One of the more difficult aspects of trying to review watches and fitness trackers is shooting video of me actually using them. The problem quickly came apparent that I really needed a third hand to shoot the videos.
Update: As much a I hate being the bearer of bad news, I wound up returning this product because it kept freezing up on me and resetting it didn’t fix the issue. Maybe I just got a defective pair because many other reviews are positive. I’ll keep looking for the right one for me!
I needed a video camera that recorded what I was seeing and allowed me to use both of my hands. An action camera, like a GoPro might be a good idea but it’s hard to be inconspicuous with a camera attached to your forehead while strolling through the neighborhood. Yeah, I’m probably known for being a bit eccentric but even that’s a little too goofy for me.
So, I sought out a pair of glasses that had a built-in camera. I thought they may be a practical alternative. I found the Powpro PP-SG110 camera sunglasses on Amazon and it had good reviews and some sample videos that looked decent, so I gave it a try.
I’ll let the sample videos below help you decide on the video quality but here are the specs and my list of pros and cons for a quick review.
The specs on the camera are:
- high definition 1920*1080 P
- 5.0 MP
- recording speed: 30 fps
- polarized sunglasses
- rechargeable battery by USB cable
- works with microSD cards, class 10 up to 32 GB
- battery life advertised to be 1.5 hours
- fairly accurate color reproduction in good lighting conditions
- easy to use, just push a button and start recording
- no attachments needed
- the sunglasses are actually quite good as sunglasses
- comfortable to wear with snug fit so they’re not likely to blow off
- easy and fairly quick to charge by USB cable (included)
- battery life of about 1 – 1.5 hours
- easy to transfer videos to PC or Mac
- convenient carrying case included
- stylish looking glasses
- sound quality is pretty darn good
- shadowed areas show up very dark with little detail
- sound notifications would have been nice to indicate when the video has started/stopped recording (there is a blue indicator light on the inside of the glasses but you have to take the glasses off to see it)
- no way to tell how much battery is remaining when using
- the dark lenses are great on brighter days but may be too dark for other conditions
- if you wear prescription glasses like me you might have to walk around seeing the world a little blurry
The biggest challenge with wearing a video camera as glasses is learning how to point the lens in such a way that it records what you’re intending it to. Even though the camera is only about an inch above the level of my eyes, it’s enough to change viewing angles quite a bit. It took some practice to learn how to position my head to get the desired angle and focal point, especially for close-up views.
Also, learning how to move my head in a way that didn’t produce herky-jerky movements in the videos may be a little tricky. There’s no worse video, in my opinion, than one that makes the viewer seasick or doesn’t focus long enough on anything to see it clearly. In my early videos, even when I thought I was panning slowly, it came across like I didn’t even try to slow my movements. The panning was still too fast. I had to learn to really slow down my movements and once I did that I was much more pleased with the end result.
I also had to make sure my head movements matched what my eyes were looking at. Obviously, my eyes can move around to look at various things without me having to turn or tilt my head but the camera doesn’t know what my eyes are doing. You have to be very cognitive of what you’re looking at and make sure the camera is looking in the same direction. Again, it just takes some practice.
The glasses are available online at Amazon at the link below: