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Covering the GoPro HERO and other small Point-Of-View video cameras.


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Old April 15th, 2014, 10:32 PM   #1
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GoPro: Is it you, or is it me?

I bought the first GoPro when they made their first appearance at NAB. I only had a few occasions to use it, and it did okay... I never felt I was getting quite the same stuff they were showing in their sizzle reel, but then again, I'm shooting corporate video and they're shooting people snowboarding out of helicopters. I didn't have the little monitor on the back, so even when I could get quality video, it was never framed right.

GoPro2, I bought another one (what the hell, they're $200, right?), sunk $100 into the onboard monitor and tried again. I really only use the thing a few times a year, but quality wise... meh. On top of that, I feel like often - all too often - it snaps a single photo when I'm pretty sure I'd set it to video mode (which is all I use on it), it stops for no reason mid recording, or it just craps out and won't do anything until I take the battery out and replace it - which is really only 50/50 as far as fixing it.

I can't rely on it as a piece of production equipment.

Is this par for the course, or do I have a dud?
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Old April 16th, 2014, 03:49 PM   #2
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Re: GoPro: Is it you, or is it me?

I got the 3 and use it a lot on my trips. It is great to get a nice wide angle and high shots. And you can always stick it in the water.

Ken.
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Old April 17th, 2014, 11:47 AM   #3
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Re: GoPro: Is it you, or is it me?

Try a GoPro 3 or 3+. It's night and day difference - especially the built in wi-fi for monitoring and controlling the camera. Make sure firmware is updated to the latest version too. I found the bacpac monitor to be crap though.

I can seriously run a GoPro 3 with battery backpack recording 1080p25 for around four hours. Very rarely a problem with them. Just taken delivery of a 3+ Silver, it adds 50p to the mix as well.

I find them to be very versatile little cameras. I don't use them for sports, just for getting shots that you wouldn't get any other way. I have four of them now, a Hero 2, 2x Hero 3 White Editions, and now the 3+ Silver. The 2 will probably be left behind normally, apart from emergencies.
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Old April 19th, 2014, 12:16 AM   #4
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Re: GoPro: Is it you, or is it me?

i have a 3+ Black. It's been useful for close up kinds of things but the focus seems biased toward close up objects. I understand that there's a way to fix that by twisting the lens a couple of mm but haven't tried that yet.

I do have problems with them occasionally stopping unexpectedly. I run it in a cage and not in the plastic housing so it shouldn't be running hot at all.

I've gotten some good close ups of a harpist's finger action and will probably use a couple of them for close up keyboard shots when our orchestra does a piano concerto in a couple of months.
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Old April 19th, 2014, 12:40 PM   #5
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Re: GoPro: Is it you, or is it me?

Mike,
I have a 3 Black and two stock batteries, purchased last July from B&H. I have updated the software.

I have the same experience where it will lock up and be unresponsive until the battery is removed and replaced.

I agree, unreliable for production work.
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Old April 19th, 2014, 10:05 PM   #6
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Re: GoPro: Is it you, or is it me?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Brickert View Post
Mike,
I have a 3 Black and two stock batteries, purchased last July from B&H. I have updated the software.

I have the same experience where it will lock up and be unresponsive until the battery is removed and replaced.

I agree, unreliable for production work.
Not if you use the right microSd cards and correctly manage fragmentation, it's perfectly reliable then.

SanDisk Extreme 32GB microSDHC (SDSDQXL-032G)
SanDisk Extreme 64GB microSDXC (SDSDQXL-064G)

Or the Extreme Plus models.

Only format in camera and NEVER delete single files off the card and then try and record, only do Full DeleteAll after copying card contents to hard drive.

And never share the card with a smartphone.
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Old April 21st, 2014, 08:13 PM   #7
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Re: GoPro: Is it you, or is it me?

That's the 64GB card I was using when it stopped.

Not sure about deleting single files though. I'm pretty sure it hung up after I had done a complete delete of test shots. Definitely formatted in the camera.
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Old April 24th, 2014, 06:58 PM   #8
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Re: GoPro: Is it you, or is it me?

It's not you...
I have owned them since the beginning and currently own 5. They all have issues, actually the Hero 3 Blacks seem to be the worst of all of them for issues. And no, the footage in their sizzle reel is NOT stock from the camera, it's graded to perfection by a team of naked valkyries on winged pegesi.

Regardless of all the reliability issues (there's no "pro" in "GoPro")... it's still hands down the best quality image in the POV camera world. Sony is coming close at 1080, but I imagine the Hero4 will crush their current offering.
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