Thursday, October 19, 2017

mini love - part 29

In my well laid plan to equip AV equipment in my Mini the street car named Desire, I put a number of products on the Amazon wishlist. I do this so I can pounce on the items when I see a good deal.

Amongst other things, I have a GoPro Hero 5 Black on the wishlist. Unbeknownst to me it is what they called a bulk pack SKU, which the sellers do not disclose they are actually refurbished camera kit. They misrepresent these as economic packaging which save you about $45 over the $399 Amazon "street price". It goes for $355 on average on Amazon by its partners.

Being a cheap skate the $355 discounted price is not good enough. I watched and one day I saw one that is Warehouse Deal and I pounced on it. Only after I committed the purchase that I realize the subtleties of the "bulk pack" being refurbished. Too late now, so I waited until its arrival.

it arrived!

when I saw the packaging inside, I thought good, this appears to be are brand new camera that is an open box

this is what it look with the full retail packaging - not the brown box "bulk pack"

the clear plastic display case has some scuff marks from the camera banging against the inside

thankfully there is no scuff mark on the camera front or back side

the happy dog indicates this is a brand new camera

the reason I got this for a Warehouse Inc. deal is the package is damaged

one unsettling thing is there is this tiny plastic piece (bottom) that looks as if it is broken off from a part

I examined every piece part and cannot find anything that is broken. I concluded it is a piece of injection mold snapoff during the production that made into the package.

here the protection case is detached from the base

I found a not so high performance SD card to use until I get a large capacity one. I proceed to charge up the rechargeable batter and perform basic functional tests to make sure everything is good.

it is a bit of struggle to remove the doggy screen overlay but I managed; the screen surface is pristine

The best part is I got this brand new camera for a significant discount over the $355 "bulk pack" that are refurbished. My cheapness paid off once again.

The down side of this newer camera is the USB-C interface. If you want to use an external microphone like me, you have to buy the Pro 3.5mm mic adapter from GoPro. Unlike the previous model one can purchase a much cheaper USB to mic adapter cable which is just a passive cable. The Pro 3.5mm mic adapter is an active device so cost $49.

pro 3.5mm mic adapter

As I haven't purchase the other two RAM Mount piece parts to assemble the final version of the passenger seat headrest mount for it, I made do with what I have to test out the mockup. I found a spare ball mount base which I could use with the GoPro's adhesive flat base. Instead of wasting the adhesive pad, I use a zip tie to secure it together for a makeshift temporary setup.

one zip tie is all that is needed

I added a nylon screw and nut to stop the GoPro base from slipping off the zip tie

even with the short arm there is no problem at all even with a passenger

The Hero 4 Black has 5 field of view setting for many HD video modes, ranging from narrow, linear, to ultra wide so there is a lot of latitude on the coverage I want to use. I went for a around the blocks test drive and took a short video. The image is crystal clear even set at 720p/60.

I still have to play with pairing the Hero 4 Black with the iPhone and use with Harry's Laptimer.

GoPro's software support leaves a lot to be desired. Their desktop app Quik only support Windows 10 so I am shit out of luck to use it on my Win 7 desktop which I do most of my heavy lifting work on.

this is their OS and hardware requirements
So I downloaded and installed Quik on the 5k Mac. Again their sleazy tactic trying to get you to sign up for their $5/month account is part of the installation click through process. I wasted the time to enter some basic user account information only to realize this sleaze at they end when it ask for payment method.

The software is quite good and light weight for basic editing especially trimming.

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