Pivothead Wearable Imaging – Great shooting tool
Pivothead has several different style and color options and we were able to get our hands on the Durango Chameleon model. They’re as stylish as they can be, but come on, they’re video glasses, this is spy stuff guys! They come in a protective hard case that is Pivothead branded and when you take them out, these glasses record hi-def 1080p video at 30 frames per second. Several different focus and exposure options and a built in microphone. The microphone is pretty good and I tested it in several different scenarios, with decent results. The glasses sport 8 Gigabytes of internal memory. Keep in mind that you cannot upgrade this memory. I’ll talk more about this in a minute.
In addition to video they have an 8 mega pixel camera with burst,multiple focus options and different exposure and ISO settings, there’s even time lapse options. These glasses also sport a plethora of other settings for many different types of recording. I mainly left everything at auto as it worked for what I needed them for.
The software installs simply on both Mac and PC and everything is on one screen. It’s pretty self explanatory and was easy to make changes.
Battery life recording full HD was just a bit over an hour of continuous video however, turning it on to record stages at a competition lasted all day and then some.
The lens is directly in the middle of the bridge right above your nose, which means you won’t get a good sight picture when you are shooting, but there are other benefits that I observed. First, I didn’t look as dorky as somebody wearing a gopro on their forehead to a uspsa match, but I did look like a dork with crazy robot glasses on. Honestly they aren’t bad and they look cooler than Google Glass, but they don’t have a heads up display either.
Remember when I said you couldn’t upgrade the memory? Good, it was a test. You passed. They offer an optional air sync box that you can use to copy files to it wherever you are. You still have to plug the glasses into it to use it though.
The Pivotheads have a simple control structure. There is the power button underneath the left arm of the glasses and a simple rocker on the top left. To start recording you push the rocker forward, to stop recording you push it forward again. Pushing the rocker to the rear takes a picture. There were several times that I forgot to start recording, which brings me to my biggest pet peeve for these glasses. Am I recording or not?! There are 3 tiny LED indicators inside the left temple area of the glasses. Blue is power on, red is recording and green means charging. What I ran into was that I would have to constantly check to see if they were a) on and b) recording. To do that I had to pull them off my face and look hard to the left, the either power it on or hit record. It was kind of aggravating to have to constantly check. Admittedly if the LED’s were visible always it would be irritating too. Not sure what the right solution is.
Now we get to safety. Are they safe to shoot in. There are a wealth of information and I recommend checking out lucky gunner lab’s very detailed article on this. Andrew Tuohy from Vurwaapen blog posted an excellent article on the safety ratings and how different glasses measure up.
Basically though you want your shooting glasses to be a minimum of Z87.1 certified, though Andrew recommends a military test (MIL-PRF-31013) that is much more demanding. The bad news is that Pivothead has not tested for Z87.1 yet, though their Recon and Moab models were designed to pass it. All their glasses are Z81.3 rated though, so understand the risks associated if using these for shooting.
I used these for shooting. I went shooting with Steve from SafeArmsReview with these. They worked great. I shot a USPSA match too, several of them. I went to a Rocky Mountain Tactical Ladies shoot and learned to shoot out of a purse with them! I even went to a speech sponsored by RMTL featuring a local Sheriff talking about the horrible legislation railroaded through in Colorado.
I believe in recording my training and progress as a shooter. It is good to be able to go back and take a critical look at technique. If you aren’t recording your practice now, start. It can be your phone propped up on a table, a camera on a tripod or even some fancy Pivothead hi-def wearable imaging. Whatever, just start watching yourself. If you are anything like me, you’ll be disgusted by how fat you are but either way you will be able to improve your shooting.
All in all, these glasses are great. The impact rating is a concern and I’ll let you make your own choices there. I really enjoyed shooting with them, even though they are slightly larger than most glasses but I was able to diagnose quite a few deficiencies in my shooting by watching the video from practice and matches. They were an excellent tool for recording my dry fire as well. I do have to say that they would not fit under my hockey helmet so I was unable to record any hockey games with them. But that is the only place I couldn’t use them.
Hope you enjoyed the review and I got you thinking about different ways to record your training and shooting performance.