When it comes to action cameras, most people will be familiar with the big name in the game - GoPro, and for good reason, they're excellent action cameras, but they come at a high price. Whilst there are decent cheaper cameras, they don't really hit the same levels as a GoPro, and Crosstour aim to change that with their CT9900.
**The CT9900 Action Camera was reviewed using hardware provided and sent to us by Crosstour, but in no way influenced the review.
The CT9900 looks like most action cameras, sporting a small black body, with just a lens on the front along with the power button, whilst the top sports the shutter/ok button, and the back has a 2-Inch LCD touchscreen. The screen is actually very crisp, and the touch response is fantastic, with intuitive and easy to use controls.
The right side of the device has up and down controls, whilst the left has a micro USB and mini-HDMI port, along with a micro SD card slot.
The box, whilst rather plain, does it's job well and keeps the CT9900 and it's contents safe, and boy is there a lot of contents:
1x CT9900 Camera
2x 1350mAh Batteries
1x USB cable
1 x External Microphone
1x Waterproof Case/Mount
1x Arc Helmet Mount
1x 360° rotating Screw
2x Wrist Strap
1x Bicycle Mount
1x J-hook Mount
1x Flat Adhesive Pads with Screw
1x Flat Adhesive Pads
1x Extension Mount
1x Long Thumbscrew
1x Short Thumbscrew
2x Adhesive Pads
1x 360° rotating Backpack Clip
3x Release Buckles
1x Insurance Tether Strap
1x User Manual
That's an awful lot of accessories, and all are included in the box, so you're pretty much ready to film your adventure from the get-go.
The CT9900 is able to record a wide range of resolutions, 4K/60FPS, 4K/30FPS, 2.7K/30FPS , 1080P/120FPS, 1080P/FPS, 1080P/30FPS, 720P/240fps, 720P/120FPS and 720P/60FPS - that's a lot of options, although to get any 4K recordings, you're going to need a fast enough SDXC card - I only had a SanDisk Ultra 128 GB microSDXC Card with 120 MB/s write speed, so I was limited to 4K/30FPS for the review, however, I will update once I'm able to use a faster card to test the 4K/60FPS.
Using the CT9900 is a piece of cake, and it produces some excellent looking shots, living in the country side, there are a lot of great places to capture some good bright areas, and these are where the CT9900 performs well. Whilst the lens is, as expected, a fish eye lens, the 170° wide-angle lens does a good job of keep distortion to a minimal by using lens distortion correction, and the electronic image stabilization (EIS) keeps footage pretty smooth for the most part.
Low light as expected is poor, but as there is no flash on the CT9900, this wasn't a surprise in the slightest. If you're planning on using the CT9900 in the dark, external lighting will be required
For photos, the CT9900 is able to take shots up to 20MP resolution, and whilst I wouldn't pick this over a dedicated camera or most new smartphones, it definitely does the job, and isn't too bad for quick captures.
The CT9900 also comes with a waterproof housing, and you're able to use it up to a depth of 40M (130 feet). I unfortunately don't live anywhere with water deep enough to test that, and understandably the people at Alton Towers Splash Hotel wouldn't really want me recording in the waterpark whilst I was there for my sons birthday.
So I did some tests where I could.
Using the supplied attachments, I attached the CT9900 to a remote control car, and took it for a spin through puddles, grass and on concrete - and the CT9900 handled it all very well!
Footage at 4K-30FPS is pretty good, with good colours and only small artifacting in busy areas, but if you have a fast read-write SDXC card, the 4K-60FPS will offer much smoother footage, but the image stabilisation of the CT9900 is quite impressive, with minor jitters here and there, but otherwise excellent footage, and for under £100 I think you'd be hard pressed to find both a better value and better quality action camera.
There are downsides, the microphone isn't great, and whilst the included micro-USB microphone is better, it's still not the best. I feel the CT9900 would have benefited from having a 3.5mm jack instead of micro-USB, and give the user the ability to use third-party microphones.
Speaking of sound, the speakers on the CT9900 are absolutely useless, and whilst this wouldn't be a deal breaker at all (it's an action camera, footage is more important than sound)- you're never going to be watching videos on the 2-inch screen after all, only using it to ensure that the footage recorded, it just means you won't really know what the sound is like until you get home and load the files up on your computer. A very minor point, but still worth noting.
Overall, the CT9900 is a fantastic action camera, one that offers 4K-60FPS capture, all the accessories you could need, and a crisp responsive touchscreen, all for under £100. If you're in the market for an action camera, then I recommend checking this out.