written by: Misty Faucheux•edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 7/22/2010
Want to record your shooting expedition? Then, you need a gun mounted video camera. But, what is a good gun mounted video camera? Learn more below!
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What is a Gun Mounted Video Camera?
Video cameras that mount to the top of a gun allow hunters, law enforcement personnel and other gun users to videotape the entire event. For hunters, they can have a record of their kill to share with others or even assist in perfecting their skill. For law enforcement personnel, this could also provide them with a training tool, but it could also record the scene for use in court.
A gun mounted camera stays on the gun via a mounting platform, known as the gun camera mount, that attaches to the gun stock. From there, the video camera is securely held onto the platform. The video camera will be slightly higher than the gun stock so that it gives a good line of sight to record the action. And, many come with viewfinders facing the user so that they can ensure that the camera is pointed in the right direction.
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Batteries, Casing and Weatherproofing - Oh My!
So, what is a good gun mounted video camera? Well, first of all, it needs to be waterproof. Unlike traditional camcorders, this machine is going to be exposed to all sorts of weather conditions. You can’t quickly cover it up during a rainstorm.
Further, users should invest in one that can take a bit of a beating. One with a harder case will work best. These will be a bit heavier, but it may be worth it in the long run to ensure that the camera doesn’t get banged up in the first few uses.
Invest in one that only needs AA or similar batteries. This way, you can simply change out the batteries when they run down. In the woods or out in the field, you may not have time or the ability to plug in your lithium battery and wait for it charge. It’s best to ignore that scenario altogether.
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To Zoom or Not to Zoom?
Go with a black camera or invest in a camouflage skin covering. If not, you will give away your location a bit easier with silver or bright colors.
Try to get one that records onto a hard drive or at least comes with a 2 gigabyte or higher SD card. You want to be able to capture at least an hour of video. If it doesn’t have a hard drive, bring extra memory cards. These are so small that they should easily fit in any pocket or bag. But, you should only flip on the camera when you are planning on shooting video. If not, you’re just eating up your memory.
While zoom may be important for traditional camcorders, you’re probably not going to have time to zoom in and out. So, don’t worry about this feature. But, you should worry about video resolution. You’ll need at least 640x480 VGA. If not, you’re video’s going to be really grainy.
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While there aren’t a lot of video cameras specifically made for mounting on guns, there are a few. For example, the TacCam was built for law enforcement use and is now available for the public. This small camcorder easily slips into the gun mount. It uses AA batteries and can capture 30 frames per second, and its resolution is 640x480. It’s also pretty small and lightweight. It can be used on a wide variety of guns, including paintball guns, regular guns, bow and arrows, and water bikes.