- The HD40 stands out in many areas - picture quality, battery life, case design and easy programming. The slow detection circuit is the only thing holding this camera back from being a true top performer. - TCP Staff
The HD40 is a red glow infrared trail camera from Covert. This camera will share many of the similarities with the no glow version, the HD60.
Quality of Design
Dimensions: 5.5" x 4" x 3" |Battery Type: 12 AA Batteries |External Battery Jack: 6 Volt
The case design hasn't changed at all from the Red 40 models of years past. The camera has a built in bracket for a python cable lock and a 1/4" x 20 threaded insert on the bottom for a Slate River Mount.
The Extreme HD 40 is one of the few cameras on the market that still has an internal picture viewer (2"). You can view pictures on this screen from the inside of the camera.
One of the most impressive features of this camera is the long list of programmable functions. Not only does the HD40 have overwrite function, password protection and PIR controls; this is one of a very few that has start/stop time. This means the camera can be set to turn on at custom time intervals during the day. There are only a handful of cameras that have this feature.
Programming the camera is incredibly easy and intuitive. You shouldn't have problems getting this camera up and running without looking at the manual. Here is a look at many of the popular setting options:
5 s. - 60 s. video clips
Time Lapse: custom start/stop time. 5 s. - 8 hr. time intervals
Photo Stamp: Time, date, temperature and moon phase
Picture + Video Mode: No
Start/Stop Time: Yes
Password Protection: Yes
SD Card Overwrite: Yes
PIR Settings: Yes | High, Low
Flash Settings: No
Picture Trigger & Recovery Speed: 0.76 s. / 5.1 s. |Video Trigger & Recovery Speed: 2.26 s. / 5.6 s. |Detection Range: 60 ft.
The HD 40 is just slightly slower than the HD 60 (the no glow sister to this camera), but just by a hair. The picture trigger speed is pretty good but the recovery times are average. The video trigger is slightly below average. This detection circuit could use some improvements just to catch up to cameras in a similar price range.
Detection range is 60 ft., which is capable of covering a moderately large area. The detection zone is wider than the field of view, which has resulted in a large number of false triggers from the HD 40.
Photo resolution: 12, 8, 5 or 3 mpxl |Video Resolution: 720pw/ audio |Flash Type: Red Glow Infrared
We have been impressed with the picture quality the HD40 has been producing. The day pictures are clear, crisp, have really good depth and solid color. The Covert HD60 had some blurry day pictures but we haven't seen that on the HD40, which is surprising as we would have thought they had similar firmware.
Night pictures have a strong flash and good contrast. There is some whiteout on close objects, but nothing alarming.
Overall, the pictures from the Covert HD 40 have been outstanding.
In the past, many people get confused with the megapixel ratings trail camera manufacturers advertise. Don't get caught up in this. We consider 99% of megapixel ratings to be a marketing gimmick. Companies inflate the mpxl rating to attract eyes to their products. They do this through interpolation, which digitally adds megapixels to a photo without actually improving the picture. The only way to judge picture quality is through the pictures a trail camera takes. For instance, the HD 40 interpolates its photos out to 12 mpxl (if you choose the highest setting). We consider interpolation completely unnecessary, however, every manufacturer employs this tactic. You will notice this the most when you zoom in on a full size image that the camera has taken. The details of the photo will appear hazy or even digitized. This is normal and to be expected.
Video quality seems to be solid. These aren't the highest quality videos we have seen from 2015 trailcams, but they are certainly some of the better ones. Day and night videos are well above average. The audio mic seems to do a particularly good job
Resting Power (on): 2.58 mW | Daytime Power Consumption: 3.72 Ws| Nighttime Power Consumption: 4.60 Ws
Battery life for the Covert HD40 is a real standout. Along, with excellent consumption numbers, this camera benefits greatly from running 12 batteries on a 6 volt system.
If this camera were to take 35 day pictures and 35 night pictures every 24 hours, this camera could last 10.5 months in the field (with lithiums). This is among the best cameras on the market for battery life.
Covert HD 40 Reviews Conclusion:
Overall, the HD40 is an excellent trail camera. Picture quality, battery life and the internal viewer make this camera a big winner. The only real knock we have found is a relatively average detection circuit. Improvements to recovery time would catapult the HD40 even higher in the rankings. In its current state, we still give the 2015 Covert HD40 a huge thumbs up.
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