DRIFT HD ACTION CAMERA
Get ready for the big screen
Video cameras are shaping up to be the hottest accessory of the season.
Capturing the action on the trail to share and relive makes every ride that
much more interesting. The $369 Drift HD camera from Drift Innovations is the
latest in a growing field of rugged little video cameras.
Tech features: The Drift HD Action Camera is more compact than its predecessor, coming
in at 4.1 (L) x 1.9 (D) x 1.3 (W) inches and weighing 4.2 ounces. The body is
water resistant, not water- proof, though a separate waterproof housing is available.
It offers three different filming resolutions in a 16:9 aspect ratio: full HD
1080p, 720p and WVGA (a resolution standard used on many of today’s
smartphones). Within these different resolutions, you are also able to film at
different frame rates. The lens has a 170-degree viewing angle, which gives it
a fisheye-lens feel, and it can be rotated 300 degrees to level the camera,
regardless of the mounting angle. It has an integrated
1.5-inch LCD screen on top of the camera to aid with positioning,
viewing playback of videos and changing settings via the menu. The camera also
comes with a small remote control that can be mounted within reach to start and
stop recording via radio frequency. Included are three different mounts:
adhesive mounts for both flat surfaces and curved surfaces, and a goggle strap mount.
Besides the three included mounts, we also received a handlebar mount that is
sold separately. Drift Innovations can be contacted at (704) 966-9768.
Field test results: Given the recent proliferation of compact video
cameras aimed at action sports athletes, it is difficult to stand out, but the
integrated LCD screen sets this camera apart from the crowd. With many compact
cameras, the positioning is a matter of trial and error. Thanks to the LCD
screen, we were able to mount the camera and check to make sure it was positioned
perfectly from the start. From the screen, you can also access the camera’s
settings and watch video playback, so you can make sure you have the shot while
you are on the trail. The remote control for the camera is nice to have,
especially if you have the camera mounted on the bike away from your hands. For
advanced setups, the remote can trigger multiple Drift HD cameras to record at
The thing that holds the Drift HD back is the availability of mounts.
For riders using a full-face helmet and goggles, the camera is easy to set up
with either the goggle strap mount or the rounded-surface adhesive mount. For
those using a trail style helmet, however, there is no mount that provides a
stable connection right away. For our trail setup, we used the goggle strap
mount zip-tied to the helmet around the vents. Though crude looking, the setup
was very stable
and never gave us any problems. The low-profile design of the
camera was confidence inspiring when ducking under low branches. The Drift HD
is a great option if you want to film your rides, but the insufficient variety
of camera mounts is a negative.
Reprinted from our March 2012 issue. Like us on Facebook