No major still camera makers make POV cameras. Why?

Started Feb 27, 2013 | Questions
OP 003tvd Contributing Member • Posts: 935
Re: Sony makes them, but are POVs either profitable or safe?

The liability issue is a really good point. When will those injured while using a POV camera start suing the manufacturer, retailer, venue? To paraphrase Flip Wilson's Geraldine" the Go Pro made me do it".

Is the market too small for the biggies to attempt domination of the category? (I didn't realize Sony and Panasonic were in the arena) They don't appear to be embracing the category as a particularly lucrative one. Every other motocrosser, road racer, mountain biker, snowboarder etc. seems to have one on their head or elsewhere, so there seems to be no shortage of customers. Are they really just a fad that will soon wane and shrink down to the die-hards only?

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OP 003tvd Contributing Member • Posts: 935
Re: Sony makes them, but are POVs either profitable or safe?

is the market "tiny" at 2.3 million Go Pro units (not $) sold in 2012?

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Mahmoud Mousef Senior Member • Posts: 2,604
Re: No major still camera makers make POV cameras. Why?

Sony HDR-AS10

Sony HDR-AS15

Panasonic HX-A100 (apparently available for pre-order at B&H; I wonder if the battery is removable on this thing)

Personally I think all of these models must make them far more profit than regular cams; these have to be far cheaper to make/sell/service to the action crowd (and sell overpriced accessories to).

Things will be interesting when prices start to dip and impulse purchases can be made.

OP 003tvd Contributing Member • Posts: 935
Re: What does POV mean?

your reply made me LMAO (if you don't know that one, OMG!)

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Beach Bum Senior Member • Posts: 1,055
GoPro's days are numbered IMO

jedinstvo wrote:

GoPro cameras are being used by people totally outside the usual camera enthusiast circles. I bought mine at REI, first time I ever bought a camera from them. I doubt we'll see a legitimate lawsuit. GoPro has defined a market which did not exist before they came along. Every time I use mine I'm amazed at the quality from such a compact and inexpensive device.

I have yet to see any practical comparison where the Sony Action Cam hasn't looked better than the GoPro. When you look at the direct comparisons on YouTube, the Sony always looks clearer and sharper. I've, in fact, challenged people on other forums to show me one comparison video where the GoPro looks better. This even extends to the black edition with its "4K video". I use the quotes because it's 4K video in name only.

Resolution tests have shown this 4K video to be no better than its 1080p. It just takes up a lot more space.

Then there's the image stabilization on the Sony, which is actually highly effective. No such thing on the GoPro, and I'm not convinced they'll ever be able to compete with Sony on this front.

Then there's the low light performance. Sony has a proven sensor in their action cam (same as on the HX100V and HX9V). GoPro has no chance to compete unless they buy from Sony. Every low light comparison has shown the Sony ahead.

And the final nail is GoPro's massive QC issues with their Hero 3.

I'm simply doing this as a public service to steer people away from a losing product that happens to have a good reputation. It's been my observation that intelligent, thoughtful observations on this forum (or any forum for this matter) are often ignored for conventional, but incorrect, wisdom. This is indeed the reason why I think it's pretty rare for original and creative thinkers to become regulars on online forums. No offense to anyone.

But, again, the challenge is open to anyone to prove that the GoPro is even competitive. If no one can meet the challenge on this forum (as they failed to on the other forums I frequent), the logical conclusion is that my observations are correct.

edispics
edispics Veteran Member • Posts: 3,513
Re: GoPro's days are numbered IMO

Just went through the exercise of comparing the GoPro with the AS15 for my brother's drone. The  conclusion? Neither is remotely appropriate for high quality drone videos. In both cases the video lacked resolution and colour. The Sony was better in both respects than the GoPro, but nowhere good enough for commercial (real estate, marketing) use. He switched to a Sony CX260 camcorder and both resolution and colour improved dramatically, but the camera format proved difficult and he then switched to a Sony HX30 and the video quality is now consistently amazing. Moral of the story - the GoPro and AS15 can take a licking and keep on ticking. The GoPro has more mounting options, the AS15 has better video. If the primary objective is a take anywhere device that can really take a beating, you can't go wrong with either. But if video quality really matters, look elsewhere. That is why the most popular option for drone use is the Sony NEX.

Beach Bum Senior Member • Posts: 1,055
Agreed. :)

edispics wrote:

Just went through the exercise of comparing the GoPro with the AS15 for my brother's drone. The conclusion? Neither is remotely appropriate for high quality drone videos. In both cases the video lacked resolution and colour. The Sony was better in both respects than the GoPro, but nowhere good enough for commercial (real estate, marketing) use. He switched to a Sony CX260 camcorder and both resolution and colour improved dramatically, but the camera format proved difficult and he then switched to a Sony HX30 and the video quality is now consistently amazing. Moral of the story - the GoPro and AS15 can take a licking and keep on ticking. The GoPro has more mounting options, the AS15 has better video. If the primary objective is a take anywhere device that can really take a beating, you can't go wrong with either. But if video quality really matters, look elsewhere. That is why the most popular option for drone use is the Sony NEX.

It's just very frustrating to see clearly inferior brands and products continually being promoted on this forum, seemingly without any meaningful comparison or even rational thought.

Supposedly, this forum has some of the best thinkers with regards to cameras and photography, yet even the most cursory and absolutely objective comparisons show the exact opposite of the prevailing wisdom here. I'm not talking about being a fanboy here or subjective thoughts. It's my honest belief that there is no possible objective way that the GoPro could be considered the best at anything in its category, yet people continue to promote this garbage like it's untouched.

This $300 to $400 product is literally nothing more than a mediocre sensor with a wide angle lens. No image stabilization, poor low light performance, and, as you mentioned, not really good video.

Very sad indeed.

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