Best bike cameras for on and off road cycling – 2017 edition

Whether you want a camera for safety, for video making, or to just have fun with – there’s plenty out there to choose from. We’ve hand picked a few that we recommend and added in some notes about what mounts you’ll need to make these cameras bike friendly.

GoPro Hero5

GoPro has always been the leader in portable cameras and their latest Hero5 camera is no exception. The Hero costs £380 on Amazon, but it’s unlikely you’ll find a better camera. It features a 12 megapixel sensor capable of capturing 4K at 30fps, 1080p at 120fps and 720p at up to 240fps.

 

It’s incredibly simple to use and they’ve added a rear touchscreen, voice control, and GPS – they’ve packed a lot in such a small space. They’ve also added the QuikStories feature, which automatically transfers and edits footage for you. Like with any GoPro – attach it to your helmet, backpack, or handle bars for any kind of footage and you’ll come out with top-of-the-market quality shots.

You can strap the GoPro on to a rucksack, but you’ll most likely want to add a bike mount to your spending spree. The official GoPro Handlebar, Seatpost and Pole Mount costs around £25 from Amazon.

GoPro Hero Session5

Hero4 Session

On the more affordable end of the spectrum, but still offering up to 4k video is the GoPro Hero session. This comes in a compact size, with largely the same set of features as the GoPro Hero5. Of course, you don’t get the touch screen, but the camera can be controlled through your phone. Otherwise, just tap the record button and start your cycle. The GoPro Hero Session5 can be purchased for £129.00 from Amazon. The same official bike mount we mentioned above, also works with the Hero Session5.

Cycliq Fly Cameras

fly12 cycliq cycling camera

The Cycliq Fly 6 rear bike camera and the Fly 12 front camera provide both a bike light and a camera. That’s handy for those of who are not fans of clutter on our bike handlebars.

Fly 12 bike camera

Staring with the Fly 12 – you get 1080p at 45 fps. The camera is built with cyclists in mind. The wide angle lens means you can capture license plates in a 135 degree arc of footage. The camera battery has a massive 10 hour life but by far the most impressive part of the Fly 12 is its bike alarm. Whenever the unit is moved too much the light will begin to flash and the camera will record. The app will also alert you when the alarm is set off providing a useful security feature.

The Fly12 bike light offers 400 lumens of LED light, making it perfect not just for being seen but also for late night dark commutes. You can mount the Fly12 above or below the handlebar, thanks to the cone-shaped beam. The light can be configured through an accompanying app, allowing you to choose different light modes.

The Fly12 can record with a looping video meaning you’ll never run out of memory space in the included SD card. As the card runs out of memory it’ll wipe the older footage. If you did have an accident, the camera will sense this and preserve that footage.

With two buttons on the back – you can turn the unit on and off, cycle through various light modes and tap to transfer data over wifi to the Cycliq app on your phone.

For Strava lovers, you can even overlay Strava metrics on your video.

The Fly 12 will set you back around £200 but for that you get a complete package, with no need to buy any additional mounts. The Fly12 is by far one of the most feature rich and impressive cameras we’ve seen for an urban cyclist.

Fly 6 bike camera

We put together a very thorough review of the Fly 6 back in 2014. The Fly 6 costs £119 and comes with 6 hours of battery life for the camera.

Vermont Action Camera

Now we go to the other end of the price spectrum. Action cameras are incredibly expensive so we want to include an option that was reasonable for everyone. For £19.99 the Vermont Action camera is the cheap option allowing anyone to grab a cam and go. Its great, compact, easy to use and captures HD footage at 1080p at up to 30fps. It only has around a 90 minutes of recording time, so expect to have to charge it regularly.

There isn’t a lot of information about the brand and they only exist on Amazon, but they offer a 1-year warranty so if anything does go wrong then you can get it replaced or your money back. Its not going to win any video quality awards, but it does the trick. For the price you also get a helmet and bike mount.

RoadHawk Ride R+ Cycle Edition

RoadHawk is a British brand that for over ten years has only been making high-quality cameras for motorists and cyclists. We really like this camera for its size and sleekness. Unlike all the other cameras, it’s not bulging out too much. If you’re the cyclist who doesn’t like too many ‘things’ popping off your handlebars or helmet then take a look. For £136 on Amazon you get 1080p at 30fps, 720p at 60 fps, waterproof for raining cycling, and video is time and date stamped. The camera comes with three mounts – one of your handlebars, a tray mount and a flat tray mount.

TomTom Bandit

The TomTom Bandit is a great high-quality addition to the camera market. Check out some of its video here. The GPS maker has taken its expertise and used it to build in a series of sensors that record location, speed, and G-force – and when the sensors pick up something exciting, they automatically tag the footage. How nifty. The app is handy too – give your phone a shake and the app automatically edits the footage. It’ll set you back around £150 from Amazon and isn’t as aesthetically pleasing as some others, but its great value for money from a trusted brand. In reality, you’ll also need to purchase the bike pack, which means the cost quickly rises to a hefty £270.

You may also be interested in our helmet camera roundup, which features the Garmin Virb, Contour and Polaroid Cube.

What camera do you use and recommend? Add a comment below.

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4 Responses to Best bike cameras for on and off road cycling – 2017 edition

  1. Simon D. 28/09/2017 at 2:59 pm #

    “The Fly 12 will set you back around £200 but for that you get a complete package, with no need to buy any additional mounts”

    Everyone that I cycle with will have to buy additional mounts because it only comes with a 31.8mm mount and and my mates have all got 26 mm bars. I shan’t be spending £200 on a light and camera that comes without a bracket.

  2. Adam Bowie 29/09/2017 at 11:25 am #

    A couple of things to note.

    Probably within hours of you completing this guide, GoPro announced the GoPro Hero 6 Black which is now their top-end camera. From reports it records in 4K at a higher framerate, but perhaps more importantly for bike use, has improved low-light recording. Anyway, it’s a full £499 at launch!

    It’s also worth pointing out that you’ve perhaps confused two different GoPro Session cameras: The Hero5 Session and the regular Hero Session. They look the same, but one is twice the price of the other. The £129 model is the regular “Session” and doesn’t come with some of the functionality like 4k video.

    That said, the cheaper model is pretty good, I’ve been perfectly happy using one of these on my Brompton as a “commuter cam” for the last few weeks, attaching it below my handlebars with a cheap minimal mount from Amazon. And I took it snorkelling on holiday as it’s waterproof without a case to 10m.

  3. Chris Tailby 29/09/2017 at 2:34 pm #

    I’ve been happy with my Contour Roam which I bought a few months ago. It is very well made although the weight on my helmet took a little getting used to. Buying the “goody bag” of mounts gives extra choice for locations for mounting the camera.

  4. Paul 02/10/2017 at 5:20 pm #

    It would be so much easier if the Roadhawk had the same type ofhelmet mount as the USE Joystick helmet light. So simple and effective. Anyone know if the Roadhawk would fit this attachment? Why go to the bother of devising straps and rubber bands?

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