Water Rocket Car Cameras

We are going to try a couple of different cameras to reduce weight on the water rocket car.

We have ordered an MD80 clone camera which is very popular in the  rocket and R/C communities as well as a cigarette lighter camera. Both support SDHC MicroSD memory cards so we purchased a reputable 4GB card which will give us hours of recording time.  The lighter camera arrived first so we will review this one first.

Lighter Camera
The lighter camera looks just like a normal cigarette lighter but it is a hidden video camera with audio inside.  Its main features are:-

  • Its very light at 16 grams
  • Its camera lens is on the end of the lighter, so can be streamlined along bottles
  • Built-in 220mAh rechargeable lithium battery that charges via USB
  • Resolution of taking video is 720*480
  • Resolution of taking photo is 1280*1024
  • Support Micro SD card Max to 8G
  • Lens: 2.0 Mega CMOS
  • The video adopts motion JPEG, records and saves it as AVI files
  • USB interface : USB1.1/2.0

Here are some pictures of the lighter camera

Lighter Camera

This camera is fairly easy to use once you know what the sequence of lights means. As all modes are activated with the one button you need to watch the internal flashing light to know what mode its in and when it is taking video or pictures as well as when it is turning off and charging.

The main test is how good the video is. So far we have tested it in good sunlight and late afternoon sunlight. In very good light the video is acceptable but is still not great. In late afternoon light is very jumpy and almost unusable. The afternoon test was walking with the camera and it was very jerky and didnt seem to record every frame. We will need to do a test on the water rocket car under acceleration to see if this jerking video continues.

… update:  …  Well we did stick the camera to the water rocket car to see how good the video quality was while it was moving. The quality is  ok but not as good as we would like.  It seems the camera is just not up to doing good enough quality if the car is moving about. We may be able to use it as a secondary on-car camera or just a stationary camera for the car leaving the cage or something.

Here is some video from the lighter camera (updated with on car video as well)

We will also try the MD-80 camera when it arrives and post a review.

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This entry was posted on Sunday, January 16th, 2011 at 12:09 am and is filed under Development. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.


One Response to “Water Rocket Car Cameras”

  1. HHWRSA » Blog Archive » MD80 Camera Says:

    […] tests showed the video quality was quite good and much better than the cigarette lighter camera we tried. We mounted this camera on our water rocket car for our recent test day. The camera […]