GoPro HD Hero2 Camcorder Review
Contour Contour+ Comparison
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If you’re looking for a hands-free, wearable camcorder, GoPro vs. Contour is the most important comparison to look at. The two companies make very similar products in terms of what the camcorders can do, but they differ greatly in actual design. The Contour+ is long and cylindrical, looking more like a laser gun than a video recording device. The Hero2, on the other hand, looks like (and is) a small box with a tiny lens.
After working with both camcorders, we developed a quick preference for the GoProHero2 over the Contour+. It wasn’t better image quality that drew us in—both camcorders have their benefits and disadvantages when it comes to performance—but it was handling and user experience that made us prefer the Hero2. We loved the fact that adjusting settings on the fly wasn’t a challenge with the Hero2 and the tiny LCD that displays menu options was a welcomed feature.
In terms of what it can and can’t do, the Contour+ looks great on paper. Contour touts the ability to connect the camcorder to your smartphone via Bluetooth, which allows you to remotely control the Contour+ while also using the phone’s screen as a wireless LCD. But in practice we found this system almost never worked. The camcorder and our iPhone 3G were able to make a Bluetooth connection maybe one out of every eight times we tried, and the connection often failed after a few seconds. This forced us to connect the Contour+ to a computer whenever we wanted to change recording settings (something you don’t have to do with the Hero2).
The Contour+ and the Hero2 have different strengths and weaknesses in terms of video performance.
If Contour could make the features on its camcorders more reliable, then we’d be looking at a much stiffer competition between Contour and GoPro. For now, however, GoPro has a significant advantage in the handling department, and the Hero2 was a much more pleasant camcorder to work with than the Contour+.