New Garmin Virb X and Virb XE bike cameras boast higher quality video and a plethora of features
Garmin is a company better known for its GPS devices, which are popular with mountain biker and road cyclists, but it is keen to get in on the action camera market that is dominated by the GoPro. A couple of years ago Garmin released its first video camera, the Virb Elite HD, but it’s gone back to the drawing board and totally redesigned the camera, and this week has released two models, the Virb X and Virb XE.
“With the updated design, enhanced recording options, built-in sensors and the introduction of G-Metrix, VIRB X and XE represent a bold step forward in the evolution of action cameras for consumers and professionals alike,” said Dan Bartel, Garmin vice president of worldwide sales. “We are extremely excited to bring these cameras to market, and see not only the content that users share, but also how far, how fast, and how crazy their adventures really are.”
No UK prices for the new cameras have been revealed yet, but the more expensive Virb XE costs $400 in the US, and the regular Virb X is $300. Both cameras share the same new form factor with now boasts a wider range of bike mounts and it’s waterproof to 50 metres without an additional case, so it should easily handle a spot of rain or being submerged in a puddle. The new flat lens is hydrophobic so water will bead off and not ruin your video.
The Virb XE shoots the highest quality of the two, at 1440p/30fps and 1080p/60fps with super slow-mo, image stabilisation and different zoom levels. The Virb X provides 1080p/30fps and 720p/60fps with slow-mo and zoom options. Both cameras can shoot still photos with photo bursts up to 12MP image quality, and the Virb XE offers professional level manual override controls.
With built-in sensors, like GPS, and ANT+ and WiFi, the Virb cameras can pull in data from external devices and using G-Metrix, can overlay this data on top of the video footage. That means you can display data like speed, distance, cadence, power and more over the top of your video, and give viewers a better sense of what was involved in your ride.
The camera is equipped with a 1in high-contrast display for changing the recording settings and one-touch controls ensure simplicity of use. Garmin claims a 2 hour battery life and the battery is replaceable for longer filming requirements.
VIRB X and XE will be available for purchase in summer 2015. VIRB X will have a suggested retail price of $299.99, and VIRB XE will have a suggested retail price of $399.99.