Browning Strike Force 850 HD/July 26, 2017

The Browning Strike force 850HD is a small camera, part of the sub micro series.  It uses only 6 AA batteries internally which allows Browning to shrink the foot print of this camera.  In addition, it uses a back lit 2 line LCD display screen which further reduces the foot print as well as the cost on this camera.  For use in the dark, both the LCD and the buttons are back lit and I added a photo of this above.  The screen is bright in the dark and easy to see when you get it at the right viewing angle.

If you are like me, then you are happy with a simple two line display and configuration like this as I never use the big color LCD screen to view photos and videos in the field and I would rather the manufacturer reduce the cost of the unit. I would not perceive the lack of an expensive color LCD screen as any indicator that a camera is “low end” or “basic”.  I just feel those big screens are probably overkill but they can have their uses for sure.

Did I mention this camera is small? It is both small and light weight even filled with batteries.  If you have to hike 10 miles with 10 of these in your backpack, trust me you will prefer this camera over larger competitors’ cameras.

This camera utilizes 850nm LEDs which means there is a visible red glow when it flashes but this also means better night imaging typically.

The surface of the camera has a molded texture that is covered with a camo pattern on the front face while the rear of the camera is a monochrome olive green.  This textured approach helps to reduce flat surfaces which reflect light and the camo pattern helps it hide into the background.  The LED array is covered with a random break up pattern to reduce the glint off the LED array from a distance.

Rather than the camera opening like a book, it has a small hinged flap on the front that uses a single secure latch and covers the LCD display, buttons, and SD card slot. The batteries are held in a removable tray with a push button release for access.  The bottom of the camera has a removable rubber flap covering the external battery port which is labelled 12V.  The bottom rear has a single standard screw in for mounting while the back of the camera supports both strap and a python.  In order to keep someone from opening or accessing your camera you will need a lock box or at least a small lock to secure the front latch but that is pretty poor security.  I would go for the steel lock box personally.

Included in the box is a very nice strap with a metal clasp.  I find that so many cameras will come with a strap that is virtually useless because the plastic buckle will break the moment you put decent tension on it.  I feel that adding a usable strap with metal clasp is a nice touch and shows that Browning is in touch with the market and its customer base.

I would consider this an easy camera to use and I was able to change the configuration with out refering to the printed manual so far.

Manufacturer model #: BTC-5HD-850.

Manufacturers specifications:

  • Red glow infrared emitters (emits a faint red glow when taking pictures/videos at night)
  • 12-Volt External Battery Jack
  • Accepts up to a 512 Gig SD Card
  • Runs on 6 AA batteries
  • 16 mpxl (interpolated) photos
  • 1280×720 HD videos w/ audio
  • Video lengths 5 seconds – 2 minutes. 20-second max night videos
  • Picture stamp includes: time, date, moon phase, temperature, and camera ID
  • Timelapse plus mode (time lapse plus motion trigger)
  • SD Card Management
  • Smart IR video
  • Removable battery tray
  • TV out jack (cord not included)
  • USB 2.0 port (cord not included)
  • 1/4″ x 20 threaded insert
  • Multi-shot up to 1-8 images
  • Selectable time delay: 5, 10, 20, 30 seconds or 1, 5, 10, 30, 60 minutes
  • Includes 6 ft. nylon camera strap with all metal buckle

The MSRP on this camera is around $139.00.

Chasingame Test Results:

Test PerformedResult
Flash RangeExceeds 60 feet. Good contrast and white balance. Usable detail at 60 foot.
Trigger Time without flash0.42s
Trigger Time with flash0.45s
Video Trigger Time1.39s
Photo Recovery Time (5s delay).45s
Video Recovery timeIndeterminate
Day RangeGood color and light balance. Pretty grainy when zoomed.
Battery Life9027 Photos and 127 Video Clips over 10 weeks
Filter ClunkNo
Invisible FlashNo
Motion Blur
Sensing Test55 feet at 86F degrees

Photo Samples captured in 8MP setting.


Video Samples in Ultra setting @ 720p [day time]

Note: The audio was not captured (or extremely low volume) on several of the clips and it may have something to do with the Smart IR Video setting which causes the camera to continue capturing video while there is motion.

2017 Browning Strike Force 850HD Review samples from on Vimeo.

Video Samples in Ultra setting @ 720p [night time]

2017 Browning Strike Force 850HD Review samples 2 from on Vimeo.

Progress and Activity
07-26-2017 Update
I unboxed this camera, grabbed some sample photos, played with the LCD screen and buttons in the dark and got the review started. It has rained most of the day and hopefully tomorrow I can complete the trigger testing and get some flash range and sensing testing done.
07-27-2017 Update: Trigger and Day range & samples
I managed to get the trigger testing done today and capture day range samples and deer samples as the rain has quit for now.  I captured some 720p video samples as well as photo samples.  I noticed that on the majority of the video clips that the camera failed to capture the audio track.  Some do have nice clear audio.

This camera will go back out at dusk in photo mode to capture those elusive Chasingame deer during the dark night.

07-30-2017 Update: Night Photo and video samples
I finally got a few night photos of the deer and all have good contrast but unfortunately not much in the way of movement to explore the motion blur.  Several morning shots shows there were no issues with transition and white out, however in the evening I did get a couple of strange photos. At this point I am not sure if its the SD card (which is new) or the camera. I will just keep an eye on this issue.  Also, I grabbed some night video footage.  As before some of the video clips will have high audio volume and some very low.  I do not know what causes this.  Maybe a camera firmware update could correct this. I will check with Browning on it.
10-20-2017 Update: Battery Life
This camera captured 9027 Photos and 127 Video Clips over a 10 week period. This review is complete.



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