Drift, don’t let the quality slide – Alan McCaffery gets to grips with the Drift Ghost 4K
Having run the Drift Ghost 4K’s predecessor, the Ghost-S, as my daily camera for the past two years, I was very eager to get my hands on the latest camera from Drift. Once the package hit the office, I was on it faster than the tab runs out at the office Christmas party.
First impressions were good, the unit itself is tiny and weighs almost nothing. Drift have retained their clip-in mounting system which meant it slotted straight onto the mounts already on my bike.
In typical man fashion I didn’t even look at the instruction manual, opting instead to throw it in the general direction of our office managers head (the manual, not the camera). The Drift Ghost 4K does not come with a viewfinder screen as standard, although it is available as an add-on module, but that wasn’t a problem as the screen on the Ghost-S is fairly useless anyway.
Figuring out how to adjust setting and modes using the LCD on the rear took me all of ten seconds, as there’s not much room to go wrong with only three buttons on top of the camera.
Bar a couple issues connecting to the smartphone app, Drift have done an excellent job with their latest camera. They have listened to users feedback and addressed a number of frustrations that arose with the previous camera, like the long wake up time, which has gone from over 10 seconds to under 2.
Footage is crisp and clean, just make sure to use a high quality micro SD card, and the array of resolutions and frame rates is enough to satisfy all but professional filmmakers. We find 1080p resolution at 30 frames per second to be the right balance between excellent quality footage and not filling up the card too quickly. Upping that frame rate to 120 fps leads to buttery smooth slo-mo that makes you look more talented than you actually are.
Battery life on the standard unit is excellent, on our recent three day excursion with Motocraft to Circuito Monteblanco, the camera lasted a full day of shooting multiple 20 minute sessions and only needed to be charged that evening to be ready for the next day.
If you are going touring and need increased uptime, an additional extended battery is available from Drift, however it makes the unit fractionally bulkier.
Back on home soil, I’ve been using the Drift Ghost 4K on my daily commute for two weeks now and the small size and aerodynamic profile of the camera mean I barely notice it mounted to the fairings, unlike the windbrake style of other action cameras I’ve used in the past.