Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Discussions about anything electronics, from altimeters to cameras.

Moderator: Moderators

air.command
Astronaut
Astronaut
Posts: 1882
Joined: Mon May 14, 2007 11:18 am
Location: Sydney, Australia
Contact:

Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby air.command » Mon Jul 20, 2009 7:15 pm

Having had the need to replace the smashed FlyCamOne V2, I thought I'd give this camera a try:

http://www.lightinthebox.com/Thumb-Size-Mini-Pinhole-Digital-Camcorder---2GB-TF-Card-gifts-Spy-Gum-Camera-Hidden-Camera_p47769.html

(AUD$105 delivered)

It just arrived today and I have had a little play with it. I have to say I am amazed at this little unit. And when I say little I mean little. It takes up about 1/3 the volume of the Flycamone!

You can fit this in pretty much any rocket.

The video I shot indoors in low light was great although a little grainy, which was miles ahead of the flycam that shows mostly black. The frame rate was also good. I'll try it tomorrow when it is actually daylight. But from what demos I have seen the quality looked good.

The build is very solid and the case looks like it is made of alloy.

It came with a 2Gb micro SD card which gives around 1.5 hours recording at 640 x 480 @ 25fps. Operation is extremely simple. Turn it on, push button to record. Push again to stop.

The other option it has is to start recording when the sound level goes above a certain value and then stops recording after 2 minutes if the sound level drops off again. This I think would be ideal for rockets. ... turn it on to standby. .... yell at the rocket just before launch (or tap it a couple of times) and then launch within 2 minutes. The sound of the launch should be enough to keep it recording for most of a flight.

I'll try to use it for a launch at the next launch event and report back here on the quality or any other issues of the camera in flight.

I took a couple of pics of it next to the flycamone V2.

Image

Image
Crop Circles: ... just a bunch of guys looking for their rockets ....

~RR~
Engineer
Engineer
Posts: 1127
Joined: Tue May 01, 2007 5:30 pm
Location: QLD

Postby ~RR~ » Tue Jul 21, 2009 5:31 am

good one, can you take some video of both and put them together in a clip to compare?
Shane...
TRA # 11474

air.command
Astronaut
Astronaut
Posts: 1882
Joined: Mon May 14, 2007 11:18 am
Location: Sydney, Australia
Contact:

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby air.command » Wed Feb 03, 2010 7:12 am

One of the guys (Ruben) on the water rocketry forum just posted a link to this camera:

http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.32022

At US$19.95 with free delivery is not a bad deal! ... You will still need the memory card though, but that's pretty cheap. I couldn't resist and placed an order for it, at that price I wonder what the catch is?

We've been using the camera now for about 6 months and have been quite happy with it. While the image quality is not the greatest, it is good enough for general rocket use.

@RR: Completely forgot to post the comparison of the two cams here, even though I have the data. I'll post it here shortly.
Crop Circles: ... just a bunch of guys looking for their rockets ....

EMiR
Rocket Crew
Rocket Crew
Posts: 384
Joined: Mon Sep 15, 2008 5:51 am
Location: Brisbane
Contact:

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby EMiR » Wed Feb 03, 2010 9:17 pm

I got one of these to try out, I've seen some youtube footage of them, and they look pretty good, it does 640x480 @ 30fps
came with a 4Gb MicroFlash and cost me $15us
And weighs 16g


Image

Youtube footage using this keychain gizmo
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5eGXnpZQqk


I'm keen to get the sunglass version of these, pull it apart and have the electronics in the AV bay, and only have the micro lens outside the rocket

Image

http://stores.ebay.com/HuaQiangBei-Shop__W0QQ_sidZ929858977QQ_trksidZp4634Q2ec0Q2em14?_pgn=2

air.command
Astronaut
Astronaut
Posts: 1882
Joined: Mon May 14, 2007 11:18 am
Location: Sydney, Australia
Contact:

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby air.command » Wed Feb 03, 2010 9:50 pm

Following are a number of comparison images taken from the two cameras at the same time. Appologies for the large frames, but I thought it important to show them at full size.

Comparison of colour and image quality:

FlyCamOne2:
Image

MD-80:
Image


Rotation of camera around focal axis reveals the amount of distortion due to scan rate while in rapid rotation: (The fence normally has parallel and perpendicular lines)

FlyCamOne2:
Image

MD-80:
Image



Difference showing the variation of intensity from the center out to edges:

FlyCamOne2:
Image

MD-80:
Image




Low light comparison. These images were shot at night with only normal incandescent light bulb lighting the room:

FlyCamOne2:
Image

MD-80:
Image


The following pros and cons are based on a subjective assessment of the two cameras:
MD - 80
Pros
-Small size
-No battery issues
-No audio sync issues
-Simple operation
-Solid alloy case
-Good low light response

Cons
-Lower image quality
-Lower frame rate

FlyCamOne V2
Pros
-Movable camera head
-Can take still as well as video
-Better image quality
-Faster frame rate
-More functionality

Cons
-Audio sync issues
-Drops frames
-Battery capacity issues
-Poor performance in low light conditions.

Both cameras are well suited for general use in rockets. Overall the FlyCamOne has better image quality but can suffer from battery issues that can cause the camera to stop recording early. Although the MD-80 has lower image quality, it is far more compact and more robust making it a good choice when used with rockets that may land hard. The frame rate on the MD-80 as reported in Windows / properties on the AVI file ranged from 19-20fps. And data rate at 460-490kbps.
Crop Circles: ... just a bunch of guys looking for their rockets ....

User avatar
ROCKet STAR
Astronaut
Astronaut
Posts: 1721
Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2009 1:40 pm
Location: Blue Mountains, NSW
Contact:

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby ROCKet STAR » Wed Feb 03, 2010 11:45 pm

EMiR wrote:

I'm keen to get the sunglass version of these, pull it apart and have the electronics in the AV bay, and only have the micro lens outside the rocket

Image


Anybody who has tried to video a rocket launch with a hand held video camera knows just how bloody difficult it can be. I wonder if thoes glasses would make things easier? After all you just have to track it with your eyes, and the camera will follow. I wonder what the image quality is like? I'm guessing you probably couldn't expect too much from them.
Chris Barnes

AMRS# 29 - L3

UKRA - L3

EMiR
Rocket Crew
Rocket Crew
Posts: 384
Joined: Mon Sep 15, 2008 5:51 am
Location: Brisbane
Contact:

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby EMiR » Thu Feb 04, 2010 6:13 am

I've played around with the keyring version I have, and I'd say its about the same as a good mobile phone camera.

krusty
Engineer
Engineer
Posts: 1303
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2007 12:21 pm
Location: Noble Park, Vic, Australia
Contact:

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby krusty » Thu Feb 04, 2010 12:56 pm

I got one of these a while back:

Image

From this guy: http://cgi.ebay.com.au/ws/eBayISAPI.dll ... 0489717825

Cost me about US$12 + a memory card.

Here's two videos I've shot with it, I'm happy - does the job and didn't break the bank!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A9gGz3luky8
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jJv3bfBxbqk

Krusty

User avatar
OverTheTop
It's only money...
It's only money...
Posts: 2434
Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 2:20 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby OverTheTop » Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:31 pm

I don't remember signing a "model release form" to have my picture published Krusty!

Video looks great! I have purchased one of these also, but not yet flown it. Also got one for my God-son for his birthday.

I can't believe the quality from such a small cheap device! Depth-of-field is fantastic too. Not too sure what low-light performance will be, probably cr@p. But I would be expecting too much for my $15.
TRA #13430
L3
"Everybody's simulation model is guilty until proven innocent" (Thomas H. Lawrence 1994)

bpratt
Engineer
Engineer
Posts: 914
Joined: Sun Feb 10, 2008 3:20 pm
Location: Logan Village
Contact:

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby bpratt » Thu Feb 04, 2010 7:15 pm

deleted

bpratt
Engineer
Engineer
Posts: 914
Joined: Sun Feb 10, 2008 3:20 pm
Location: Logan Village
Contact:

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby bpratt » Thu Feb 04, 2010 7:15 pm

deleted

bpratt
Engineer
Engineer
Posts: 914
Joined: Sun Feb 10, 2008 3:20 pm
Location: Logan Village
Contact:

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby bpratt » Thu Feb 04, 2010 7:16 pm

deleted

evilfrogie
Parachute Packer
Parachute Packer
Posts: 47
Joined: Fri Sep 11, 2009 9:35 pm
Location: Shepparton, Victoria
Contact:

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby evilfrogie » Thu Feb 04, 2010 7:16 pm

I'm thinking of getting one of the cameras myself after watching the video, I think there quite good. One question though, has anyone disassembled one of these and, if so, would it be possible to move the camera/lense to outside the airframe. Thanks
Last edited by evilfrogie on Thu Feb 04, 2010 7:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

bpratt
Engineer
Engineer
Posts: 914
Joined: Sun Feb 10, 2008 3:20 pm
Location: Logan Village
Contact:

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby bpratt » Thu Feb 04, 2010 7:17 pm

deleted
Last edited by bpratt on Fri Feb 05, 2010 7:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

bpratt
Engineer
Engineer
Posts: 914
Joined: Sun Feb 10, 2008 3:20 pm
Location: Logan Village
Contact:

Re: Amazing MD80 Mini DV cam

Postby bpratt » Thu Feb 04, 2010 7:18 pm

will this post trip the thread on to a second page ?


Return to “Electronics”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests