Gearbest F23 Action Cam Review

Summary:  For those interested in a basic 1080p 30 FPS action camera without too many bells and whistles, the F23 action cam takes decent video and has an acceptable build quality. Its best uses would be as a cheap bike DVR for road riders or for someone who will occasionally use their camera and does not want to throw down a lot of cash. While it’s limited by its hardware, it has set my personal standard for video quality in a sub-$60 camera.


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SJCam M20 Review


Summary:  This is my favorite SJCam I’ve tested to date, with excellent daylight recording and a unique form factor. Aside from some needed improvements with the gyro and low light recording, this is a good option for those looking for a budget action camera.


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Amaz-Play HDP-100 Pico Projector Review


This Amaz-Play HDP-100 projector is a compact projector with acceptable brightness and a sharp picture, but the picture is too blue and the fan is quite loud. It works fine for movies and multimedia but for applications that require accurate colour I would recommend looking at the WH-80B or something with 100+ lumens instead. 


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OnePaa X2000 FPV Camera Review


The X2000 has tack sharp 2K video with good color and exposure. It includes a mounting system for drone and FPV use but is not compatible with most action cam hardware. The camera does not have a screen, but instead includes a 5.8ghz wireless video transmitter.


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Auto-Vox D2 Review


The AutoVox D2 is a cheap dash cam built with low quality internal components. The result is a device that has poor video quality and low reliability. I reccommend looking at the A118-C (link above) as it is known for higher quality video and better reliability.


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AmazPlay WH80B-M Pico Projector Review


Summary:  While it’s a little bit expensive for the features, this projector combines good picture quality with a nice build and excellent battery life, making it a good choice for those who want a projector that can be charged by USB. Just note that it will not run off of USB power unless the power bank is capable of supplying 2.4A. Were the AmazPlay priced at $229 it would be easier to recommend, but as it stands there is the AAXA ST-200 at the same price, which has less battery life but is native 720p (and resolution is one of the more important aspects of these projectors). For only a few dollars more the AAXA P5 has identical battery life, is brighter and has 720p too, but is bigger. Taking into consideration the size and battery life of this projector, it’s a good option compared to many of the other 480p projectors available at this price point.

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Is a $20 action cam worth it? (NOPE!)

 

So I managed to get my hands on a cheap $20 action cam from Amazon. This is the identical internal hardware for those “1080p” action cams that go for anywhere from $15-$20 on eBay. I thought I was buying a slightly better cheap action camera and this was a good deal – but the listing was misleading and I ended up with a piece of garbage. Skip to 2:00 in the video if you just want to see samples.

Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.

-Me and I’m sure countless other people who bought this cam

Video Transcript:

So I was looking to buy a cheap action cam for my sister and I ended up grabbing a ‘good deal’ from Amazon. The seller images and description were for a SJ7000, a knockoff of the SJcam SJ4000 that actually has acceptable video quality, but I thought the price was a little too good to be true. Hint: it was. So that brings me to this video: what exactly does $20 get you in terms of an action cam?

This thing takes…1080p video. Ooh, Wi-fi. Apparently has a Novatek processor (that’s a lie). 2″ screen.. It comes with all the standard accessories, and they are of standard quality. And from the outside it actually looks pretty good. The differences between this camera and the one in the listing are subtle on first glance. It’s only missing these little notches down below the power button. Build quality seems fine… until you press the buttons.

Ho-ly- *beep*. That power button feels like pressing my finger into warm butter. There’s no feedback to it at all. The camera turns on though, that’s a good sign… You can’t really see it in the video, but the screen flickers noticably. Here’s what the menus look like.. Do you.. do you hear that?! The camera is making an audible click noise, as if it is trying to trick me into thinking the buttons themselves are clicking! Oh my God!. Image quality high, that’s cute. ISO maxes at 200, this thing is gonna suck in low light! Also this battery door is the worst thing ever. The release latch is too close to the actual door and I can’t get my fingers into it. I had to use a knife…

Ok so I’ve been putting this off because I really don’t want to see…but… Let’s take a look at video quality.

It supposedly shoots in … 1080p. And yeah, the video is 1080p, but it’s AVI compression. And if you know ANYTHING about video, you’ll know just how bad AVI is. Take a look at the sky. See how the gradient in color isn’t smooth? Look at how the video brightness appears to jump and skip as I change locations. It’s just plain awful. There’s actually an OK amount of detail and the entire frame appears to be in focus, until I start to move, then everything just gets lost in compression. Gross. Also, I notice that when you’re looking at the screen from an angle, the orange dot that indicates not recording turns red, so the camera wasn’t even recording for a good chunk of the time I thought it was! This is made worse by the fact that this camera doesn’t beep or have any front indicator lights to tell you when it’s recording.

Maybe still image quality will be this cameras saving grace. NOPE.

This is literally the worst still image I’ve seen from a camera since 2007, and I had the ORIGINAL iPHONE. There’s no resolution at all. It looks like someone rubbed chili peppers in my eyes!

What about sound? Can you hear me?? NOPE.

So, if you’re watching this video and wondering whether those cheap sub $30 action cams that film in AVI are worth it, hopefully this has been enlightening. I wouldn’t even want to give this to my enemy. Spending $10 more on a camera will give you significantly better hardware so don’t cheap out THIS much. And always pay attention to what you buy, otherwise you might end up getting screwed.

 


 

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