We’ve been using the Sony 4K Action Cam for a couple of months now and it’s time for a review! The small, sleek and very capable pov camera packs a whole lot of punch and features that we think is useful when you use it to capture your ride footage.
“The Sony FDR-X1000V is a small, sleek and very capable POV camera that’s perfect for sports and outdoor enthusiasts.”
- Shoot professional-quality 4K movies at a high bit rate of 30p 100Mbps*1, and record in XAVC S*2 format for crisp, sharp videos
- Capture beautifully detailed images with the Exmor R™ back-illuminated CMOS Sensor, which makes intricate, high-resolution images possible, even in dimly-lit environments
- Capture the feeling of being there with the ZEISS Tessar F2.8 Lens, offering an ultra-wide 170 degree angle so you don’t miss a thing
- Indulge in stunning, stabilised videos when recording on the move either on foot or in a vehicle with the Advanced Electronic SteadyShot*3, approximately 3 times better at suppressing low-amplitude vibrations, so you can enjoy maximum video quality
- Playback and delete your movies with ease even from a distance when you connect using the Wi-Fi® Live-View Remote RM-LVR2*4 and PlayMemories Mobile app
- The Splashproof (IPX4), Shockproof*, and Dustproof*5 body allows for carefree, lightweight shooting in a myriad of conditions, so you’ll never have to worry, even in adverse conditions
Use & Performance
The Sony 4K Action Cam is one of the easiest cameras to use. Once we’ve setup the camera correctly, using the camera is as easy as switching it on by pressing any of the buttons and then pressing the record button at the top of the camera. There’s no dedicated power button on the cam and you can easily use the cam with only one hand. It’s been perfectly designed to be able to let the user to easily mount, switch it on, record and let it do it’s job.
The camera also has Wi-Fi and NFC to connect it to your Android or iOS smartphones via the Sony PlayMemories app. We tested the app on the iPhone and we were able pair with it easily and perform it’s core functions including it’s settings, modes and framing our shots. Honestly, there’s no need to use your phone though, as the 4K Action Cam pack includes the Sony Live Remote where you can perform those functions, including video playback. Using the Sony PlayMemories app, you can also easily edit your footage and select the best highlights to quickly make a short video for those quick moments of sharing on social media.
While you can use the camera without the Live Remote, we’ve found that it can be quite a pain when you need to frame that perfect shot with only a guess. Having the Live Remote takes all of the guesswork out of the equation and allows fast, instant interaction with the camera controls and previews. We’ve also preferred toggling through the camera menus on our Live Remote, and occasionally on our iPhone, rather than directly on the camera. It’s gives you a more user friendly interface when you’re changing modes or settings without having to remove your camera from your mounts.
On our multiple rides out in the trails with the cam, the Sony Live Review was really useful for us. While strapping the Live Remote on your wrist is the easiest option, we found that it was a whole lot easier to mount the Live Remote on our handlebars when you’re out riding. It’s doesn’t have a dedicated mount or strap that you can use, but all you need is a couple of cable ties and you’re good to go.
The battery life on the Sony 4K Action Cam is quite good as well, and we got more than a couple of days of on and off recording with Full HD mode (1920 x 1080 30p) on a full charge. The Live Remote lasted much longer and we only had to charge the Live Remote after every 2 recording sessions. If you’re planing the continuously shoot with the cam, you’ll be glad to know that the camera can last for slightly more than 2 hours on the lowest-setting Full HD. Turning off your Wi-fi and GPS will let you squeeze a little bit more recording time too.
Sony has it’s own set of dedicated mounting options for the Action Cam. We’ve used a couple of couple of their bike specific mounts including the handlebar mount, chest harness and the helmet mount. All of these 3 mount performed as advertised, but we think they should relook into designing the mounting on the chest harness.
While we didn’t have any issues with the harness webbing itself (it’s quite comfy actually), we had some major shaking issues with the mounting. No matter how hard we tighten the straps or the mount, footage from the chest mount was too shaky for our liking. We had no issues when we’re riding on smooth trails, but once we got into the gnarly stuff, the footage turns into a shaky mess that’s unusable. Maybe it would lessen the vibration if the camera is closer to the chest and with a differently designed mount.
The helmet mount, however, was perfect. All of our footage was clean and smooth when it’s mounted on the helmet and it gives you a nice POV of the trails ahead. This was the best mounting option to use if you know that you’re gonna be riding in rough terrain. As long as your helmet is strapped in properly, you’ll be able to get nice clean footage to enjoy.
The Sony Action Cam has proved to be a useful companion whenever we ride and we’re totally happy with the camera’s quality. Videos and still photos look really good and with it’s small form-factor, you can easily carry it in your hydration pack for your next adventure. It’s an excellent piece of equipment that any adventure junkie should own.
With Sony’s history in technology, imaging, service and support, you can’t go wrong with a reputable brand like Sony. After sales service is also a factor in our opinion, and Sony has a huge service centre in Jurong East if there’s ever anything wrong with your action cam.
At the end of the day, we had loads of fun using it and we’re quite sure that you’ll be stoked too.