SJ8 Pro 4k@60fps, SJ8 Plus 4K@30fps, SJ8 Air Coming Soon!

TwoBlues

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Reminds of Huawei and the Google smart phone (Nexus 6?), where they ran out of the quality component and began using cheap ,low quality, junk that began failing the phones!
 

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Based on the SJ7 record on various forums, parts played some role, but design, assembly and QC (or lack thereof) appear to be the main problems posted on the forums I track or moderate. Multiple reports pointing to a common part failure are very much in the minority, if they exist at all. Things like WiFi pulsing showing up on the audio track, for example, are more common. There have been some DOA cameras; diagnosing why a particular camera died is not possible via web posts. Usually, though, the camera is partially functional; symptoms vary. (Of course, any web forum doesn't contain the user universe. Observations based on postings on any forum will not give mean data. But anecdotal data shouldn't be dismissed.)

The SJ7 case is wide open to airborne contaminants and rain or condensing moisture. For an action cam, this is ridiculous. That the camera can't be used at least for snorkeling isn't a major problem. A "diving" case is included. Why a flexible "plate" is offered escapes me. The screen won't respond to it except when pushing the screen to near destruction. And the existing buttons covering all of the screen-controlled items anyway. Poor design. Mics don't work, batteries won't charge, the lens is defective. QC was probably on vacation that day.

The firmware has been a large topic. V1.21, the current rev., should be called a beta. RAW support is not consistent with most RAW use. A number of requested items (proper image inversion, for example) have been ignored. V1.21 crashes (a "pull the battery" crash) far too often. The firmware crew is MIA.

Going back to V1.15, which I see as limited but useful within its limitations, camera temperature was "very warm" but not objectionably hot. By the time V1.21 arrived, the camera was hot enough to cause batteries to swell appreciably. It takes some clever work to extract a swollen battery, wedged in tightly enough to pop the removal tab. It's bad enough that the battery was cooked, but there's a larger problem waiting to happen. Li-ON fail catastrophically when shorted out externally or, more important here, internally. That means, if an SJ7 battery swells to a certain degree, internal shorting might happen. YouTube is filled with what follows next.

The heat increase clearly comes from driving the camera electronics hard. They harder they work, the hotter the camera becomes. The firmware needs to be tuned to handle power demands better than happens now. Poor design (heating) and poor QC for not spotting V1.21's many problems.

But the above may well be moot. There's no further contact with SJCam regarding the SJ7 (or AFAIK the SJ8). And that's not a good way to proceed.

For all of my negative comments about the SJ7 in particular, it does produce excellent video. I've seen worse, worser, and worsest. The SJ7 is, at least in my thinking, the gold standard for video quality. There's plenty of room to debate frame rates, exposure times, amplification, etc., etc. But in the typical setting for an action cam, the SJ7 delivers. It's the maker who doesn't,
 

TwoBlues

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I've had to throw away two of four Sj7 batteries because they swelled, one was so tight I had to rap the cam on my desk ! Luckily the cam was undamaged!
The swelling never happened once with seven original Xiaomi Yi cam batteries! This cam also would get hot!
One reason I moved on to the Yi 4k plus!
The SOC Amba.H2 provides solution to the A12 problem of excess heat.
 
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TwoBlues

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Based on the SJ7 record on various forums, parts played some role, but design, assembly and QC (or lack thereof) appear to be the main problems posted on the forums I track or moderate. Multiple reports pointing to a common part failure are very much in the minority, if they exist at all. Things like WiFi pulsing showing up on the audio track, for example, are more common. There have been some DOA cameras; diagnosing why a particular camera died is not possible via web posts. Usually, though, the camera is partially functional; symptoms vary. (Of course, any web forum doesn't contain the user universe. Observations based on postings on any forum will not give mean data. But anecdotal data shouldn't be dismissed.)

The SJ7 case is wide open to airborne contaminants and rain or condensing moisture. For an action cam, this is ridiculous. That the camera can't be used at least for snorkeling isn't a major problem. A "diving" case is included. Why a flexible "plate" is offered escapes me. The screen won't respond to it except when pushing the screen to near destruction. And the existing buttons covering all of the screen-controlled items anyway. Poor design. Mics don't work, batteries won't charge, the lens is defective. QC was probably on vacation that day.

The firmware has been a large topic. V1.21, the current rev., should be called a beta. RAW support is not consistent with most RAW use. A number of requested items (proper image inversion, for example) have been ignored. V1.21 crashes (a "pull the battery" crash) far too often. The firmware crew is MIA.

Going back to V1.15, which I see as limited but useful within its limitations, camera temperature was "very warm" but not objectionably hot. By the time V1.21 arrived, the camera was hot enough to cause batteries to swell appreciably. It takes some clever work to extract a swollen battery, wedged in tightly enough to pop the removal tab. It's bad enough that the battery was cooked, but there's a larger problem waiting to happen. Li-ON fail catastrophically when shorted out externally or, more important here, internally. That means, if an SJ7 battery swells to a certain degree, internal shorting might happen. YouTube is filled with what follows next.

The heat increase clearly comes from driving the camera electronics hard. They harder they work, the hotter the camera becomes. The firmware needs to be tuned to handle power demands better than happens now. Poor design (heating) and poor QC for not spotting V1.21's many problems.

But the above may well be moot. There's no further contact with SJCam regarding the SJ7 (or AFAIK the SJ8). And that's not a good way to proceed.

For all of my negative comments about the SJ7 in particular, it does produce excellent video. I've seen worse, worser, and worsest. The SJ7 is, at least in my thinking, the gold standard for video quality. There's plenty of room to debate frame rates, exposure times, amplification, etc., etc. But in the typical setting for an action cam, the SJ7 delivers. It's the maker who doesn't,
My sj7 produced fine 4k with great detail of the finches on my feeders as well as good rendition of audio with their external mic., but 1080p120 fps video was poor with wavy lines in my cam.
 

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SJCam replaced the first battery (sent two batteries) that swelled up. Since then, another battery swelled during use. Nonetheless, SJCam shows no concern about the potential for catastrophic failure. Each f/w version has increased the camera's temperature while operating - both charging and in recording mode. This situation reminds me of the hoverboard debacle.

At this point, if I could find a camera that matches SJ7 image quality and operates at significantly lower temperatures, I'd be on it in a New York minute. If I could test it before buying. The Hero 5 Black convinced me of that requirement. I bought it on the strength of the GoPro name, thinking the imagery would be comparable and found the camera's imagery was demonstrably poorer. No more buying blind.
 

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I found Amazon's buyer forum to be helpful to detect a possible quality deficit, but there were to few Sj7 reviews to ponder, the Yi 4k + reviews, however remained in the +4 stars range. A few % of Hero 5 buyers complained that swimming with their cams was enough to destroy the electronics! When I scuba ,the cheaper Star goes with me-good video, and f it drowns, who cares?
,
 
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RBEmerson

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The H5B doors have to be closed properly if the camera's going swimming. A dirty seal or poorly closed lid will write off the camera.

The SJ7 shouldn't have any problems with overheating when it's in the water (in a case, of course).
 

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It's likely that having a Hero 5/6 door open/off, many times for battery changes or that STUPID super size ext.mic.dongle will decrease the effectiveness of the waterseal!
Only a few drops will do you in!
 

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The newer Gopros i would only rely as being splash proof, going swimming or diving with it i would not dare to do without a WP housing.
 

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When I was deciding which to buy Yi 4k+,or Hero 5or 6, I read the Amazon buyers reviews , the 6 had no water drownings of the camera! Perhaps they improved Q.C.
 

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SJ8 pro dashcamming it, dont look too bad if you ask me.
 

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WTF?!? That's in Germany. between Mannheim and Kaiserslauten, somewhat west of the Rhine, in Rheinland-Pfalz. Either a Ukrainian brought his camera back with him/her (the title translates as "trip home"). Amazon.de, Mediamarkt, and Saturn don't list any SJCam products. The H6B, FWIW, goes for €399, including 19% VAT. If someone wants a break on an H6B, the VAT can be recovered when leaving Euro-land. Unfortunately, even with the best exchange rate (intra-bank) €1=$1.18. So much for that bargain.

ADDED: looking at the map (the video starts by going north on E61, and turns west onto E650) and the shadows, the video was shot late in the afternoon. Which means the camera was effectively looking into the sun. The cloud deck helps to filter the light but it still challenges the SJ8 (or any other camera).
 
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What follows has been edited for clarity:

Bad news, boys and girls. I just stumbled on this review comparing the SJ8 and the GP H6B.

IMHO the reviewer is an SJCam "homer"; I question a number of his conclusions. The H6B imagery is simply better. The one gripe I have, and it's not a small one, is the H6B imagery has far too much contrast. I have no idea about whether reducing contrast can be done during shooting, or if it has to be fixed in post. Other than that significant issue, the H6B walks away from the SJ8.

If, however, your budget rules out the H6B, the SJ8 is a reasonable alternative. If... you trust SJCam to support it with firmware updates (everybody needs updates - SJCam isn't unique in this regard), and customer support. I leave the reader to draw their conclusions on these points.


Now to sell my wife on yet another camera...
 
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kamkar1

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Hehe yeah the SJ8P do lack in dynamics and or contrast there, it also seem to be the much the same with GPH6B Vs the Yi4K+ this i think should be fixable in firmware, and i will agree upon this one comparison the SJ8P do look a bit soft or less vibrant if you like.
Color dynamics i dont feel look too bad, but its much up to the individual how saturated they like their footage, and i assume in the SJ8P there are a warmer setting to be selected ( assuming this are stock settings in regard to IQ )

It is nice someone can compare against the direct competitors, i would never be able to do that as i dont have those cameras.

Looking forward to more from this guy, maybe see if SJ8P setting changes can lift it up.
And i am wondering if firmware changes at least in regard to IQ results can be used both on the YI4k + chipset and this smaller one, if so SJ could piggyback on the improvements already made by the Yi people with their camera.

Now to sell my wife on yet another camera...
All you have to say are " Hony its a better camera, and so it will make you look even better" then if down the road it turn out to not be so, you can always say its the brand, or wife is getting older,,,, if you dare to go there.
 

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What follows has been edited for clarity:

Bad news, boys and girls. I just stumbled on this review comparing the SJ8 and the GP H6B.

IMHO the reviewer is an SJCam "homer"; I question a number of his conclusions. The H6B imagery is simply better. The one gripe I have, and it's not a small one, is the H6B imagery has far too much contrast. I have no idea about whether reducing contrast can be done during shooting, or if it has to be fixed in post. Other than that significant issue, the H6B walks away from the SJ8.

If, however, your budget rules out the H6B, the SJ8 is a reasonable alternative. If... you trust SJCam to support it with firmware updates (everybody needs updates - SJCam isn't unique in this regard), and customer support. I leave the reader to draw their conclusions on these points.


Now to sell my wife on yet another camera...
Ditto-Reached the conclusion that the Sj8 imaging can't hold a candle to the Gopro!
BTW the H6B chip produces more saturation!
 

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Im glad i am not shopping for a new camera, so i will just wait and see more reviews / comparisons.

But i really would like 1080/240 in a new camera, the GP6HB cam do that as i recall, YI 4K + too if my memory serve me right.

ATM i think comparing the SJ8P to the SJ7S and maybe the GP5HB, it should beat those as it have them beaten on price as far as i know, and might be what people are going to upgrade from.

So the great ? will be is the SJ8P worth it, or should i throw one more large denomination bill on the pile and go for something else.
 

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@kamkar1 Hah! You don't know She Who Must Be Obeyed (see H. Rider Haggard's book "She: A History of Adventure" or... John Mortimer's "Rumpole of the Baily" series).

@TwoBlues Saturation is like any other image quality (or item in life), there can be too little or too much, the trick is finding "just enough".

One of H6B's claims is dynamic range. The further gradations from black to white, the more life-like the image. For example, stand on a rock jetty with waves breaking on it. Low range means the white in the waves will be "can't get no whiter" and the shadows become "can't get no darker". With a large dynamic range, the subtle degrees of almost white to full white in the waves is visible. The parts of a hole in the rocks can be "almost black, but still gets some light" to "no light, no way".

The breaking wave next to the photographer is maxxed or bleached out. The same is true for the waves near the rocks and even some of the "sparkles" on the nearer wavelets. Look at the pile of rocks and there are holes that are maxxed out to full black. Compare that with some ricks where details are discernible.

(Acadia National Park, Maine - Fujifilm Pixel S8000 - for sale - $135)
 
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TwoBlues

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Hehe yeah the SJ8P do lack in dynamics and or contrast there, it also seem to be the much the same with GPH6B Vs the Yi4K+ this i think should be fixable in firmware, and i will agree upon this one comparison the SJ8P do look a bit soft or less vibrant if you like.
Color dynamics i dont feel look too bad, but its much up to the individual how saturated they like their footage, and i assume in the SJ8P there are a warmer setting to be selected ( assuming this are stock settings in regard to IQ )

It is nice someone can compare against the direct competitors, i would never be able to do that as i dont have those cameras.

Looking forward to more from this guy, maybe see if SJ8P setting changes can lift it up.
And i am wondering if firmware changes at least in regard to IQ results can be used both on the YI4k + chipset and this smaller one, if so SJ could piggyback on the improvements already made by the Yi people with their camera.



All you have to say are " Hony its a better camera, and so it will make you look even better" then if down the road it turn out to not be so, you can always say its the brand, or wife is getting older,,,, if you dare to go there.
The 4k+ uses the higher grade, more energy efficient H2 SOC.
 

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ADDED: When I took the picture, I thought the photographer was busy taking his own pictures. It wasn't until I enlarged the image that I found out he was looking at me!
 
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