Monday, November 15

Drift HD170 Camera Review

The game-changer of motorcycle riding cameras has arrived and it is in the form of the Drift HD170 Camera. The HD170 is the first full HD riding camera to offer a 1.5" color LCD screen combined with a wireless mountable/wearable remote control and a rotating 170º wide angle lens. Drift was getting close to this level of innovation with the X170, a very similar camera features-wise that only shot with a resolution of 720x480. With the integration of full 1080p HD video in addition to 720p functionality, the Drift HD170 Camera offers the best features and functionality of any action sports cam we've seen to date.

Check out our Drift HD170 Camera Review:

The aspect that really stands out to us the most in the Drift is how easy it is to actually operate. Some other cameras that have come out in the HD wave are extremely difficult to operate, sometimes making it hard to know if you're recording or not. Also, once you hit record on these other cameras, there's no turning the cam off mid-ride. With the Drift's easy setup and included remote control, you can wear the remote on your wrist or mount it somewhere you can access it easily so that you can turn the camera on and off as you please. No more filming the boring parts of the ride that you don't need; now you can edit as you go. The HD170 also features a rugged rubberized construction that is waterproof up to 0.5 meters. Anthony recently road-tested the camera on an Arizona GS ride, the highlights of which we'll show further in this post. He rode through rain and the Drift continued recording without issue, and when he crashed on a dirt road, totaling the GS, the HD170 (mounted to the turn signal) was completely unharmed.

The 170º wide angle lens is not so wide that you get the crazy fish-eye effect as you see with so many other action cameras, but it is wide enough that you can see everything you'd want within the field of view and provides crisp and clear image quality. The lens can also be rotated so that no matter how you choose to mount the camera, you can spin the lens so that it is shooting upright. Full 1080p and 720p video modes are available, and the HD170 takes 5mp photos that can be shot singly or in a three-shot burst mode. To mount, the HD170 comes with a handlebar grip mount, a goggle mount, a helmet grip, a head strap, a velcro strap, and a universal mount that fits into the bottom of the camera. There is also a third-party manufactured suction cup device sold separately if you'd prefer that method.

Complete Box Contents
The HD170 also features a built-in microphone and speaker with the option of the Drift HD170 External Microphone connected via the USB port. It is recommended for use with the Drift HD170 Rear Silicon Cover to maintain waterproofing. This same USB port connects to your computer both to download the footage that you've shot and charge the battery. Speaking of batteries, the length of the lithium-ion that comes stock is roughly four hours. The Drift HD170 Long Life Battery that will increase recording time by 1.5x. For every 1GB of memory you have -- and the HD170 supports up to a 32GB card -- you can record 15 minutes. Basically, you'll run out of battery charge before you run out of memory if you have the largest SD card. Finally, there is an HDMI port that comes with a supplied cable so that you can playback all of your footage on your HDTV at home. Pretty convenient.

Check out the video from Anthony's Arizona GS Ride. Be sure to watch it in HD.

Like I said, we see the innovations of the Drift HD170 as game-changing to the world of action sports cameras. It's only a matter of time before other manufacturers follow suit.

Record your rides in full HD glory.


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