There are already a few cases available for people who want to turn their fragile li’l iPhone into a wide-lensed rugged actioncam, the Optrix XD Sport and the mophie OUTRIDE being two examples. The new Miveu-X is a similar product, although it includes a chest-mount system.
Speaking as someone who has messed around with various actioncams while cycling, it’s my opinion that a chest-mounted camera provides the best footage. A handlebar mount is too shaky, while a camera mounted on the top or the side of the helmet sometimes gets whacked against things. Additionally, neither of those mounting locations are the greatest for getting the rider’s hands and handlebars in the foreground of the shot – having those in there improves the look of the footage, as it really puts the viewer in the action.
At the heart of the Miveu-X is a rugged plastic cover that clips onto the front of an iPhone 4 or 4S – the phone’s camera lens lines up with the cover’s 180-degree fisheye lens, greatly expanding its field of view. The phone/cover are then attached to a nylon clip, which is itself mounted on a flexible elastomer chest plate via a 360-degree ball mount. Adjustable elastic straps run through that plate and around the user’s torso, holding everything in place.
The case also has an integrated record button, allowing recordings to be started or stopped without the phone needing to removed.
The ball mount allows the iPhone to be tilted up, towards the user’s face. This is certainly a good feature, since if the device is used to record biking footage, the phone will need to be tilted up in order to compensate for the user’s forward-leaning position – otherwise, the shot will mostly just show the bike’s top tube and handlebars. Users of GoPro’s chest-mount rig will often actually mount the HERO camera upside down on it, in order to allow it to tilt up sufficiently.
Footage shot using the Miveu-X can be seen in the video below. There does appear to be some vignetting (the edge of the lens becoming visible in the corners of the shot), but it’s certainly still better than what would be captured using an unadorned iPhone.
The Miveu-X can be purchased for US$99. There’s also a $15.95 Miveu-Z mount, designed to be zip-tied “to just about anything.” A handlebar-specific mount is on the way.
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