Taking a closer look at shot cameras and a ShotKam
Tom Sykes is a big fan of his ShotKam and here is why.
It’s fair to say that a ShotKam is an essential part of my crow shooting kit.
So I thought I would enlarge on why I particularly like having a ShotKam strapped to my gun. I have been using ShotKams for a few years now and think they are extraordinary pieces of technology. (You might also like to read our list of best camouflage jackets.)
How a ShotKam works
- There is an internal accelerometer within the camera that detects when the gun’s action is closed (also achieved with a gentle bump on the stock).
- This wakes the camera from sleep mode and it starts the recording process through a memory buffer (temporary storage).
- When a shot is fired, the camera responds to the recoil and saves the critical portion of that video, even slowing the footage down to the selected playback speed.
- Any follow-up shots, which occur within six seconds, will also be saved in that one MP4 clip.
So how does this help the shooter? It means that you can turn the camera on, leave it running, wake the camera up when you see an approaching bird and let the camera do the rest.
- These cameras are designed to show you exactly what is happening down range.
- The footage allows you to observe and collect data of the numerous different aspects that have gone into a shot.
- You can see clearly the amount of lead and where the muzzle is in relation to the target during the crucial moments leading up to and following a shot.
- These are an excellent training aid for a lot of people, not just beginners.
- I have used them to illustrate how much lead a certain target or type of target needs.
- They are great for reinforcing that desired sight picture that beginners can sometimes struggle to grasp.
Getting started with a ShotKam
Not just for beginners
Even competent Shots will benefit from access to a ShotKam. For example, a good friend of mine used my ShotKam for a session when he was practising prior to qualifying for the England Team in DTL. The camera allowed him to analyse a lot of varied information, which enabled him to see exactly what he was doing right and wrong and correct it.
Top game shots have also been keen to use a ShotKam to see what they are doing when they shoot and have then used them to improve their technique. We can all improve our shooting, no matter how good we are and this is a useful way to do so.
Of course, you can also use a ShotKam with other film cameras to produce great shooting videos that can be shared on social media.
I have lots of footage that we have recorded over the years and I get a lot of pleasure rewatching it and reliving the joys from a day out in the field. Plus, you have the proof when you pull off that cracking right-and-left that nobody believed you about! (Maybe anglers should have them too.)
How to get a ShotKam
ShotKam are currently offering equipment at £529 with a 30 day trial period, two year warranty and free delivery in 3-5 days.
I have used my ShotKam a lot when sat in the hide during the summer months to see exactly what went right and wrong. Unlike some shooting cameras on the market, ShotKams are compact and unobtrusive to the line of sight, allowing me to get on and shoot without having something putting me off. I know that some people have raised concerns in the past that the camera looks like it will weigh down the muzzle of the gun when shooting. To be honest, I don’t notice the small additional weight to the barrel.
This piece was originally published in 2018 and has been updated.