Spending hundreds of dollars for a video camera may sound like a crazy
idea, but is it still a crazy idea if you
film one of your best friends going
over the bars? A moment like that is one you’ll want to play over and
over again—in HD, of course. Drift Innovation lets you now seize those
classic times in HD (high definition)
with the $399 Drift HD Ghost.
The Drift HD Ghost
comes with Drift’s Active Status, a
wearable, wireless, two-way remote
control with an on/off indicator LED
light. This feature lets the rider take a
still picture, video, time-lapse sequence
or a burst of individual photos. Each
mode on the remote has its own color
to let you know what mode you are in.
The 300-degree rotating lens is a neat
feature for changing camera angles.
The viewing screen is equipped with
Corning Gorilla Glass, and it allows for quick, real-time viewing of camera
angles before you even press record.
You can also check the instant video
playback of recorded footage to edit or
delete scenes. Another standout feature
is the Flashback Video Tag (explained
in our results).
If you really want to get pro with
your coverage, you can use the
DataLink system, which uses the built-
in Wi-Fi function, and the Drift mobile app that’s compatible with Android and Apple smartphones. The Drift app
allows you to preview and line up a
shot remotely from your phone, change
camera settings, view shot recordings
and play back directly through your
mobile device. Also, just in case you
accidentally drop your Drift HD Ghost
in a stream and you have your water-proof hatch attached, it will keep the
water out for up to 9 feet.
Field test results:
On bright, sunny
days, the two-way remote’s LED lights
are easy to read. The remote control is large, which is a good thing when
you are in a hurry and you want to
push the button and go. The remote is
designed to be worn around your wrist,
but for mountain biking, the alternative
home of strapping it to the handlebar
stem is preferable. This location makes
it easy to see and to activate.
Our favorite Drift HD Ghost feature has to be the video tagging. If you
record every minute of a ride, you have
to edit through a lot of boring footage
to get to the good stuff. If you leave
your camera off, there is a good chance
you will miss the best footage of the
day, like a gazelle that runs into your
buddy. Video-tagging mode eliminates
this problem. While in VT mode, the
camera is recording all the time, so you
won’t miss anything unexpected. The tagging takes place when you decide, like
on a fun descent. Push the remote action
button, and the VT mode leaves a digital
bookmark (up to five minutes). When it
comes time to edit your coverage, you can
skip to the footage you tagged.
Image quality is on par with other HD
cameras of this size and cost, although
low-light shooting results in grainy images. Sound quality is always a challenge
when there is wind involved, so we complimented our video clips with music.
Using the newest Drift app for our
iPhone was a cool feature, because it let
us set up shots right from the phone, and
we were able to change the camera settings on the spot. Once we were done
with our recordings, we could send the
recorded clips through our phone to be
We got slightly over 2.5 hours of battery life on our rides. If you are willing
to experiment and broaden your digital
imagery skills, Drift Innovation has plenty of accessories available for the job.