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  1. #1
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    Turn your Contour Roam into a Contour Roam 2.

    Picked up one of the Contour Roams on Amazon (the watersports kit version) and I've liked it so far, but I wanted better, so I modded the stock firmware to record 720p @ 60fps (versus the stock recording of 720p @ 30fps).

    Messing around, and comparing the differences between the Roam 1 and Roam 2, I came across someone who figured out that the stock firmware for the Roam 2 works on the Roam 1!

    Here's a link to it, but I'm also going to copy-pasta it in case Amazon removes it. Contour Roam 2 FW on Roam 1

    I haven't yet done it, but I am doing so right when I get home. The problem with modding the stock Roam 1 firmware is that you have to use a really old firmware, without all the mic improvements and such.

    It seems the Roam 1 and 2 are either the same camera, or extremely close. I think the Roam 2 uses a better lens, but that might be all that's different.

    I'll be doing this tonight, so if anyone is nervous about trying it, I'll report back my results.

    Here's the post, in case Amazon removes it:

    Hey friends,

    I found a way to install the Roam2 Firmware to the Roam1. Now you have all Roam2 features on the old Roam1

    This is how it works:

    Go to the contour homepage and download the current Contour2 Firmware V2.16

    Download Firmware V2.16 -> you get the file "ContourRoam2.bin"

    Rename the file to "ContourRoam.bin"

    Plug the ContourROAM1 camera into your computer using a USB cable. Check to see that the Record slider is not in the forward (or ON) position. Once connected, the Battery LED on the ContourROAM1 will turn red and the camera will appear as an external USB device on your computer.

    On your computer, navigate to the camera which is mounted as an external storage device.

    Copy the ContourROAM.bin file that you downloaded and renamed in Step 2 to the camera's microSD card. Do not put it in any subfolders on the camera's microSD card.

    On the microSD card of the camera will be a file called FW_RTC.txt. The file may be hidden and you may need to enable the ability to view hidden files in your computer's settings. Open the FW_RTC.txt file with a text editor application.

    Near the top of the file is a line of text that reads `UPDATE_FW:N'. Change the `N' to a `Y' so it appears as `UPDATE_FW:Y' and save the file. This will instruct your camera to update the firmware when it next starts up.

    Unplug the camera from your computer.

    Press and release the Status Button. The camera will beep and the Memory and Battery LEDs will flash while the update is in progress. When the update is completed the camera will beep again and turn off.

    That's it, now you have all Roam2 functions on your Roam1 including 720p with 60 FPS.

    If you want, open the StoryTeller App on your PC and check if a Contour Roam2 will be recognized under "Devices".

    Check some vids under youtube, username "budschidau". Have fun!
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  2. #2
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    Hey, it works.

    Super simple, the only thing different than manually upgrading the normal firmware, was renaming the ContourRoam2.bin to ContourRoam.bin.

    No reason not to do this

    :EDIT:

    Noticed it no longer records in the ridiculous Quicktime format, and now records in mp4.




    Also has new Lighting options

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  3. #3
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    Have you made any videos with the new settings?

    When you replayed them and/or edited them, are they really in 60fps?

    Sounds too good to be true and when something is....

    (But I've downloaded the bin file just in case!)

  4. #4
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    Yes and yes.

    Everything seems to be working.

    Verified 60fps in Sony Vegas and you can tell from looking at it, it gives a much cleaner and crisper look.

    I'm a member of the club that maintains the local trails, so I'm making "tour" videos for anyone interested in seeing our trails, and here's one I made with the Contour ROAM2 firmware. It was heavily overcast, so I set it to "overcast" in the settings.



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    Last edited by Krunk_Kracker; 06-05-2013 at 07:48 AM.
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  5. #5
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    Is there a direct link to download the Roam2 firmware Bin file?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dictatorsaurus View Post
    Is there a direct link to download the Roam2 firmware Bin file?
    CONTOUR | Firmware - ContourROAM2 (v2.16)
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  7. #7
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    Didn't work for me.

    I'm coming from ContourRoam Firmware V1.11. When I installed the ContourRoam2 firmware, when I move the record slider, the camera keeps beeping and does not record. Can you guys please share the original ContourRoam FW_RTC.txt file?

  8. #8
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    According to this article, the mod only works for version 1.01.

    How to Mod a Contour Roam to 60Fps - wikiHow

  9. #9
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    Re: Turn your Contour Roam into a Contour Roam 2.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dictatorsaurus View Post
    Didn't work for me.

    I'm coming from ContourRoam Firmware V1.11. When I installed the ContourRoam2 firmware, when I move the record slider, the camera keeps beeping and does not record. Can you guys please share the original ContourRoam FW_RTC.txt file?
    I certainly can, but it'll be tomorrow, I'm not home tonight.

    If you press the reset button, that'll get you back up and running.

    If you want to try again, downgrade to the ROAM1 1.01 firmware, and then try again. Maybe they locked it with the newer firmware. I was on 1.01 with the 60fps mode when I went to the ROAM2 firmware.

    Quote Originally Posted by Oakeshott View Post
    According to this article, the mod only works for version 1.01.

    How to Mod a Contour Roam to 60Fps - wikiHow
    I'm not talking about the mod, I'm talking about loading the firmware for the ROAM2 on the ROAM1.


    I promise you both it works, and all the additional features seem to work fine as well. It seems the only difference between the ROAM1 and 2 is the 2 has a slide lock for the record slide and has a better mic.


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  10. #10
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    Well I'll be... that was easy. I upgraded directly from the v1.11 ROAM software and now have all the options for the ROAM2 (which is what Storyteller recognizes the cam as now). I guess that means I have to do some test vids to optimize the settings. Anyone know what they were for the ROAM? Mine worked pretty darn well in most light conditions before this, so I'll start with the defaults and go from there.


    Quote Originally Posted by Oakeshott View Post
    According to this article, the mod only works for version 1.01.

    How to Mod a Contour Roam to 60Fps - wikiHow
    Nope, not true at all. As I said, I went from v1.11 to ROAM2 v2.16 directly. Piece of cake.

    But be careful now on long rides. 60fps uses 1gb for every 7 minutes of video vs 1gb every 15 mins with 30 fps.

    And what the hell is with the stretched out page width??

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by skiahh View Post
    Well I'll be... that was easy. I upgraded directly from the v1.11 ROAM software and now have all the options for the ROAM2 (which is what Storyteller recognizes the cam as now). I guess that means I have to do some test vids to optimize the settings. Anyone know what they were for the ROAM? Mine worked pretty darn well in most light conditions before this, so I'll start with the defaults and go from there.




    Nope, not true at all. As I said, I went from v1.11 to ROAM2 v2.16 directly. Piece of cake.

    But be careful now on long rides. 60fps uses 1gb for every 7 minutes of video vs 1gb every 15 mins with 30 fps.

    And what the hell is with the stretched out page width??
    Glad it worked!

    Stretched out page width?


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  12. #12
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    This has stuffed my camera up bad. I've come from the v1.11 update and all my camera does now if I press the record or status button is have the SD card LED flash red and do nothing.

    I urgently need the camera for Monday and have tried everything to get it working again to no avail, anybody any ideas? Could somebody please upload the original FW_RTC.txt file? I'm hoping this will allow it to accept the previous firmware again.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by KonaCC View Post
    This has stuffed my camera up bad. I've come from the v1.11 update and all my camera does now if I press the record or status button is have the SD card LED flash red and do nothing.

    I urgently need the camera for Monday and have tried everything to get it working again to no avail, anybody any ideas? Could somebody please upload the original FW_RTC.txt file? I'm hoping this will allow it to accept the previous firmware again.
    Format the SD card.

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  14. #14
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    Funny enough I did that just after I posted! Success. Thought I'd already tried it before, but hadn't waited for the yellow SD card light to appear.

    Now works and the settings look great, thanks.

    NB: To anyone else having the same problem, you must format the card using the camera (small pinhole button under the SD card slot), it won't work it you format it on your computer. Hold it down for around 10 seconds until the yellow SD led appears.

  15. #15
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    Re: Turn your Contour Roam into a Contour Roam 2.

    Quote Originally Posted by KonaCC View Post
    Funny enough I did that just after I posted! Success. Thought I'd already tried it before, but hadn't waited for the yellow SD card light to appear.

    Now works and the settings look great, thanks.

    NB: To anyone else having the same problem, you must format the card using the camera (small pinhole button under the SD card slot), it won't work it you format it on your computer. Hold it down for around 10 seconds until the yellow SD led appears.
    Awesome!

    Glad you got it figured out :-)

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  16. #16
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    Hi all,

    I came across this thread the other day and just registered so I could share my experiences so far.

    I have two Contour ROAMs which I just purchased this week (good price on Amazon), so I decided to test out this firmware upgrade. I loaded the ROAM2 firmware on one of them and ran a few quick comparison tests.

    Holding both cameras in the same hand, I just walked around my back yard for a few minutes and then into the house. For the ROAM1 firmware, I left it on ContourHD (720p/30). For the ROAM2, I did the following in my 3 tests:

    • ActionHD (720p/60), Center Metering
    • ActionHD (720p/60), Average Metering
    • ContourHD (720p/30), Center Metering


    Sound levels were set the same in both (mic sensitivity 34).

    My observations so far:
    • ActionHD is indeed 60fps
    • The ROAM2 firmware does significantly worse indoors. After walking inside the house, everything was much darker compared to the ROAM1. This was true across all 3 tests (I was hoping that changing those settings might alleviate the problem, but no).
    • Background noise is filtered out much more on the ROAM2 firmware. I didn't get enough sound in my tests to really say whether both picked up "desired" sounds equally well.
    • ActionHD (60fps) on the ROAM2 was about 11.9 mbit/s, or about 11.5 minutes per gigabyte - better than the advertised 7 min/gb.
    • ContourHD (30fps) on the ROAM1 was 10.8 mbit/sec, or about 12.6 min/gb.
    • ContourHD (30fps) on the ROAM2 firmware was about 9.9 mbit/sec (13.8 min/gb).
    • The ROAM2 firmware consistently started recording about 1/2 to 1 second faster than ROAM1.


    I haven't had a chance to test and compare 1080p modes, but I would expect similar results to what I saw in the two ContourHD modes.

    If it weren't for the indoor / low light performance issue with the ROAM2 firmware, I would definitely go with it for everything. As it is, though, I'm torn. I haven't had a chance to take these cameras out on any rides yet (that's next) so I don't know if the low light performance will even be an issue outdoors (shadows etc) or if there will be plenty of light as long as I'm recording in the day time.

    I could also try adjusting other lighting settings on ROAM2 (particularly bumping up exposure), but I assume that would wash out any bright light recordings. I will try to report back with any other findings.

    Thanks to whoever it was that originally discovered this trick.

  17. #17
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    Re: Turn your Contour Roam into a Contour Roam 2.

    Quote Originally Posted by bankshot View Post
    Hi all,

    I came across this thread the other day and just registered so I could share my experiences so far.

    I have two Contour ROAMs which I just purchased this week (good price on Amazon), so I decided to test out this firmware upgrade. I loaded the ROAM2 firmware on one of them and ran a few quick comparison tests.

    Holding both cameras in the same hand, I just walked around my back yard for a few minutes and then into the house. For the ROAM1 firmware, I left it on ContourHD (720p/30). For the ROAM2, I did the following in my 3 tests:

    • ActionHD (720p/60), Center Metering
    • ActionHD (720p/60), Average Metering
    • ContourHD (720p/30), Center Metering


    Sound levels were set the same in both (mic sensitivity 34).

    My observations so far:
    • ActionHD is indeed 60fps
    • The ROAM2 firmware does significantly worse indoors. After walking inside the house, everything was much darker compared to the ROAM1. This was true across all 3 tests (I was hoping that changing those settings might alleviate the problem, but no).
    • Background noise is filtered out much more on the ROAM2 firmware. I didn't get enough sound in my tests to really say whether both picked up "desired" sounds equally well.
    • ActionHD (60fps) on the ROAM2 was about 11.9 mbit/s, or about 11.5 minutes per gigabyte - better than the advertised 7 min/gb.
    • ContourHD (30fps) on the ROAM1 was 10.8 mbit/sec, or about 12.6 min/gb.
    • ContourHD (30fps) on the ROAM2 firmware was about 9.9 mbit/sec (13.8 min/gb).
    • The ROAM2 firmware consistently started recording about 1/2 to 1 second faster than ROAM1.


    I haven't had a chance to test and compare 1080p modes, but I would expect similar results to what I saw in the two ContourHD modes.

    If it weren't for the indoor / low light performance issue with the ROAM2 firmware, I would definitely go with it for everything. As it is, though, I'm torn. I haven't had a chance to take these cameras out on any rides yet (that's next) so I don't know if the low light performance will even be an issue outdoors (shadows etc) or if there will be plenty of light as long as I'm recording in the day time.

    I could also try adjusting other lighting settings on ROAM2 (particularly bumping up exposure), but I assume that would wash out any bright light recordings. I will try to report back with any other findings.

    Thanks to whoever it was that originally discovered this trick.
    Awesome input!

    Did you notice the lighting settings under the ROAM2 firmware? There's an indoor setting. Did you give that a try?

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  18. #18
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    Worked like a champ- upgraded my ROAM with 1.11 firmware on it (that I bought from Amazon a couple years ago for ~$75!).

    I'm going to try some actionHD today on the trails and see what happens.

    Thanks for posting all the excellent info!!!

  19. #19
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    Turn your Contour Roam into a Contour Roam 2.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dictatorsaurus View Post
    Didn't work for me.

    I'm coming from ContourRoam Firmware V1.11. When I installed the ContourRoam2 firmware, when I move the record slider, the camera keeps beeping and does not record. Can you guys please share the original ContourRoam FW_RTC.txt file?
    You need to reformat the SD card. Then it works fine. Had to do this with both of my Roams.
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  20. #20
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    One thing I've found running 720p/60 fps "Action HD" mode: let the camera run a few seconds longer (than you typically would with the Roam v1 firmware) before turning it off. A couple of awesome videos ended up a bit too brief :/

  21. #21
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    Turn your Contour Roam into a Contour Roam 2.

    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    One thing I've found running 720p/60 fps "Action HD" mode: let the camera run a few seconds longer (than you typically would with the Roam v1 firmware) before turning it off. A couple of awesome videos ended up a bit too brief :/
    I have not noticed that, but I tend to let the cameras run a bit long in the first place.

    My Roam2 does seem to take longer to start recording than my Roam1s (with the R2 firmware).
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  22. #22
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    It works astonishingly well. So far I can tell that the following ROAM 2 features work on the ROAM:

    • Contrast
    • Sharpness
    • LED On/Off - ALL LEDs
    • Laser On/Off
    • White Balance
    • 720P 60 FPS - Photoshop shows different images each frame


    Exposure values seem like they work but it is very very subtle.

    Auto exposure metering selections may appear to work as well. Amazing what a camera can do with proper firmware.
    Last edited by AMDPhenomX4; 07-09-2013 at 03:25 PM.

  23. #23
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    THANK YOU so much for posting this.

    Works flawlessly!

  24. #24
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    Thanks for posting this, was getting ready to order a Roam2, but I'll go the cheaper Roam1 after seeing this.

    Are they all the same camera, just different kits? On Amazon there are different descriptions and prices. Ironically this one is cheaper and from what I can tell comes with the waterproof case.
    Amazon.com: ContourROAM Waterproof HD 1080P Hands-free HD Camcorder Watersport Kit: Camera & Photo
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  25. #25
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    Turn your Contour Roam into a Contour Roam 2.

    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    Thanks for posting this, was getting ready to order a Roam2, but I'll go the cheaper Roam1 after seeing this.

    Are they all the same camera, just different kits? On Amazon there are different descriptions and prices. Ironically this one is cheaper and from what I can tell comes with the waterproof case.
    Amazon.com: ContourROAM Waterproof HD 1080P Hands-free HD Camcorder Watersport Kit: Camera & Photo
    There are detail changes between the 1 and 2. Most noticeable being a lock for the on-off slider on the 2. Useful if you just toss the camera in your pack between uses. The 1 is easy to accidentally turn on.

    No need for the waterproof kit unless you use it in the water.

    Also looks like the water sports kit includes only the surfboard mount
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  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy View Post
    There are detail changes between the 1 and 2. Most noticeable being a lock for the on-off slider on the 2. Useful if you just toss the camera in your pack between uses. The 1 is easy to accidentally turn on.

    No need for the waterproof kit unless you use it in the water.

    Also looks like the water sports kit includes only the surfboard mount
    Thanks Shiggy, when I was asking about a difference I meant the original Roam, since Amazon has different descriptions for the different prices I just wanted to make sure all the Roam1 cameras are the same, it's just the accessory packs that are different.

    I thought the case might be nice to keep crap from scratching the lense. How have yours held up?
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  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    Thanks Shiggy, when I was asking about a difference I meant the original Roam, since Amazon has different descriptions for the different prices I just wanted to make sure all the Roam1 cameras are the same, it's just the accessory packs that are different.

    I thought the case might be nice to keep crap from scratching the lense. How have yours held up?
    The price of the waterproof ROAM kit has gone up 20 dollars since I bought mine a couple months ago. Apparently it's quite popular still. I could have gotten one with a bunch of mounts for that price.

    Relevant stuff below

    That thing on the front of the ROAM is actually a lens protector so it's okay for it to be scratched.

    A new lens protector is 5 dollars from Contour's website while that waterproof enclosure is 40. I'd go for the regular version with useful mounts unless you're specifically going snorkeling or diving.

    Slightly related, a lens cover is also 5 dollars.

  28. #28
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    Turn your Contour Roam into a Contour Roam 2.

    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    Thanks Shiggy, when I was asking about a difference I meant the original Roam, since Amazon has different descriptions for the different prices I just wanted to make sure all the Roam1 cameras are the same, it's just the accessory packs that are different.

    I thought the case might be nice to keep crap from scratching the lense. How have yours held up?
    The differences are the accessories.

    The stock lens cover does not get scratched, and it is replaceable. I carry a microfiber cloth to wipe the lens on the trail: dust, rain, mud--no problem. There is a rubber lens cap for transport protection.


    The profile and rotating flat mounts are good for a helmet, but is use the Flex mount and Rollbar mount much more.
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy View Post
    The differences are the accessories.

    The stock lens cover does not get scratched, and it is replaceable. I carry a microfiber cloth to wipe the lens on the trail: dust, rain, mud--no problem. There is a rubber lens cap for transport protection.


    The profile and rotating flat mounts are good for a helmet, but is use the Flex mount and Rollbar mount much more.

    Thanks all I ordered the last one at $139 with the normal mounts, went ahead and bought the Bike mount kit for $59 since the flex mount alone was $27

    Should have put more thought into before I hit the button. Since I ended up ordering the bike mount kit anyway, I should have bought the cheaper one with the waterproof case, that way I'd have it, spent a little less and still had all the bike mounts.
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    Can someone explain how I can do this on a MAC or is it the same directions

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    Turn your Contour Roam into a Contour Roam 2.

    Quote Originally Posted by esteroali View Post
    Can someone explain how I can do this on a MAC or is it the same directions
    No difference. I use a Mac.
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    Thanks to everyone in this thread. Got my camera and mount kit today. The update to Roam2 firmware went flawlessly. So it saved me a bit of cash. Can't wait to try it out on my next ride.

    Question for you all. Which mode do you use 1080p @ 30fps or the 720p @ 60 fps? Wondering if the higher quality makes up for the slower frame rate as long as you don't want to do slow mo effects.
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    Turn your Contour Roam into a Contour Roam 2.

    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    Thanks to everyone in this thread. Got my camera and mount kit today. The update to Roam2 firmware went flawlessly. So it saved me a bit of cash. Can't wait to try it out on my next ride.

    Question for you all. Which mode do you use 1080p @ 30fps or the 720p @ 60 fps? Wondering if the higher quality makes up for the slower frame rate as long as you don't want to do slow mo effects.
    Be sure to reformat the card.

    I have noticed better quality image at 60fps vs 30fps @ 720. Have not tried 1080
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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy View Post
    Be sure to reformat the card.

    I have noticed better quality image at 60fps vs 30fps @ 720. Have not tried 1080
    And it seems the sound is better, too. I haven't messed with the mic sensitivity, so the "factory" setting is more sensitive than the ROAM 1's.

  35. #35
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    New member and I found this how to after purchasing the Roam. I got the ROAM within the past two weeks. I did all of the steps and after I hit the "Status" button my camera completely and totally died. It doesn't turn on at all, it doesn't show up on my computer when plugged in, I can't format the SD Card to return to the original settings. Any suggestions? Do you think Contour caught on to this and this is the solution?

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    As a quick follow-up, the only thing that seems to get any response out of the camera is hitting the reset button which makes the battery light flash red? Any ideas? I'm not really trying to shell out another $100 for another camera.

  37. #37
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    I just did mine tonight and works fine

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    Well, then I guess that's not the issue. I did everything step-by-step and formatted the card prior to the whole process. Now, the camera is completely dead(I don't know that it was fully charged before but it shouldn't have been very low either). Like I said, the only response I can get out of it is the battery light lights up red when I hit the "Reset" button but that is only while it is plugged in. I'm going to let it charge overnight and see if that does anything but I'm concerned as it died right after the update(the blinking yellow). I'm wondering if any more tech-savvy people have any idea what is wrong.

  39. #39
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    Additionally, the biggest complaint I've read about Contour is how awful their customer service is.... so, I'm not looking forward to that.

  40. #40
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    Did you reformat the card after the update?

    Not reset, but reformat.
    Tantrum incoming
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  41. #41
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    Nothing happens at all when I hit the format button either. Even with the card out, the camera is completely dead.

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    okay, i ordered one from amazon... will be here today.

    can't wait to try this!

    joel

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cadent3 View Post
    Nothing happens at all when I hit the format button either. Even with the card out, the camera is completely dead.
    Try fully charging the camera before you do anything else.

    Put the card (in an adapter, most likely) in your computer and copy the FW_RTC.txt to your desktop (or wherever you want it), then format it (FAT or FAT32) then put the two files back on the card (FW_RTC.txt and the firmware file) and try and restart the camera. Then reformat using the "FORMAT" button (NOT the "RESET" button!!!) and it should work fine.

  44. #44
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    I'll try that when I get back from work, but even out of the box the camera would turn on without a card in it. It literally does nothing at all after I charged it overnight.

  45. #45
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    Turn your Contour Roam into a Contour Roam 2.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cadent3 View Post
    I'll try that when I get back from work, but even out of the box the camera would turn on without a card in it. It literally does nothing at all after I charged it overnight.
    Did you read this?
    http://help.contour.com/customer/por...ge-or-power-on

    You have to press the reset button for a loooong time.
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  46. #46
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    No luck yet, the card comes up in a Card Reader just fine with all of the info on it, it just seems to be the camera itself. It's possible that it is completely dead if the charging cord is bad because I haven't had it all that long so I may have used up that initial charge by now. I will try to find another cord and go from there, but this isn't looking good.

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    However, it definitely seemed to be charging in the past and now it does not charge at all when plugged in nothing lights up. I think it's screwed, not sure if it had anything to do with this update, but it was blinking yellow(after updating and pressing status button) and then it just died completely. I guess I'm gonna have to give their customer service a try and any replacement will take forever as I got it off of Amazon.

  48. #48
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    I can now attest that their customer service is not great. All tech support is done on a call back basis so you have to leave a message and they will get back to you "in the order that your call is received." Fantastic.

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cadent3 View Post
    I guess I'm gonna have to give their customer service a try and any replacement will take forever as I got it off of Amazon.
    i would simply return it to amazon and order a new one.

    when returning to amazon tell them DOA or whatever and you can print the return shipping info out and drop off at a UPS or whatever you choose.

    then get back online and order a replacement for yourself.

    i just picked up my contour and will charge it before trying the update.

    the packaging pretty cool - lol.

    i got the contour roam waterproof for $129 from amazon.

    i didn't know it came with the water proof case!!!

    joel

  50. #50
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    Turn your Contour Roam into a Contour Roam 2.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cadent3 View Post
    However, it definitely seemed to be charging in the past and now it does not charge at all when plugged in nothing lights up. I think it's screwed, not sure if it had anything to do with this update, but it was blinking yellow(after updating and pressing status button) and then it just died completely. I guess I'm gonna have to give their customer service a try and any replacement will take forever as I got it off of Amazon.
    Replace through Amazon.
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