Test video from a Vivitar DVR 787HD Camera - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 5 Old 08-04-2014, 07:31 PM Thread Starter
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Test video from a Vivitar DVR 787HD Camera

I didn't really want to shell out for a high end camera to put on the Vee so I found this one for $60 ($54 + $6 for the 2 year warranty) and bought it. If I lived someplace where every road was a roller coaster ride I'd probably have shelled out for a GoPro, but while I'm living in FL it's just not worth the investment because I won't use it much. Yesterday I had the chance to try it out finally. Here are some thoughts:

The video quality is better than expected. Certainly not great, but not bad overall. It's a little shaky, but that's due to how I have it mounted. I've got it on top of the gauges, behind the windshield. I simply used a fastener made by Scotch that is a hard plastic instead of Velcro fabric. I like it because it's stronger & it's cleaner than Velcro. See pics below. I've got some ideas on how to steady up the video, but I'm not too overly concerned with that. I'm not a professional film maker after all!

I wish I had taken a peek at the manual before buying a 16gb card. It will take up to 32gb, so I'll be making another purchase.

The waterproof case seems solid. I'm not a fan of the latch because even my fingers are too big to easily open it. I see a modification coming. Also, when it's in the case you can't push the “display” button to turn on the screen. The reason you would need to do that is because the display screen goes black shortly after you start recording. To preserve battery I presume. Still haven't decided if that's a plus or a minus. I figured out you can turn on the display by pressing the “capture photo or video button”. I was concerned doing this during recording may affect the recording in some way, but it does not. Also, in record mode the numbers displayed on the screen (showing the record time) turn red when you press the record button and are difficult to see in bright light. Initially I wasn't sure it was recording.

The on screen instructions are idiot proof. I figured it out without having looked at the manual. It is very simple to operate, and the first time you plug it into a PC the drivers load quickly. It comes with software, but I haven't explored it much. Upon initial inspection it looks to be completely unnecessary if you've got video viewing and editing software standard on your PC...which Windows does.

It comes with several different mounts. 5 or 6 if I recall. For my purposes it worked best to slightly modify (trim the base & remove the straps) the mount intended to be strapped to the top of a bicycle helmet. The bases of the other mounts, even with trimming, would be too big for where I chose to locate the camera.

Playback on the screen is smooth. It has a play, pause, stop, ff & rev so no complaints there. Also, you can use it to record video as it charges. Although you can't charge it while it's in the waterproof case. So if the weather is dry you can keep the camera charging as you record your ride.

Overall I'd have to say it's a very inexpensive way to be able to record the occasional ride. For $60 it appears it will do exactly what I need it to do. However, I do reserve the right to change my opinion at a later time, but for now I think this will work.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8dYUiYK4qzc





I figured out how to get rid of some of the shakiness. I put a small piece of Velcro on the front of the camera case. I then cut out a piece of foam from a buffing pad & put some electrical tape around it to stiffen it up a bit. I mount the camera so the foam is touching the windshield. May not be the prettiest, but it works!


Last edited by cpr4life; 08-04-2014 at 07:50 PM.
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post #2 of 5 Old 08-04-2014, 08:39 PM
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for the price, the video quality is pretty good!

However this camera is recording in AVI format, which is pretty ancient. Mac users cannot edit AVI files using iMovie, they have to be converted to a different file format first.

And speaking of editing.... as I said on another thread, the editing is the most important part of the whole process. If you wanted to save money (=time) on the initial purchase of the camera that's fine, but do you have time (=money) to learn how to edit the resulting video?

Straight out of the camera 15 minute segments of driving around the neighborhood get boring quite fast. Are you willing to spend the energy to edit these videos down to something watchable?
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post #3 of 5 Old 08-04-2014, 09:31 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rashnak View Post
for the price, the video quality is pretty good!

However this camera is recording in AVI format, which is pretty ancient. Mac users cannot edit AVI files using iMovie, they have to be converted to a different file format first.

And speaking of editing.... as I said on another thread, the editing is the most important part of the whole process. If you wanted to save money (=time) on the initial purchase of the camera that's fine, but do you have time (=money) to learn how to edit the resulting video?

Straight out of the camera 15 minute segments of driving around the neighborhood get boring quite fast. Are you willing to spend the energy to edit these videos down to something watchable?
Since I'm on a PC I was able to cut out the beginning & end of the video in a matter of a few minutes with Windows Live Movie Maker. The only reason I did that is because I took the camera out while it was recording at the beginning (because I couldn't see the red numbers) and at the end because I forgot to stop the recording when I took the camera out of the case.

Otherwise, when I record a ride I post it to YouTube from beginning to end.

I don't expect this camera to compare to the high end devices, but it worked much better than I thought it would. I'm hoping to move to Chattanooga someday and when I do I'll likely buy a better camera.
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post #4 of 5 Old 08-04-2014, 10:23 PM
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Originally Posted by cpr4life View Post
, when I record a ride I post it to YouTube from beginning to end.
pet peeve alert!

Doesn't it seem odd to you that you are asking people to devote 15 minutes of their life to watching your video, but you are willing to devote practically no time at all to improve the experience for them?

Let me put it another way. If ten thousand people bought this camera and put up 15 minutes of raw footage of themselves doing normal, everyday boring things.... how many of these videos would you seek out and devote 15 minutes to watching?


Maybe it's just me, but unedited video is just plain boring. IMHO

You started this thread to talk about the tool- and it's a fine tool! Great value for the money! But it's just a tool and the hand that wields it makes the decisions about the final product.

My prediction is that six months from now you will look back on your first unedited videos and wonder what you were thinking.... or.... the camera will be sitting unused because you realized that unedited video is boring. Either way, the purchase of the camera was the easy part. What comes next is up to you.
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post #5 of 5 Old 08-05-2014, 12:00 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rashnak View Post
Doesn't it seem odd to you that you are asking people to devote 15 minutes of their life to watching your video, but you are willing to devote practically no time at all to improve the experience for them?
Nah, because I'm not forcing them to watch it lol!

Besides, I'm not all that creative so I don't know what I could do by way of editing. I only turn the camera on when the fun is about to begin. :mrgreen:
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