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Contour is BACK!

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
FYI - I just discovered that, after going out of business for a short time and looking like they may never return (website gone, etc.), Contour is back in the Helmet cam business. http://contour.com/ I personally always preferred the side mounting profile of the Contour over the GoPro. So, good news for anyone in my camp or considering alternatives to the top-mounted Jumbotron profile - as great as that one is as well..
post #2 of 10

Hmm, that's interesting.  I thought Contour was defunct, too.  I've only owned and used GoPro, but they do feel and look like skiing around with a flat panel TV.  I always thought the form of the Contour was superior, but friends who've used it never liked the video as well as what they got out of the GoPro.  I wish them good luck...competition is always good for the consumer.

 

T. - wasatchreport.com

post #3 of 10

I too love the low profile contour shape, but the quality is nowhere close to the GoPro. The range is absolutely terrible as well. If they can improve both I would go back to Contour though for sure.

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PoisonTheWell View Post

I too love the low profile contour shape, but the quality is nowhere close to the GoPro. The range is absolutely terrible as well. If they can improve both I would go back to Contour though for sure.

I never really had a chance to compare video quality between the two, but to me, the Contour looked pretty spectacular on my 1080p tv screen, although I've only really played it that way briefly, a couple times. Looks great on my computer monitor as well, but maybe the Go Pro would look even better. Not sure it would be that much better though for me to sacrifice the form factor. Last year I picked up the Contour + model and really didn't upload any of the clips. So i just went and grabbed a quick clip, and uploaded to Vimeo. I had a hard time finding a segment with any sunlight however aside from this one which has some harsh back lighting at the end. So here's a real short segment. It is a little dark, but is the Go Pro's video quality really that much better?
post #5 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by carvemeister View Post


I never really had a chance to compare video quality between the two, but to me, the Contour looked pretty spectacular on my 1080p tv screen, although I've only really played it that way briefly, a couple times. Looks great on my computer monitor as well, but maybe the Go Pro would look even better. Not sure it would be that much better though for me to sacrifice the form factor. Last year I picked up the Contour + model and really didn't upload any of the clips. So i just went and grabbed a quick clip, and uploaded to Vimeo. I had a hard time finding a segment with any sunlight however aside from this one which has some harsh back lighting at the end. So here's a real short segment. It is a little dark, but is the Go Pro's video quality really that much better?

 

I have compared, here is a vid I took with pretty similar lighting. I'm not sure what you were recording on but they look pretty similar. The sun was kind of popping out here and there creating similar lighting, but mostly it was a very dark day and you'll see how it looks in those conditions as well. This is recorded in 720P and looked so much better before I uploaded to vimeo. I may have made a mistake in that step of the process.

 

 

IMO the GoPro is far superior in dark conditions and there is no doubt it has better range, the key here though is the go pro still has 2 higher settings 1080p and 1440. It also has something called ProTune which enhances everything, a 1440 ProTune recording looks 100 times better than these vids. I use my laptop while i'm traveling to do these vids however and it can't handle the file size. It's also worth mentioning that I don't and won't ever wear the GoPro on my head. I use Chest Mount or Pack Mount which IMO is a better angle.

post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
Damn! That's nice!! Didn't have time to sit through the whole thing at work, but will when I get home. Stunning scenery definitely helps here too. But I agree, the quality is excellent. Now I understand what you meant by "range." Yes, that Go Pro video does have excellent dynamic range. Although the Contour + also has 1080p, I can't upload to Vimeo above 720p without a paid account. As far as the chest mount goes, better for the wearer, I guess, but I still find it a little distracting with so much knee action in the frame, especially here with such spectacular scenery!
Quote:
Originally Posted by PoisonTheWell View Post


I have compared, here is a vid I took with pretty similar lighting. I'm not sure what you were recording on but they look pretty similar. The sun was kind of popping out here and there creating similar lighting, but mostly it was a very dark day and you'll see how it looks in those conditions as well. This is recorded in 720P and looked so much better before I uploaded to vimeo. I may have made a mistake in that step of the process.

IMO the GoPro is far superior in dark conditions and there is no doubt it has better range, the key here though is the go pro still has 2 higher settings 1080p and 1440. It also has something called ProTune which enhances everything, a 1440 ProTune recording looks 100 times better than these vids. I use my laptop while i'm traveling to do these vids however and it can't handle the file size. It's also worth mentioning that I don't and won't ever wear the GoPro on my head. I use Chest Mount or Pack Mount which IMO is a better angle.
post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by carvemeister View Post

Damn! That's nice!! Didn't have time to sit through the whole thing at work, but will when I get home. Stunning scenery definitely helps here too. But I agree, the quality is excellent. Now I understand what you meant by "range." Yes, that Go Pro video does have excellent dynamic range. Although the Contour + also has 1080p, I can't upload to Vimeo above 720p without a paid account. As far as the chest mount goes, better for the wearer, I guess, but I still find it a little distracting with so much knee action in the frame, especially here with such spectacular scenery!


Glad you liked it. Yeah the Knees get in the way, I should have used my pack mount. Problem is I ski pretty fast and jump off everything, so I get a bobblehead effect with the helmet mount. You can really notice the range if you give your cam to someone else and let them shoot you hitting a line. On my Contour I was a tiny spec if it picked me up at all, this is what I mean when I say the GoPro has much better range. But you bring up a good point with dynamic range as well.

post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
I think you mean Resolution by what you're calling range. Either way, yes, Resolution is very good as well as dynamic range in your video.
post #9 of 10

I'm surprised I never see anything written about Liquid Image Apex Goggles with a built-in camera.  I was given a pair as a gift, and I love them.  Some people complain about it being difficult to swap lenses or access the battery compartment, but IMO it's not that difficult, and it surely beats having an object protruding from your body that can get caught by trees and whatnot.  As far as I can tell, the quality is on par with the other cameras.  It has 1080, 720, stills, and rapid stills.  Plus, when you factor in the cost of a separate pair of goggles, the camera goggles are probably cheaper than a GoPro plus goggles.  Zeal came out with a pair too, although I haven't seen those in person yet.  

 

Here's a video I recently put together, if you're curious about quality.  For the most part, I deleted the audio because it wasn't interesting, but I left in a few "WOO HOO"s in there.

 

post #10 of 10

This is good news because I have a Contour, and it works great.  There are quite a few comparisons of the GoPro and Contour on YouTube and other places, and as of two years ago I  thought the GoPro had slightly better contrast with the rest of competitors (the few that were) far behind in several other areas.  The shape of the Contour is certainly more convenient for skiing, and with the correct setting (Tall HD) there is no issue seeing your skis in the videos when using the goggle mount. 

 

The issue with all of these cameras is, of course, using them for skiing and not MTBing, skydiving, zip lining or anything else.  There is usually little problem getting the exposure perfect when doing any activity except skiing, where skiing off a highly reflective surface and then going into shadows goes beyond the dynamic range of whatever setting the camera is preset to. Getting the exposure perfect in the mountains take a little practice.   For people who want basic home videos and not studio quality work, almost anything sold today--including the goggle cams--will do the job.

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