Xdreme HD Extreme Sports Action Camera – Closer look

Author James Mash 26.10.2012. | 20:42

What? Why? How? Let’s see the details.
Out of the box

The package is full of accessories. These make the camera suitable in various conditions such as:

 

  • 2x chargers -1 wall charger + 1 car charger – The camera is fully functional while charging
  • 2x video cables – 1x  HDMI cable + 1x 2.5mm-RCA composite AV cable
  • External microphone – For better sound quality, but obviously not usable underwater
  • Handlebar grip – full metal, robust mount for bicycle, motorcycle or even newel
  • Suction cap bracket – steadily fix to car windshield, or to any plain surface
  • Stand (90deg ) –Includes standard tripod mount; The camera can be attached both ways (180deg); There are holes on it, so it can be combined with Velcro/Rubber strap
  • 2x Velcro pads
  • USB cable
  • Battery
  • Long/Short Strap for stand and helmet
  • User manual
  • Travel adapter (the charger is EU compatible; for other countries travel adapter is included based on the  delivery address)

Depending on usage you can call it a sports camera, car DVR, bicycle or motor cycle camera, underwater camera, photo camera, camcorder, helmet camera and so on…

At the first touch you will notice how massive it is but actually the camera is not too big or too small. It fits in hands comfortably without any movement and feels solid and durable. The blue parts and the back panel are covered by rubber. If the back panel is closed, then the camera is completely waterproof. It will be your mate in the car, on tour, hiking, biking, skating, workout, in rain, on boat etc.

Tip: I fit it to my bicycle and motorbike regularly. For faster mounting I replaced the standard hex nut on the handlebar to a wing nut, so I can fix it quickly without additional tools. Another option is to buy extra accessories. In fact any standard photo tripod, photo mounting or even standard GPS mounting accessory will fit.

What does it do?

According to the basic specification, it is a 1080p Full HD photo and video camera. The camera offers plenty of added functions. Just to highlight some of the most interesting features like motion detection, cycle recording, taking photos at certain time intervals aka self capture, auto orientation, ISO adjustment, EV compensation, WB adjustment, etc. With these functions the Xdreme camera definitely beats many competitors units and even some compact digital cameras. The camera is powered by a 1800mAh Li-ion battery. The battery life is approximately 2-3 hours depending on use. By default settings, the screen goes off to save power. Of course, with more LCD screen use, the battery life will be shorter. The battery characteristics are the same as the well known NP-120 battery. You can order a spare battery from Chinavasion, but it’s also available in many retail and web stores as well.

Now let’s see the usage

On the top of the camera there are 3 buttons; power, record and mode which are pretty simple to use. To turn on just press and hold the power button until it turns on. Press the mode button to switch between video and photo modes. Press the Record button to start/stop video recording or take a photo.

 

Tip: Pressing the power button quickly in photo or video mode, enables or disables the OSD icons and text. You can decide to watch the battery, time, capacity and similar status icons or just watch the camera image in full screen. Through the video-out connections you can see the same screen as on the built-in LSD display.

Tip: Press Mode button during video recording to take a snapshot photo.

 

Ports and slots:

On the top there are 2.5mm ports: TV out and Mic in. Between these ports can be found the status indicator LED. In the middle there’s the battery compartment. Next slot is the SD card slot. This unit supports memory cards up to 32GB memory cards. High-speed memory cards are recommended, at least class 4 but faster memory cards is better. On the bottom mini HDMI port and mini USB are located. The USB port is used for charging and data transfer too.

The speaker and microphone are located on the bottom of the camera, beside the tripod mounting screw. Because of the waterproof design, the microphone sensitivity and recording range is not too long. The microphone hole is quite small and covered by a rubber plate. Opening the back panel increases the microphone sensitivity, as the sound can go inside the camera body through the ports.

On the back panel below the display you can find 4 buttons: menu, back, play/enter, forward.

Pressing menu button, it goes to: saved videos > saved photos > setting menu. The other buttons are used for navigation. The only missing function is that there’s no delete option in photo and video browsing mode. You can delete all photos and videos by formatting the memory card, or manage photos and video on a computer.

Resolution (for video): FullHD @30/25fps [1920×1080], 1080p @30/25fps [1440×1080], 720p @60/50/30/25fps [1280×720],WVGA @60/30fps [848×480]

Photo size (photo resolution): 16MP/12MP/8MP/5MP/3MP. 5MP is the native resolution; the higher resolutions are created by interpolation.

Record overwrite: This function enables cycle recording. 2/5/15 minutes options are available. It means that the camera records 2/5/15 minute video clips until the memory card is full, then the oldest video will be deleted.

Motion detection: The video recording can be triggered by motion detection. This could be useful for sudden action or even for surveillance purpose. You can set the video length: 30sec/1/3/5minutes. In fact the camera starts to record the video when motion is detected and records an additional 30s/1/3/5min video after the last motion has been detected.

TV type (for analog composite video output): The device support PAL and NTSC analog video standard.

White balance: Supports 5 WB presets for better image quality and realistic colors; auto, sunny, cloudy, fluorescent, incandescent.

AE BIAS (exposure compensation): Exposure – practically brightness – can be adjusted between -0.2 up to +2.0

Contrast and Sharpness can be set in 3 levels: Standard, Hard and Soft.

AE ISO (light sensitivity): Auto, 100, 200, 400 options are available. Higher value means higher light sensitivity, brighter image in low light conditions. Of course, with higher ISO the photo may become noisier.

Auto power off and Auto LCD turn off are handy power saving options. The screen starts up on button press or vibration.

Self capture (taking photos at certain time intervals): 3/5/10/30/60secods/Off options are available. It’s strongly recommended not to move the camera while taking “self capture” photos.

 

The orientation correction is completely automatic. If you hold the camera upside down, it will automatically flip the image, so when you record and play back the video it will be upright. Of course, it will not correct the image during video recording, so it does not “fix” your hard 360° jump. There’s no option to disable this function, but why would you anyway?

Demonstration sample videos

Photo comparison

Nikon D5000 DSLR sample photo

Xdreme HD camera sample photo

 

Nikon D5000 DSLR sample photo

Xdreme HD camera sample photo

Nikon D5000 DSLR sample photo

Xdreme HD camera sample photo

HTC Sensation Smarthpone sample photo

 

Quite impressive quality from this compact size action camera, isn’t it?

Let us know your opinion in comments!

 

Author James Mash 26.10.2012. | 20:42
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1 Comment

  1. Lee November 1, 19:21

    Well done. Useful and interesting review. Sample videos and pictures are the best! Thank you.

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