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GoPro Recommendation

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@doddsie, gopro is used for a lot of 'broadcast' quality output, so yes it would work. Downsied is it's fixed focal length, so you can't zoom optically in camera, that has do be done in edit so not the best for pure close up work.
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@ansta1, cheers, never dreamt of filming in 4k but I guess as I have a decent desktop PC I could stabilise in Premiere Pro post production???
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@kitenski, I mostly use 4K (on my GoPro and my camcorder), not least because it's great for capturing individual frames which aren't half bad as photos.
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@rob@rar, pretty impressive photo that Smile

So 4k seems to be the goto for filming then Smile
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kitenski wrote:
So 4k seems to be the goto for filming then Smile
I think so. Storage is so cheap these days that getting the highest quality source material that you can seems like a good idea, to me at least. Hoping 8K cameras get here soon, so at least we'll have the option of 4K Stabilised Happy
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ansta1 wrote:
... They also try to editlarge files rather than chop together lots of shorter stuff.

(I wasn't actually disagreeing with the previous stuff - not sure how to get the tone right here).

But this is important - I think that's why people are whining about batteries too. It's way better to mostly not use the camera, and just shoot segments when the light and the action are good. Then editing is much easier.

...how-to videos at work (fitting car parts) and want them to look as professional as possible. We have a well lit area to use at the back of our shop and I was wondering if I could get away with using a Go-Pro Hero 5 for the job. Was also going to get a set of video lights, tripod, an external mic, probably a clip-on one and a handheld Gimbal.

They are very wide-angle, so not good for anything close up, plus they have a small sensor so you have no depth of field control (there's no focus: it's all in focus). I don't know what the focal length is without googling it, but it's very wide, you'd usually want something longer for general use, with a focus control and some depth of field control and maybe zoom. Look at a few video Blogs or whatever and see if you like the look. The GoPro is a "POV" (Point of View) camera really, not "cam corders". I would not personally use one for talking head stuff. Most stills cameras will also record video these days and will likely do a better job.

A GoPro with ProTune may be "broadcast quality", but that doesn't mean it's useful other than for POV.
  • You don't really need a tripod for a GoPro. If you had one, you'd probably get the legs in the shot too (think about it). Just clamp it to something.
  • You probably don't need lights, although you would want to be careful that you don't shoot in mixed light. Try to avoid fluorescents as they're green.
  • You could consider a separate high-quality sound recorder rather than something you plug into your video. That gives you a lot more flexibility.
  • You may not really need stabilisation, depending on what you're doing precisely.


---
Premiere Pro has the Warp Stabilizer built-in now and it works well, although you need to shoot loose to use it. That means for pole-cam use you need a longer pole than you think (seriously).

On balance I don't find stabilisation particularly useful. It's different, but not necessarily better. It's not quite what I expected at least. Example: a Vimeo video I made 2 seasons ago (# 115226548). The first two riding sequences were shot in 4k and warp stabilized . You can see it because the end of the pole with the camera on it appears to vibrate, rather than the end with the rider on it. The first heli segment is also stabilized (because I stuffed up the hand-hold). The rest of the riding (43 seconds onwards) is not stabilised. I actually see less vibration there, because it's taken up by the rider's arm and it's just less noticeable because that's not really what your looking at. So for pole cam use I mostly don't bother any more. I can see that the equation will be different if you do "POV" (eg helmet mount) stuff.
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@philwig, i don't disagree with anything you've posted above. In fact i'd echo your comment about the wide angle, fixed focal length etc limits the flexibility a lot in anything other than POV and people do try to use a gopro situations that other solutions would certainly be better and quite often cheaper. That being said we don't know the details around what @doddsie is trying to capture and whilst there are certainly better solutions its possible the gopro would work. As an additional point the hero5 has 3 onboard mics and the sound from these can be captured in seperate sound files, at one of the press events one journo said the sound quality caputred on the gopro was better than their pro mic setup (though that should be taken with a small pinch of salt I'd guess).
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Ansta1 & Philwig, thanks a lot for the replies. We are going to be filming various parts being fitted to a classic mini, eg. brake conversion kits, suspension set-ups etc. So whilst the wide angle will be useful in some instances, the ability to zoom in close at other times would also be helpful, especially when we're fitting stuff in the engine bay. How easy is it to zoom in during editing?
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doddsie wrote:
How easy is it to zoom in during editing?
A reasonably proficient video editing application will have the option to zoom footage. But be aware that this will have an immediate decrease in video quality, unless you record in a higher resolution that the resolution of your final output. For example, you can zoom a 4K video a little bit and output 1080p without loosing quality, but there will be limits to this. Much better would be to buy a cheap camcorder with a proper zoom lens rather than zoom in during editing. But for what you are doing, why not just move the GoPro really close? That's one of the things that POV cameras are really good at.
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Thanks robrar, I've just been looking at some of the better videos on-line fitting car parts and they seem to use a fixed length camera. So I don't think it will be a problem to do as you say and just move the camera.
I think I'll get one and give it a go and if it's not suitable I'll still have it for my own use Very Happy
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Aye, that's a really good idea - look at some videos which do what you want and which you like, and try and work out how they're doing it. As stated, you can easily move the camera in and out.

(Although that's not quite the same thing as "zooming" - the perspective changes differently. Think about zooming in and walking backwards at the same time and visualize how that looks to see what I mean.)
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@doddsie, have you got access to a DSLR camera? Most have the function to record video and you have the added benefits of a good interchangeable lens and able to balance brightness quickly which is useful if you're trying to film inside a wheel well.
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@doddsie, maybe worth getting something like this and you can then mount it on various surfaces around the car...

http://joby.com/gorillapod/gorillapod-magnetic
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doddsie wrote:
I need to film some how-to videos at work (fitting car parts) and want them to look as professional as possible. We have a well lit area to use at the back of our shop and I was wondering if I could get away with using a Go-Pro Hero 5 for the job. Was also going to get a set of video lights, tripod, an external mic, probably a clip-on one and a handheld Gimbal.
Is there anything else I'd need and am I taking the wrong approach using a Go-Pro.

To be honest I want a Go-Pro for my skiing use, so was hoping I could get the company to treat me. Obviously if the Go-Pro is unsuitable, I'll have to look into something else.

Thanks in advance for any advice.


just use your 2 year old mobile phone like I do


http://youtube.com/v/1CxlaUMxKJU

gives it that "cinema verite" look. Important for credible youtube videos.

Oh yeah, don't ask about the burd, she had to go for an urgent pee just when I was ready to film!
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Kittenski - Yes I think that could be useful.
Richard - Yes, but an older model Canon 5d, which I think has manual focus when you do filming, so perhaps slightly more hassle. May give it a go and see what comes out best.
Davidof - That's what we are trying to achieve, although hopefully a slightly more professional feel, no offence meant. Some of our agents have some videos on youtube which are a lot worse than that, with 100k+ views.
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doddsie wrote:

Davidof - That's what we are trying to achieve, although hopefully a slightly more professional feel, no offence meant. Some of our agents have some videos on youtube which are a lot worse than that, with 100k+ views.


None taken. Obviously if you are putting a company name to something it has to look professional.

Doesn't the go pro have fish eye correction? My 50 quid Xiaomi Yi does and it is fine for this kind of video. The most important thing is a tripod; a fluid one if you intend to do pans.
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Thread bump to see if anyone has any bright ideas about editing software. Previously I've used GoPro Studio and it coped okay, but for some reason it's now crashing at every available opportunity. I've tried just about every different tip that I can find as a way to get it to work but it's now reaching the stage that I'm about to go full Hulk on the computer and surrounding area. The really annoying thing is that I actually quite like the Studio software when it works, it's straighforward and I know what I'm doing with it, but I can't even edit one clip as it is at the minute.
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FYI, The YI 4K+ is announced:

https://www.dpreview.com/news/0308057636/first-look-video-yi-4k-action-camera-shoots-4k-60p
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@SnoodlesMcFlude, I had the same problem with GPStudio crashing all the time (on a top end XPS pro laptop). I find Cyberlink Power Director much better. There's lots of different bundles and offers, and if you register then leave the webpage it gives you a further discount... worked out about £70 for the package I got, and its MUCH more powerful, reliable and usable than Studio.
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@snowdave, cheers, although I probably don't use it enough to warrant spending money on it. I reckon at most I edit 5 videos in a year, generally less though.
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@SnoodlesMcFlude, I'm learning to use Davinci Resolve. It's now a video editor ontop of the usual colour correction functions. Free and more features than you'll ever learn how to use Very Happy
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altis wrote:
FYI, The YI 4K+ is announced:

https://www.dpreview.com/news/0308057636/first-look-video-yi-4k-action-camera-shoots-4k-60p


Probably useful for professional filming but poor battery life, no GPS and no connectivity take the shine off it's use as a hobby action camera. At $299 it will be a £300 camera in the UK with VAT and import duty.

I would be seriously worried about heat, if I were using 4K 60fps.
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robin_mxx wrote:
@SnoodlesMcFlude, I'm learning to use Davinci Resolve. It's now a video editor ontop of the usual colour correction functions. Free and more features than you'll ever learn how to use Very Happy


Cool, downloaded it yesterday and set to work. Fairly straight forward but I miss the simple 'fade in' or 'fade out' options that GoPro Studio had. it's made up for by other features though and I had no real trouble putting something together.
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Hey, rather than start a new topic, thought I'd drop in here...

Thinking of a Session 5 (work bonus came in, ski trip in a few weeks)... Already have an early Hero HD but know it doesn't compare to the 4 black a friend had last year.

Size of Session is attractive for bike and boarding footage. Negatives on consumer reviews seem to be use ability / user interface, but as I have an early Hero, I don't think this will be an issue for me... Size, quality, durability is more important.

I have seen some negative comments online about early failures/ battery life degrading and over heating...

Any one here have real life experience?
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Got a session 4 and no problems with usability. Press button, start recording. You have to be pretty stupid to get that wrong.
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@Richie_S, I have a 5 Session. No problems with it (although I've not used it a huge amount), and the image quality is pretty amazing for such a small device. As SnoodlesMcFlude said, it's dead easy to use. Mostly you set it so that you press the record button, it turns on and starts recording, then you press the record button again and it stops recording and turns itself off. Makes best use of battery life and is impossible to get wrong. Voice commands work reasonably well unless there is a lot of noise or wind around you, but drains battery a bit quicker. To change modes for different video settings, photos, time lapse, etc you can use the teeny 2-line LCD screen on the camera itself, but an easier way to change the camera settings is via the phone app. For a waterproof device that's just a 1 inch cube it's pretty remarkable.
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Thanks @rob@rar, it was your images on the Les Arcs thread that has got me considering the upgrade.

@SnoodlesMcFlude, that's what I figure. Reviewers seem to complain about the most stupid things like "it hasn't got a touchscreen"... But that isn't the point of this version of device.

Like I say, I have a Hero HD... Second generation I think. No screen, no app control, small LCD with button controls to adjust settings.

Having app control in itself will be easier. But my experience of the Hero, has been 'set it up once, and then just stop and start recording'. The only thing I've often changed is the 'upside down' setting so I can mount the camera differently. It can be pretty frustrating when you forget to switch it over again when remounting right side up! At least these days, GoPro software offers an easy way to fix that.
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Richie_S wrote:
The only thing I've often changed is the 'upside down' setting so I can mount the camera differently. It can be pretty frustrating when you forget to switch it over again when remounting right side up! At least these days, GoPro software offers an easy way to fix that.
There is an Auto setting for orientation as well as the usual Up and Down options. It works really well, so I just leave it in Auto and never have to flip the video.
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@rob@rar, you had me at "Auto setting"...
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Yeah that's pretty neat, it just knows which way up you're holding it and adjusts to suit.

The app is pretty good but sometimes can be a bit laggy or need a few attempts to connect. That might be because the way that I use it means that I start it recording with the app but then the camera goes beyond the range of wifi and then comes back.
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I recently bought a TomTom bandit. I cant comment much on it yet as not used it in anger. i wasn't bothered much about 4k, good 1080p is more than sufficient for my needs. I got the premium pack for £180 so it comes with a little remote and plenty of mounts. I like the fact it has inbuilt GPS and other sensors. It seems decent value compared the Go Pro range so worth consideration?
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As an aside, one of the negative points of lots of these cameras including the gopro range is that you can't have predefined settings, though in general they aren't really needed.

What you can do on the gopro is change all the setting in one hit via http command, you just need to be connected to the camera and issue the http command via your browser.

So what I hear you shout, well you can build a preset http command for the different modes, quality etc etc. If you store the http url's in your device browser and name them

Eg 4k upside down, protune
1080 auto rotate, capture still
High speed burst

If you are connected to camera, then just fire up the required url and it can change all the settings in one click.

No shuffling through the menus, no connecting via the app and changing all the options.
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If anyone is interested in buying a GoPro Hero3+, c/w various mounts, head strap, memory card + usb adaptor, battery backpack (basically an extra battery which clips on the back of the camera) with the larger case to accommodate it, and a zip up case for everything to live in... PM me with an offer.

The sad reality has set in that my life isn't half as exciting as I thought a GoPro would make it appear to be.
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@ansta1, interested in that trick. Will PM you when back in the U.K.
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Z
Quote:

The sad reality has set in that my life isn't half as exciting as I thought a GoPro would make it appear to be.


That's pretty much what I say to my kids when they ask for one - start doing something spectacular* and I'll get all the photographic gear to capture it. In the meantime, my phone and compact camera can take all the pictures and video we need.

That said, I do occasionally hanker after a neat little unit, and could imagine having one clipped to the strap of my backpack.

Is there any real benefit to the Session 5 over the Session 4? The only difference seems to be 4K video - which is irrelevant as we don't have a 4K screen.

*which isn't to say my kids aren't awesome - they are, and I'm very proud of them. Just not very spectacular!
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@tomj, I'm interested in the answer to that, also. Session 4 or 5? As the 4 is now at a reduced price.

Mind you, this is why I got my current Hero, because they brought out the 3 and dropped the price on the older model... I've not so much regretted it, as hankered for the better quality of the later models!
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I think other than 4k it has USB-c charging and also built in waterproof housing, so you don't need the annoying protective case (I think I'm right in saying the 3 & 4 both needed that).

I just upgraded from the 3 to the 5 so not quite a direct comparison, so far other than the shocking battery life (and the battery life on the 3 was far from good) I've been impressed by everything.

I also bought the Karma Grip as a side point, which is very cool Happy
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tomj wrote:
Z
Quote:

The sad reality has set in that my life isn't half as exciting as I thought a GoPro would make it appear to be.


That's pretty much what I say to my kids when they ask for one - start doing something spectacular* and I'll get all the photographic gear to capture it.


The thing is that I think GoPro make a good job in their marketing of making you think that you too can create absolutely spectacular videos, just by doing your thing and pressing the button on the top.

I bought it when I lived in the Middle East, and I was frequently out mountain biking in the Omani mountains, sailing in the ocean, skiing in the winter (and a couple of occasions dune skiing in Dubai!) so I thought my life was pretty interesting and I'd document it properly and make some killer movies. But then since it transpired that I didn't jump 60 feet over any mountains on the bike, or encounter any sharks in the sea, or do a double backflip off the top of a cliff and land it... the harsh reality hits and it transpires that it never looks that exciting when you watch it back, everything seems slower than it felt at the time, and I swear too much when my adrenaline is going so I can't show the family anyway. And they're the only people who are really interested.

The only time I've ever had people interested in watching my GoPro footage was when I lost an edge at an inopportune moment and skied into a wheely bin.

So maybe in hindsight it's best not to document it. Then your memories of it keep the adrenaline in tact, you can tell people there were sharks with razor teeth and a bear stole your wallet and whatever else you want to include, and you can swear as much as you like. One day (probably not so far in the distant future) they'll build tiny GoPros inside every ski helmet with massive memory cards and you'll be able to film all day inclusive in the cost of the helmet, and since there'll be no excuse not to film, you won't be able to add artistic license to your otherwise leisurely day out.
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tomj wrote:
Is there any real benefit to the Session 5 over the Session 4? The only difference seems to be 4K video - which is irrelevant as we don't have a 4K screen.
I do most stuff in 4K (or 2.7K at a minimum) for a few reasons. You can work the footage when editing, so you can stabilise it or crop in and change the framing. You can't do that with 1080P without losing video quality. I also film in 4K to future proof the footage. When you are trying to watch your 1080 footage on your 8K TV the quality is going to make you want to dash out to Specsavers.

I agree that footage of "action sports" gets tedious very quickly, but I do think photos taken at the right moment of the action sports that we mortals enjoy can convey an impression (if not the actuality) of what we experience. I occasionally use my GoPro for skiing or other activities, but mostly to be able to export a single frame from the video footage to use as a regular photo. Filming in 4K means the size of the photo is reasonable, and in many ways is as good as the quality of normal photos I was taking a few years ago with the digital stills camera I owned back then. However, I now have 25 photos per second to choose from at a decent frame size, in a small form factor that I can attach to my body in a variety of locations. Without GoPro the photos wouldn't have been possible:







The most cherished GoPro footage I have isn't from me trying to be some all-action hero, but me and my niece having a giggle on a kiddie ride in Disneyland. Those are precious memories that I will want to watch for ever, rather than tedious footage of so-so skiing which not even I want to watch again.
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^ what rob@rar says. Most of don't have the editing kit, creative skill, never mind the budget of Abe K of gopro fame. We can try but just use it where and when you can and have fun.

I have footage of me and my daughter doing Suisse in Courchevel 1850 first thing and of her doing the Grand couloir at 11 or 12 years, neither of these are going to be great edits, but they are good memories which I can review.

Also the flexibility of the pov cameras means you can get stuff like this.



This was stacked straight out of camera, no other editing, did it from camera to phone.

I have a canon 1dx and some big lenses and have skied with a 300mm f2.8l and other lenses in a rucksack and you can't get shots with a gopro that that quality kit can get, but if you can't get any shot you don't have anything.
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