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Old 04-29-12, 12:35 PM   #1
Myosmith
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Camera shake

I've got a Cannon Powershot camera and recently got a handlebar mount for it. I was disappointed that even with the anti-shake feature, the road vibration is just too much and makes for blurry video on all but the smoothest roads. I know that helmet or chest mounts would eliminate a lot of the fine vibration, but I see a lot of videos out there that seem to have the camera mounted on various parts of the bike frame and they are not nearly as blurry. I'm not sure if the GoPro type cameras just handle fine vibration better, if there are vibration dampening mounts, both??? I'm putting together a chest harness but I'd like to do some video with rear facing mounts or perspectives from different parts of the bike frame.

How do you get clear video on anything other than smooth concrete roads?
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Old 04-29-12, 01:47 PM   #2
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Is the mount really firmly attached to the bars. i.e. if you flick the camera it does not vibrate? I've mounted my powershot (with mechanical IS) with a spare cat eye rear reflector mount with some bolts and washer to get the spacing right. Its on there pretty firm and even though there are vibrations for bumpy high speed shots, most of the time it's pretty stabilized and not blurry.

I do have a front air fork, but I do have it setup pretty stiffly.

The only problem with the handlebar mount is that you can get affected with motion sickness when viewing it. My wife refuses to be in the same room when I play my trail shots on the TV. I'm thinking of experimenting around with making a chest harness out of an old baby harness that we have. I'd probably look pretty stupid with the big purple thing stuck on my front. But, worth it if I can get some good shots of my sons on the trail.
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Old 04-29-12, 03:10 PM   #3
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Helmet Cam!
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Old 04-29-12, 04:39 PM   #4
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This is a GoPro Hero HD mounted to the handlebars on a rather bumpy Texas chip and seal road. It was a rather nice downhill, 49.7 mph.


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Old 04-29-12, 05:39 PM   #5
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If you check out my Youtube account you'll notice that I have a lot of riding videos.
Using different cameras(Olympus 810 compact, Samsung HZ30W compact?,
Nikon P100 bridge, GoPro HD, ContourGPS), using different mounting positions(helmet,
fork, handlebars, rear triangle, handheld). I think how the camera is mounted makes a
big difference; the more solid, tight the mounting is - the more stable your shots will be.
Also, the sports oriented cams(GoPro, Contour, etc.) don't have a lens that zoom in and
out that adds to the vibration. Before you spend any money on other mounts or cameras,
I would suggest to add some strips of inner tube to whatever setup you have now and
see how it goes.


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Old 04-29-12, 06:56 PM   #6
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Probably depends more on the video capture rate of the camera than any mounting options you can up with. You haven't specified a model or a fps spec so its hard to be definate, but if you only have a 15 or 30 fps option - it ain't gonna happen.
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Old 04-29-12, 07:22 PM   #7
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Use software antishake. If you upload to Youtube they will automatically offer to do some shake removal. VirtualDub also has some good and free antishake filters. Other editing software may have options as well. You will reduce your overall resolution by doing this, either that or black-bar the sides form time to time.

Honestly I wouldn't attach a camera with optical antishake such as a Canon powershot to a bike. I would think that it would wreck the mechanism pretty quickly.
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Old 04-29-12, 07:46 PM   #8
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I have a $20 Vivitar DVR480 and it does not have an excessive shake issue even with no antishake features. I would venture to say the biggest issue would be the mount having too much flex. The ones that came with the Viv are very stiff, though I had to add padding inside the latches. The mounts have a removable plate that can stay with the camera, but there was play in the click. A little double sided foam tape with only one side peeled(leave the backing on the other).
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Old 04-30-12, 04:34 AM   #9
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Suggestions:

Stiffen OR loosen the mount as necessary to move the natural frequency of vibration for the camera/mount away from the excitation frequency bandwidth.

The camera mount or camera extension is likely a cantilever. Use a snubber at the free end of the cantilever (likely top or front of camera) to deaden vibration at this point. The strut for the snubber structure would need to be a very solid and rigid.
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