The helmet camera was first introduced during the 1980's as a bulky camera mounted to a helmet. These helmet cameras were most often used to record a first-person perspective during sports and adventure activities, as well as on movie sets. Because the cameras recorded to video tape, the cameras were almost as large, heavy, and obtrusive as the average home VHS tape player of the day. With the advent of digital video systems, helmet cameras became small, light, unobtrusive and easy to use.
Digital helmet cameras which recorded the video to smaller, lighter tape media, hard drives, and memory cards were the next step in the evolution. The video from digital helmet cameras could be downloaded to a desktop computer, or a laptop computer in the field. However, these helmet cameras still required a wired connection to the computer in order to download the video. A wired controller was also required to manipulate the recording device perched on the helmet.
With the advent and widespread adoption of wireless connectivity, the last chains holding back the helmet camera's usefulness in the field have been severed. Today, high quality, wireless helmet video cameras are available at affordable prices. These wireless helmet cameras unobtrusively record the action from a first-person perspective while leaving the operator's hands free to engage in the activity.
Wireless helmet cameras are particularly popular with sporting enthusiasts interested in recording the action. Their use is widespread throughout air-related sports such as skydiving and hang gliding. Wireless helmet camera systems are even available in waterproof cases, making them perfect for recording underwater activities such as SCUBA diving. Helmet cameras are also widely used by the military, and for civilian police training. Like other video cameras, these wireless helmet cameras also record audio, making the system ideal for capturing everything the operator sees and hears.
Today's wireless helmet cameras typically record the action to widely available SD memory cards. The camera systems are resistant to shock, and many are resistant to water, making possible their use in inclement weather conditions. Many wireless helmet camera systems can transmit the action in real-time back to a base from where it can be broadcast to the internet, or to a centralized video broadcasting or repository system. The typical wireless range extends from about one thousand feet, to a few miles. The use of repeaters extends the range.
Straps and other mounting hardware allow the use of wireless helmet cameras with a wide range of helmets. Special helmets are not necessary. Therefore, such systems are popular for recording action from the middle of football games, BMX bike riding events, and other activities where the participants typically wear protective helmets. The mounting hardware also provides the ability to affix the camera to almost any imaginable platform.
If you are in the market for great wireless helmet cameras, there is a plethora of excellent vendors who sell a wealth of high quality products. Prices for complete systems typically range from one hundred dollars, up to thousands of dollars. Media cards are widely available for under one hundred dollars.