Sunnycam Xtreme Edition Review
So summer is now upon us, meaning people will be spending more time outside. People will be embarking on long hikes in the British countryside, taking to the beach for a dip in the sea and taking part in extreme sports in various parks. Wouldn’t it be great if you could document your summer adventures first hand? Well now you can. Rather than strapping an action cam to your body, Sunnycam has come up with a way of capturing a true first person viewpoint, directly through a set of sunglasses.
The sunglasses themselves are made from a very thick plastic to keep the weight low. There’s nothing worse than having a pair of glasses feel too heavy, as they do start digging into the bridge of your nose. The set we were sent were comfortable, but did have a couple of sharp edges around the bridge, so I had to pick away at the plastic first to make them feel okay. They are a little tight around the temple area, but if you’re going to be swinging your head around while mountain biking, you don’t want them falling off. The entire product is covered in a matte black finish.
They charge via a microUSB cable, of which the port is on the underside of the glasses. The Sunnycam glasses have a 500mAh Lithium-ion battery which will give you around an hour of record time. There is a built-in 16GB storage which will give you close to an hour worth of full 1080p recording time. Not too bad for something that’s built into a pair of sunglasses. No support for extra microSD card, and from what we’ve seen, cannot be connected to a mobile phone. The USB port has a rubber cover to protect them from the elements.
As a whole they are IP65 water resistant, so no submerging, but a rain shower won’t be enough to damage them. If the sunglasses lenses aren’t for you, there are a set of polarizing lenses that come in the box. They’re the type that react to sunlight, and return to being clear once inside. There’s no information on whether you could stick your own prescription lenses inside however, so bare that in mind. And they aren’t big enough to fit over your glasses.
The 1080p recording looks quite nice, considering the camera is so small. The camera has been placed right on the bridge of your nose to capture the widest angle possible. I did stretch out my arms in front of me and I couldn’t see the tips of my fingers on the camera, so not sure what kind of focal length this is so it’s not a true first person viewpoint. There is no built in image stabilisation either so you’re going to experience some shaky video, especially if you’re on a bike going over rough terrain for example. Even walking you can detect your steps and natural head movements quite clearly.
The picture quality is a little washed out, and looks a little over-exposed in some cases in sunlight. You could apply some kind of colour grading to try and pull back some detail, but it’s by far not the worst picture we’ve seen come out of a portable device like this. It could compare some kind of mid-range smart phone camera.
The Sunnycam Xtreme Edition sunglasses is a great idea, and it means you need no other accessories like a chest strap or helmet tripod that you would generally need with most other action cams. You can also find these for under £100 online from various retailers too which I think isn’t a bad price at all. So if you’re looking to grab some footage of your summer sports trips and you can’t justify the cost of a £300 GoPro, then look no further, these are a nice budget alternative.