LAST UPDATED: May 8th, 2015
Do you want a game camera that has a no glow IR flash, or do you want high quality color night time photos? Are you a person who may want both depending on the situation or time of the year? The camera that you may want to take a more in depth look at is the CamTrakker MK-10. CamTrakker is a name that all hunters have herd of and has been around for years, so I was excited to test out the new MK-10 by CamTrakker.
The new MK-10 by CamTrakker
As soon as I received the MK-10 in the mail I knew right away that this camera is a quality product that is made in the USA. My initial impression of the craftsmanship and durability of the camera was phenomenal. It is a very sturdy and heavy duty camera sealed in a high quality and durable housing. I would not recommend it but I seriously would not be afraid to drop this camera because of its durability. The MK-10 is camouflaged in Natural Gear, giving it a natural look while attached to a tree to keep it hidden from both animals and thieves. Since we are on the topic of thieves, the MK-10 comes equipped with an all metal locking flange that can be locked securely to a tree.
The MK-10 attaches to the tree using a rope ratchet strap
A further look into the heart of the MK-10, reveals the secret of flash selection. The camera comes with a smoke colored lens that attaches to the flash, by switching the setting in the set up menu of the camera you can either use the high powered flash for colored photos at night, or if you are afraid that the flash spooks deer, then place on the smoke lens over the flash and switch the mode to IR in the camera settings and you now have a camera that produces a “no glow IR flash”. There are no LED lights that light up in this mode for potential thieves to spot at night, this is especially important if you are using the MK-10 for security on your toys or residence.
For a “No Glow IR Flash” just put attatch the smoke lens to the flash
The MK-10 stores your images to a standard SD card. The digital camera takes high quality 5.0 megapixel photos. The trigger speed is lightning fast with a night time speed of 0.186 seconds and a day time trigger speed of 0.388 seconds. The MK-10 is powered by a rechargeable lead-acid battery, and when I tested the MK-10, was in the dead of Wisconsin winter and I got a little over two months of battery life in very cold temperatures. A feature that I have never seen on a game camera before is the on/off switch is located on the outside of the camera, making it very simple to turn the camera on or off without having to unlock and open up the camera to turn the camera off.
Here is one of many photos from the field test of the MK-10
This camera is equipped with a 1.2” color LCD monitor. I didn’t realize how much I would love this feature until I tested the MK-10. The LCD monitor allows you to review your photos while in the field without having to remover SD card. The best part of having the LCD monitor is that in the menu settings you can activate the monitor to give you a “live” view of what the camera sees. Basically you can set up the camera at the perfect height and angle by looking at the monitor.
The MK-10 comes with a LCD screen for reviewing pictures in the field
I will admit that because of all the features that the MK-10 offers, this is a camera that would be difficult to take right out of the box and use it without first learning about the camera. This may turn some hunters off from using the MK-10, however the camera comes with an in depth CD –rom that not only shows you how to set the MK-10 to the features you want, but also explains them in depth. After reading and reviewing the operator’s manual, my camera was ready for the field test. It attaches to the tree using a supplied rope ratchet strap. I set the flash to approximate distance to the deer trail that I placed it on to prevent both an over powering flash that would wash out the picture or an under powered flash that wouldn’t light up the deer good enough for detail. After several weeks in the field, I took a look at the picture quality and what the MK-10 captured. I was very impressed with the quality of the photos. The MK-10 took high quality photos that worked great for my new screen saver and the trigger speed was excellent. The important thing to keep in mind is that there is a lot of settings and features, the key is learning these settings. With a little practice you can open the light setting to take brighter photos for when your camera is placed in a darker environment such as a thick cedar swamp, or you can darken your photos for a brighter environment such as a snow covered field. The flash is also adjustable and very powerful. This is a strong feature if you are placing your camera on a field edge or a food plot where the deer may be out of the range of the flash on most other cameras, and if you are setting the camera up on a trail you can turn down the flash so that it doesn’t wash out the picture. With these different settings you can obtain the best quality picture to be taken by a game camera.
Fast trigger speed means more centered photos
I broke down the pros and cons of the MK-10 to better help you decide if this is the camera for you.
· Super-fast trigger speed
· The option of both regular flash or No Glow IR flash
· High quality solid construction locking flange to secure the camera from thieves
· 1.2” LCD monitor for aiming the camera and in the field review of pictures
· An exterior on/off switch
· Adjustable high powered flash
· Adjustable light settings to adjust the picture lighting to the given environment
· Natural Gear camouflage housing to blend the camera to the surroundings
· Very well built and durable housing to protect the camera
· Easy to attach the camera to the tree with the rope ratchet strap
· High quality photos, great for reviewing points on your next trophy or screen saver
· Long battery life in cold temperatures
· Made in Watkinsville Georgia, American made
· You have to learn the camera, a lot of features that you would be missing out on if you didn’t take the time to learn the operation of the MK-10
· Because of the Lead-Acid battery it makes the MK-10 heavier than most game cameras
· You have to either carry out the battery to take it home to charge it or carry in another battery to replace the dead battery, versus just carrying in several D or AA batteries
· The MK-10 is a larger camera than some of the compact models available
This picture is a great example of a fast trigger speed
These are the pros and cons to the MK-10 by CamTrakker, however the pros to this camera for me out weigh the cons. I am very impressed with the MK-10, it is a durable high quality game camera that is proudly made in the USA, a superfast trigger speed, and the options of either a standard flash or a no glow IR flash with just a simple setting adjustment and the placement of a lens. The MK-10 is a camera that you will definitely want to check out for this fall.