The Wasp 4K instantly strikes you as a camera that’s different to the main stream, and during my time with it I’ve really grown to like the way it looks and functions. At the same time there are an equal amount of features that I am a little reserved about, but ultimately this is one of the most solid performing cameras I have yet seen.
First and foremost is the design, there’s really nothing sleek about the casing and the way that it looks. It looks tough and slightly industrial. In the hand the contrast between the hard plastic used for the front compared with the rubberised back seems reminiscent of engineering gear designed to be used in the field.
After a short time that tactile feel of the camera really starts to draw you in and you realise that it’s more likely designed that way due to necessity and function rather than aesthetics. The rubberised back means that the buttons give you slight enhanced purchase so if you aim to push a button you do, there’s no chance that your finger will slip. The small screen is small, but again it’s just enough to see what you’re filming and to use the buttons on the back to easily navigate around the options.
The front and sides of the camera use a tough plastic that easily to clean. The only issue here being that the lens uses the old style design with screws surrounding the lens, this means that a simple wipe of the finger isn’t quite enough to clear all the mud and grim away, although the surround is slightly bevelled so it isn’t actually too bad.
On the side of the camera is the screw cap that protects the USB port connector, a rubber seal provides an extra level of security ensuring that moisture doesn’t get in. On the other side is the accessory mount which is there so you can attach lamps or anything else that fits.
As the camera is an all-in-one design there is no waterproof housing yet it still uses the familiar lever lock design to secure the flip down back. Once the back is open you have direct access to the battery and memory card. This lever lock features a small locking mechanism that I did find fiddly to use especially if wearing gloves, but certainly does the job.
On the base of the camera is the usual GoPro style of mount which enables the camera to be fitted to almost anything, and it’s a nice touch that this is screwed to the base so if you did want to change it for another type then a new mount could be made.
That is really the point of the Wasp 4K it’s been designed by someone who uses action cameras. Not in a weekend ride or day out with the kids way, but in a motor cross, put the camera through extreme conditions way, and this explains the design and build of the camera.
Out on the trial
It’s taken a while to fully grasp the Wasp 4K, in many ways it looks like any other accepted action camera but it’s not. It is the action camera that keeps on going, when all others have for one reason or another stopped recording the Wasp 4K is still there.
Compared with the other action cameras that I had on test at the same time; these included the GoPro Hero5 Black, Yi 4K and Olfi one.five, all excellent cameras, the Wasp 4K was constantly the last one standing when it came to recording times, not by a bit but by an average of an hour.
In use the camera was simple to use, the small screen enables you to flip through options and set the recording settings as you need. Then hit record and go.
A feature that I’m never keen on is having two buttons on top of the camera, especially as you swap the camera from one position to another as it’s all too easy to hit the power option rather than the shutter. There is a small mark on the base of the camera which highlights which side the shutter button is on, although I’m not sure that’s intentional, but it’s definitely handy.
More over, after time it should become instinctive what side the shutter button is on, but if it doesn’t or you can’t see the camera to start it rolling, then the shutter button is on the side of the accessory mount, this is handy for when you’re trying to feel your way around the camera.
When it comes to the Wasp’s app it does look a little dated but there’s no doubt that its fully featured and does the job, the live view is also exceptionally quick.
If I was put on the spot and asked who should buy this camera, I’d say anyone who needs a camera that will be subjected to serious abuse. Of all the people I showed the camera it appealed most to those who owned off road vehicles. Due to this and as part of the test the Wasp was attached to the front of a Defender – whilst the camera survived the hard drive didn’t so that footage will be re-shot in the new year..
Wasp 4K Action Camera Video quality
Quality wise the video is as good as it gets with clear crisp detail and great colour. there are also enough options to keep you satisfied with 1080 at 60fps to capture fast action and 4K at 24fps. The camera doesn’t try to cram in too many other resolutions and frame rates it just keeps it to the direct and usable.
Side-by-side against the GoPro Hero4 Black and there really is very little to tell between the quality of the two.
If you’re looking for a camera that will stand-up to all types of abuse then the Wasp 4K is perfectly suited. It’s size and bulk although only marginally larger than a standard GoPro does make a bit of a difference so it’s not as comfortable to mount as some other cameras.
It looks most at home attached to the front of a Land Rover or Moto Cross bike but is also fine attached to a chest or helmet mount.
The small side accessory mount is an excellent idea and easily enables you to attach any accessory as long as it features that the GoPro style three prong mount.
Design wise I did have a few issues with the screw on lens style in as far as it was a little more tricky to clean, the lever lock with extra security catch that was fiddly to open and the two buttons on top, but when it came to use it functioned exceptionally well.
The app and menu system all look a little dated but as with the camera it all again functioned well. When it came to overall usability the length of life in the battery was the real winner.
Of course all this would mean nothing if the camera was let down by the video quality, again the camera performed well turning out quality footage that matched that from the GoPro.
If you’re in the market for a super tough action camera that will last the distance, stand-up to abuse and capture stunning footage then the Wasp 4K is an excellent choice.