A small, light, low cost HD recording camera that can be fixed on to all manner of places it comes with a range of mounting hardware from cable ties to handlebar mounts and a waterproof housing (30m) with spare back door.
The lower price point compared to the Go Pro encourages more bravery and creativity in its deployment. On-line searching also reveals just how successful the SJ4000 has been not only because the mount attachments are essentially the same as the Go Pro but because the captured video quality is at least equivalent, some say better.
Identifying the exact camera version you have is a bit of a mystery. Some people will ask some key questions about what is and is not present in this package. So here are the sensitive points to what I have from Blusmart:
* Firmware version N20140902V01 SJCAM-SJ4000
* Inside camera, under pop off colour front a QC label dated 2015
* Box printing on front has "water resistant"
* Blusmart logo in top left corner above power button
* waterproof case: squarer type, 73.3mm wide, with circular bumper rubbers right up in to the rear backplate corners.
* waterproof case: 8 chrome coloured screws on black lens cover
* there is no charger
* there is one battery
Included in the usual camera settings menu:
* car mode
* TV mode
My main use for these is in car mode as a dash cam. Fits easily behind my rear view mirror. I use a 3m USB cable with 90° bend on the micro end [[ASIN:B00MX7Q73C]] (supplied one is only about 90 cm) to direct the cable into the roof trim.
There are many other reviews covering the sports and RC uses so I will stick to what I used it for which is as a dash-cam which seems less covered.
So I am using mine as a dash-cam for which you will need additional bits: a long micro-USB to USB-A cable, I found 3m was exactly right length for complete cable concealment), a 12v power adapter here
with 5v USB and of course a 32GB fast SD card, here
For mounting I could have used a combination of one of the supplied self adhesive mounts and clips to fix to the back surface of the rear-view mirror. I used the small black cable ties, one of the plate clips plus one of the adhesive pads all supplied to attach to the mirror stem. The wide angle lens on the camera gives a full view of the road ahead and junction activity to the sides.
Filming continuously in 1080p in normal mode into one long single file the camera will stop recording at about 32 minutes in or actually when a 4GB file size is reached because of the FAT32 limit. Reformatting the SD card to ExFAT on did not increase this limit behaviour either but was a valid format the camera could use. Sound from the car interior is picked up in mono from the built-in microphone. It picks up very little car engine or suspension noise (just a low bass) but does pick up indicator sounds, radio, music and conversations screams and gasps.
For general dash-cam usage you need the special "car mode" from the menu and also annoyingly in another menu location set the split length; so car mode = recording starts/stops automatically with sensing power to USB from cigarette lighter on/off without having to fiddle with camera buttons etc. No G-force function though. Footage is split into relatively small sequential MOV files up to 10 mins long (this is the split length) with one second overlap between the files. 10 minutes 1 second is about 1.22GB. The SD card then fills up with sequential files at which point it deletes the oldest file. So if you want a large length of time saved get a big card. I used a 32GB which seems to save just over 4 hours of drive time. Another alternative is to power the USB from an external USB battery pack so the car mode continues even when parked. I have just tried a SanDisk SDSDQUN-064G-FFP-A Ultra Android microSDXC UHS-I Class 10 Memory Card + SD Adapter up to 48 MB/s read FFP - 64 GB
and it works in car mode straight away formatted as supplied ExFAT which gives 8 hours of HD surveillance in 48x 10 min segments.
My settings for dash-cam use: HDR, 1080p (30fps), +1/3 exposure, Auto ISO. On these settings the results when viewed on laptop or HD TV are really amazingly sharp with no signs of jaggies. I tried 720p 60fps but on my TV I could see a lot of jaggies and it is not true 60fps.
If I want the files I eject the SD card and read them from the card in MacOSX. iPhoto imports the clips automatically and iMovie can edit joint whatever you want to do. Speeded up (8x) journeys look amazing especially with a good soundtrack. If your TV or Blu-ray player has a SD card slot you maybe in luck and play clips directly although my 2011 panasonic TV did not like the ExFAT format I tried but the 2012 Blu-ray Player did.
There are so many uses for this camera. I have just covered dash-cam use which works beautifully. My main criticisms the exact meaning of the menu options are not made clear at all, some not what you might expect. The printed manual is of little use in this respect; no car sucker mount supplied but there are a lot of bits and pieces supplied to make other custom solutions; only one battery supplied and no charger.
The camera performs just as I expected and this version allows me to invert the camera for better cable management. (note the live LCD image is NOT inverted to compensate which is a shame but the recorded movie files are OK. Remember use it at 30Hz 1080p as the 60Hz 720p is just 30Hz with every frame doubled.
My previous examples of JS4000 all failed by the USB socket breaking off. There is no reinforcement only surface mount solder. This is a weak point. This Blusmart looks to be exactly the same so consider reinforcing around this socket (inside) with either hot glue or epoxy. Doing so of course invalidates your warrantee and at your own risk as you can bung up the inside of the socket and even cover the microphone which is right in the corner.
Tried unsuccessfully to use as a web cam in MacOSX. It is identified by the system as:cJ1455 Model ID: UVC Camera VendorID_1539 ProductID_34322 Unique ID: 0x1420000006038612 but I only achieved a blank screen.
There are many versions and suppliers of this camera. This one (Black) was delivered to me from Blusmart to review (honest and unbiased) and also draws on experiences with previous examples of the JS4000 I have tried. I hope it helps someone. Note this is NOT the WiFi version.