ChaseCam HD: More resolution, smaller package

At the 2010 SEMA Show, ChaseCam has stepped up the resolution of its racing cameras with the DIVA HD system.

The ChaseCam HD camera packs more resolution into a smaller package than the previous generation.
The ChaseCam HD camera packs more resolution into a smaller package than the previous generation. Antuan Goodwin/CNET

When racing teams want to record their vehicle's performance, they usually don't grab a GoPro Hero or ContourHD off of the shelf (although they surely could). Instead they use a system like ChaseCam's DIVA (Data Integrated Video Acquisition), which not only captures video from multiple cameras, but also records from an internal accelerometer, a GPS receiver, and a direct connection to the vehicle's brain via OBD-II/CAN bus. However, up until now and in spite of all of that functionality, the lipstick-size cameras in the ChaseCam system captured only SD video content. This year at the 2010 SEMA Show, ChaseCam has stepped up the resolution with the DIVA HD system.

The DIVA HD system consists of the DIVA HD module itself and the new ChaseCam HD camera.

The DIVA HD module has been upgraded to receive 720p video.
The DIVA HD module has been upgraded to receive 720p video. Antuan Goodwin/CNET

ChaseCam has reduced the HD camera's size by about a third.
ChaseCam has reduced the HD camera's size by about a third. Antuan Goodwin/CNET

The DIVA features all of the bells and whistles of the previous generation, but has been upgraded to accept HD video input from up to four cameras. Video is captured at 720p at 60 frames per second and encoded in H.264. Alongside the video, the DIVA can store audio captured from its internal (or optional external) microphone, lap times, vehicle speed, engine RPMs, and other data captured from its previously mentioned internal accelerometer, external GPS receiver, and vehicle diagnostics connection.

The ChaseCam HD camera itself has been upgraded to supply the DIVA HD with 720p video, but has also shrunk by about a third from the already small standard definition unit. The HD unit features an anodized metallic finish on its new rectangular chassis, which should make leveling the camera much easier. We got our hands on the unit on the show floor and were blown away by its compact size.

The ChaseCam DIVA HD system is said to be in final product development now, with an estimated ship date of December 31.

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