Gopro on a budget! Getting the most out of your Flip UltraHD or MinoHD
So lately I have been wanting a Gopro to go with my new Go kart, My new DRZ400sm and for when I go up to the snow and start snowboarding for the first time since I had a knee reco. If you have read our blog you will notice that the Warcom team are very adventurous and love the outdoors.
The GoPro HD 960 ticks all the boxes for what I need, except price. The price is a bit steep for something I just want to record some fun memories to share with my friends/work mates and even Warcom customers.
I managed to pickup a Cisco Flip Mino 3rd gen fairly cheap, As the price now is much cheaper than it was a year or 2 ago and is now in a totally different price bracket to the GoPro. I was pretty happy with the purchase, but after a few planned mods it will be a total outdoor warrior.
A few things to note about the Flip. New 3rd gen (current model) now has some really decent image stabilization. So for things like mounting to a car or motorbike it will dramatically increase the video quality. It also has a preview screen, so you can see what you are videoing and preview stuff that you already shoot. Great if u want to try cut out some bad videos (Or if u stack and you dont want anyone to kn0w)
The BIG thing I prefer about the Flip is that for about $150 less (Yeah, the Gopro is pretty expensive here in Australia) is that the Flip can do 720 @60fps where the Gopro 960 only 30fps. This really makes for much smoother videos.
Currently the Flip mino 3rd gen is priced at about $125. A total Bargain!
Things you need to make the Flip AWESOME:
Flip camera (Mino or Ultra, 3rd gen because this one is the good one!)
Video Action Tripod – Can mount the flip to basically anything. Durable and lots of mounting options.
180 Degree magnetic mount fisheye lens – Basically mounts via a magnetic clip to Flip cameras, iPhone, Android and more! This is the big upgrade with the Flip. It increases the FOV and even makes the video slightly sharper.
The above video is just to show you what it can be like, Obviously he’s used a length of PVC pipe as a home made monopod. The Monopod gives it a cool third person look and also aids in stabilization of the video.
Theres also other cheaper ways of moding a fisheye onto the Flip, Including gluing one of those door peep holes to the back of it. This would only cost about $5 but id imagine that the optics would be sub par compared to a dedicated lens built for the Flip. If you want to find some of these tutorials head over to google, theres literally hundreds of them.
Now lets have a quick look into the specs of the Cisco Flip Mino HD 3rd Gen vs the GoPro HD 960.
GoPro: 1280 x 720 (30fps), 848 x 480 (60 fps)
Flip: 1280 x 720 (60fps) Also does lower res, but who wants lower res?
GoPro: Fixed focus f/2.8 170º Wide angle
Flip: Fixed focus f/2.4 180º wide angle with fisheye mod - Slightly better in low light, and slightly more FOV.
GoPro: Rechargeable 1100mAh Lithium-Ion battery, approx 2.5 hours recording
Flip: Internal Lithium-ion Rechargeable Battery, 1.5 hrs of use between charges
Not a lot in it between these two. I think the Flip wins on price and the 60fps 720 HD.
In the end, I’m pretty happy with this. I bought it because I didn’t want to take my DSLR into places where it could potentially get dropped, Ruining $1000 of camera and $800 of lens (Really depending what lens i take) so for $125+a small amount for a fisheye lens im pretty happy.