There is absolutely no denying that the original Akaso v50 was the undisputed king of the entry-level action cameras back in its day when Akaso basically ruled the cheap GoPro alternative price point with little to no real competition to their excellent camera range. After the huge success of the original v50 as well as the Brave 4 Akaso seemed to fall on hard times after becoming complacent and releasing a number poorly performing action cameras and allowing their competition such as the Apeman Trawo to come in and take absolutely massive market shares from them.
Thankfully though, Akaso seems to have pulled it all together and managed to get back on track with their new range of reimagined cheap action cameras that are taking the action sports community by storm. Rather than just releasing one single action camera per generation as they have with their previous generations of action cameras, Akaso seems to have taken a leaf out of GoPro’s book and released three different cameras to target different price points in the market.
These are the Akaso V50 X, the Akaso V50 Pro, and the Akaso V50 Elite in price ascending order and at the time of writing, all three variants of the cameras are doing very well and rapidly growing their customer bases. Thankfully, all three variants of the camera are relatively cheap while offering some excellent performance and image quality relative to their price point in the market.
Due to the three new, modern variants of the Akaso v50 being released and being received so well by the community and earning such a great reputation, we have seen an almost exponential increase in the number of people reaching out with questions about the cameras. Due to this, we have decided to publish our own ultimate Akaso v50 review to take a massive in-depth look at the three cameras and share our thoughts on how Akaso have managed to turn everything around and establish themselves as the dominant entry-level action camera brand again so quickly.
We will try to answer as many of the commonly asked questions that we see throughout our article while also trying to help as many of our readers as possible. Our regular readers will be aware of the format of our articles with our comparison table just below going over the main features of each camera for anyone who is short on time and just wants a quick and easy breakdown. For any of our readers who like to know as much as possible about any new potential purchase, we then have our more in-depth look at the three cameras and their features blow the comparison table section.
We have tried formatting this type of ultimate review article in multiple ways but the feedback always seems to suggest that this is the best way to cater to our readers who are in a hurry and short on time as well as those who want to know as much as possible. Anyway, without any further ado, lts get stuck into our ultimate Akaso v50 review!
Last update on 2020-01-27 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
As you can see from our comparison table above, all three of the cameras have their own specs-based around their relative price point and in all fairness, each model dominates their respective price ranges on paper at the time of writing. The new V50 range is also the first action camera range to offer features such as 720P@240fps as well as advanced electronic image stabilization in an action camera under $150 so it’s not surprising that the cameras are selling as well as they are.
First up, we have the Akaso v50 x that is the cheapest camera in the new v50 range and offers some solid performance for its price tag. It is a great entry-level action camera and probably the best sub-one hundred dollar action camera on the market right now it that is perfect for capturing your adventures. the V50 X has managed to earn itself an excellent reputation amongst the community in the few months since it was released and its sals just keep on increasing as time goes on.
That said though, although the Akaso v50 x is a great little action camera that provides some great image quality, its audio track can be muffled and be a total pain. If you are an action sports enthusiast then this will likley not be an issue as most people play music over their sports footage. On the flip side of this though, if you are a vlogger using an action camera to capture your content then this can be a nightmare as your audio track can be low quality making either of the other two variants of the v50 the better option.
Next up we have the Akaso v50 Pro that we actually think offers the best value for money out of the three cameras and is our primary recommendation for anyone looking to purchase a new action camera. At the time of writing, it is without a doubt our favorite cheap action camera and we are very impressed with its performance and image quality for its price.
As you would expect from a camera that is absolutely jam-packed with all these features, the Akaso v50 Pro has managed to quickly build up a massive customer base of action sports enthusiasts. Many of these have chosen to post their own independent reviews of the camera sharing their experiences and as you can think, they feel very highly of the camera too. The audio quality on the Akaso v50 Pro is much better than its little brother, the v50 x too making it a much better option for a vlogger or social media influencer too.
Although 4k@60fps looks great, it absolutely burns through your camera battery life like there’s no tomorrow while also creating a ton of heat that can cause your camera to overheat during use. 4k@30fps is almost as good and the vast majority of people won’t be able to tell the difference between them anyway while being much more battery-friendly. The 720P@240fps can offer some solid slow-motion video footage but again, the majority of people won’t be able to tell the difference between 240fps and the 720P at 120fps on the v50 Pro.
That said though, the Akaso v50 Elite is still growing itself a large customer base while also earning a bunch of great independent reviews from the community. Its sales are also increasing at an almost exponential rate at the time of writing too as word gets out it can save you money while rivaling the entry-level GoPros.
Anyway, that brings our comparison table section to a close and for the rest of the article, we will be taking a more in-depth look at the various features on the new Akaso v50 action camera range that set them apart from the competition.
Performance And Functionality
Another thing that we feel that Akaso has done right is to add native 4k to the v50 range rather than digitally upscale their video resolutions helping make them much more competitive to what Apeman and Campark are offering in their latest cameras. One of the main issues with the Brave 6 was that it used digitally upscaled 4k rather than native 4k pretty much giving Apeman free range with their native 4k action camera range until these new v50 cameras were released.
For those of you who don’t know, native 4k video means that the camera sensor on the action camera is able to capture true 4k video resolution. Digitally upscaled 4k video is actually captured with a weaker camera sensor in a lower resolution before the footage is then digitally upscaled to meet the resolution requirements for the brand to advertise their camera as offering 4k.
As you can probably expect, digitally upscaling the video footage to meet the requirements of 4k requires a ton of battery and can literally half the battery life you can get per charge. On top of this, digitally upscaled 4k causes a fair amount of heat to be generated while capturing 4k and can potentially lead to problems with your camera overheating. Thankfully, the Akaso v50 action camera range has native 4k and does not need to digitally upscale the video footage.
All three of the variants of the Akaso v50 support some form of slow-motion frame rate. With the V50 X and the V50 Pro this is delivered in 720p at 120 frames per second while the V50 Elite offers you 1080p at 120 frames per second as well as the massive 720p at 240 frames per second. To our knowledge, the Akaso v50 Elite is the first budget-friendly action camera on the market to offer these frame rates for 1080p and 720p too.
That said though, as we mentioned in our comparison table section, the vast majority of our readers will easily be able to do without those higher frame rates and just go with the v50 x or the v50 Pro and just save some cash. We also touched on how the v50 Elite offers 4k at 60 frames per second but it can actually end up causing issues with battery life and storage space so you will likley be using 4k at 30 frames per second instead that both of the other cameras support anyway.
No matter what variant of the Akaso v50 you choose to go with, if you are planning on capturing 4k video footage then we would highly recommend that you pick up a memory card that offers at least 100MB/s data transfer. This will allow your v50 to save the 4k video footage to your memory card in an optimal way at the standard transfer speed to help prevent any buffering issues that may degrade image quality. Thankfully, these higher data rate memory cards have fallen drastically in price over the last two or three years and depending on the storage size can often be picked up for around $10-$20.
Although not the best to show of the advanced electronic image stabilization technology, you can get a hint of the technology from the sample video footage above. That said though, even though the Akaso v50 Elite has a higher price tag, in our opinion, even though it is the exact same technology, we feel that the cheaper V50 Pro actually has the better build-in image stabilization. We have no idea why this is as Akaso has confirmed it is the exact same advanced electronic image stabilization technology in both cameras but the v50 Pro just seems to pull it off better.
That said though, even the digital image stabilization technology on the latest premium price point GoPro cameras is no match for what a cheap 3 axis action camera gimbal like the Feiyutech G6 is able to provide. If you are more of an action sports enthusiast, rather than a vlogger or social media influencer, especially in a sport with a ton of vibration then a gimbal is a great little camera accessory to invest in. The G6 is an excellent gimbal too and in our opinion, it is definatley the best gimbal for action cameras available at the time of writing.
Before moving onto the v50 ranges underwater performance we want to quickly touch on the night mode of the range. Now, it is a nice little thing to have but in all honesty, we would rather it just be missed off the cameras totally to lower their price tag is possible as in our opinion it is not fit for purpose. The Akaso v50 X does not actually have the night mode technology but actually has the best image quality in low light in our opinion and we have seen multiple reports from other people using the v50 range who agree with us.
In our opinion, the issues with night mode stem from the camera frame rate dropping drastically when the v50 Pro and v50 Elite are capturing video with night mode turned on. Although the tech helps improve the visibility of the camera slightly, the drop in frame rate makes it almost unwatchable. Running the cameras in regular mode for the better frame rate is the better option as far as we are concerned but we hope that Akaso can release a firmware update soon to make their night mode better and actually usable.
The underwater sample video above also does a great job of showing off the image quality the v50 Pro is able to offer in variable light conditions too. As you can see, it has no problems when the surface waves cause the lighting to change and it keeps its focus with ease. This is a rarity at this price point in the market and is just another reason that we would recommend that you go with the V50 Pro over the v50 X or the v50 Elite.
Moving onto the photographic capabilities of the cameras and we are happy to say that all three variants of the Akaso v50 offer excellent photographic image quality due to their 20MP camera sensor. Now, we have seen a number of people report that the new v50 range uses a Sony camera sensor but we are yet to see anything from Akaso or Sony to confirm this to date but the image quality the sensor captures is excellent.
Additionally, the variable lens on the action cameras allows you to switch the field of view between 170°, 140°, 110° and 70° that translates into ultra-wide, wide, medium and narrow-angle photography. Although these variable angles are commonplace and the vast majority of the compeating action cameras offer them to, we are pleased to see that Akaso has included them in their v50 cameras.
With so many action sports getting you up in the mountains or into locations where you have a high chance of seeing some excellent landscapes, the 170° ultra-wide-angle field of view allows you to capture them in all their beauty while still being able to adjust to something like the 70° field of view for close-ups of a subject. If you are into your vlogging then the 140° and 110° angles are great for general vlogging too.
All three of the action cameras in the v50 range offer some form of digital zoom with the v50 X and v50 Pro offering four times digital zoom whereas the v50 lite offers eight times digital zoom. The technology for these cheap cameras has come on a long way and the digital zoom does not distort your image quality much or cause issues with chromatic aberration either. Depending on what niche you are planning to work in, this will likley be something you either never use or use every time but all three cameras offer some solid zoom capability.
Next up we have the Akaso v50 Pro that in our opinion, comes out on top of all three of the cameras again with the best audio quality. Not only does the v50 Pro capture the best treble and bass with its microphone but its quality does not fluctuate much either so you know what kind of audio track that you are likley to capture.
Finally, we have the most expensive option, the Akaso v50 Elite that is kind of between both of the two cheaper variants of the v50 when it comes to its audio performance. Although it still handles the bass and treble well while recording like the v50 Pro, it also has some wild fluctuations in audio quality that can be detrimental to the overall video if you are trying to vlog. Again, this is just another reason why we feel that the middle price point v50 Pro is the better option.
Next up we want to touch on the battery life of the Akaso v50 camera range. Now, unlike the vast majority of the compeating cheap action cameras on the market right now that use the 1050mAh Akaso have used the higher capacity 1350mAh batteries in their v50 action cameras. Not only does this offer better maximum battery life but it also allows you to get more usable time per hour spend charging the battery too.
As we mentioned earlier in the article, all three of the Akaso v50 cameras capture native 4k too so don’t have to waste power digitally upscaling their video footage. This can result in around three hours of 720p recording, an hour an a half of 1080p recording, and around an hour of 4k video footage. That said though, this is the official advertised battery life for the cameras but we have seen multiple reports from different people of the 1080p and 4k battery lives lasting up to a third more than their advertised maximums.
As you get two 1350mAh batteries with your purchase of any of the three v50 cameras you can charge one up in your backpack with a USB power bank while using the other battery. When your active battery is empty switch them over and you can essentially keep doing this indefinitely to keep your Akaso v50 supplied with power all day to allow you to capture the video footage that you need.
Just like the other modern action cameras, all three versions of the v50 support a number of camera modes including diving mode, burst photo mode, time-lapse mode, slow motion, look mode, driving mode, and audio-only mode. This allows you to easily tweak the mode of the camera to meet the needs of a number of common situations that any content creator may find themselves in.
When you factor all of this in, it really is not surprising that the cameras in the new Akaso v50 range have been able to earn so many excellent reviews in a matter of months since they were released. We feel that reading some of those reviews can offer some excellent insight from other users of these action cameras who have used it in pretty much any situation that you can think of.
User Interface And Control System
This ensures that if you are purchasing your very first action camera, all of the Akaso v50 cameras will be very easy for you to learn while offering you with some of the best performance available, especially at this price point. That said though, we know that many advanced action cameras may be reading this looking to pick up a more budget-friendly action cam but the v50 range offer all of the advanced features that an advanced user needs too.
The control system on the v50 range is all done via the camera’s two-inch IPS touchscreen display with a navigation menu that is very easy to follow allowing you to quickly and easily tweak any settings on your camera to adjust to your situation. The navigation menu has the most commonly tweaked settings prioritized to be closer to the start of the menu too to try and save you as much time as possible during use.
The actual touchscreen technology on these new Akaso v50 cameras is the best that we have seen in the sub $150 price point too. If you are planning to use your action camera for action sports then you will be pleased to know that all three variants of the v50 have a touchscreen that can perform well if your hands are wet or cold. This is one of the main issues with these more budget-friendly action cameras but Akaso have invested in their touchscreen technology and it has paid off allowing user involved in water-based or winter sports to use their cameras with ease.
If you are wanting to use any of the v50 cameras for photography then their streamlined capture modes make it as easy as possible. You literally just have to swipe up to start capture mode and then tap to actually capture your photograph. This minimized the amount of wasted time to get the camera ready for photography and increases the chance of you catching those rare, time-sensitive photographs.
You are able to quickly and easily capture photographs via the remote control or start and stop your video capture as well as a number of other key functions too. On top of this, the Akaso smartphone app offers similar functionality as well as the ability to easily tweak the settings on your camera too. If you are involved in a sport where your action camera will be mounted during use, the smartphone app allows you to easily tweak its settings for optimal performance without having to unmount the camera and waste time.
All in all, Akaso has done a great job of producting a solid little control system for their new v50 cameras that should easily be able to meet the needs of all of their target user groups. It is perfect for vloggers, social media influencers, and action sports enthusiasts alike while also being ideal for new and advanced action cameras too.
Build Quality And Design
If you are a travel vlogger or take part in an action sport that requires you to travel around on a regular basis then the small size and lightweight allows you to easily add any of the v50 action cameras to your luggage without having to use up much space or add much weight either. More and more vloggers are switching over to action cameras and smartphones due to their image quality going through the roof over the last few years while their size and weight are so much smaller than a mirrorless or DSLR camera.
Akaso has also improved the working temperature range for their latest action cameras too with all of the new v50 cameras being able to work in the 23°F/-5°C to 113°F/45°C temperature range helping to improve their winter sports performance too. The waterproof case that comes with the v50 cameras is pretty standard for this day and age and will protect your camera down to a depth of around 130 feet during use too while also helping to protect your camera in various other action sports too.
Just like the majority of other action cameras on the market right now, the three new Akaso v50 cameras come with a bunch of different camera accessories and mounts too. All of the mounts have a solid build quality too helping to ensure that your camera will stay mounted to whatever you attach it to offering peace of mind that it is safe too.
That brings our ultimate Akaso v50 review and as you can probably tell, we feel that Akaso has done an excellent job of upping their game and regaining their title of being the best entry-level action camera brand on the market. In our opinion, the Akaso V50 Pro is the best option out of the three cameras and offers the best blend of price for performance. Judging by the number of independent reviews that the v50 Pro has received from the community, it would seem that many people also agree with us too.
The Akaso V50 X is a solid little sub-one hundred dollar action camera but its issues with its microphone make it useless for vloggers although it offers some great performance for anyone just wanting great, cheap image quality. Although the Akaso V50 Elite offers some excellent technology for its price tag, we just feel that the majority of our readers will not use it meaning they are paying to tech they simply don’t need whereas the Akaso V50 Pro is not only cheaper but also should easily be able to meet the needs of our readers while also saving you some cash.