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Steve Sawyer 06-11-13 08:33 AM

New to video - looking for a way to mount
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I recently bought a Nikon Coolpix S9400 camera, and have been really impressed with the video quality. I'd like to start documenting some of the routes I ride regularly, so would like to mount this on the bike.

First, the camera has the mounting threads at the extreme end of the case, right next to my left hand when shooting it hand-held. It makes me kinda nervous to think about the weight of the camera hanging off of the mounting screw on any mount, but if I can't find a mount that will fully support the bottom I'm sure I can cobble something that will deal with that.

It would seem that the best place to mount the camera is on the frame, not the handlebars to avoid the constant twitching as the bike is steered, though I might be wrong on that. If not, this suggests a mounting on the head tube. I can find plenty of camera mounts to go on the handlebars, but haven't found anything that might work on the head tube.

Any suggestions?

Jason Abbott 06-11-13 09:37 AM

You'll get much more stable video if you can mount it to your body. If you prefer to mount to the bike, though, look at the RAM mount options. They may have some with damping.

ItsJustMe 06-11-13 09:47 AM

I'd be very nervous about mounting a camera with moveable optics on a bike. I think it would be quite hard on the optics and the mechanical bits around it unless there was something to absorb shock. Mounting it on the body might be OK. I'd also be nervous because hardly any point and shoot cameras are sealed against dust, and I'd think a lot of it would get in the optics where you'd never get it out again.

rumrunn6 06-11-13 09:55 AM

yeah there are other "ruggedized" sports cameras better suited for what you want to do. you are better off hand holding that baby ...

Steve Sawyer 06-11-13 10:11 AM

Thanks. Hadn't considered the effect of shock, vibration and dust on the camera. If I end up doing a lot of this, I'll probably spring for one of the GoPro Hero cameras which are obviously more suitable and rugged for this kind of use, but I was hoping to get some experience using what I have in hand before dropping more $$ on another camera.

If I go with body-mounting, it would seem that it would make more sense to go with a helmet mount.

ItsJustMe 06-11-13 10:23 AM

FWIW, I have a GoPro Hero3, and I'd advise looking elsewhere. They're not magic. I'm having just as good luck with an RD32II which is $125.

The downsides to the RD32II - unusual special cable for charging, and no removable battery. Upsides - smaller, looks less ridiculous on a helmet.
Downsides to GoPro - is EXTREMELY picky about MicroSD cards - I have about a dozen and a total of TWO of them work in the GoPro. ALL of them work just fine in everything else I've ever put them in. Also after formatting in the GoPro, my cards become unreadable in some devices and have to be reformatted multiple times to get them back. Also, the loop recording feature is broken - if the card is full when you turn it on, it SHOULD just delete the oldest file and carry on, but instead it complains that the card is full and refuses to continue. You have to manually delete files before it will begin recording, which is a joy at the side of the road.

1nterceptor 06-11-13 12:38 PM

If you check out my earlier ride videos(; I just used mostly
compact point and shoot cameras. Olympus 810, Samsung HZ30W, etc. I used a mount that goes on the bars:

For added stability, I wrap the camera with some strips of an old inner tube.
4:40 mark in this video:

rumrunn6 06-11-13 02:23 PM

dude that tunnel run was sick (as-in very excellent) - glad you were with a group tho!

rumrunn6 06-11-13 02:29 PM

I'd be interested in a small mobile vid cam if it recorded MPG file format instead of AVI so that I could use my MAC or my Windows computers.

ItsJustMe 06-12-13 06:40 AM


Originally Posted by rumrunn6 (Post 15731101)
I'd be interested in a small mobile vid cam if it recorded MPG file format instead of AVI so that I could use my MAC or my Windows computers.

Pretty much all of the HD cameras are recording h.264 video. They might be contained in AVI or MP4 or MOV, but that's a triviality that any good video editing software (mac or PC or Linux or whatever) will deal with. AVI (or MP4) is just a box that holds the video, the important part is that the video inside is h.264.

You really don't want MPG - it's a horrible and old format that really can't handle the bitrates of proper HD video. I don't think anyone uses MPG at over DVD resolutions (which are pretty poor by today's standards).

rumrunn6 06-12-13 07:55 AM

got a digital cam recently - not for the bike - just stuff in general - and was disappointed the MAC was such a PITA about the AVI file format. didn't want to edit it just look at it and post it on facebook. turns out windows7 has a native program that lets you easily view, edit, screen grab, etc. The MAC probably does too, though their picture software IPhoto sucks (insists on organizing and hiding my pics)

so whatever format can be read natively on both platforms would be good out of the box. I think an MP4 is their proprietary audio file, not video? do you mean MPEG4? anyway I'll be poking around for something someday

facebook is cool tho, they can take anything

Steve Sawyer 06-12-13 10:05 AM


Originally Posted by ItsJustMe (Post 15730119)
FWIW, I have a GoPro Hero3, and I'd advise looking elsewhere. They're not magic. I'm having just as good luck with an RD32II which is $125.

Thanks for the suggestion.

I think what I'm going to do is cobble up a mount for my helmet, which should give me some experience shooting video and go from there. Helmet mounting should provide enough shock absorption to avoid wear & tear on the camera, and be far enough off the road to keep dust & dirt to a minimum, plus provide a smoother platform for the camera.

ItsJustMe 06-12-13 11:40 AM

MP4 is video. I first saw the format on iPod/iPhone video, but it's in wide use now and not just with Apple.

There should be software that can transcode AVI into MOV or something else. As I said, AVI is just the container format, and it is a "venerable" old format - you can translate that into "old and crusty" - it doesn't have nearly the features that newer formats have. That said, MPG is even worse. Proper modern formats like MKV and the like have much better support for modern features.

Apple tends to get really uppity about using formats that they don't like - they get into their "well, you should be using non crappy equipment then" mode when you complain, rather than making their stuff play well with others.

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