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Old February 28th, 2008, 04:52 PM   #1
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Best MiniSpy or Snake Camera for Broadcast??Suggestions?

I need a miniature camera, preferably wireless or with the video recorder built in, that i can mount on a turtle's back. That's right, a turtle's back. OK, actually it is a Gopher Tortoise's back.

I also need a snake camera for sticking 8 feet down a Gopher Tortoise's burrow. It must have built in led lighting.

I work on a nature show, and may need these types of cameras for other things later anyway.

This show will be for broadcast in HD. This footage doesn't have to be HD, but I want it to be halfway decent looking.

Any suggestions for spy cam or snake cam that would provide reasonably decent video??? What do they use on Meerkat Manor?? Anyone's experience with this type of thing, positive or negative, would be helpful!
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Old February 28th, 2008, 05:43 PM   #2
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Would a borescope work? Alot of the more expensive ones have video capture capability. I think they run around $8000 though.
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Old February 28th, 2008, 07:34 PM   #3
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Yeah, a boroscope would sort of work, though most of them are only 2 to 3 feet long--and I need more like 10 to 15 feet. There are some made by Rigid for sewer pipe inspection, but I don't think the video is anywhere close to broadcast (something like 380X200 at 15fps) AND it's like $5500. The price options I have found on the internet so far run from $125 to $8000. While I don't want to pay $8000, I don't really trust the $125 item to make something usable.

I was really hoping someone here has had to deal with a similar situation, and found something halfway decent that might be in the $300 to $800 range.
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Old February 29th, 2008, 03:24 PM   #4
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I was looking at this site yesterday. Might be just what you need. Price looks reasonable. Elmo Suv-cam Micro video camera system.
www.goelectronic.com

Bob Trimmer
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Old February 29th, 2008, 05:20 PM   #5
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you need a pocket DVR with high quality recording (mpeg2).
on a 16Gig Cf card you can fit 6 hours, probably more than the autonomy provided by the battery. 16gig card around 80$.
The device is usually little bit bigger than a cigarette box.
prices are starting around 300$ up to....$$$$
for the camera, many choice, from the tiny plastic one (like a sugarcube) or the bullet one (little bigger than a lipstick) with many level of quality available (from medium to excellent). Lots of lens available too.
price around 100$ for the cheapest ones and better ones not so expensive (around 250$)
a 2.4 ghz emitter will be smaller/lighter but the antenna could be a problem et excellent video quality is almost impossible especially in closed space or underground (will cut sometime, loose color, jaggies etc...).if you can afford such problem (removed at editing) it is ok.
Currently i order 3 recorders like this, they should be delivered next week.
2 of them for sale.
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Old February 29th, 2008, 07:26 PM   #6
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Thanks for the link Bob.

And thanks for the info Giroud, I was unsure about the wireless reliability. Please let me know how your cameras work out. If they are good and you think they might suit my needs, please post a link of what you ended up with.

I also wonder if anyone has tried VIO's cameras POV1 or AC3 at:
http://www.vio-pov.com/products.php?...ogin=&mem=&gr=
I wonder how they stack up.
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Old March 2nd, 2008, 01:39 PM   #7
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So I think I've decided to get the POV1 from http://www.vio-pov.com/products.php?...ogin=&mem=&gr=

It has pretty a good picture. It is used in action videos frequently as a helmet camera or handlebar camera. There are some good reviews for it at http://helmetcameracentral.com/2007/...-video-system/
and
http://www.helmetcamreview.com/POV1Review.htm

I think the Gopher Tortoise is large enough to accommodate the camera as well as the recorder, or I could just use the optional 5 meter cable and tether it. As far as going down into the Tortoise Burrow, I'm thinking of turret mounting the camera to an RC tank. This could get down in the hole remotely and give me maneuverability as well as a pan and tilt. I could also attach two LED flashlights to provide lighting. Sounds good in theory.

Anyone here ever use a tank for a remote camera?? Any thoughts on something I may have overlooked?
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