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How To Use an Action Camera-A Beginner’s Guide

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How to Use an Action Camera

Outdoor sports are not only adventurous but are quite thrilling as well. And its natural to wish to capture these moments. But how to do so?

Many people love to record their experience and post it on social media like Instagram and YouTube, for others to view it and get some essence of it.

How do they shoot these videos? What sort of equipment is used by them? These are a few questions that come to the viewers mind naturally. And if you are here, it means you are planning to get ahold of the suitable equipment and shoot some videos of your own.

The type of camera used for recording such videos is the Action Camera. Action cameras are very similar to normal cameras. But to understand and know how to use an action camera, lets take a deeper look at them.

What is an Action Camera?

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Action Cameras are very similar to normal cameras. They have the ability to shoot pictures and videos just like them.

Action cameras have a distinctive shape. They come with additional features like being water proof and being able to record 4k resolution action videos. They are small, lightweight and portable. They are the perfect type of cameras to record videos in tough locations like mountains and bumpy roads. They are made in a way to withstand such tough conditions including jolts and knocks.

These cameras feature appropriate mounting system so that the user can record the videos without any difficulties. Action cameras come with some start of quick operational features like a single button to start.

Perfect for adventurers and tourists, action cameras tend to provide high quality videos of the amazing outdoor experiences. The most important feature which makes these cameras special is that they don’t require to be handheld. This makes filming at the most beautiful and difficult locations much easier.

Action cameras are small, easy to carry and waterproof and are specifically designed to capture high quality shots. The most latest action cameras have 4k resolution which is followed by 1080p and 720p.

Difference between Action Camera and Normal Camera

There aren’t much differences between the two type of cameras.

  • The action cameras are small, and lightweight whereas normal cameras are heavier and bulkier comparatively.
  • Action cameras are specifically designed for tough locations and thus are quite durable, whereas normal cameras don’t require extreme durability.
  • All of the action cameras tend to be waterproof or at least water resistant, however, normal cameras don’t necessarily have this feature.
  • Action cameras have quick access/capture buttons for ease of use.

Apart from these, the image quality and functions of both type of cameras is somewhat similar.

Now since we have established the basic picture of an action camera, lets take a look at the working details and tricks of this camera.

Actual Use of an Action Camera

Action cameras are simple to use. You will be able to capture and record 4k resolution videos by following these simple steps:

  1. Most of Action cameras require an external memory card. Place the memory in the memory card slot present on one side of the camera.
  2. When the camera is brand new, it is recommended to charge it for a while so that it turns on without any difficulty. Use the provided charging cable to charge the camera. Some cameras have an indicator light, showing that the camera in charging.
  3. To turn on the camera press the power button which is usually present on the front or side of the camera.how-to-use-an-action-camera (2)
  4. You will find the mode (video/picture) on the top corner of screen of the camera. You can change the mode by pressing the mode (power button).
  5. To capture a picture, press the capture button usually present on the top of the camera. Make sure you are in camera mode.how-to-use-an-action-camera (3)
  6. To record a video, first go to recording mode and then press the capture button present on the top of the camera.

You can also have other modes like burst mode to take a large number of pictures at once and timer mode and so on.

Settings of an action camera

To access to the settings of the action camera, press the power button until you reach the settings menu. The shutter/capture button (present on the top of the camera) is used to select.

On the Settings menu you will see a list of settings like video resolution, exposure and so on.how-to-use-an-action-camera (4)

How to select the resolution in action camera

Action cameras support 4k video resolution as well as 1080p and 720p video resolutions. You can manually select the appropriate resolution for your requirement.

  1. Press the mode button which is usually present on the front side of the camera. It will take you to different mode. Press again and again until you reach the settings.
  2. In Settings, you will see a number of things. Look for Video Resolution by pressing the side arrow buttons to scroll up or down.
  3. Select Video Resolution by pressing the shutter button present at the top of the camera.

You will now see a list of resolutions. Select the required one by pressing the shutter button.

How to turn on Time Stamp in Action Camera

Time stamp provides with the time and date details of when an image or video was shot. To turn on this feature in your action camera, simply follow the below mentioned steps:

  1. Turn on the camera by pressing the power button present on the front side of the camera.
  2. Now press the power/mode button again and again until you see settings on the screen.
  3. Once in settings, look for Time Stamp. You can scroll up and down using the arrow buttons present on the side of the camera.
  4. Select the Time Stamp to turn it on by pressing the shutter button present at the top of the camera.

How to Reset an Action Camera

An action camera can be reset from the settings.

  1. Go to settings by pressing the mode button.
  2. In settings scroll down by pressing the down arrow button present on the right side of the camera. Select Reset.

This will reset the camera and all of its setting.

How to connect an Action Camera to Mobile App

You can view the pictures and recording on your phone by connecting your action camera to it. There a number of action camera apps present of the app store of your device. You will first have to download it.

  1. Download action camera app from the app store of your device. Some of the most popular action camera apps include iSmart DV, GoAction and OK CAM Plus.
  2. Turn on the Wi-Fi of your camera. Press and hold either up or down button (depending on the model) which are present on the side of the camera to turn it on. The screen of the camera will display the name and password (if any) will be displayed on the screen.
  3. Now, in your phone open the app and add your action camera.
  4. Turn on the Wi-Fi on your phone and connect it to the action camera. Some app will ask you to turn on the Bluetooth as well.

Now, the connection has been established and you will be able to view your action camera pictures and recordings from your phone as well.

Some apps will also allow you to control the recordings from your phone.

How to transfer images and recordings from action camera to computer

You can transfer images and recordings from your action camera to your computer using an SD card reader. You can find an SD card reader easily online and they usually cost anywhere between $5 – $10.

  1. Connect the SD card reader to your computer using a micro USB cable. Some card readers can be connected directly in to the USB port.
  2. Take the micro SD card out of the camera.
  3. Put this card in the reader.
  4. You will now see the micro SD folder in the USB Drive folder in My Computer on your PC.
  5. Open it and transfer the files to your computer.

Additional Tips for an action camera

In order to capture the best images from your action camera, we have enlisted some tips and tricks apart from the settings of the camera.

Frame Rate

It isn’t recommended to use high frame rate all the time. Action cameras feature different frame rates like 24 fps, 30 fps, or 60 fps. Some high-end cameras also offer 90 and 120 fps. It is obvious that higher frame rate will provide smoother and clearer pictures but it will also take up a lot of space. So, if you wish to have a lot of pictures, it is better to change the frame rate manually.

Clean Camera Lens

Action camera means exposure to ultimate conditions like dust, rain, dirt and so on. Lens is the most sensitive part of the camera and if dirt accumulates on it, it will highly effect the picture quality. To get the best results make sure to clean the lens regularly. It is also recommended to keep the action camera in a protective case to avoid damage.

Spare Batteries

Action Cameras don’t have long battery lives. On average, an action camera will have a battery life of about 60 minutes. This battery life is definitely short for the ultimate adventures; therefore, it is recommended to carry extra batteries with you and to make sure that the camera is fully charged before you leave.

How to Use an Action Camera-Frequently Asked Questions

How do action cameras work?
Action cameras are small, compact and lightweight. They work like normal cameras; however, they have fewer buttons for ease of control. They are also dust and waterproof and are capable of recording high quality 4k videos.

How do I connect my action camera to my phone?
You can connect your action camera to your phone by downloading the specific action camera app from the app store. Turn on the wi-fi of the camera by pressing up or down button and note down the details. Now open the camera app, add your action camera and turn on the Wi-Fi of your phone. Connect to the action camera.

Can I shoot a movie on an action camera?
Action cameras are made to be compact and durable so you can capture realistic, on-location video even in challenging circumstances. They can be mounted nearly anyplace! Although they are simple to operate, owners are constantly looking for new methods to give their footage a distinctive edge.

How long can action camera record?
The recording time of the action camera depends on the resolution and frame rate. Higher resolutions and better frame rates will consume more battery. For instance, at 4K/120 fps, a fully charged action camera will provide 40 minutes of recording time. Similarly, at 1080p/30fps, it will provide 2 hours of recording time.

What is the difference between camera and action camera?
Action camera is more compact and lighter than normal cameras. They are easy to carry and can be mounted anywhere. Action cameras are capable of recording high-quality videos in a more stable and better way.

How long does a GoPro battery last?
The battery of a GoPro will last from 1 hour 30 minutes to about 2 hours.

Do action cameras take good pictures?
Action Cameras take high-quality pictures just like normal cameras and are used for photography all the time. They feature high resolutions like 4k, 1080p, and 720p.

Can you use an action camera as a normal camera?
Yes, action cameras can be used as normal cameras. They will give the same high-quality results like normal cameras.

Is an action camera better than DSLR?
The answer to this question depends on your usage. If you are willing to use a camera for recording your adventurous videos while running, hiking, cycling, swimming, etc. then it is better to use an action camera to capture fast-moving objects.

Who uses an action camera?
Action cameras are mostly used to record fast-moving objects and are made durable to withstand tough conditions like dust and water. They are mostly used by hikers, runners, bikers, divers, swimmers, surfers and so on. However, they can also be used as normal cameras.

How to Use an Action Camera-Conclusion

Action cameras allow you to record and capture videos without holding them in your hands. Using the action camera perfectly will allow you to capture high-quality and useful images.

Action cameras are easy to use and feature only a few buttons. These buttons make it very simple to capture and record images and videos. Action cameras feature high-resolution specs which allow them to produce quality images. They come with the latest frame rates and resolution support to meet the requirements of these days.

If you wish to show your experience to the world, then knowing how an action camera works, will not allow you to create high-quality content but also allow you to present them to the world.

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