7 Things to Look for in an Adventure Camera

Cameras Like GoPro

When you think about getting an adventure camera what should you look for?

It can be hard to know where to start. There are a lot of options!

adventure camera

In this post, we'll help narrow things down by considering what makes an adventure camera great.

What to Look for in an Adventure Camera

You can take a DSLR camera on an adventure, but you need some quality gear to carry that baby around. They don't care much for bumps or bruises, and they cringe at the mention of rain, salt water or sand.

But adventure cameras are made for that stuff. And they're easy to pack.

galapagos bodyboarding bryanhaines

An adventure camera could be likened to a DSLR's stunt guy. You bring it in when the other guy might get hurt or dirty.

adventure cameras get dirty

So, what makes a great adventure camera?

7 Things to Look for in An Adventure Camera

Here are seven things to look for in your next adventure camera:

  1. Size. Adventure cameras should be small. They should pack easily without adding bulk and weight to your backpack.
  2. Waterproof. It should be waterproof for capturing underwater footage. And so you don't have to worry about rain, snow, mud or sand.
  3. Mountability. You'll want your camera to be where the action is, or as close to it as possible. Make sure there are a lot of mounting options available, either from the manufacturers or other companies.
  4. adventure camera Wearability. It's important to be able to wear your adventure camera. You're going to want to capture all that POV action. Look for one with a low-profile so it won't get in your way, or catch on objects as you bike, ski, or otherwise fly by. Ideally, you'll want to have lots of options as to where you'll wear it (head, chest, wrist…) so remember point 3 about mountability.
  5. Durability. This is a big one. Your camera needs to be able to survive a tumble – because that's going to happen. One of the main reasons for getting an adventure camera is to be able to take it where your DSLR dare not go. I wouldn't mount my DSLR on the handlebars of my mountain bike because I could wipe out and it wouldn't survive. There are a ton of places you'll feel comfortable mounting a durable adventure camera that you wouldn't dare put your DSLR.
  6. Popularity. Why should you go with a popular camera? Because unlike popular people, a popular camera has been tested as to quality. If a camera continues to have healthy sales stats year after year, it's far less risky than one that doesn't. That proven track record will also mean that you'll have support if you encounter a problem. You'll easily find answers from fellow users online, or from the company. There will also be more books available to help you learn how to get the best out of your new camera.
  7. Great Reviews. Make sure you check out the reviews. If the camera you're thinking of has hundreds of positive reviews on Amazon, you can be confident you have a winner. Read the reviews carefully to see what aspects people are praising, and which ones they don't care for. This will give you a better feel for whether or not that particular camera is a fit for you.

How to Choose Your Next Adventure Camera

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Which Adventure Camera Will You Choose?

There are some great adventure cameras out there. As you can tell from this blog, our favorite is the GoPro.

But there are some great alternatives to GoPro. Here are 4 solid options:

  1. TomTom Bandittomtom cameras like gopro ($399.99) Features: 3-hour battery, fully waterproof, 4k video and 16MP stills. See more on Amazon.com | Amazon.ca |Amazon.co.uk
  2. Garmin Virb X / XEgarmin virb cameras like gopro ($299.99 / $399.99) Features: Waterproof to 50 meters, 2-hour battery, GPS, and HD video. See more on Amazon.com |Amazon.ca | Amazon.co.uk
  3. Drift Stealth 2drift stealth camera like gopro ($199) Features: 3-hour battery, 12MP stills, super small and lightweight. Connects via W-Fi to the Drift app. See more on Amazon.com | Amazon.ca | Amazon.co.uk
  4. Polaroid Cube+polaroid cube waterproof ($149.99) Features: Same as above, but with Wi-Fi connectivity and better shooting specs. See more on Amazon.com |Amazon.ca | Amazon.co.uk

Check out: Our Complete Guide to Cameras like GoPro.

adventure cameras get wet

If you're thinking about getting a GoPro make sure to read up on them.

While all the GoPro models come with dependable waterproofing, photo, and video capabilities, they aren't all equal. You may prefer one with an LCD screen like the cameras you're used to (Hero4 Silver). Or if highest photo and video quality is important to you, you would choose the Hero4 models over the Hero3 models. Research is rewarding.

Whichever camera you choose I hope it does an awesome job of capturing your adventures!

adventure cameras should pack easily

Please tell us about your favorite adventure camera in the comments.


Hi, I'm the Author!

Dena Haines is co-editor of ClickLikeThis: GoPro tutorial blog. She is a travel blogger and content marketer. She is also co-founder of GringosAbroad (Ecuador's largest blog for expats and travelers) and Storyteller Media (content marketing for travel brands). Work with ClickLikeThis.

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