SJCAM Common questions and suggestions.

After reading some suggestions for the next camera models that SJCAM will produce, I think it’s time to write some thoughts regarding questions on features (or the lack thereof) currently in the SJCAM cameras that most of us own. Some of them sort of leave us hanging, and with good reason. Some, though, just simply needs an explanation to properly understand. I can only be able to discuss a few that I think are worth mentioning in this post, those that we commonly get in the support section.
Note: As of this writing, the current latest model SJCAM Action Camera is the M20.

Screen goes blank while playing back video on the camera LCD.

You have your Screensaver on. Turn it off if you want to watch your videos in full. Keep in mind that the LCD screen that comes with your action cam is intended as a viewfinder and a status indicator. Watching a 30-minute video you just recorded this afternoon at the park is generally not a good idea on a measly 1.5” or 2” display. You’ll only hurt your eyes. Besides, you’ll use up your battery’s charge faster than you can watch 2 of those videos.

LCD screen does not show true recording exposure.

As stated above, the screen is intended to be used more as a viewfinder and a status indicator. It will only show you, a good idea of what will be recorded onto your memory card. Like with any other camera, one must be familiar with photography settings well enough to judge what exposure is required for any given lighting condition. I would also want to see some developments in this particular area. Hopefully we will see a screen that will display, in real-time, every little aspect that will go into the recording.

Screen is washed out when viewing it in sunlight. What can be done?

The type of screen used in action cameras is nowhere near at par with most Smartphones of today. Phones even have that capability to adjust its screen brightness depending on the lighting conditions. For action cameras, the display is, again for the most part, just a simple monitor. Maybe an OLED screen will solve the brightness and contrast issue when you’re out in the sun. I think that there is still room for a better screen here, too, myself. My only worry is that it will add to the overall price tag for a budget camera that most SJCAMs have been known for. For the time being, I suggest you cup your hand over the top of your camera to fight off glare.

Audible sounds when starting a recording or taking a still photo is too soft. Please make it louder.

Because of space limitations inside the camera and weight considerations, the speaker is deliberately made small. Just loud enough to make audible beeps/sounds to be heard in a not-so-quiet environment.

The camera is not equipped with a sound level sensor to make adjustments. In environments where sound pollution is present (like in the streets, in restaurants, etc.), it will be difficult for you to tell the indicators apart from the background. It would require a much bigger speaker for a camera that small to be able to produce a loud enough volume for you to hear it well enough.
This is where the very bright LED indicators come in handy. But of course, it doesn’t address the issue being discussed, additionally, there are situations where the camera is mounted elsewhere that looking to see if the LEDs are blinking or not may prove impossible, like, on a helmet, for example.

Recorded sound while the camera is in the Waterproof Case is too soft. Can this be fixed?

The waterproof case is hermetically sealed. No water or air can pass through in either direction. Although sound waves travel through solid, liquid, and air, it varies greatly across those media.

Of those three, air is the best of them, as a greater range of frequencies can be recorded properly. Which means that for sound to be picked up correctly, it requires a direct, or reflected line to the microphone.
Now let’s say we did have a way to control the volume and boost the microphone sensitivity, a very large portion of the audible spectrum will still be left out, and the sound you will hear in the recording will be only those that are either extremely too close to the camera, or is directly in contact with the case (conduction). Either way, the sound will not be acceptable by any standards.

When will SJCAM release a proper 4K camera? Interpolated 4K just don’t cut it for me.

Yea, I must admit that it is taking SJCAM some time to catch up with this most common request. Although, not a lot of people have the proper devices/equipment that can handle such big video filesizes that 4K video recordings will produce. The amount of time to render big files like that when editing is just too much. And to output that to YouTube, well, that too, will take a lot of time to upload. We haven’t even covered the bandwidth required to do just that (See last topic on my other article on this here). We’ll see soon what’s next. 4K is definitely on the SJCAM lineup anyway, that’s for sure.

Got any of your own you want added on to the list? Write it down in the comments below. Just keep in mind that this is for SJCAM related cameras/items only.