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


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Old April 1st, 2016, 03:25 AM   #1
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GoPro Hero 4: Extended battery life

One of my main gripes, along with a lot of other people's, I assume, is the battery life of the Hero 4 Black. It devours batteries.

As a lone shooter, I tend to set up my GoPro somewhere in the church on a Gorillapod to provide a different angle. I constantly feel anxious as to whether or not the battery is going to make it through the ceremony - even if it's not recording, just powered on ready to record.

So I was wondering what everyone does to overcome this? I always have spare batteries, I have about 4/5 for my GoPro, but I don't really want to be swapping out a GoPro battery last minute and having to reframe my shot - nightmare.

I carry an Anker USB portable charger in my bag. I place things on charge in there when they're not in use, such as my AVX batteries. When I went skiing I carried it in my bag and placed gopro batteries on charge in there using the dual charger housing. It was excellent and I always had a powered battery, despite the cold. In theory I could plug this Anker power bank into my GoPro using the frame and it would keep it charged probably for an entire day or two! But the battery pack is big and heavy and not really suitable for placing in locations where the Gorillapod would go. I could by a smaller power bank and construct some sort of rig. Does anyone have something like that?

The other option is to buy the GoPro battery 'bacpac':
https://shop.gopro.com/EMEA/accessor...ABPAK-401.html

Does anyone have this? What's it like? Would it keep a GoPro on standby for around 20 minutes, followed by 30mins-1hrs worth of 4k recording?

The other option would be to explore 3rd party GoPro batteries - anyone got any experience with these? I dislike using third party batteries as they aren't reliable. At my second wedding I had my camera battery fail as a contact had broken off. It was a 20 battery, but the Panasonic branded battery is 160!

So... let me hear your solutions/suggestions :)
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Old April 1st, 2016, 02:28 PM   #2
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Re: GoPro Hero 4: Extended battery life

If you are indoors anyway, why not use "The Frame," and since the camera will be out of the waterproof housing, plug it in to the wall and presto...no need for battery swaps!
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Old April 1st, 2016, 11:01 PM   #3
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Re: GoPro Hero 4: Extended battery life

I use a Switronix battery eliminator USB cable for my Hero 3. This stops the gopro from overheating and with it plugged into a huge AB mount battery it keeps it running all day long.

With the hero4 there is a newer version that plugs into the expansion connector on the back: Switronix Battery Eliminator USB for GoPro HERO4 DV-GP4-USB B&H
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Old April 2nd, 2016, 04:02 AM   #4
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Re: GoPro Hero 4: Extended battery life

Is the four different from the three. I just plug a powerpack into the usb and it will run as long as the card will record.
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Old April 2nd, 2016, 11:45 AM   #5
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Re: GoPro Hero 4: Extended battery life

I have the original battery bacpac that I used on my first Hero HD. It essentially doubles the battery life.. of the original battery anyway. It works on the newer Hero 4 as well since it mounts to the Hero bus connector.

Like others mentioned, you are indoors, so I would use the frame (better for heat dissipation) and plug into a wall with the USB. I think part of the big battery drain is the WiFi. You would get more battery life if you could disable wifi, then set and forget the camera during the ceremony.

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Old April 26th, 2016, 08:51 AM   #6
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Re: GoPro Hero 4: Extended battery life

We bought the Switronix power cable and some of those cheap Anker Lithium Ion batteries from Amazon. Still portable and runs all day on one charge. Have also used this setup for car shooting, GoPro out on the hood, run the cable back to the car, this is a great way to shoot for the way I use Go Pros, which is typically like you, stationary as an alternate angle. I would rather run off of the Anker batteries than AC because AC can have power brownouts and dips that could turn the camera off and you are tied to an outlet. The Anker battery isn't that large or heavy, works great.
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Old April 26th, 2016, 09:32 AM   #7
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Re: GoPro Hero 4: Extended battery life

I've simply used one of those power packs meant for charging cell phones and plugged right into USB of GoPro. Small, inexpensive, simple.

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Old April 26th, 2016, 10:22 AM   #8
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Re: GoPro Hero 4: Extended battery life

Like the others said, you're kind of stuck.

Get an extra long USB cord if you want to be able to hid the power pack.

Don't use WiFi to get 40ish minutes out of the battery.

I use my GoPro in the balcony. Lasts the entire ceremony, unless they're Catholic. In which case, I swapped batteries during Communion.
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