2013 Fall Trail Camera Shootout

      Many people think the Trail Camera Shootout is the cumulative rankings for everything a camera has to offer.  That couldn't be further from the truth.  The Shootout is a great way of identifying a cameras "real-life" detection circuit.  How well does the detection zone synch up with the trigger speed?  Does a particular camera have a detection zone that is so wide that it snaps the picture before the subject has walked into the field of view?  The Shootout is designed to test all the cameras under the same conditions to determine how the detection circuits rank.

     The Shootout does not take into account battery life, ease of operation, picture quality and many other factors.  Check out our trail camera star ranking system if you'd like to take all the factors into consideration.


How it works:
     Cameras are attached to the trailer at a height range equivalent to the core vertical range of the human torso.  This gives all cameras an equal chance of detecting motion created by an adult human.  Cameras are then individually tested and adjusted for exact perpendicular alignment to the mounting surface of the trailer.  Once all cameras are aligned and aiming along the exact same plane, the trailer is adjusted for perfect alignment parallel to the lay of the land at the testing location.

       While there are different schools of thought regarding how a trail camera should function, we believe a camera should come as close as possible to replacing a human in the field.  Specifically, we look for cameras to monitor as large an area as possible and capture as many photos of anything which enters that area as fast as possible.  With this in mind, we developed the original Trail Camera Shootout.

     The shootout tests the combined abilities of a camera’s trigger speed, detection width & detection range.  The test area is established by setting cones at 10’ intervals from 10 to 100 feet from the cameras.  A human test subject walks in front of the cameras twice at each distance- once from the right and once from the left.  This process averages out any inconsistencies created when detection sensors are mounted incorrectly.

     Photos are judged and awarded points based on how quickly each camera detects motion and ultimately captures a photo of the test subject. Photos are divided into 8 vertical zones.  If the test subject appears in the first zone of the leading edge of the walk path, a camera receives the maximum score of 8 points. Cameras which record an image of the test subject just as he is about to exit the picture are given a low score of just 1 point.  If no photo is captured, a camera receives 0 points.


     An extremely valuable test criteria which doesn’t factor into the scoring for the Shootout, but is readily apparent during the test is Recovery time.  Recovery time defined is the amount of time which elapses between triggered photos.  Some cameras are able to snap photos one after another with virtually no lag time between pictures.  Other cameras are incapable of capturing photos any faster than 1 a minute.  Cameras with quick recovery times captured multiple photos of the test subject as he made his way across the test area.  Where applicable, we document all cameras which captured multiple photos.


     Conditions this day were absolutely perfect.  The temperature was in the low 40's and the cameras were very sensitive.  DO NOT expect the cameras to detect out this far when the temperature is warmer (the colder it is, the more sensitive to heat & motion a trail camera will be).


Rank
Model
Score
Full Results
1
Uway UM562
120
Uway Results
2
Scoutguard SG560
118
Scoutguard Results
3
Bushnell HD Max 11-9576
103
Bushnell Results
4
Uway Panda Wireless
102
Uway Results
5
Reconyx HC600
100
Reconyx Results
6
Covert MP6
98
Covert Results
7
Scoutguard SG565F
97
Scoutguard Results
8
Buckeye X7D
95
Buckeye Results
9
Moultrie M-990i
95
Moultrie Results
10
Reconyx HC500
94
Reconyx Results
11
Moultrie M-880
94
Moultrie Results
12
Moultrie D-555
93
Moultrie Results
13
Covert Special Ops - Code Black
92
Covert Results
14
Bushnell HD 11-9537
91
Bushnell Results
15
Cabelas
91
Cabelas Results
16
Browning Range Ops
88
Browning Results
17
Bushnell HD 11-9547
87
Bushnell Results
18
Spypoint Live 3G
85
Spypoint Results
19
Moultrie D-444
84
Moultrie Results
20
Wildgame Innovations Lights Out
80
Wildgame Results
21
Spypoint BF-10
76
Spypoint Results
22
Stealth Cam Unit Ops
74
Stealth Cam Results
23
Wildview X8IR
71
Wildview Results
24
Stealth Cam Professional HD
67
Stealth Cam Results
25
Wildview TK30
65
Wildview Results
26
Spypoint Tiny W3
61
Spypoint Results
27
Cuddeback Attack IR
56
Cuddeback Results
28
Covert Red 40
53
Covert Results
29
Browning Recon Force
53
Browning Results
30
Primos TC35 Ultra
44
Primos Results
31
Browning Spec Ops
43
Browning Results
32
Uway MB500
42
Uway Results
33
Cuddeback Ambush
29
Cuddeback Results