GoPros can be used as standalone cameras, but thanks to a great mobile app, they also pair perfectly with Android and iOS devices, allowing you to add more functionality and versatility. Using built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, users gain full control over their GoPro camera and can even display a live feed of what’s being captured right on their mobile device.
As for video quality, it really isn’t bad. If you’re viewing footage at 100 percent on a computer, you’ll definitely notice some softness and lack of fine details. However, this looks to be more of an issue of heavy-handed compression and digital sharpening rather than a lack of pixels. On a smaller screen, like a smartphone, it would be really difficult to notice a difference between the Hero and the 4K-shooting Hero6 Black.
Another hardware change is that the lens cover is no longer removable. This will be a drawback for those who use things like neutral density or color filters, but a GoPro spokesperson tells me there's a solution for that in the works. The upside is the glass is reportedly twice as strong, so it's less likely you'll need a replacement. We can be sure someone, somewhere is going to test that claim to the limit. There's also no longer an HDMI port, you'll need to buy an accessory for that (mentioned later).
For a company known for its camera drones, DJI got a lot right with its first action cam. One of its stand-out features is its front color screen. It might be small, but it's enough to make sure you're centered in the shot when the camera lens is facing you. The view can be switched with a voice control. It's also waterproof and rugged with removable lens covers, it has great electronic image stabilization, shoots HDR video and has customizable presets so you can get to the shooting modes you want without diving into menus. Read our DJI Osmo Action preview.
And yes, you read that right. Having waited this long for GoPro to finally embrace micro-USB ports in place of mini-USB, the company has now moved onto USB Type-C instead. Don’t get me wrong, this is a good move – especially if you have a newer smartphone featuring USB Type-C – but it just tickles me that it happened so rapidly after an initial long wait.
First of all, the camera itself is physically different from last year's version. Most notably, the Hero 8 now has the mounting fingers built in (meaning, the "pins" that slide into the top of a pole). This means you'll no longer need a "frame" mount to connect it to accessories. This also means easy access to the battery and memory card at all times. Another perk is that this reduces the total footprint of the camera when mounted.
The built-in screen means the Hero is much more approachable to novice users than the Session cameras were, and it offers the same touch controls as the Hero5/Hero6 Black. Leaving in voice control was also a good move, letting you say things like “GoPro, start recording” while bombing down a hill on your bicycle when you’d rather not take your hands off the handlebars.

Which GoPro accessories to get?


Internally, the Hero uses a 10MP sensor and video resolution is limited to Full HD 1080p. That’s right, no 4K here. (It does offer a 1440p mode, but this forces the camera into a 4:3 aspect ratio.) Frame rate can be set to either 30 or 60 frames per second (fps); there’s no 24 fps option, nor is there the ability to shoot higher frame rates at lower resolutions like the Black-series cameras can. In fact, there are no lower resolutions at all; the Hero can’t shoot in 960p, 720p, 480p, or anything else below 1080p.

Back when the Hero 5 came out, the big news was that you no longer needed the waterproof housing (which most people used all the time as it also protected the lens). This made the camera much smaller and more lightweight. With the Hero 8, someone had the bright idea of building the "fingers" that you use to mount the GoPro into accessories right into the camera itself. Turn the Hero 8 upside down and there they are, lying flat and waiting for you to flip them out.
GoPros can be used as standalone cameras, but thanks to a great mobile app, they also pair perfectly with Android and iOS devices, allowing you to add more functionality and versatility. Using built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, users gain full control over their GoPro camera and can even display a live feed of what’s being captured right on their mobile device.
Unfortunately, that narrow focus means the Hero goes without all of the advanced features found on higher-end GoPros. This isn’t inherently bad for its target user, but it does mean that experienced users no longer have a lower cost option that will play well with their Hero5 or Hero6 Black cameras. The new Hero doesn’t have the resolution or ProTune settings to match the quality of footage from the other two.
Much like Band-Aids or Kleenex, GoPro makes products so good that their brand name is synonymous with the product itself. GoPro’s portable video cameras set the standard for action cameras: they’re durable enough to withstand just about any outdoor activity, they’re easy enough for anyone to use, and they include features typically reserved for far pricier cameras.

Are Gopros waterproof?


First of all, the camera itself is physically different from last year's version. Most notably, the Hero 8 now has the mounting fingers built in (meaning, the "pins" that slide into the top of a pole). This means you'll no longer need a "frame" mount to connect it to accessories. This also means easy access to the battery and memory card at all times. Another perk is that this reduces the total footprint of the camera when mounted.

underwater camera housing

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