Miscellaneous Purchasing Advice/Recommendations

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
I'm looking to purchase two items in particular, hoping others might be able to fill in my lack of experience in these fields:

Mini Go Cam Thing

You see these all the time on telly now, clamped to peoples helmets going white water rafting or whatever, filming full HD broadcast quality video.

I'm going gliding in a couple of weeks (half-hour session), and it's a one-off opportunity to record the experience. My current kit includes a camcorder (dunno if it still works, bulky), compact Fuji digital camera (eats batteries, fiddly), Fuji bridge camera (top notch, but bulky and fiddly), and my iPad (last thing I want to do is hold the camera all the way through, and I doubt it could record for that long!).

I don't want the filming to detract from the personal experience, so I aim to mount the camera somehow, set it running and lock it off. I expect plenty of people do this, so the gliding club probably has advice to offer (I have made enquiries), but I guess possibly I can sucker-mount to the inside of the canopy, or maybe there's something I can clamp to.

So: something small and light, with an hour's battery and memory capacity, and preferably not too expensive because I don't see that I'm going to have frequent use for it. I do have a cheapie car dash cam, but a) it's broken (although I expect I can fix it) and b) it's crap.

Audio Mixer

One of my clubs has a need for a small mixer. Current kit includes a power amp and dual CD player, and the CD player has a microphone input with mixer controls, but there is no facility for an external input to be mixed in. Now a lot of people are presenting their music from digital sources, we will be moving away from the CD player but still need a way to match the PC/tablet/MP3 player line/headphone outputs to the power amp inputs, provide a microphone preamp and mix, and a master volume control (the power amp has individual gain controls for left and right, but that's hardly a convenient way to control the overall volume!).

It would also be nice (but not essential) to have a spare input for the CD player or other equipment. So we're talking mic plus two stereo inputs with individual channel gain presets and mix level, or mic plus one stereo input at a push.

The Behringer Xenyx 502 looks almost ideal, what I don't like is the aesthetics of having the connections on the main panel (why aren't they on the back?), and the lack of an easy mute on the mic input (a slider or a pop-free mute button would be much easier to operate than a rotary knob).

The 502 is also a good price (approx £30). This purchase is price sensitive, because I'm spending other people's money.

Any considered advice (regarding either of the above) is appreciated.
 
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
I do have a cheapie car dash cam, but a) it's broken (although I expect I can fix it) and b) it's crap.
Brainstorming: if I bought a better dash cam, it might serve both purposes and have a useful life after the giding trip. Consider the brief to be widened to include dash cams (that include their own battery).
 

Wallace

Traveler 34122
All you need is a 6" nail to knock the bracket into your head!

Looks good that Ezra. Thanks from me too.
 
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
Email from the gliding people in response to my enquiry about using a sucker mount inside the canopy: "that will be alright". Somehow it doesn't instil confidence!
 
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
On the subject of the mixer: do I need XLR balanced microphone inputs with phantom power? I'm treating it as a nice-to-have, but the fact is our mic has a battery and an on-off switch, and although the mic body has an XLR connector the cable is terminated with a ¼" jack. In as much as this is not a recording studio set-up, do I really need provision for balanced line for future-proofing?

On the other hand, maybe it would be better to have a separate mic pre-amp and feed it into a line input of a mixer (three stereo channels instead of two stereo plus mic).

Thoughts welcome.
 
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
Can't argue with the price tag on the Xenyx 502. OK, so it doesn't have a microphone mute and the location of the I/O is not aesthetically pleasing, but I can modify it to add a mute if necessary and re-enclose the guts with relocated I/O if that becomes a problem. I think I've made my mind up on that one.
 
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
'Ere: Amazon have Sandisk 32GB micro SD cards on offer at £6.99 today - offer ends at midnight (need a £20 order to qualify for free delivery).

BTW, I went for WiFi in the end, only a few more quid and you never know when it might come in handy (drone shots?). I paid more to get it from a UK source too - I hate this "dispatched from China" business.
 
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Ezra Pound

Well-Known Member
Now to find the best price and quickest delivery of a non-counterfeit one!
There do seem to be a lot of fakes around, thing to look for are :-

1) All genuine 2nd generation cameras have SJCAM written on the front (most fakes don't)
2) The waterproof housing has silver screws around the lens (some fakes have black screws)
3) The SJCAM Wi-Fi App. won't work with the fakes

BTW
The genuine DJCAM SJ4000 DOES NOT take 60 frames per second, it doubles up it's 30fps, the SJ5000 does real 60fps
 
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
I have ordered the Behringer Xenyx 502 mixer too, I had a trawl around but couldn't beat the Amazon price of £33 delivered.

Have you seen those Barclay's Digital Eagles adverts? "Put the item in your basket but don't rush to check out - the retailer may come back to you with an offer for a quick transaction". Oh yeah? In whose imagination?? How long am I supposed to wait?

"Try mis-spellings of what you are looking for - if somebody has made a mistake in their listing you will be the only person bidding on it". Maybe, but I would feel morally obliged to point out their mistake rather than be taking advantage of it, which is close to robbery.
 

af123

Administrator
Staff member
ave you seen those Barclay's Digital Eagles adverts? "Put the item in your basket but don't rush to check out - the retailer may come back to you with an offer for a quick transaction". Oh yeah? In whose imagination?? How long am I supposed to wait?

Definitely works on hobbyking.. put in the basket, go and make a cup of coffee and when you get back there is often a popup offering a percentage discount.
 

prpr

Well-Known Member
put in the basket, go and make a cup of coffee and when you get back there is often a popup offering a percentage discount.
What happens if you don't like coffee? Do you still have to make it and then pour it down the sink? Will tea do instead?
 
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
I had to find out what hobbyking is (hoping not to find myself in some dark alley). Maybe I just don't frequent "that kind of web site"!

Xenyx 502: Amazon £33 all in, saw it somewhere else for £33+£6.50 - they would have had to knock off 20%.

YMMV: new one on me. Added to the Glossary (Netiquette section).

Digital Eagles: "If you are good at something, you can trade your skills with somebody else". How?
 
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