GoPro has been the dominant player in the action camera market in recent years, so much so that the name has virtually become a generic trademark. But there are plenty of other action-ready video cameras capable of filming your extreme sports outings in Full HD (1080p). Though sometimes less advanced than the latest GoPro devices, these models are nonetheless decent alternatives for most users.
In comparison to these alternatives, the current GoPro Hero3+ offers the ability to shoot in 4K (4096x2160 pixels) and in 170° ultra wide-angle mode. This camera is available in two versions, Silver and Black, each with its waterproof case, for $299 and $399 respectively.
Sony Action Cam HDR-AS100V
Introduced at CES in Las Vegas in January 2014, the latest version of the Sony Action Cam films in Full HD and is shockproof, dustproof and waterproof at depths of up to 60m when used with its underwater case. This model rivals the GoPro thanks to its very thorough feature set, including a Zeiss lens designed specifically for the Action Cam. WiFi and NFC compatible, the camera can also be controlled through a smartphone.
Camsports Evo Pro 2
While it looks more like a flashlight than a camcorder, this action camera from French manufacturer Camsports is capable of filming in Full HD and even has a slow-motion mode. The model has a 135° wide-angle lens, is waterproof up to 10m and weighs just 65g. Several accessories are available, including a remote control, external battery and various mounts for different uses.
Price: €199 (around $215)
This model from JVC is dustproof, shockproof, freezeproof and waterproof up to 5m, all without the need for a separate case. The camera comes with a wide-angle lens with a 5X digital zoom and a gyroscope-based image stabilizer designed to better film fast-moving action scenes. Footage can be transferred to other devices using WiFi.
Toshiba Camileo X-Sports
This little rectangular camera comes with a waterproof case that allows it to shoot scenes at up to 60m underwater. A remote control is provided, but the device can also be controlled through a smartphone with a dedicated app. As a photo camera, the device supports burst shooting, and a simultaneous video-photo mode allows users to take stills while continuing to film video. Of course, Toshiba offers a range of mounts for attaching the Camileo X-Sports to your helmet, your bike, your surfboard or yourself.
Price: from €249 (around $340)
The least expensive camera in this selection, priced at less than $100, the AC-100 is limited by its 1.3MP resolution and battery life of less than two hours. Equipped with a 120° wide-angle lens, the model is delivered with a waterproof case (up to 10m), a protective cover and a set of mounts (windshield, handlebars, helmet).