Cubicam Waterproof 1080p and our Action Cam Tests.

We really wanted to find a good waterproof action camera for you guys that would give excellent picture quality in a well made product with lots of accessories for water sports enthusiasts like us. With a few friends we spent a few months testing HD Action cams priced from £40 up to £300. We read all the reviews and feed back from users as well and what most people seemed to be saying is they would like a Go-pro because of the video quality and versatility but they wouldn’t spend £250-300 on it. The camera packages we tested were ones that came fully loaded with surf board accessories as a minimum and were as follows.

MUVI Atom NPNG – Best Price £89.00
GoPro Silver Surf Edition – Best Price £249.00
Garmin Virb – Best Price £249
Cubicam 2014 – Best Price £149
Polaroid XSP + Surf Mount- Best Price £59.00

Fast and Slow
After some dry tests based on fast and slow speeds we viewed all our footage on a 42″ 1080p LCD Samsung screen. It’s fair to say that everyone involved was disappointed with the Muvi and the Polaroid. The image quality was blurry with even slower movement and the colours were very dull.The Polaroid in-particular seemed to have no stability control at all. We also preferred the wider angle shooting of the other 3 cameras. Pretty quickly we were able to exclude the Polaroid and Muvi from our tests.
The best image quality at low speed were the Cubicam and the GoPro silver which i would say were on par at 1080p. The Virb was not far behind though but the colours looked a little duller and slightly blurry. Once we cranked up the accelerator in our test car (An aston martin V8 BTW) we found that the Gopro handled speed well with the clearest moving images but as it only shoots at 30fps in 1080p it did get blurry at higher speeds although it was the best when we went seriously fast. The Cubicam was not far behind at all with similar bright images but a little more motion blur. The Garmin give a little more motion blur than the Cubi and again had that less vibrant image quality. The Gopro, Cubicam and and Virb all only shoot at 30fps in 1080p so we tried some at speed again and this time switched to 720p where the remaining 3 action cams can all shoot at 60fps (that’s 60 frames per second if you are not yet tech savvy). Again the Gopro had the edge but the Cubicam was very close when scrutinised on our big screen. The Garmin Virb again just not so nice in terms of bright sharp colours.

In the Surf
In the water the story was much the same. All 3 remaining cameras were great truth be told. It was a bight sunny day and image quality from our surf board was excellent on all 3. In changing brightness levels all cameras performed well. With faster moving images the Go-pro was sharpest, with the cubicam second but even the Virb was good. The bright sunlight definitely brings out the best in all 3 cameras.

Low Light
In low light conditions surprisingly the Go-pro met its match here with the Cubicam coming out top and the GoPro silver second and the Virb was third again. All shots were a little grainy as the cameras iso levels changed to allow for low light , but the cubicams image was definately the best in this category.

Versatility
All the 3 remaining cameras come with a standard tripod adapter so will fit more regular cam accessories. The gopro does have some extra accessories available that will not work with the Virb becasue of its shape, however the cubicam being of very similar shape to the Go-Pro fitted all of its accessories. It also has a range of accessories on its own including surf , bike , chest, helmet mounts and more that were all signifigantly cheaper than the Gopro ones.

Usability
On the devices themselves the Gopro was the out right loser here. Its liquid crystal screen is much trickier to navigate than both the cubicam and the Garmins LCD colour Screens. We preferred the Cubicam only just because of the added remote control. How ever it should be noted the Gopro’s remote was very nice. It’s just a pity it doesnt have an LC screen. They are really useful for playback while shooting or even just getting your camera angle right.

Unique Features
For the Garmin , although its is lacking just a little compared to the other 2 in image quality it has GPS tracking which is its big selling point. But to be honest we felt that this can be acheived by some many cheaper devices and apps nowadays it was no longer a draw to many people.
For the Gopro , we liked the wifi connectivity and i-phone app letting you control it from up to 600ft.
On the Cubi , really there was no one outstanding feature on it that’s not available else where. THey seem to be going fo a No gimmick approach concentrating on build quality, great images and price. We like this way of thinking.

Overall
Despite having no unique features the Cubicam was our overall favourite. It does everything very well no matter the conditions. It even upstages the expensive Gopro in a few areas and for the price we felt it is a worthy winner. Choose it if you want a great all rounder that wont break you bank account.
Second for us was the Gopro. Over all it had the best picture quality but accessories are expensive and it is quite fiddly to use at times. The lack of LCD screen though was our deal breaker.
3rd was the Garmin Virb. Image quality is fine , but not up to the standard of Cubicam or Go Pro. The GPS is good but that is the only reason for choosing this action cam.
4th was the Muvi. Its out there at some good prices now but for not much more you can have a lot better image quality.
5th was the Polaroid XSP. Most phones will give better image quality and its not worth your cash we thought.

We chose to stock the Cubicam based on our tests and you can see all the specs and info at Cubicam HD Waterproof Action Camera .

Here is a sample of some surf board testing on the cubicam. Set it to 720p and enjoy.

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