Have you ever noticed that so many times when you want to buy a compact version of a product it is often a stripped down version that doesn’t perform as well as the larger versions or is missing some key features? If you have ever shopped for trail cameras before have you notice this often holds true for trail cameras too?
If you are looking for a compact trail camera and don’t want to skimp on performance or features Browning might have what you are looking for with the Strike Force HD Pro trail camera.
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Why Do So Many Compact Trail Cameras Perform Poorly or Lack Key Features?
There probably isn’t a one size fits all answer to this question, but there are two things that come to mind.
Putting Everything Into a Small Package Can Be Difficult
Have you ever looked under the hood of a modern small or midsize car? If so, you can understand that it is an engineering marvel. There are more equipment and features on modern cars and they are put into a much more compact space. Doing something like that can get complicated – even for trail cameras.
The process of figuring out how to fit everything into a compact package can be expensive. Plus, once you figure out how to do it the cost of all the higher end components will drive the cost of production up further.
In the end, manufacturers don’t want to price themselves out of the market. So they try to find that sweet spot where the price of the trail camera is still competitive so people will still want to buy it.
Browning has tried to find the best of both worlds by creating a full-featured, compact, trail camera while still offering it at a competitive price.
Introducing the Browning Strike Force HD Pro Trail Camera
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The Browning Strike Force HD Pro is one of the top performing low glow trail cameras in the Browning lineup. It has all the bells and whistles you look for in a top performing trail camera and it comes in a very compact size.
- Compact case size of 4.25” x 3” x 2.5”
- Takes 18MP pictures & 720p HD video with audio
- Super long 120 foot adjustable flash
- Adjustable steel tree mounting bracket and strap are included
- camo exterior
- Viewing screen is on the small side
- Low glow flash
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Review of Key Features and Benefits of the Browning Strike Force HD Pro
The camera on the Strike Force HD Pro is capable of taking 18MP, which more than enough to capture some great images.
When you switch to video recording this trail camera can record up to 720p HD video with audio. We realize that it isn’t 1080p or 4K, but the video you will get from this camera will look good. Plus, recording in 720p will save you some space on your memory card compared to recording in a higher resolution.
Video lengths are adjustable and can be anywhere from 5 seconds to 2 minutes in length. One thing worth noting about video lengths is that night videos are limited to a maximum of 20 seconds to help conserve battery power.
The 80 foot detection range on this trail camera is the most you can get on any of the Browning trail cameras at this time. An 80 foot detection range is more than enough for most situations and compares favorably with many other trail cameras.
The trigger speed of 0.3 seconds is very fast. In fact, it is right there with the fastest trigger speeds on trail cameras from other manufacturers. One thing you won’t say about this camera is that its’ trigger speed is slow.
This trail camera comes with a massive 120 foot adjustable Low Glow flash. It has 3 settings to help you get the perfect nighttime pictures and videos: Power Save, Long Range, and Fast Motion.
We really don’t have anything bad to say about the flash on the Strike Force HD Pro. It is very impressive. However, we do think it is fair to point out that the fact that it is Low Glow flash will probably cross it off the list for people who are thinking of using this camera for security purposes. On one hand, the compact size and camo exterior are great for security purposes. On the other hand, the fact that the LEDs will glow and give up the camera’s location (if the subject happens to be looking directly at it) when it is taking videos or pictures at night is probably a negative for anyone looking at trail cameras for security purposes.
Let’s be clear about the fact that not every top performing trail camera has a viewing screen. Furthermore, viewing screens are even less common on the more compact trail cameras.
So when we say that the 1.5” color viewing screen on the Browning Strike Force HD Pro is a little on the small side we aren’t slamming it. We are happy that they were able to put a screen in it at all, because it certainly helps with the setup of the camera in the field. However, if you want to get a good detailed look at the images on the SD card your best bet is to still use your computer to view the images or invest in an SD card reader.
The Browning Strike Force HD Pro can accept a standard SD card (class 10 or higher) from 4-32 GB. We were also excited to learn that it also supports the higher capacity SDXC cards, which can range from 64-512GB.
This trail camera is also equipped with the SD Card Management feature. When turned on this feature will erase the oldest pictures and videos from your SD card should it become full so you can continue to capture new images. We always recommend getting larger sized memory cards in order to minimize the chances of it filling up. However, if it does happen to fill up it is good to know that you won’t miss out on the most recent activity, because that is usually what most people view as most vital anyway.
Below is some information from Browning to give you and idea how fast different resolution pictures and videos can fill up an 8GB, 16GB , and 32GB memory card.
If you are unsure about the differences between SD cards and microSD cards you can read our article that talks about the different types of memory cards that are available.
The Browning Strike Force HD Pro is priced to sell. No, you aren’t going to find it on sale for $50 anytime soon, but you won’t find the features and performance on those entry-level camera like you will on the Strike Force HD Pro.
That being said, this trail camera isn’t high priced. It is considered by most to be middle of the road in terms of price, while also being considered a high performing camera.
Browning Strike Force Extreme
The Browning Strike Force Extreme is a small step down in price and performance from the Strike Force HD Pro. However, just because you are saving a few dollars doesn’t mean that the Strike Force Extreme is a slouch.
There are basically five differences between the Strike Force Extreme and the Strike Force HD Pro. The Strike Force HD Pro has an 18MP camera, but the Strike Force Extreme still offers a very good 16MP camera. Both trail cameras offer an 80 foot detection range, but the Strike Force Extreme’s detection range is adjustable. The Strike Force HD Pro also has the edge when it comes to its’ 120 foot adjustable low glow flash. While the Strike Force Extreme offers a very strong 100 foot now glow flash. One thing the Strike Force Extreme doesn’t offer is a viewing screen, which can be a deal breaker for buyers who want this feature.
It is a mixed bag when it comes to trigger speed. Both cameras have trigger speeds of less than 1/2 second. The Strike Force HD Pro comes in at .3 seconds, while the Strike Force Extreme offers an adjustable trigger speed from .4 – .7 seconds.
Both trail cameras offer an 80 foot detection range, but the Strike Force Extreme has the advantage in this area since its’ detection range is adjustable, which can be very helpful if your trail camera is placed in an area where you are getting a lot of false triggers.
Browning Dark Ops HD Pro
The Browning Dark Ops HD Pro is basically a no glow version of the Strike Force HD Pro. Other than being priced just a few dollars more than the Strike Force HD Pro the infrared flash is the only difference between these two trail cameras. The Strike Force HD Pro offers a 120 foot adjustable low glow flash, while the Dark Ops Pro has an 80 foot adjustable no glow (invisible) flash.
It may sound like you are giving up a lot losing 40 feet by going to a no glow flash, but remember that 80 feet is as good or better than many of the low glow cameras that are out there. Plus, if you need a compact trail camera for security purposes, or if you hunt on public land and plan on putting the camera in an area where you want to keep its’ location concealed, a no glow camera is probably what you want to go with.
The Browning Strike Force HD Pro is a great trail camera. It is a solid performing compact trail camera that comes with lots of top end features and a very fair price. That being said, remember that even though it is compact and has a camo exterior it is still a Low Glow trail camera. So it might not be a good fit for people what to use it for security purposes or in other situations where you don’t want the camera to be detected at night. If you are happy with Low Glow flash, which is the case for most of us, it is hard to go wrong with this trail camera.
You can learn more about the Browning Strike Force HD Pro here.