Don’t be afraid of the Ghost. It might be big, but it’s smart, too
Drift’s action cams have been getting gradually smaller over recent years, but this is still one of the most hulking devices on test; strap this to your head and your neck muscles will be tested. That extra size does, however, mean there’s space to fit in a two-inch screen, suitably protected in Gorilla Glass. It’s not just the screen that’s tough, either, with the Ghost-S’s rear hatch and screw thread mount bulkier for increased stability. There’s also waterproofing to three metres without a case.
The quoted shooting abilities are also pretty bolshy, with claims of full-HD 1080p video at up to 60 frames per second, plus a wide range of time lapse, burst and other video and photography modes. That suggests a sensor able to go toe-to-toe with the elite, yet the Ghost-S doesn’t quite deliver.
In daylight, yes, video quality is hard to distinguish from the best on test. But use the Ghost-S in murky conditions, under tree cover and out of direct sunlight, and it all starts getting a bit grainy and blurry. At night that tendency is even more pronounced; on an evening cycle ride you’d struggle to read a number plate if a driver clipped you. Audio is also poor, with wind noise drowning out the sound of your inventive swearing.
The Ghost-S does have one defining innovation, though: a rotating lens. This makes it easy to mount the camera side-on, atop a snowboarding helmet for instance, and still shoot widescreen video the correct way up. Ingenious.
Add to that a decent selection of included mounts and the ability to hit record and adjust settings via the remote control – and soon an iOS and Android app – without removing it from its mount and you have a camera that could be near the front of the pack, if only it could up its game in terms of video quality.
Love Rotating lens adds versatility to mounting options. Incredibly tough build Hate Poor video in low light. Lack of casing means wind noise is an issue. Bulky and a bit ugly, too T3 Says There are some smart design ideas here, but video quality lets the side down