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Configuring the Polaroid Cube on Linux (or anywhere)

The Polaroid Cube is all fun and games until you see the only way to configure it is through a program for either Windows or OS X.

Fortunately that configuration program does not do anything fancy, it just edits the files Setting.txt and time.txt that live in the root level of the sdcard. These files are read by the firmware of the camera when powered on, and can be edited by any text editor. The syntax is a bit sloppy.

CUBE-V1.01 
UPDATE:N           <--- Set this field to Y before saving!
        FORMAT     <--- No idea
LightFrequency:1   <--- Europe: 50Hz(1), US: 60Hz(0)
TimeStamp:0        <--- Show a timestamp on the topleft corner of videos (dashcam)
CycleRecord:0      <--- Record a video in loop (dashcam)
BuzzerVolume:0     <--- Set this to 0 for disabling the annoying beep. 1 to 50 if you like it
-------------------------------
LightFrequency
	0 ~ 1, def:0, 0:60Hz  1:50Hz
TimeStamp
	0 ~ 1, def:0, 0:Off   1:On
CycleRecord
	0 ~ 1, def:0, 0:Off   1:On
BuzzerVolume
	0 ~ 50, def:5

Setting.txt

UPDATE:N             <--- Set this field to Y before saving!
 
2014-10-20 00:57:44  <--- Set with current date, YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS  

time.txt

Notice the two dashcam options. Is it an added feature or a hint of the Cube's hardware origin? Even if it is just a glorified dashcam with a sexy underwater case and the Polaroid brand slapped into it, this toy is well worth the buzz: nice concept, fits on the pocket, has a magnet and feels nice on the hand.

Writing a simple QML client for configuring the Polaroid Cube should be simple enough, but I guess it's not really worth the time: Text is the universal interface, maybe another day.

13 thoughts on “Configuring the Polaroid Cube on Linux (or anywhere)”

  1. Hi!

    I am really considering getting one of these little cameras, but I have a little hang-up around the video quality.

    According to this Reddit Thread, the settings for changing the video bit-rate have been exposed somewhere along a firmware update (how to upgrade) via the Settings.txt file that the device generates on the SD-Card. According to that, the bit-rate can be bumped up from 8 Mb/s to 13 Mb/s.

    Do you still have your Cube?
    Could you please test and confirm if this changes the quality of the recording?

    For me this might be the only needed push to get one of these cubes.

    Thank you!

    1. After some quick late night tinkering, I can confirm the bit-rate can be bumped up from 8 Mb/s to 13 Mb/s. :)

      With the latest firmware we also have self timer, too!

  2. I don’t know if anyone will see this, but would there be a way to add a line to actually up the bitrate of the AUDIO?… Because as far as I can see it’s only around 128kb/s, unless it’s variable. I can’t really see the bitrate “live”, not even in VLC or something like that.
    But I’d say compressed MP3-level audio really shouldn’t drop below 192-256kb/s, preferably it should go up to 320kb/s.

  3. These are ‘action’ cameras (I bought two) which means they have a noticeable fisheye distortion when shooting both stills and 10 video. It is not extreme fisheye, and if you have the capability it is easily remedied in Photoshop. The lenses are high quality but are fixed focus. You will need a micro SD card to store the images, video, and to install the included apps on. This camera is a discontinued older model (no Wi-Fi) and will accept Micro-SD cards up to 32GB. There are two compressed files, one for Windows and one for Mac, that are written to the SD card from firmware when you first charge the camera. Clicking the one for your machine will unzip a colorful Polaroid icon onto the card. This is a little program that allows some adjustment to the camera’s settings. You MUST have this software installed for the camera to work. The camera is a solid piece of workmanship. It is well made and delivers great imagery for the price. I paid $56 for each of the cams, the newer ones with 14 resolution and Wi-Fi go for about double that. I also got two of the little starfish camera mounts (I cannot call them tripods, they are much more than that.) that are a must-have for these cameras, IMO. I will probably pick up one or two more cams and starfish. The initial charging time was lengthy, about an hour and a half. I charged one with my Windows laptop and the other with an Anker charger and they both took about the same time to charge.

    ***из примочки***

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