Interested in getting a new camera for your cycling adventures, the good thing is, there is a huge choice now and you don't have to sell your single speed cyclo cross commuter to afford one either.
After commuting for more than 7 years in a busy and growing city and getting knocked off my bike more than a couple of times, it would have helped if I had had a camera to record the commutes before and after work. It would have been nice to look back at some of my most fun rides back home when I put my foot down and used it as a training ride and didn't mind sweating. The bike still comes out now but purely for fun, both on-road and off-road on my roadie and mountain bike.
Depending on what you require for your cycling videos there are a couple of requirements that we have filtered for above that you will need. Waterproofness being one, rain or shine, you'll need some weatherproofing and all the action cameras above are at a minimum, splashproof. Some require a waterproof case to be made weather sealed but all should be good, no matter how heavy the rain gets.
The next thing we have filtered for is looping recording, like dashcam mode, it means that when you are recording video footage, it means that what time you set, say 5 minutes, or longer, it will record for this amount of time and then record over this segment, so that you always have one file on your sd card, the last one that you required. This is especially good for cycle commuting, you can be re-assured that if something was to happen, you'd have it recorded on your camera and sd card.
The cameras above aren't limited to these settings, they can still record normal video footage, photographs and others do other formats too, like burst mode, time lapse, etc.
Finally, the list of best cycling action cameras has been sorted by best battery life.This is a very important feature, if you want to ride for hours on end or record that century, you'll need a camera with a big battery life.
Where To Mount Your Camera On Your Bike
Cameras come in various sizes, shapes and with a myriad of features, the best bike camera for you is the one which does exactly what you want. If you just want to record rides out and control the camera with your voice, there are choices for you. If you want a helmet camera then you will be better off with something that is lighter and that can be put on to your bike helmet without feeling as though you have a brick attached to your head.
You have plenty of options on where to mount and position a bike cam, your bike or your body, you can even get a follow drone if you're that in to it for even better third person viewing.
Helmet Camera Mount
If you are using a 360 camera, this could be the best way to do it, by using a helmet camera and mounting it on top on your helmet, you will get the most of your ride and commute in the shot.
You can also place normal wide action cameras on your helmet, facing forward and you'll get a great POV shot as you ride. You might also find that you will get a smoother video with the camera on your head because you'll have the added dampening your body provides as well as any suspension that is already on the bike.
Beware though, as soon as you start adding cameras that weigh even 100g to the top of your head, that drag and weight will add up over long distances and you may find yourself with a stiff neck and shoulders the following day.
Front Facing Handlebar Mount
By far the most common, you can mount a camera underneath your cycling GPS computer and you'll get a full view of whats ahead of you and if you have drop bars you might get some of the hoods in too, which leads for a nice angle and shot.
With this view you will have a great choice of mounts and you can mount the camera on top of or below your handlebars. You'll see most videos online from this angle, especially those who may be commuting as it will show everything that is happening ahead.
Rear Facing Seat Mount
With this approach, you are covering an area that you can't see, a simple seat or saddle mount will fit most cameras to your saddle or seat post. The cycliq has a specific rear facing camera and light combo, so you can be seen and also record footage at the same time. The Gitup camera manufacturer recently released a duo action camera setup, specifically to cover you for this situation, you put the smaller camera of the two at the rear and the front camera is of standard action camera size. They both connect to each other as well, as do the new Cyclic 12 and 6 CE (Connected Edition) models.
Action Camera Body Strap
A camera angle that can be used for more than just cycling, the body strap. Running, kayaking, hiking and other sports can benefit from this POV angle, used quite a lot with adventurous cycling and more so with mountain biking. You will get a lovely POV shot from this angle, just remember to tilt the camera up a little to compensate for your body leaning forward.
Over The Shoulder Mount
Not used in cycling videos that often, but it doesn't mean you can't. By placing a strap around your chest and over your shoulder, you can attach and mount an action camera to your shoulder to get a similar angle to that of a helmet camera. It may not be as smooth but you may get more of the shot in, including a small part of your body, which might give some cool results.
Check Your Field of View and Camera Angle
Always check your camera angle before you set off, as stated above with the chest strap, the last thing you want to do is record an awesome ride, but not get anything in shot because you're aiming at the floor or the sky.
You can do this before you ride and fix the camera firmly to you or the bike by using a friend or an action camera app that comes with your camera. The phone app is probably the best bet because you can then put your phone back away to use later and you know you've got that perfect angle.
Now you've got the camera angle down, what frame rate and video resolution are you going to choose?
What Settings To Use On Your Bike Camera
This again, like camera features you require, will depend on your scenario. If you want to record low lit scenes, forest shots, evening rides or any time you may have a little bit less sunlight available, aim for 30fps. This smaller frame rate will enable more light to be let in during your recording and another positive is that you can record more of this footage if you aren't using loop mode.
If you want to get more action in and to make it look smoother, choose 60fps, so you'll require a camera that does that at 720p or 1080p at a minimum. There are a couple of choices now for 4k at 60fps and more should come in through 2018 and beyond. The Yi 4K+ Plus and the GoPro Hero 6 Black both can record at 4K 60fps but you'll just have to make sure you have a large memory card for this job as it will eat through your memory in no time.
If you are more of a tech geek and love you numbers, you could look in to getting a camera with GPS so that you can overlay the data from the ride on to your video, the Garmin Virb's do this out of the box as do a number of other cameras.
Don't forget that if any specific feature takes your fancy, use our one of a kind action camera look-up tools. They are the latest action camera filter grid, the simple table with the barebone features and the mega (not safe for mobiles) look-up table with every feature, spec, filter and sorting option you could wish for.