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Ion Air Pro 2 review

Chris Finnamore
9 Oct 2013
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
180
inc VAT

Poor software mars this otherwise well-designed action camera

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Specifications

sensor, PAL, 1,280x720 (50fps), 1,280x720 (25fps), 1,920x1,080 (25fps), 0.0x zoom, 130g

The Ion Air Pro 2 is an action camera with a focus on ease of use. As with the Contour Roam2, starting and stopping recording is as simple as flicking the switch on top of the camera. The Air Pro 2 has the bonus of a dedicated single shot button, too, so you don't have to connect the camera to your computer to switch to photo mode.

Ion Air Pro 2

Having separate video and photo buttons is useful

This is definitely a good thing, as we're not impressed with Ion's software at all. You can install the PC software from the camera's microSD card by plugging the camera into your PC, but this didn’t appear to survive wiping the SD card and Ion bizarrely doesn't offer the software for download from its website. There is the option to download Mac software, but this refused to recognise our camera.

The iOS and Android apps weren't much better. These require you to have the optional Air Pro 2 Wi-Fi adapter, which lets you make a direct connection to the camera. The iOS app let us change settings, such as flicking the camera mode between single shot, burst and 5/10/30/60s time lapse modes, but as soon as we tried the remote camera view it would drop the connection. The Android app would let us view a (jerky) feed from the camera, but the app was slow and poorly-designed.

Ion Air Pro 2

Flick the switch to change video mode

This is a shame, as we like the camera's basic design. As mentioned above, it's easy to start and stop recording and take photos with the rubber buttons on top, and the camera is waterproof up to 10 metres down without needing an additional case.

The Air Pro 2 comes with a useful tripod, which has bendy legs to help it fit on a variety of surfaces. Unlike tripods such as Joby's Gorillapod, though, you can't bend the legs all the way up to wrap it around objects such as poles. The main supplied mount is a sticky base with a ball socket which you clip the camera's mount into.

The ball and socket design certainly makes the camera easy to position at the angle and elevation you want. Unfortunately, it's far less resistant to being shaken around than a rigid mount, as found on cameras such as the Contour Roam2 and Drift HD Ghost.

HPI Racing Bullet MT

The HPI Racing Bullet MT test car

This was evident during our testing. We mounted the camera on the bonnet of an HPI Racing Bullet MT radio-controlled off-roader and took some high-speed runs through the woods. The Ion's footage wobbled and sheared as the camera moved vertically on its mount, and often ended the speed runs pointing down towards the floor instead of straight ahead.

The ball-and-socket mount doesn't cope well with bumpy tracks - best viewed full-screen at 1080p

This was a shame, as its static footage was some of the better-quality we had seen, with saturated colours and a reasonable level of detail. There are a number of other mounts available from the www.ioncamera.com shop, such as a suction mount for £27 and a bike mount for £18. The bike mount uses the same ball and socket joint, which may be a problem if you're going off-road, but the suction mount screws directly into the bottom of the camera. The Air Pro 2 also has a standard tripod screw mount on the bottom, so you'll be able to use third-party mounts and tripods.

But static video is fine - best viewed full-screen at 1080p

Despite its good looks, out-of-the-box ruggedness and useful included tripod, we're not fans of the Air Pro 2's mounting system, software and apps. The Contour Roam2 is a better choice at this price.

Basic Specifications

Rating***

Recording

Optical zoom0.0x
Digital zoom0x
Sensor pixels14,000,000
Widescreen modeletterbox
LCD screen sizeN/A
Viewfinder typeN/A
Video lampNo
Video recording formatH.264
Video recording mediamicroSD
Sound48kHz stereo
Video resolutionsPAL, 1,280x720 (50fps), 1,280x720 (25fps), 1,920x1,080 (25fps)
Maximum image resolution4,320x3,240
Memory slotmicroSD
Mermory supplied0
Flashno

Physical

Digital inputs/outputsMicro USB
Analogue inputs/outputsMini HDMI output, microphone input
Other connectionsnone
Battery typeLi-ion
Battery life3h 3m
Battery charging positioncamcorder
Size37x37x108mm
Weight130g

Buying Information

Warrantyone year RTB
Price£180
Supplierhttp://www.ebuyer.com
Detailswww.ioncamera.com

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