2011 Primos X-Cam Blackout Camera Review - May 23, 2011

2011 Primos X-cam Blackout

2011 Primos X-Cam 62 count black flash 7 mp digital camera review

The anticipation that has hit the forums and at the sporting goods counters has been unreal. The word about this company coming out with a Black flash and keeping the cost under $300 has also been a constant buzz. We have been involved with the pre release testing for some time and believe me they just do not want to let even the smallest issue slide. The back and forth and upgrades have been on going until they no longer had any and the field testing has gone well. Having a top resolution of 7 MP is plenty and you can also move down the ladder to 5 and 3 Mp through programming. There is a single 640X480 video resolution at 18 fps. The trigger time is stated at 1.3 seconds and delay is programmable down to 5 seconds. They also chose to use the burst up to 9 pictures as one of the programmed features.

They call it Blackout and that is well named because it is all black except for a bit of grey color in the PIR lens. I put it on a tree that had another small bit of brush up next to it and it hid very well to my surprise. The top front has a small door with a lockable swing around latch. Under this door is the LCD view display and programming buttons. At the very top is the USB port and SD card slot next to the on/off switch. Programming is very straight forward and easy to do and follow. Just below the control center door is the Array cover which is a triangle shape and black with no visible emitters. Below the array is the indicator lamp, main lens and light sensor. The PIR sensor is centered at the bottom edge of the front of the camera. Looking at the bottom you will see the tri-pod insert and external battery port rubber cover. On each side of the bottom is a round cap that unscrews and when removed the 4 D cell compartment (two on each side) can be seen. If you choose alkaline or NiMH you must go to the program and select the type so the battery level indicator will give the correct reading. The back of the camera has a pipe thru setup for a Python and there are some very ridged ears that stick out on each side and are also big enough to handle a 3/8 in Python or the really great supplied cord. Primos also offer an accessory angle mount for this camera.

Time after time we get our hands on a camera and it will have a trait that just does not fit and it seems to throw your train of thought off. With this camera the method of setup is so easy it is like fun to do. To try to pick out any quirks about this camera just isnt working. I just seem to work normal without any trouble so far. Anthonys main love was the supplied strap to hang the camera and he would like a box full to use with some of the other cameras we test.

My initial tests in the dark room at one foot did not show even a ting of flash color when triggered. It is totally black and I could not see any indication that the flash had happened. The flash range is said to be 60 feet and we found that to be pretty close also. Day color pictures are sharp and clear with good color and a bit bright. Night pictures are good also during the initial in house tests. The market is growing one camera at a time in the black flash arena, and this camera has certainly achieved that task and it looks like they have done it very well. We now have four brand names that have made the grade.

We already have a ton of field pictures and all the main tests have been done where the trigger times come in the 1.5 range and sensing is a match for the flash range. Good wide angle sensing and field of view. The camera is on the hill right now gathering videos and will be changed over pictures this evening. Keep checking the sample pictures because we will be adding more.

06-21-2011 update: We have been very happy with most of the function but we have a problem that keeps sneaking in. We originally found this in burst mode where the first picture is a whiteout and we switched to single capture and also found the same thing. When we have animals in front of the camera that has had a rest period for a while before these animals arrive in front of the camera, the very first picture will be white but there after all is normal. We have contacted others who have their cameras in the field and they are not finding this same issue so it may very well be just our unit. Any way we have notified the company and we are also reporting here. We will probably be exchanging this camera out for another as soon as things slow down a bit at the shippers.

07-02-2011 update: We have completed gathering sample pictures and we only have battery life remaining so please view sample pictures and we will later post the final battery life. This review is closed.

07-30-2011 Update: Intermediate battery life update shows 6509 photos and 193 videos file and the battery level indicator still reads full. This camera is showing very good battery life.

08-06-2011 update: More on the battery life, up over 7500 stills and 200 videos and still reads full.

08-21-2011 update: This camera finally ended its run with 8411 photos and 200 videos taken on a single set of Rayovac D cells. Starting this test on May 8 and ending on August 8, this black flash camera exhibited excellent battery life over a 3 month period.

Trigger Tests
( 1.84s without flash)

( 1.48s with flash)

Flash Range
(camera only)

Day Range/8 Plate

Video Samples

Original Format

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