Eken/Gearbest H8R

GoPro-style 30m/100' Underwater 170º 4k 12MP

Sample Images   Intro   Specifications

Performance   Usage   Recommendations   More

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Gearbest Eken GoPro H8R

Eken/Gearbest H8R (2.450 oz./69.5 g with battery and card, about $98). bigger. I'd get it at Amazon.

This ad-free website's biggest source of support is when you use that or any of these links to my personally-approved sources when you get anything, regardless of the country in which you live. Buy only from the approved sources I use myself for the best prices, service, return policies and selection. Thanks for helping me help you! Ken.

 

Gearbest Eken GoPro H8R

Eken/Gearbest H8R in included 30m/100' waterproof case (4.825 oz./136.7 g as shown with battery and card.) bigger.

 

Gearbest Eken GoPro H8R

Eken/Gearbest H8R. bigger.

 

July 2016   Underwater camera reviews   Underwater cameras compared   all reviews

 

Sample Images

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Palm, 05 July 2016

Palm, 05 July 2016. (Eken H8R GoPro camera, f/2.8 at 1/250 at Auto ISO 100. bigger or camera-original © file to explore on your computer (mobile devices rarely display full resolution images properly).)

 

Ryan in the Pool, 05 July 2016

Ryan in the pool, 05 July 2016. (Eken H8R GoPro camera, f/2.8 at 1/250 at Auto ISO 100. bigger or camera-original © file to explore on your computer (mobile devices rarely display full resolution images properly).)

 

SAMPLE 1,080/30p VIDEO: Katie on the Zip Line (18MB MOV, 03 July 2016).

 

Introduction

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Good   Missing

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The Eken (Gearbest) H8R is an inexpensive GoPro copy.

For $98 it comes complete with an underwater housing, numerous mounts and a wireless remote control.

It offers decent picture quality for much less money than a real GoPro.

The case feels pretty tough and is rated to 30 meters (100 feet).

Since the whole point of these cameras is to take them places they may get destroyed, the less expensive they are, the more likely you are to take it, take it closer, and put it places that will get you better pictures than if you were worried about babying your prized GoPro.

 

Good

● Works fine at a low price

● 170º f/2.8 fisheye lens

● Includes a remote control

● Includes waterproof housing and numerous mounts

● "Upside Down" mode for use when mounted upside down

● Compatible with GoPro mounts

● WiFi

● Has a rear LCD and a front color OLED display

 

Missing

● No GPS

● No rotation sensor for vertical shots.

● No image stabilization

● No standard 1/4-20" tripod thread — but this is an action camera so who cares?

● No real instruction manual, just a tiny sheet of information included.

● Underwater case front lens cover seems to be plastic, which will be easy to scratch, but won't shatter when the case hits a rock, either.

Gearbest Eken GoPro H8R

Eken/Gearbest H8R box. bigger.

 

Specifications

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Gearbest Eken GoPro H8R

Eken/Gearbest H8R box back. bigger.

 

Still Image Sizes

4,608 x 2,592 pixels native (12 MP).

JPG only.

Lower resolutions, too.

 

ISO

Auto ISO 100 ~ 1,600.

 

Video

1,080/30P

1,080/60p

2.7k/30p

4k/30p

H.264 MOV

 

Audio

Mono microphone built in.

Remember that it can't hear much from inside the underwater housing.

 

Autofocus

Presumably fixed, so it's always in focus.

 

Displays

Color rear LCD.

Color front OLED.

 

Connectors

HDMI.

Micro USB.

 

Storage

Micro SDHC.

Use Class 10 or faster for 4K.

 

Body

Plastic.

 

Quality

Made in China.

 

Power & Battery

Battery

Removable lithium-ion.

Gearbest Eken GoPro H8R

Eken/Gearbest H8R bottom. bigger.

 

Charging

Charges via USB in-camera.

 

Weight

Camera only: 2.450 oz./69.5 g with battery and card, measured.

Camera and housing: 4.825 oz./136.7 g as shown with battery and card, measured:

Gearbest Eken GoPro H8R

Eken/Gearbest H8R in included 30m/100' waterproof case. bigger.

 

Included

H8R Remote Control

Included Remote Control. bigger.

Gearbest Eken GoPro H8R

Gearbest H8R included accessories. bigger.

Depending on when and where you get yours, you may get different accessories included.

 

Price, USA

$98, July 2016.

Gearbest Eken GoPro H8R

Eken/Gearbest H8R box. bigger.

 

Performance

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Performance   Usage   Recommendations   More

 

Overall   Autofocus   Exposure

Ergonomics   Image Quality

Mechanics   Front OLED   Rear LCD

Playback   Data   Power & Battery

 

Overall

Performance          top

The H8R is an inexpensive action camera. It works well when used as intended in violent, dangerous or other active situations where you expect that it may be destroyed.

 

Autofocus

Performance          top

It's always in focus, no worries here.

 

Exposure

Performance          top

Exposure always seems optimum.

Of course just like any camera if you have a subject in shade with a bright background, don't expect it to light your subject for you: it will be dark.

 

Ergonomics

Performance          top

Just like a real GoPro, with only three buttons to control it, it will take a while to figure out.

It wakes up ready to shoot video, and otherwise it always takes a few clicks to do anything.

It's intended to shoot and forget. It expects you do your playback elsewhere; there is not much in the way of forward/back or zoom controls.

Trying to set the camera, just like a real GoPro, is frustrating since there are too few buttons to make much sense of trying to navigate around (or even find) the menu system.

 

Image Quality

Performance          top

It works as expected for a $98 camera, most of the price of which is expended in the tough housings and mounts.

Still images have plenty of violet fringes on the edges.

The video isn't that particularly sharp at 1,080, so I doubt there's any additional real resolution at the higher settings; I'd stick to 1,080.

Video motion is smooth, no problems with dropped frames.

It works swell in low light, better than expected.

 

Mechanical Quality

Performance          top

While the underwater housing is tough, the camera itself is cheap Chinese plastic.

 

Front OLED

Performance          top

The front color OLED is a nice touch.

It's easy to read indoors, but invisible in direct sunlight.

It's legible in shade outdoors, or if you use your hand to shade it in sunlight, even inside the case.

 

Rear LCD Monitor

Performance          top

The read LCD is pretty good. Colors are reasonably accurate and it's bright enough.

 

Playback   

Performance          top

It can be done, but it takes about seven long clicks.

I'd wait for playback until after you download your images elsewhere.

 

Data

Performance          top

 

Card Formatting

Cards are poorly formatted as "NO NAME" and not as "H8R."

 

JPGs

12 MP JPG files are about 4 MB each.

They are tagged as 72 DPI.

 

Power & Battery

Performance          top

Plug it into USB to charge.

A charge icon appears, and then goes away as it charges.

It seems to have pretty good battery life; I can be out shooting for hours and it's fine.

 

Usage

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Lens

It ships with a plastic protector over the lens glass. Be sure to remove it if you want sharp pictures. Also be sure to clean the front of the lens with a fuzzy micro fiber cloth, since the plastic tends to leave residue on the glass that will appear as flare if left uncleaned.

Since the lens sees nearly 180º there is no lens protection when out of the underwater housing, and even in the case there is little protection against scratching the front of the case.

 

Power & Mode Selection

Hold the Power button a few seconds to turn ON or OFF.

Tap the power button to swap shooting modes (still, video, time lapse, etc.).

 

Detailed Settings

Keep tapping the power button until you get to the gear icon.

Tap the shutter after you've selected the gear icon.

Tap the power button to go down the menu items.

Tap the shutter to set a menu item.

A time and date stamp is burned into the image by default; you can turn it off in these settings. With video, this time stamp counts hours, minutes and seconds as video rolls.

 

Video

I used an old class 4 card, and only was able to select 1,080/30P.

The other selections were grayed-out; it is suggested to use a class 10 or faster card to shoot 4K.

Since 1,080 isn't all that insanely sharp, I doubt there is any better picture quality at the higher video resolution settings. I suspect they just consume more data; I wouldn't use them.

 

Sound

While the microphone will work inside the underwater housing, it can't hear much.

Pull the camera out of the underwater case if you want better sound.

 

Recommendations

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Performance   Usage   Recommendations   More

This is a great little camera to use for the dangerous things for which you use a GoPro in the first place.

This camera costs less than a real GoPro, so there's less to worry about when you destroy it.

There's also an even less expensive version, the H9. I haven't tried it.

Sure, I suspect a real GoPro is much better, but for its intended use, this is a swell little camera system, and the fact that you're more likely to put it places where it will get destroyed or damaged, its more likely that you'll get more exciting images from this H8R than you will from any GoPro you actually have to buy for yourself.

You also might want to check out SJ Cams for other inexpensive GoPro copies.

This ad-free website's biggest source of support is when you use any of these links to approved sources when you get anything, regardless of the country in which you live. Buy only from the approved sources I use myself for the best prices, service, return policies and selection.

Thanks for helping me help you!

Ken, Mrs. Rockwell, Ryan and Katie.

 

More Information

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06 July 2016