Mobius HD Action Camera Review/Mounting

Mobius HD Action Camera Review/Mounting

I’ve used cameras on my bike for around 6 years, now, eschewing the ‘popular’ (i.e. expensive) cameras in favour of the cheaper options.  I’ve also found that the cheaper cameras are smaller, and so more covert to use.

Whilst looking for a new helmet camera, someone on a bike forum mentioned the new Mobius HD Action Camera.

It’s designed by the same people as the very first Keychain Spycam I used all those years ago.

It’s far smaller than the rest (although bigger than the Keychain Spycam), and a more sensible shape for most fitments than Go Pro’s and the like.  It was also boasting some extremely impressive HD 1080p quality.

The more I read, the more I liked: 80 min battery life – but you are also able to record whilst using external power, great low light resolution, super-wide lens available as standard, and a promise that this is a camera FOR THE PEOPLE.  As such, there is a user designed software set up package and the whole shebang is still being actively developed.  And a good price of £50-£90 depending on where you buy from.

The only thing stopping me buying it was the lack of waterproofing or any cases for it.  This makes it pretty useless most of the time for what I want it for.

Then, after keeping my eye on things for a few months, I saw mention on a forum that JooVuu have created a custom waterproof case for the Mobius – and so I ordered a camera and case.

The Mobius has been developed primarily for use on radio controlled planes and helicopters, because of its small size and light weight.

My ultimate plan was for something to use on the Formula Vee race car this season – and being able to use it on the bike would be a bonus.

Mounting it on the car won’t be an issue (I’m thinking on top of the roll hoop so it give a view ahead and down into the cockpit), but for the bike it posed more problems.

As an initial test I used the supplied Velcro mount stuck on top of my helmet.  This works fine, but wind noise is a major problem – and there is no external mic.  In the waterproof case the wind noise is massively improved, but the overall sound is also far quieter, so you can’t hear much of the bike engine, for example.

The problem was trusting the extra weight when the camera was in the waterproof case…

I ordered a few new mounts, deciding I’d use a permanent stick-on mount screwed into the camera.

As you can see, this took me back to the whole Go Pro situation of looking like a damned Telly Tubby with the camera sticking out the top of my head!

I couldn’t live with this, so found some sturdier Velcro, unscrewed the bolt mount from the waterproof case, and went back to the tried and tested Velcro method.

This is still far less covert than an MD80 hidden behind my tinted visor, but it’s just about acceptable.

All seems pretty stable using just the Velcro up to speeds that wouldn’t be legal off a race track, but I’m sure there would be an upper limit where things might depart company, but it would take a lot.  How fast to RC planes go, anyway?  120mph plus?

So the Mobius Action Camera itself is well impressive.  File size is quite large (about 1.4GB per 15 minutes), but not too bad in comparison to other action cameras.  You would be wise to choose a 32GB card for it, though.  Incidentally, the software program will allow you to set recording to chunks of 10, 15 or 20 minutes.  There is no gap between the files.  There is also an ‘max’ option which will record up to 4GB to each file, but I found reviewing footage could freeze – probably down to my system limitations than anything with the camera, and all footage was useable.

The only fault I can really find is the picture is a bit blurry/pixelated in the bottom right hand side. It just looks like there’s something on the lens, but is such a small area it’s not a worry.  Also, the spare lens covers supplied with the JooVuu case are pretty scratched up (See comment below – I now know there is a protective sticker you’re supposed to remove- doh!).  You can’t see any difference in picture quality when using the case, and I’m sure dropping a quick email to JooVuu’s excellent customer support would mean a few replacements being sent out – I haven’t done this as it really isn’t an issue.

I’d definitely recommend the Mobius Action Camera to anyone, and the fact that it is still being developed for the end user by Mobius and third parties like JooVuu is extremely impressive, and bodes well for the future of this fantastic camera.



The Decline Of The MD80

The Decline Of The MD80

MD80 Helmet Cam

I’ve been using an MD80 camera mounted inside my helmet to film all my motorcycling adventures for around five years.

I started out with the Veho Muvi camera that it copied – and although the Veho had better battery life and lasted overall for around 2 years, the cost difference meant I switched to the far cheaper MD80.

The MD80 had some drawbacks – some versions have a different focus point, that you can’t really adjust.  The battery life declines slowly but surely, so that effectively they only last up to about 6 months.  That wasn’t so much of a problem, as you can now buy them for £6-£10, so they’re pretty disposable.

The main problem I’ve found in the last couple of years is that, from brand new, the battery, which used to last for an hour of recording time (the same as the Veho Muvi), will now last for 30 minutes at best!

Picture quality has improved on them, but file size has also increased.  I have been using a wide-angle lens with mine for a while now (see pics) which also improves things a little.

The second biggest problem, however, is that where they used to record in 30 minute segments (again, like the Veho), the latest 3 or 4 that I’ve had have only recorded in 10 minute segments.  This is compounded by a 30-60 second gap as file is closed and a new one created to record.  So you miss anything that happens during that time.  It also makes it pretty useless to record alongside another camera, as when you join each file from the MD80 it’s out of sync after each 10 minute segment.

I could switch back to Veho Muvi, bite the bullet, and pay at least £60 for one, but to be honest things have moved on.  640p no longer cuts it, with so many other full HD cams on the market for the money.

So it may be time to retire the smallest, and only real covert camera that I use whilst riding.

I don’t particularly want one of these Telly-Tubby arrangements for a helmet camera, but it’s looking like I might have to.  I guess a side-mounted bullet-style camera is the next best option?

Shame, because the whole Veho/MD80 camera was perfect for my needs… and surely someone COULD now make a HD camera the same size??

MD80 wide angle lens

Rockingham International Trackday 21/05/11

Rockingham International Trackday 21/05/11

I was watching this for ages, and as soon as the weather looked good (just over a day before!) I booked my first trackday of the year and my first for almost a year!  With No Limits trackdays and as Intermediates was all booked I was in the Novice group with a mate…

I quite liked the International track when I did it before, and to be honest liked it a lot more this time.  Compared to circuits like Oulton it’s a bit soulless – but there’s no denying that in the dry it’s still a -ing great place!

This was also the first trackday I’ve done where I was using my road bike – a Kawasaki ZX9R Ninja C2 – rather than a fully tricked-out hire bike.

I figured I’d take it easy in the first session I’d just feel out my bike and then had options from there, as you may have seen in my last blog.  

I HATE sighting laps!  OK, I see their point, but FFS people don’t cruise around them – use them to get some heat in your tyres!  I didn’t have the luxury of tyre warmers this time, but already know my Pirelli Angel ST tyres are good for kneedown from cold (I did a video to prove it!), so unsurprisingly I was still flying past almost everyone on the warm-up laps.  That’s not because I’m great on cold tyres – it’s just because I know the limits and still leave a massive safety margin whilst getting a move on.

There were a fair few incidents, but considering most ‘hardcore’ trackday riders pick mid-week dates, this Saturday event didn’t seem to have any Nob-heads in the Novice group.  Sure, some were slow, but generally the pace was pretty quick and there were a few very fast riders – including my mate and a few from who I met.  I couldn’t stay with them.

I got advice from the Tyre Guru to use pressures of 34psi front and 32psi rear.  After noting that my front tyre was screeching like a teen at her first fisting mitten session under heavy braking, instinct told me to drop the pressure even more, but the same Tyre Guru advised against it, and I had to admit what I already suspected…. That my front brake discs are warped.

Major issue, but I just had to brake early and try and ride around it.

My worries of ground clearance were unfounded, because on track I hang off so much more than the road that my foot pegs were clear.  The tyres were also much better than I thought, and although I could have pushed harder they never failed me.  Sports-touring tyres?  Well the videos will show me on full throttle, kneedown at 12,000rpm and 120mph all the way around the left-hander after the first chicane with not a single glitch!  Very impressive for tyres I honestly thought would overheat and try to spit me off!

I was a bit proud that my mate and I were representing 90s sportsbikes and how cheap trackdays can be done, with him on a 1996 Fireblade, and both of us riding around the outside of much more modern machinery.

Then, in the 5th session my mate lowsided it into the last chicane thanks to one of the TDR riders (only joking lol) – amazingly little damage, but unfortunately he broke a footrest hanger sliding over the curves so his day was over…

I found my fitness was a major problem, and I was proper gassing when I was on the pace.  And I was lapping around 1min 50 – which for a 12 year old ‘sports tourer’ on sports touring tyres and with warped front brake discs that I knew I couldn’t afford to crash – was very impressive!  And also seem to have got one lap in closer to 1m40!

Great day – good to meet all those who I did, and I should have a ‘highlight’ video uploaded soon… The professional photos should be sent out soon.

EDIT: There are 3 good laps through traffic then a load of mistakes, crash victims and other stuff at the end.  You can hear my front tyre screeching under hard braking if you listen closely – and also hear I was doing some serious trail-braking into some of the corners to compensate!

Tank Mounting The Veho VCC-005-MUVI-HD10+

Tank Mounting The Veho VCC-005-MUVI-HD10+

One problem I’ve been having with my Veho HD10 camera is with the sound.  It seems that the microphone is very sensitive, and will even pick up sounds such as vibrations and movement through the casing if you tape it to anything, like I do.

The way to get around most of the sound issues is to either use the mounts supplied by Veho, or to make your own.  I decided to try using one of the ‘official’ Veho mounts.

This one has a strong sticky pad that I stuck onto the tank.  The glue is very strong and even just plonking it on there in the cold it stayed put confidently.  Ideally, you want to make sure it’s set by sticking it on and leaving it overnight to set properly.  There are several of these types supplied.

The camera and mount attaches to this with a velcro pad.  I chose this for easy removal, but as it turns out the extra ‘give’ of the velcro meant the camera has far too much free movement!  The actual mount itself has two connecting joints (you can add more or remove them as required) – make sure these are screwed in as tight as possible, as they do work loose so the camera position moves!

My petrol tank does move a little with engine vibrations, and this didn’t help matters.  Before I’d screwed the joints up REALLY hard, I found the camera started to lean backwards under acceleration so it was filming the sky, and went forwards under hard braking and over harsh bumps.  My advice is to use as few of the joints as you possibly can for maximum stability.

I have no interest whatsoever in filming my speedometer – I don’t use cameras to show off or prove anything, so I’m not a major fan of this set-up!  You may well love it, and it could be good on track.

To eliminate the excess movement you may also want to stick the camera mount directly to the tank, and not use the velcro pad like I did.  If you do this you can still remove the mount and camera quickly and easily, as they all slide and click in securely anyway.

Oh, and the camera itself screws into the mount nicely, with no need for tape, padding, or anything else.

Overall, the mounts are all very good and very easy to use, plus they’re quite adaptable.  They’re well thought out, but you need to have a think yourself about where best to put them and which to use.

So what’s next?  I didn’t like the tank mounted option because there’s just too much movement on my bike.  I think next I will stick one of the pads onto my top yoke and see how that goes.  I’m also tempted to get the suction mount and put that on the inside of the windscreen… I’m not sure on a bike there’ll be anywhere on the screen flat enough to get good purchase, though?

And I finally got around to putting the supplied CD-ROM into my laptop – there’s nothing special on it apart from an electronic copy of the user manual, so those who can’t get it to load aren’t missing anything here!

I’ll get more pics and video of my next run…

First Knee-Down Of 2011

First Knee-Down Of 2011

I can’t even remember if this is earlier or later than usual, but today was the first day of the year that I heard that distinctive scrape of plastic kneeslider on tarmac!

It’s still only around 8 degree Celsius here, and the roads are colder than a polar bears winkie – but the sun had been shining all day and so it was on with the Buffy neck warmer and away.

I’m still playing with mounting options for the Veho HDd10.  Sound is a major issue, because not only is it picking up far too much wind noise and high end sound, but it seems to pick up vibrations through the casing itself when taped to anything vaguely vibratey.  Yes, that is a word.  Today I used one of the Veho clip mounts, and taped this to my brake reservoir, rather than putting any tape on the actual camera directly.  Sound seems a lot better, but the very loose mounting point meant the camera was a bit wobbly.

It’s looking like a custom mount will be the way to go – possibly similar to the one I made for the micro cams, where you just slot the camera into some foam.

The bikers all over the UK seem to have woken up today, so I’m sure I’m not the first to scrape my knee today!

I was still worried about cold tyres and the mud still on the sides of mine, but I know the Pirelli Angel ST tyres have excellent grip from cold, so it’s more in my head after getting used to looking out for ice patches all Winter.  Just because the sun’s out doesn’t mean the road conditions are good and grippy…

My riding felt a bit off.  Speeds I’d normally think nothing of were feeling fast to me today – most likely thanks to driving a slow-assed car around so I’m more used to that than bikes now.  Consequently I was taking it relatively easy, because I just didn’t feel very comfortable when cornering.

Despite this, on a few roundabouts I put the feelers out and cranked the old ZX9R over enough to scrape the footpegs, and if you can scrape the pegs you can scrape your knees!

I followed someone on a grey BMW GS with hard paniers for a while before overtaking nice and safely when the opportunity arose.  He turned off on a roundabout, and so I was a bit surprised to see him in my mirrors again shortly afterwards.

Coincidence?  Maybe… but he then followed me everywhere I went.  This is a red flag because the Police do like these bikes, and it’s easy to conceal cameras and blue lights in those hard paniers.

As I’ve said, today I was riding sensibly, so this was even more strange… unless maybe he saw my camera as he turned off?  He certainly had a few opportunities when he followed me to get a good view of it, so perhaps he was watching to see me do something stupid for the camera.

I didn’t.

I rode nicely, pretending I hadn’t seen him, and headed towards a favourite place to see if I could get my knee down without much effort.

He followed me all the way, so I turned off early onto some more fast flowing curves.

Most people are surprised at how well a big BMW GS can move compared to a sportsbike, but when it comes to smooth, fast curves NOTHING beats a sportsbike.  It’s the reason for their whole existence.

Even at legal speeds I pulled out a gap, and then as a switchback curve obscured his view of me I tightened my line around a left-hander, shifting my weight over to the left as I gripped between the footpeg and the side of the petrol tank with my right leg.

Reaching out a little with my left knee was all it took for the slider to touch down.

Ahh, that beautiful, addictive sound!

And literally in front of the police?  Could be…

Veho VCC-005-MUVI-HD10+ Full Review After Onboard Test

Veho VCC-005-MUVI-HD10+ Full Review After Onboard Test

See this blog for my initial review of what you get and some tech specs: INITIAL REVIEW

The Veho VCC-005-MUVI-HD10+ comes with millions of mountings and attachments.  By far the best option for a sportsbike is to stick it near the front of the tank where it will have an excellent view of the clocks and through the screen.  Mounting it on the tailpiece would be quick and simple, too.  In fact, for a track bike there are loads of options!

For the road, however, I soon realised my options were far more limited.  I don’t want to film my speedo.  That’s far too easy to incriminate yourself when you’re pulled over doing 75mph and the Police view the footage.

My other big consideration is for a bit of stealth – and the HD10 just doesn’t allow this anywhere near as well as the smaller cams such as the Veho Muvi Pro or MD80.  Plus there’s the 1.5″ video screen which draws attention at the traffic lights.

In the end, I went back to duct tape and sponge, mounting the HD10 on the front of the brake reservoir in the same place I favoured for smaller cams.

This still isn’t ideal for fast installment and removal – such as when you stop for petrol and don’t want some Scrote grabbing your camera off the bike whilst you’re inside paying.  This is something I will work on.

The velcro strips are very useful for mounting and as extra ‘security’ measures in case the cam does fly off at 190mph.

I used a simple piece of foam between the cam and the brake reservoir, and vibrations were minimal.  The footage doesn’t go wavy at high revs or over bumps.  There is some jolting, but footage is still continuous and it seems good.

More of a problem is the sound.  I think it’s more sensitive than the smaller cams, which means it does pick up more, but the crisper sound also picks up a lot of wind noise.  I think the hole on the front cover is for the mic, and I will try and dampen it next time by putting some tape across and see how that helps.  It has potential.

The time/date stamp is still there, although smaller on the HD10 it’s still a totally unnecessary pisser.  It is easier to set and can be altered through the menu options at any time – but I don’t want it there at all!  For one it’s unsightly, and secondly it goes back to incriminating yourself by showing the exact time and date the footage was filmed.  It could work in your favour or very much against it, so I randomise any stamps on my cams.  PLEASE GET RID OF IT, VEHO!!!

To be honest, I wasn’t  as impressed with the video quality as I was expecting to be.  It is better than a Veho Muvi Pro, but not by much… that is until you watch it on a full-size TV, where the difference really shows!  It’s still a bit grainy – especially in poor light conditions (see my test video) but the widescreen is good.

The 160 degree fisheye-type lens isn’t as terrible as I thought it might be, and doesn’t distort the footage in ways that make it look weird and unwatchable.  It’s just about right.

Playback on a TV directly from the DH10 is very impressive.  There is no broken footage or waiting around for it to play.  I’ve only tested this with the USB cable into my Xbox, but I should imagine the HDMI connection is just as flawless.

In my test the HD10 was recording at 1.28GB for every 30 minutes of footage – and again Veho needlessly split the footage every 30 minutes.  It does this quickly and does offer some protection if a file goes corrupt, but I doubt anyone likes it.  Sort it out, Veho.  And I got a shock editing my video in Windows Media Player, as this cam records as a .mov file and not a .avi.  This may not be an issue with other software, but WMP has to convert all the file before you can even snip a 30 second chunk out to edit.  Having said this, the .avi’s from the Muvi Pro and MD80 wouldn’t play from the cam through the Xbox or video player, whereas these files WILL.  And this is a Very Good Thing!

What is impressive is battery life.  All these cams make a claim that you can halve and then it’s getting closer to the truth.  Veho claim ‘4 hours recording time’ for the HD10 and for my test I left it recording for well over 3 hours before it switched itself off… and I later noticed that this was because the memory card was full!  Four hours of recording seems very realistic – and possibly more!

So overall the Veho Muvi HD10+ is damned good, but a bit of a let-down in parts, for me.  It’s just about perfect for filming trackdays – aside from it not being waterproof – or other more overt uses.

It IS a good camera, and for the price there isn’t much that compares.  The next one up is a £250 GoPro, and the next one down is probably a Veho Muvi Pro for around £60, so it does sit nicely in the gap.  Would I buy one again?  Well… unless my budget extended to the GoPro (which is even less covert and awkward to mount anywhere for everyday road use), then I would have to say that I would.

I was just hoping Veho would have sorted out things like the file-splitting and especially the time/date stamp.

You may disagree and think it’s amazing – I just think that they could have done better…


Click here for my review and comparison of: Keychain Spycam, MD80 and Veho Muvi Pro

VEHO VCC-005-MUVI-HD10+ Mini CamCorder – Initial Review

VEHO VCC-005-MUVI-HD10+ Mini CamCorder – Initial Review

I have a new cam!  I don’t know if it’s because it’s so new, but there is no information online about this yet that I can find?!

Anyway, Neru on my blog drew my attention to the fact that Veho have a new cam out – everyone seems to list the VCC-005-MUVI-HD7 but when I looked I could see a HD10 – with higher 1080 resolution – so I decided to pay the extra and get that one.

Most of you will have heard my high praises for the Veho Muvi Pro which I have used for around a year now.  There are some failings of this cam, but overall it’s better than the cheap MD80 copy, and for the price has never let me down.  Having used it there are features I’ve found I’ve needed, though, such as: ability to take an external mic (for narration whilst vlogging or overall better sound), GET RID OF THE -ING TIME/DATE STAMP, preview screen for alignment/playback, longer battery life, and higher resolution.

Well Veho have addressed some of these with a proper HD camera with (claimed) 4 hour (1400mah) battery life and a 1.5″ colour screen included!  In addition this had a remote control unit, digital 4x zoom, ability to take 32GB micro SD cards, 8MP still photographs (weirdly EVERY spec I’ve found says 5MP as per the HD7) and loads more!

I found one on Ebay for £129.99, and the temptation was too much.

First impression is that it comes as standard with loads of accessories – I’ve got 4x velcro straps, 2x stretchy straps, 2x flat mounting plates, 1 concave mounting plate, 1 velcro mounting plate, more sticky-backed velcro, and 3x different holder thingies!  More than what it says I should get, actually!


I was also a bit gutted to see it’s around four times bigger dimensionally than the Muvi – but I suppose that’s to be expected…  It just means crafting new mounting if I don’t get on with what’s supplied.

It looks well made.  I’m prodding it now and can’t tell if it’s case is metal or plastic because it’s coated in that grippy matt stuff.  I think it could be metal.  The touchscreen-type buttons on the rear are a bit too sensitive and easy to touch whilst it’s on.

This has full HD support with an HDMI out socket and AV out (untested) and the usual USB port for charging/data transfer.

An initial test run in the car showed it recorded for over 1 hour and the new battery level gauge was only exhausted by one third – so it seems reasonable to expect at least 3 hours.  This took over 3GB of memory from the 4GB card supplied, so a memory upgraded is highly recommended.  Recharge time (it also now tells you when the battery is fully charged by a flashing light which turns constant) seems to be an hour or less to replace the hour or so used.

It has sliders again for on/off and voice activation which is great to stop false in-pocket activation, and seems to wake up and record in around a second from the remote control.  Shutter speed for still pics is pretty slow but quality is good at 8MP.

Oh, and the other thing putting me off buying this camera is that it has a 160 degree lens, and so a bit fish-eyed!  This seems to be less intrusive than I thought, but until I get it on the bike I won’t know for sure.

Performance in the dark seems a bit poor.  Probably the same as the Muvi Pro, I think.  Very grainy even under flourescent lights, but daytime seems like the promised improvement.  Vibration whilst taped to my cars rear view mirror wasn’t a factor, and I have to say it appeared to pick up ambient sounds much better than the Muvi Pro.  Where the Muvi Pro barely picked up in-car conversation and virtually none of the engine noise, this HD10 picked up both.  It remains to be seen how it copes with the 12,500rpm roar and vibrations of a Kawasaki ZX9R superbike…

Specifications as given on

Resolution Full HD 1080p
Cmos lens 5 Mega pixel    (***Surely this is 8MP??***)
Memory included 4GB (Micro SD) Max 32GB
Frame rate 30fps
Battery 1400mah Lithion rechargable
Angle 160 degrees
Screen 1.5″ LCD – Bright colour
Record time up to 3 hours continous recording
Wireless remote range 5 metres
Weight 81g
Dimensions H 80mm x W 47mm x D 19mm