There’s no shortage of people willing to sell us video glasses, but the big difference nowadays is the fact that they’ve moved out of the dodgy covert spy bracket and into the action/lifeblogging market. Blame Google Glass if you must, because whatever the Big G does must be cool, right? Right?
These Inventio HD video glasses are a good example of where the market is going. Distributed by a company calling itself SpyTec, these 720p HD video and audio recording glasses are anything but covert. They come in a delightfully garish shade of yellow (you can have any color you like as long as…) and feature removable sunglass lenses which optionally can be swapped out for clear if needed.
The first thing you notice when you open the package is the attention to detail. They’re sturdily made, and come with a well written user manual and a robust carrying case, which is a cut above the ‘cheapo’ end of the market for this type of product.
The main claim to fame for this product is some sort of ‘shake free’ tech which is supposed to minimize the video shake you get when using them to grab footage when on the move, and the specs give a battery life of around 2 hours, internal storage of 8GB and 16 Bit audio recording.
Once you work your way through the rather unnecessarily fiddly set up instructions (it’s the first product we’ve seen with such specific charging instructions as not over-charging, but making sure you charge them for exactly 12 hours the first three times you use them) and making sure they sync nicely with your computer, you’ll be keen to put them on and actually try them out. Our video test is below.
As you can see from our video, they definitely record video, but we would hardly say that it’s ‘razor-sharp, shake-free’, as the marketing claims, and in fact the results are really rather ordinary. Unfortunately when you claim in your literature that a product is the ‘most advanced…on the planet’, people expect just that, and these are anything but.
There are two main problems with the product. First, the audio is marred by a microphone which suffers excessively from wind noise at speed. Whether this is something that is generic with this type of product or not, it really removes a lot of the pleasure of wearing them as action glasses. The second issue is the lack of microSD expansion to provide for more viewing time.
At the moment you get around 1 hour of recording on the internal 8GB, which is not really enough. The third factor which we found unnecessarily annoying was the unusual USB connector on the glasses themselves. This means you need to use their cable to recharge, which involves lugging around an extra cable if you go on a long jaunt. Individually these points are niggles, but together they spoil an otherwise nice product.
We liked the comfort of the unit, and the ergonomics of just having to press one button to start and stop recording (although it would be nice to have a more prominent indicator light when recording is running). However unfortunately, for $129.95, we would expect more from the product in order to meet the marketing claims, and it’s just not there. It’s a shame.
We do, however, look forward to seeing what the company produces with Version 2.0.
720P HD Video & Audio Recording
16 Bit Digital Audio Recording
View Video through Computer or TV (Cables Included)
Battery life of 2 Hours
8GB of Class 10 Internal Memory
Compatible with PC and Mac Computers
Most Advanced Video Sunglasses on the Planet
Built by Spy Tec
Includes One Year Warranty
Replacement Clear UV lenses: $12.00