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Author Topic: Chest Harness vs Handlebar Mounted Camera Videos !  (Read 1382 times)

singhg5

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Chest Harness vs Handlebar Mounted Camera Videos !
« on: January 26, 2011, 06:42:44 AM »
Earlier I had used a handlebar mount for camera to take video for Winter Ride.  The thump vibrates the handlebar and camera produced shaking videos - which strained the eyes too much.  

I was looking for a better solution.  Could not find anything in the stores.  So, thought of designing an alternative.  Here is what I have come up with - a home-made wooden camera holder, with a neck strap and a back strap - it is a chest harness that can be used for most of the digital cameras !  Quite universal in that sense.  It may cost $10 - $15 for wooden board, screws, nuts, glue or less if you have these items in garage.  For more details, see the link below.

The final test was actually comparing the videos made when riding the bike on the same road.  The test results are in the following youtube video  -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XM0s2yzgUwM

« Last Edit: January 26, 2011, 04:11:54 PM by singhg5 »
1970's Jawa /  Yezdi
2006 Honda Nighthawk
2009 Royal Enfield Black G5

singhg5

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Re: Chest Harness vs Handlebar Mounted Camera Videos !
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2011, 06:51:48 AM »
To make a Camera Screw that fits most of the digital cameras - it is the same size as  used in Tripod stands.

1970's Jawa /  Yezdi
2006 Honda Nighthawk
2009 Royal Enfield Black G5

WillW

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Thanks for posting this Singh. Nicely done with the chest harness - it really does fix the vibration problem.  Is it a bit cumbersome / inconvenient though?
A drawback with a low-mounted camera is that it has to film through the screen, although this is no real problem if lighting conditions are ok.
You may remember before christmas I was about to get the Drift HD170 camera for filming my rides. I was going to mount it on the handlebars but the vibration issue made me think again and I shelved the project for a while. It'll fix on the helmet of course, like the Contour & GoPro etc, but I don't seem so keen on this method.
I shall have a go with your chest harness, although I think I'll experiment with velcro fixings rather than straps.  I am a bit concerned to expose the lens of my G10 to the risk of impact/abrasion at speed. I have an older camera but it only takes 3 minutes of video. ( I no longer want to spend the money on a dedicated bike cam).
2010 Royal Enfield Electra (G5) DL

2004 Kawasaki W650
~ the best british bike they never made ~

Ducati Scotty

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Motrax Kwik Cam.  About $90 in the States and easily mounts to the helmet.  I'm tempted to get one myself but I try not to film myself breaking the law or doing stupid things.  It's an invitation to disaster with evidence afterwards.

On sale for $45.  At that price, I may have to film some moto and showboard adventures.
http://www.cyclegear.com/spgm.cfm?L1=&L2=&L3=&L4=&item=MRX_MMC

Scott
« Last Edit: January 26, 2011, 03:52:48 PM by Ducati Scotty »

WillW

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Re: Chest Harness vs Handlebar Mounted Camera Videos !
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2011, 04:43:01 PM »
You might want to do a bit of research Scotty. The output from those el-cheapo cams tends to be pretty bad. While full HD just isn't necessary for viewing on pc/youtube etc, and requires mega pc resources to edit, the other end of the scale can be so poor as to be just unwatchable. Cameras like the Contour & GoPro give excellent output even when set below the full res. Definitely worth the extra outlay if you're going to be doing a lot of it - or if you actually want to watch what you film!
I saw some output from a £40 helmet cam recently - a lot of shaky pixels, and purple grass! You don't get a lot of lens or anything else for forty five bucks.......
Just my opinion  -  I did a lot of research into these cams just recently. Contour, Drift, & GoPro come out on top every time. I initially settled on the Drift because of the built in LCD. The project has been shelved for a while, but if I buy one later on it'll likely be the Contour.
2010 Royal Enfield Electra (G5) DL

2004 Kawasaki W650
~ the best british bike they never made ~

singhg5

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Thanks for posting this Singh. Nicely done with the chest harness - it really does fix the vibration problem.  Is it a bit cumbersome / inconvenient though?

I shall have a go with your chest harness, although I think I'll experiment with velcro fixings rather than straps.  I am a bit concerned to expose the lens of my G10 to the risk of impact/abrasion at speed. I have an older camera but it only takes 3 minutes of video.

( I no longer want to spend the money on a dedicated bike cam).

@Will:

I am really relieved of the problems I had from the handlbar mounted camera.  The main reasons for making chest harness were as follows -

1.  "NO longer want to spend money on dedicated bike cam" your words hit the nail on the head !  GoPro, Contour, Drift and their mounts etc. are not cheap by any means.

2.  GoPro and Contour do not have a screen to view what you are recording until you go home, load on computer and then play it back !  Whereas using a digital camera in harness allows you immediate replay at the spot.

3.  The third reason is that home made chest harness allows me the flexibility to use any digital camera, with very little modification - if required.  Most digital cameras are so versatile that even the least expensive one that cost about $100 can do-it-all !

As to your question -  It is no more cumbersome  than wearing winter gear when riding in below freezing cold  ;).  Once it is done, you don't even feel it is there.

Cameras like the Contour & GoPro give excellent output even when set below the full res. Definitely worth the extra outlay if you're going to be doing a lot of it -

 if I buy one later on it'll likely be the Contour.

I agree with you that the quality of Contour HD and Gopro is very good.  One reason is that they have wide angle lens that captures a wider area.  You get what you pay !  Actually I went to see Contour HD.  I am impressed by how small and handy it is. It is well designed.  
« Last Edit: January 26, 2011, 08:54:42 PM by singhg5 »
1970's Jawa /  Yezdi
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Ducati Scotty

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Re: Chest Harness vs Handlebar Mounted Camera Videos !
« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2011, 05:50:38 PM »
Yeah, I know the quality tends to be low but I'm really not looking for anything fancy.  I saw a few videos on youtube from this cam and it's fine for me.  I don't know if I'll even be using it on the bike, maybe just snowboarding.  With the price that low I'm really digging a full system that is small, doesn't need any thing external, and I won't worry about too much if I crush it in a snowboard accident.

Thanks for the warning though.

Scott

gashousegorilla

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Re: Chest Harness vs Handlebar Mounted Camera Videos !
« Reply #7 on: January 26, 2011, 05:53:44 PM »
 Wow !  Very clever singh!  Great idea!
An thaibhsí atá rattling ag an doras agus tá sé an diabhal sa chathaoir.

robbw

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Re: Chest Harness vs Handlebar Mounted Camera Videos !
« Reply #8 on: January 26, 2011, 06:25:52 PM »
Nice!! Necessity is the mother of invention.   ;)

singhg5

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Re: Chest Harness vs Handlebar Mounted Camera Videos !
« Reply #9 on: January 26, 2011, 08:25:25 PM »
Wow !  Very clever singh!  Great idea!

Nice!! Necessity is the mother of invention.   ;)

@GHG and @robbw - Thanks guys !  

@Will -

Your choice of Drift HD is excellent.  I just watched its review and its comparison with GoPro HD.  I liked the fact that Drift has a viewing screen ...yes, that is one feature that is deal maker for me !  Picture quality is good.  It is definitely easier to use than GoPro because you can see the symbols and menu functions on the screen - more like digital camera which are so user friendly.  

GoPro is the least user friendly and harder to set up than Drift HD.  
GoPro is Go_Away_from_me kind of camera and I don't like its boxy shape either  :D.  

Almost all videos have artifically added music, minus the actual sound of riding a motorcycle.  This takes away from the 'real' experience when a person views the video.  I want to hear the motorcycle sound as well when viewing a video.  My objective is to make a video as close as possible to what I am experiencing - ofcourse the viewer cannot feel the cold or smell the countryside  :).

The ability to record sound is affected not only by the camera but it is influenced greatly by the mounting system - and its location.  This is where different options for mounting the camera comes into play.  A good video requires stable image as well as real undistorted sound to give a wholistic visual and auditory combo experience to the viewer.

The first review from a motorcycle store and second from a gizmo place.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BW3521vp_1Y&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HlnA0fl9nbY&NR=1&feature=fvwp

« Last Edit: January 26, 2011, 10:41:23 PM by singhg5 »
1970's Jawa /  Yezdi
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2009 Royal Enfield Black G5

Ducati Scotty

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Re: Chest Harness vs Handlebar Mounted Camera Videos !
« Reply #10 on: January 26, 2011, 09:30:07 PM »
Another advantage of the chest mount: less bobbly than a helmet mount, less vibey than a bike mount.

Scott

Ice

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Re: Chest Harness vs Handlebar Mounted Camera Videos !
« Reply #11 on: January 27, 2011, 04:53:55 AM »
Br. singhg5,

 Your chest rig is a winner !

I can break it better,,,,at night, in the rain, on the trail,, 20 miles from nowhere.

REA #136

"TIMEX", the '06 Iron Barrel Military that takes me everywhere I want to go... and some places I shouldn't.

WillW

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Re: Chest Harness vs Handlebar Mounted Camera Videos !
« Reply #12 on: January 27, 2011, 10:06:50 AM »
Singh - I agree about the usefulness of the LCD on the Drift. It's absence from the Contour was the dealbreaker for me at the time. Menu adjustments on the Contour can only be done via the pc, and no playback on location of course. That said, the Contour appeals to me for its style, size, and simplicity.
I must have seen every review & comparison of the Drift, Contour & GoPro, and the video output is comparable from all three (1080 HD models only - the previous model of the Contour is way ahead of the previous model Drift & GoPro). The sound is always a problem - mostly wind noise. An external mike placed behind the rider might be worth experimenting with.
These dedicated sports cams are expensive of course, but they do have that great wide angle lens and are very easy to carry about, and have several mounting options. That said, your chest rig is a great idea and I'm going to have a go at it when the weather settles back to civilised riding conditions for old men.....!  (Freezing north-easterly wind blowing the smoke down the workshop chimney today so I'm staying home.)
2010 Royal Enfield Electra (G5) DL

2004 Kawasaki W650
~ the best british bike they never made ~

singhg5

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Re: Reducing Wind Noise in Videos
« Reply #13 on: January 31, 2011, 02:00:35 AM »
FURTHER DEVELOPMENT - REDUCE WIND NOISE IN VIDEOS

Having explored another aspect of recording videos on motorcycles, I tried a home-made sound/wind barrier to eliminate the terrible wind noise.  

The idea is simple - use a double sided foam tape and a foam ear plug to cover the microphone of camera.  Tested and evaluated this method three different ways - inside home with a hair dryer, on motorcycle, and then car.

The motorcycle result was pretty good for me !  If anyone is making any video on motorcycle do a couple of trial runs with and without this barrier and let me know how are your recordings.

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PxVstx69teo

1970's Jawa /  Yezdi
2006 Honda Nighthawk
2009 Royal Enfield Black G5