Action Cameras for Every Adventure


There's a lot of planning that goes into mapping out an action-packed vacation, and sorry to break it to you, but capturing every highlight demands more than just your cellphone camera. Here, find essential gadgets for documenting every adrenaline-fueled moment—whether that's rafting down some rapids or paragliding high above a scenic mountainscape.

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Best for 360-Degree Recording

The 360Fly camera packs a lot of technology into one small, futuristic-looking package. It offers a 360-degree horizontal and 240-degree vertical field of view with use of just one lens, and switches from 360-degree mode to standard point-and-shoot mode with ease. That's a whole lot of versatility for such a sleek, streamlined product.

Specs: Sixteen-megapixel image sensor increases resolution to 2880 x 2800 pixels; 64 gigabytes of internal memory that can store up to three hours of 4k footage; built-in e-compass and non-assisted GPS; omnidirectional microphones record true stereo sound.

360Fly, $500, shop.360fly.com.

Best for Straightforward Editing

The Bandit water-resistant camera is a smart option for beginners who are intimidated by the highly technical world of recording and editing. The biggest perk of this handy travel companion? Its accompanying app, which allows you to edit hours of footage using your phone's interface—no need to download and transfer the footage first.

Specs: 4K video; built-in motion sensors track changes in everything from G-force to acceleration and altitude.

Bandit Action Cam, $311, tomtom.com.
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Best for Compact Size

All action cameras are designed to be easily transported, but the newly released Mokacam has the honor of being the world's smallest 4K camera. The tiny gadget is also the only camera with a rotating screen, which makes it easier than ever to capture the best shots from every angle.

Specs: 4K ultra-high definition; easy snap-on battery pack; the motion-activated mode automatically detects and films any movement; the magnetic mount allows you to attach it to any metal surface.

Mokacam, $199, indiegogo.com.

Best for Handheld Action

No need to worry about blurry photos with Sony's AS20 Action Cam—its "SteadyShot" technology minimizes shakes and vibrations in order to guarantee those crystal-clear recordings you're after.

Specs: Ultra-wide Tessar lens; waterproof; wi-fi compatible; built-in stereo mic; Exmor R CMOS sensor allows for low-light capture.

AS20 Action Cam, $150, sony.com.
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Best for Live Streaming

Want to bring your friends along for the ride? The Sioeye Iris 4G LTE camera is made to let you record, connect, and share your adventures via its mobile app or through the use of clickable web links. The live video broadcast gives friends and family a direct look into all the action—no wires or phone required.

Specs: 4G LTE; lens with protective coating; 150 degree POV with F2.8 aperture; 1GB onboard storage; slow-motion and time-lapse video.

Iris 4G LTE, $429, shop.sioeye.com.

Best for Underwater Shots

Snorkeling, surfing, or skiing? (Yes, it's even freeze-proof!) The Olympus Tough TG-4 is your camera. The "raw" setting on this model shoots the highest possible resolution, which gives you the most creative control in the end. Every small detail and bright color is accounted for with this camera's image-processing technology.

Specs: Built-in wi-fi; high-speed wide-angle lens; full HD 1080P video; super-macro modes.

Tough TG-4, $350, getolympus.com.
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Best for High Dynamic Range (HDR)

Wales-based camera company Olfi has given GoPro a run for its money. Their cameras' impressive video capabilities rival those of GoPro, but at half the price. And in addition to its high-definition 4K video, Olfi's HDR setting helps users retain vivid detail in the brightest and darkest areas of their shots.

Specs: Time-lapse video ranges from 0 to 30 seconds; the camera's photo burst can take 11 photos in 1 second; gyro stabilization reduces shakes; wide range of color-mode settings.


4K HDR Action Camera, $194, olfi.co.uk.

Best for Point-of-View Shots

Nikon's soon-to-be-released KeyMission 360 will be a game changer in the realm of body- and vehicle-mounted cameras. Not only will it capture 360 shots, but it'll boast ultra-HD 4K resolution.

Specs: Shock-proof and waterproof; dual lenses and image sensors; built-in wi-fi and Bluetooth connectivity; "vibration reduction" diminishes the effects of shakes and jitters.

KeyMission 360, nikonusa.com.
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Since its founding in 2002, GoPro has quickly become synonymous with adventure filming. The Hero4 is the latest update of their signature camera, and it embodies all the attributes for which the company is known: durability, reliability, and simplicity.

Specs: 1080p60 and 720p120 video; 12-megapixel images at 30 frames per second; built-in wi-fi and Bluetooth; waterproof to depths of 131 feet.

Hero4 Silver, $400, gopro.com.
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