.
The Best Helmet Camera: Our Choices
Buying and evaluation criteria for helmet cameras
If you are looking for the perfect helmet camera to capture your experiences, you will find that the range of helmet cameras is huge. To help you decide what to buy, we've listed the most important evaluation criteria and explained what you should look out for in each case.
The criteria that help you compare helmet cameras with each other include:
Resolution is responsible for how good the image and video quality is. Resolution is a technical term used in photography. It describes the ability of a camera to display the smallest compositions.
The resolution of a camera is given in pixels per line. 1920 x 1080 pixels, for example, means that the camera can display 2,073,600 pixels.
The better the resolution of a helmet camera, the more expensive it will be. Therefore, think carefully about which resolution is sufficient for you and what you want to use the camera for. If sharp images are particularly important to you, you should have a larger budget.
Here is a brief overview of the most common resolutions:
|Ultra HD (4k)||4096 x 2160|
|Quand Full HD (4k)||3840 x 2160|
|2.7k||2704 x 1520|
|Full HD||1920 x 1080|
|HD||1280 x 720|
Since helmet cameras are mostly used for sports activities, image stabilisation is particularly important. After all, who enjoys a shot of a skiing trip that is completely blurred.
In order to avoid blurring, there are different stabiliser techniques. For videos, electronic stabilisation is often used.
No matter what you plan to use your helmet camera for, a waterproof action camera is always a good idea. If you plan to use your helmet camera underwater, you will no longer ask yourself if you need a waterproof camera.
You'll ask yourself how far underwater you'll go, and then look for the right action camera for your needs.
Many helmet cameras have an additional housing that makes it possible to film a few metres underwater. Again, think carefully about what you want to use your helmet camera for to find the perfect action camera for you.
Nothing is more annoying than a battery that runs out at the wrong moment. Especially when it comes to once-in-a-lifetime experiences that you would like to have filmed, this can sometimes spoil the mood. If you are one of these people, then you should pay attention to a particularly long battery life.
During a downhill ride on a mountain bike, you won't be able to look at the screen anyway.
Apart from that, the helmet camera is located on the helmet, as the name suggests. A screen that is on during recording would therefore only waste battery power unnecessarily.
Another way to extend battery life is to carry a spare battery with you. Many helmet camera manufacturers sell their small helmet cameras, often called action cameras, with a spare battery.
With a helmet camera, you want to capture special experiences. These special experiences include not only pictures and video, but also sound. Since every movement can produce a sound, you should pay particular attention to ensuring that the helmet camera has the necessary protection factors.
So if sound is important to you and you don't plan to record it over music, make sure that the action camera has good protection factors for sound quality when you buy your helmet camera.
Basically, helmet cameras can be attached to helmets in three different ways. Read more about this in the next section, where we will introduce you to the different types of helmet cameras.
After all, who wants a helmet camera that you have to fear could fall off your helmet at any second?
Before you buy a helmet camera, it is important that you know your helmet or helmets on which you want to mount the camera. This is because the helmet determines how the camera should be mounted.
Decision: What types of helmet cameras are there and which one is right for you?
If you want to get a helmet camera, there are three different types. To learn more about the different types, you can read the following paragraphs.
Guide: Frequently asked questions about helmet cameras answered in detail
In the next sections, we would like to answer the most frequently asked questions about helmet cameras. After reading the guide, you should have all the necessary information about helmet cameras.
What is a helmet camera?
Why? Because otherwise you would have endangered your own safety, as you needed your hands for the activity you were doing. The helmet camera has solved this problem and now lets people enjoy it who have never been paragliding, for example, but would like to see it from a first-person perspective.
Who is a helmet camera suitable for?
Whether it's underwater, skiing, mountain biking, paragliding, bungee jumping or simply filming your holiday accommodation, the list of possibilities for capturing everything with a helmet camera is endless. In addition, it awakens the desire for new experiences or for faraway places in many people.
When are helmet cameras allowed?
Generally speaking, if you film the footage for your private use only, you will never get into trouble. However, if you want to publish your extraordinary experiences on social media, for example, you have to keep a few small things in mind.
Under data protection law, no videos of people may be published without their consent. It is also forbidden to publish personal data without the consent of the person concerned.
Our tip: It is therefore best to make any person who has not given you their consent unrecognisable. The same applies to number plates.
In the following table you can check whether you have understood what is allowed and what is not.
|Filming for private use||Filming for the public without the consent of the person being filmed|
|Filming for the public with the consent of the person being filmed||Filming personal data for the public without the consent of the person|
Are helmet cameras dangerous?
The BFU (Federal Bureau of Aircraft Accident Investigation) has commented on this accident and has a very clear opinion. They believe that the presence of the camera encourages filmmakers to do more dangerous things because they look more spectacular on video.
They also fear that filmmakers sometimes hold their heads unnaturally in order to present certain things better on video. They also acknowledge the leverage effect that the camera on the helmet can create.
In addition, the BFU points out that the function of the helmet must never be impaired by the presence of the helmet camera. This means that the helmet should never be pierced to attach the camera. And adhesive pads must not soften the shell material of the helmet or impair its function in any other way.
What accessories are available for helmet cameras?
- Extra batteries: Nomophobia is not uncommon these days. Nomophobia is the fear of no longer being reachable via one's mobile phone. This fear is caused by a dead zone or an empty battery. Nomophobia is not directly transferable to helmet cameras, but you can imagine how unpleasant it would be not to be able to film your ride on a zipline through the jungle only because your helmet camera battery is empty.
- Head strap / chest strap: Useful for attaching the helmet camera where you want it.
- Handgrip / Selfistick: Perfect for those who don't do sports or when you're out and about as a tourist with your action camera. So you can take photos and videos of you and your friends.
- Extra memory cards: Just in case, it's not a bad idea to have an extra memory card with you. Since memory cards are not heavy and don't take up much space, this should be easy to do.
- Bike mount: If you ever want to mount your camera somewhere other than your helmet, the bike mount is very practical. Provided, of course, that you ride your bike.
- Remote shutter release: A remote shutter release can be useful for a variety of things. For example, to take group photos when no one is around to do so.
- Waterproof housing: This allows you to turn your helmet camera into an underwater camera, even if it is not waterproof. Or you can simply protect it from heavy rain.
How much does a helmet camera cost?
However, there are also cheaper models that serve their purpose for as little as €50. Usually, most hobby filmmakers find a helmet camera between 50 - 120 €.
What are the alternatives to a helmet camera?
One place could be the body. For example, the camera could be strapped around the chest. It may be worthwhile to wear a protective cover over your chest so that you are not injured by your own camera in the event of a fall.
Another place to attach the action camera would be a bicycle handlebar, a ski pole, a backpack and many more. The only challenge here is to attach the action camera in a stable way.
Image source: Corr/ 123rf.com