Soon after we first tried the Contour GPS action camera, the company's "new and improved" Contour+ update sought to address several of our niggling issues. "Bigger lens!" they said. "Better audio!" Would they deliver the goods? Or was it all just marketing wizardry? Watch our snow video comparison.
We finally got our hands on the Contour+ and took it to Thredbo for a bash last weekend — and we're impressed.
Keeping in line with our last insane trip into the wild, we took a GoPro for the sake of comparison. This time, both cameras were strapped to the same helmet and were running their default settings (besides setting the recording mode to 720p at 60fps) for consistency and glorious slo-mo.
As you can see in the video above, the Contour+ picture is a little flat and underexposed, while the GoPro picture is a tad over exposed.
Depending on your taste, the GoPro footage may be more appealing out of the box, but the default Contour+ picture is more suitable for colour grading in post. If your prefer the higher contrast without any fuss, the Contour+ allows you to modify your picture settings via your phone on the fly, or on your computer before heading out.
The last time we tested these two brands of rugged camera, we found the Contour range easier to use. This is still the case, even moreso with bulky gloves on.
Getting the Contour+ set up and recording on the slopes was an absolute breeze — we had it connected to our iPhone in seconds to check the shot and had zero issues with the gigantic sliding record button.
The GoPro on the other hand was tricky to operate, and if you miss the on/off beep, it's impossible to know if it is recording without checking with a mate.
The GoPro was in its waterproof case while the Contour+ was naked, so comparing sound is not really fair — but the quality of sound output from the Contour+ is a massive improvement over the Contour GPS. It's actually usuable. The Contour+ also features an external 2.5mm microphone jack, which we didn't get a chance to test, but is a really handy feature to have.
The Contour+ not only addresses all of the concerns we had with the Contour GPS, but builds on a good camera and makes it even more awesome.
GoPro, old friend — you have some catching up to do!
The full video of the trip will be online soon — follow Ben White's personal Vimeo account if you're interested!