What is a GoPro?
GoPro is an American technology company that produces action cameras and develops mobile apps and video-editing software. The company was founded in 2002. Today there are millions of GoPro users around. GoPro enables users to capture life as they live it, in its full vivacity.
GoPro was initially designed as a small camera, a compact means to capture photos and videos. Almost 18 years later, GoPro continues to be used for this purpose but it has also come a long way. Today these cameras are also used by many athletes and extreme sport adventurers in addition to the more casual and lightweight users.
These cameras take the best quality point-and-shoot photos and videos. It uses 3 microphones, a sensor, a processor and an ultra-wide-angle lens. The recordings are stored in a frame that is smaller, waterproof and virtually indestructible.
GoPro’s are extremely versatile when it comes to mounting. It can be attached to all objects in one way or the other. They are small enough and can be mounted in tight and complicated positions. Because of the standard mounting systems, many manufacturers are now designing cameras that are compatible with it.
Like every other model, GoPro also comes with a few limitations. It lacks complete manual control, as a result of which the aperture and shutter speed cannot be controlled. The resolution may not be as great as that of a DSLR or a camcorder. The absence of buttons for making changes in the settings also means that making adjustments on the go becomes difficult. It also has no display which means that the user cannot see what is in the frame for most early models.
However, A GoPro camera is the best option in the market for adventure and travel use.
Best GoPro Cameras
GoPro Hero 9
This has been rated as the best and the ultimate action camera. It has a decent battery life and weighs around 131gm which makes it easier for the user to carry it around. The most advanced feature in this latest model is that it comes with a front-facing colour LCD screen which enables the user to record themselves in selfie mode. This camera record images in high resolution, is waterproof and comes with built-in accessories for mounting. This model is however quite expensive and costs $534.35.
GoPro Hero 8
If looking for a more affordable product with almost a similar set of features, this is the model to buy! Priced at $399.95. it comes with a decent image stabilisation system, waterproof capacity and built-in accessories for mounting. It records images and videos in high quality and uses GoPro LED light to enhance illumination. The only flaw that might be pointed out in this model is that it has a smaller screen than its competitors.
GoPro Hero 7
this one is a 2018 model that is waterproof up to 10m. It has a 2-inch touchscreen and records stills and videos in 12 megapixels. It has a large memory capacity. This model also includes the original time-warp feature which enables it to record time-lapse videos smoothly. Two disadvantages of this model are that the screen might be unresponsive at times. The voice commanding feature also needs to be refined.
GoPro Hero Fusion
This is a 360-degree camera from GoPro. It comes with in-built Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity. For the first time ever, it departs from a single lens to use dual wide-angle lenses facing in opposite directions. The camera records pictures in a resolution as high as 18 megapixels. It also has an ‘over-capture’ feature which allows it to record videos in full-HD resolution. This camera is loaded with features and costs approximately $548.24. One disadvantage is that this GoPro model has a reduced waterproof capacity and can resist water levels up to only about 5m.
This is another 360-degree model and perhaps the best in the market. It is a touchscreen model that uses Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity. It records images in 18 megapixels. Along with a range of features, this model also comes with a Pro-tune video editing software. The model is however on the expensive side and costs $449.99.
These are some of the best GoPro models in the market as of 2020. However, there are many other cameras with a host of other features that buyers may look into as per convenience.
Can you use GoPro as a dash cam?
With the enhanced features of GoPro cameras and the rising popularity, many people have been trying to use these cameras as a dashcam. In the light of the huge number of mishaps occurring on the roads every day, having a dashcam mounted in the vehicle has become absolutely essential. GoPro is a compact digital camera that is possibly capable of capturing some of the best point-of-view shots. These small devices are also waterproof, use wide-angle lens and 3 microphones for recording and have built-in processors.
GoPro cameras are extremely easy to mount on any vehicle and also have a high resolution for capturing images and videos. There is another technology called Dash which is a GoPro dashcam controller. It is an easy and flexible plug-in that can be configured to 8 different modes of operation as per convenience. Once enabled, the moment power is applied to the trigger, this technology automatically switches on the recording mode in the GoPro camera.
However, despite having a number of high-quality features, A GoPro camera does not match up to the level of a proper dashcam in terms of its usage for recording a vehicle’s footage.
Unlike a dashcam that starts the moment the car starts, a GoPro does not start/stop recording automatically unless one purchases additional technology for the same. The user needs to manually start or stop the camera every time they wish to record or stop recording a scene. This may become a hassle if one has to do it multiple times every day. And in case it slips from one’ mind, important footage may not get recorded.
One major difference between verified dashcams and GoPro cameras is that the latter does not come with a G-sensor. A built-in G-sensor allows a dashcam to detect shocks and turn on the alerts. The footage from such cases is also stored in a different folder which ensures that important recordings are retained. The absence of a G-sensor means that such alerts are not identified and crucial footages may end up getting lost with other regular footages which makes the former’s retrieval rather difficult.
GoPro cameras also have a battery life that lasts less than that of a regular dashcam.
Unlike a dashcam’s loop recording feature, the limited battery life of a dashcam means that the recording may suddenly stop at a point if the storage issue is not taken care of.
Another major disadvantage associated with GoPro cameras is that they automatically shut down once they are in an atmosphere with a temperature of 120-degree Fahrenheit or higher. In real life and in certain states, if a vehicle is left in the sun for too long, the temperature may go higher than that. Footage in such heated areas may not be recorded. A regular dashcam is generally more heat resistant than a dashcam.
Thus, a GoPro camera in its usual form can be used as a recorder for rugged exercises like sporting or other adventure activities. It may even be converted into a dashcam for short-term purposes or light usage. However, for recording extensive and crucial footage of a vehicle and its surroundings every day under conditions that may not be perfect, it is be recommended that one goes for a verified dashcam instead of a GoPro camera.
Want to learn more about dash cams? We’ll help you out.