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What Cameras can be used with the CamStrap

The CamStrap can be used with any camera that has a 1/4″ tripod thread, records video, and is of a size that is comfortable on the head or helmet.  Most digital cameras and all camcorders have a tripod thread and video capabilities.  GoPro is one of the only action cams that do not have a tripod thread, but like cell phones, there are tripod adapters available – Solvid Store .

The ideal camera weight is under 12 oz, but if it will fit on your head and you’re fine with it, then you can use whatever camera you want. Most cameras have some sort of version that is small enough that it is comfortable for hours, even days. Of course, the smaller you go, the more quality that is lost due to smaller components.

Zoom:  How do you zoom in for the shot?

One of the main benefits to the Solvid Head Cam Systems is the ability to use the zoom feature standard on most video cameras and camcorders.  There are many times this feature comes in handy to turn POV footage into a full feature film, but right before the shot is not the time to mess with it.  All of the zooming done just before the shot is accomplished with basic video editing software.  It is an effect called “Crop and Pan” on Sony editing software, and usually something similar for other programs.  The pan and crop effect is typically not an option with free or very inexpensive software.  Check out Solvid’s Video Editing page to learn more about programs.

Most of the zooming that occurs pre, post and during a stalk is done with the camera’s zoom feature.  The zoom during the actual shot footage is done with video editing.  One option if you expect a shot to be longer than 40 yards is to zoom in to the desired magnification before you shoot.  This will make the animal look a lot closer , but with the narrower angle there is more risk of not getting the target in the lens come time for the shot, and any movement will be exaggerated.  If you plan to use this feature, before hand practice is highly recommended to get the camera pointing where you want it and the zoom at the right power.

Recording with the Screen Closed: How do you record using a camcorder with the screen closed?

Recording with the camcorder screen closed is not possible with all models of cameras.  If you are buying a new camera, you should make this feature a requirement.  If the current camera you have does not record with the screen closed, you may need to dig into the settings and change some things around.  We have used Panasonic, Sony, and Canon with the screen closed, but not all models.  If yours does not, try these steps:

  1. Open screen. If camera does not power on automatically, then turn on with the power button.  Push record and close the screen. If the settings are right and the camera is capable of recording with the screen closed, then it should continue to record.  You can then press record again and it will stop recording and shut down or you can open the screen, stop the recording, and then go from there.
  2. Change the settings: go into the menu —> set up —> and look for settings that have to do with “Quick Start” and or “Quick Power On”.  With newer Panasonics, the “Quick Start” needs to be off which will enable the camera to power on and off with the opening and closing of the screen.  Most brands will be something similar, so you might need to play around with it.
  3. If you are convinced that your camera will not record with the screen closed regardless of the camera settings, then another option that cameras allow is to flip/twist the screen to where it is facing the camera lens as if you were to film yourself for a selfie clip.  Next, push the screen closed so that it is facing away from the camera.  The camera should be fully functionable in this mode. If you are worried about the illumination from the screen, a paper cover can be taped to it, or some other object that will block the light.
  4. If you come up with any good ideas for those who can’t record with the screen closed, please let us know so we can share – Contact Solvid.

Camera Settings : What settings are best for Filming It Yourself Head Cam footage?

When the camera is on on your head, the best thing to do is keep the unit on auto settings.  This way, the camera will decide what the best settings are; with it on your head you are unable to tell what needs to be adjusted.  Most camcorders and digital cameras that are comfortable to use with the CamStrap will not have easily adjustable settings such as aperture, color correction, lighting and contrast, etc.  The cameras will allow for these adjustments, but you will have to access the settings through the menu.  We usually set the camera to auto adjust / focus, and if needed, mess with this stuff during the editing process.

More Questions?

Please direct any questions, comments and concerns to us through the Solvid Contact Page.