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Liquid Image Video Goggle Review
Video Camera Goggles
You may have noticed a slightly different look in our latest riding videos. I have been using the Liquid Image goggles that have a video camera built right into them. The camera goggle concept is certainly a unique one and has some nice features. But it is not without a few drawbacks also.
By far the most interesting aspect of the goggle camera is the unique view perspective. The camera catches exactly what the riders eyes do. Somehow the effect is slightly more realistic than with other camera systems I have used. The wide angle birds eye view makes the viewer feel closer to the action.
One technical reason is the fact that the camera sits under the shade of the helmet visor. As the rider moves in and out of direct sunlight, the exposure changes very little. There is none of the sun flare effect so common with the GoPro. For woods riders there is the added bonus of protection. Nothing is sticking out to get whacked by a tree branch or caught in a vine.
Basic operation is nearly identical to what we are used to with the GoPro. One button turns the camera on and off. It also cycles the mode between video and photos. The second button is the start/stop function. Each has a beep or double beep to let you know it is working. The buttons are large and easy to use.
Inside the goggle, above the lense is a small LED display to tell you what the camera operation is, again nearly identical to the GoPro. There is also a light to indicate the operation. Solid blue for camera on, flashing blue for camera running, red for photo mode. You can see the light with the goggles on, but you cannot see any of the other screen displays.
So far so good. The goggle camera is a pretty cool idea and has some nice functions. But of course, there has to be a few drawbacks also.
First, the goggles are wide and thick. They don’t fit into every helmet perfectly. They also tend to ride just off the face, resting on the helmet eye port instead. So they are not for every condition. To get a properly framed view, the goggles need to point just slightly upward, otherwise it is just a constant view of the bars. On the MX track I have to concentrate on keeping my head pointed up just a bit too. Off road it doesn’t seem to matter as much because I am not in a constant attack position.
Above you can see how the goggles fit better in the Klim helmet than in the Scorpion
The sliding door that holds the battery comes open easy. I have not had any problem while riding. But twice I have opened it while taking the goggles off and the battery falls out to the ground. The space required for the camera covers up a little of the vision area at the top of the goggle.
Both the fit and slightly reduced vision took a little time to get used to. But I adjusted. These are certainly not a choice for racing. But for my use in testing and play riding, I love them. The end result is some really nice video.
I purchased our “Liquid Image XSC Impact Series HD 365R MX Goggle” from Amazon for $50. It is an amazing deal. This is not the newest goggle from Liquid Image, so I don’t know what issues may have been addressed in the latest version. Included in the kit were: spare lense, tear offs, 4gb micro SD card and USB cord.
There is no additional software required to edit the files. Technically the files are called H.264, but my computer opens them as regular .mov files in quick time. Video mode is rated at 30 frames per second at 720p HD. Picture files are JPEG @ 5 megapixels. The battery can be directly charged via USB to a computer.
Overall I think the Liquid Image goggles are a cool concept. The design is a little rough around the edges, but I have figured out how to make it work for me and I love the extra creative room they give me. For $50 they are a steal regardless of faults.