One of the challenges that most people find themselves with when choosing a cellular trail camera is the hassle of getting the correct SIM card. Most cellular trail cameras are compatible with only one carrier, and therefore, the user has to set up their device and buy data plans from the said carrier. If you find this to be too much of a hassle, then you should check out the HCO Spartan HD GoCam Wireless Trail Camera. It is a red glow infrared cellular 3G trail camera that is not bound by a SIM card, unlike most other cellular trail cameras.
With the HCO Spartan HD GoCam, the set up process is quite simple and one does not need to visit an AT&T or Verizon to buy a SIM card. Instead, one can easily set up the cellular function of the camera using their PC in a matter of minutes. Since the device is not bound by a contract, one can start and stop the service as they wish. However, the ease of set up and carrier freedom are not the only advantages of the HCO Spartan HD GoCam. Read on to find out what else the camera has to offer.
Right off the bat, you will notice that the HCO Spartan HD GoCam is fully camouflaged, with deep colors that are convenient for hiding the camera somewhere on a trail. The deep trail colors make it more suited for trail hunting rather than home use, since it would stand out like a sore thumb within the home environment. However, this is not much of a disadvantage provided you can find a good hiding place for it within your home. Without the antenna, the unit measures 6” x 5” x 3.25” and weighs just under a pound, which is light enough for a trail camera. The light weight allows you to hang it as high as you need without having to worry that it might drop and hit the ground. The small size also means that it can easily fit in most hiding spots, though the antenna might limit this a little bit.
Trigger speed refers to the time it takes for the sensors to detect the motion and then trigger the camera to take the photo. The HCO Spartan HD GoCam has a trigger speed of 1.2 seconds, which can be compared a bit slow compared to other cameras. However, it will still capture most animals or intruders.
Despite its small, compact size, the HCO Spartan HD GoCam is surprisingly strong, with materials made to last in the elements. The antenna has a little bit of give to avoid getting broken or damaged in case it is slightly bent. The antenna’s durability is an important part of the camera, since without the antenna it becomes nothing more than a regular trail camera. Spartan did a good job with the design of the HCO Spartan HD GoCam, with most parts of the camera being well secured.
Image and video quality
This is the most important part of a trail camera. Who cares about the other features if a photos and video are low quality? The HCO Spartan GoCam comes with a strong 8MP camera that captures high quality photos, both during the day and at night. Daytime photos appear with good color and clarity, while night-time photos are black and white. It has blur reducing technology so the photos captured will be blur free. The 8MP camera also shoots amazing video footages at 720p. The HCO Spartan GoCam uses red glow infrared to illuminate objects for night-time filming. All in all, Spartan did not take any shortcuts when building the media portion of the trail come, resulting in a device that takes quite decent photos and video.
It’s important to consider the battery life of a trail camera since the device will be on 24/7. The HCO Spartan GoCam uses 12 AA batteries. Battery life depends on the number of times the trail camera gets triggered. In a location where the camera takes 15 daytime photos and 15 night time photos every 24 hours, a set of lithium ion batteries will last for about 3.9 months. The batteries will last longer if the camera is installed at a location with less traffic. It is recommended that you use lithium ion batteries for this camera, since they deliver a higher and more consistent voltage as compared to alkaline and rechargeable batteries. Always go with brand names over generic batteries.
The HCO Spartan GoCam has a fairly good detection range of 70 – 80 feet, making it a good choice in a variety of situations. With the premium GoWireless service, users get access to a mobile app that allows them to remotely change camera settings, monitor battery levels, change image size and delivery options and manage cloud storage.
- There is no SIM card to install and you are not bound by any contract. It works on a pay as you go service which allows you to activate, deactivate and reactivate as you please.
- Activating the service from HCO is an easy process with simple, step by step instructions provided.
- Access to the mobile app makes changing settings and managing the camera easy and convenient.
- It captures fairly good quality photos.
- It has a low resting power usage, increasing battery life a bit.
- The solid case design makes the trail camera quite durable.
- The battery life is average, even with power saving settings.
- The trigger speed is a bit slow.
The HCO Spartan HD GoCam is one of the best in Spartan’s range of trail cameras. The big detection zone, excellent picture and video quality and solid case design will excite any game hunter. Most importantly, the fact that you are not bound by a SIM card and the easy set up procedure will win over any critics. However, this camera is more suited for nature monitoring over home security, since the deep trail colors and the red infrared glow at night could easily give away its location.