Summer is the perfect time to go on an adventure. Dabble in watersports, spend time on the beach, try scuba diving, scale a mountain, or ride your bike in the countryside. The opportunities are literally endless. Of course, you might want to preserve those memories forever by capturing them in glorious photos and videos. Those action-filled moments should be shot with a camera that can record in beautiful wide-angle, because without the scenery, what’s the point? For that, you need to get yourself an action camera, and for most people, the go-to camera is a GoPro. The problem is they’re very expensive. In fact, their latest model, the GoPro Hero7, costs as much as $400.
For something that won’t hurt your wallet but is capable of nearly the same performance, check out the Campark ACT74 action camera, which topped our list of budget-friendly GoPro alternatives. The Campark ACT74 is available on Amazon for 22% off. Start recording your summer adventures in high definition for the very reasonable price of $43 instead of $55.
This action camera looks pretty similar to a GoPro. In fact, you might even say that it’s a knockoff of the older GoPro models. It has four buttons, including a multifunction button on the front opposite the lens, which you use to turn the camera on and off, switch to different modes, and browse the menu. The shutter button found on top starts and stops recording, takes photos, and acts as the “OK” button for selecting a menu item. The up and down buttons found on the left side are used for navigating.
There’s an LED screen at the back that isn’t a touchscreen, and there’s also a removable slot found at the bottom which completely detaches and houses the camera’s ports: A MicroUSB port, a mini HDMI port, and a MicroSD card slot.
The Campark ACT74 is capable of recording 4K videos and shoot time-lapse and burst photos using its 170-degrees HD wide-angle lens. The footage it captures is honestly astounding, almost as good as a GoPro’s. In our experience with it, the colors were vibrant and really pop and details looked sharp and accurate, even in low light. You can set the camera to shoot at multiple adjustable angles (170°, 140°, 110°, 70°), depending on how much of the scenery you want to include. Video stabilization was a little underwhelming. Footage captured while riding a bike was a little shaky but still watchable. It’s built-in microphone? Garbage. Audio recordings sounded muffled with so much background noise, and conversations were nearly incomprehensible. Thankfully, you can turn it off in the settings.
This action camera comes with a lot of accessories, including a waterproof housing (which allows the camera to record underwater in depths of up to 30 meters), several mounts, bases, and clips, a USB cable, an adapter, and a couple of rechargeable batteries. Finally, you can download Campark’s XDV app on your phone to view the camera in real-time, transfer files, and remotely control it via a Wi-Fi connection.
The Campark ACT74 is a true value for your money, a budget action camera that offers above-average picture quality and a ton of accessories including the waterproof housing (which you need to buy separately for a GoPro). The drawbacks are the horrible microphone and mediocre video stabilization. Honestly, for just $43, you get more than what you pay for.
For more awesome deals visit our curated deals page.
Digital Trends may earn commission on products purchased through our links, which supports the work we do for our readers.