Tonbux 4K Waterproof WiFi Action Cam AC170201

Action camera prices are falling and every day it seems less buys more. At only £49.95 at the time of writing this is by no means at the bottom of the market either in price nor features. A year or so ago you could not get a decent sports camera for under £150. I have tried a few Tonbux products in the past and they have all been good quality but well priced and I was interested to see how this new action camera shaped up.

At this point I usually include a list of items in the box but in this case there are too many to mention. Suffice it to say that in addition to the camera the box also contains a collections of almost all the accessories and mounts needed by most users. Notably these include a second battery (one is already fitted) and waterproof housing that differs from the norm in design. It is also worth noting that although no case or carry bag was provided the simple cardboard box the camera arrived in would be robust enough to double for storage use between shoots. Also missing was a SD card. these are cheap enough these days and the inclusion of the card would allow the cammera to be used straight from the box.

The User Guide is typical for action cameras in that it is small and hard to read but explains the basics about the how to operate the action cam. I attach a copy of the guide to my unboxing video. Run the video full frame and pause when needed to read it.

The camera itself is actually rather better than I expected for the money. Video quality is excellent, and a definite step up from the cheaper no-name clones. The 170° angle of view is great but with the barrel distortion common to all cameras of this type. There was a time when this would have been seen as a high end camera and now standards are moving higher even in the budget market. This camera does a perfectly decent quality 4K@30fps (too slow for many action uses) as well several other rather more useful modes including 1920×1080@60fps and 720P slow motion at 120fps. The slow motion is good but could be better – my Nexus 6P phone does 240fps.

Similarly, we are told it is waterproof to 30M, which is way above average, but there is no mention if this means it has been tested and rated IP68 or what. I would want to know what this was before diving with the camera.

The camera has loop recording, which is used for cameras with Car Mode and it will automatically power up but recording would need to be started manually. Also I do not think the camera has a G-sensor needed to flag impact recordings. However, I have yet to find an action camera that will actually work effectively in car mode so it is no great loss..

Like many more upmarket action cameras it has wifi built in which means the camera generates a mini wifi network of its own which allows attached phone to control the camera and viewed live streamed video. To use it you need to download the “SportLook” app from Apple or Android. The Android app is better than most and will stream a decent quality video stream, save images and video to the app as well as give easy access to the otherwise rather hard to negotiate camera settings. I was not able to test the iOS version of the app.

I was impressed by video quality which I found to be excellent at the most used setting of 1080p@60fps. Slow motion was OK at 720p but could be better. Still images were OK but not exciting with low light resolution poor.

On balance I would say this is an excellent buy for the money and at the mid range price of just under £50 the price it is not too dear.

This is a excellent quality mid level camera and has a features and performance that lifts it above the run of the mill. If you enjoy using it you may want to shell out more in the future for a high end model.

The Good
Great price
Good video quality
170° Angle of view
True 4K video
120 fps 720p Slow motion
FHD @ 60fps
64GB card support
Good Android app
Good packaging

The Bad
No SD card included
No Car mode
Slow motion could be better
No carry bag

More info and purchase