Review GoPro Hero 4 Black
GoPro Hero 4 Black edition, action video camera.
Amazon.com ; bhphotovideo.com; shop.gopro.com : $499.99.
Aspect Ratio: 16:9 ; 4:3
Audio Format: AAC with AGC
Dimensions : 41x59x30 mm
Weight: 3.1oz (89g)
Lens Aperture: F2.8
Video mode / Max frame rate:
4K / 30fps
2.7K / 50fps
1440p / 80fps
1080p / 120fps
960p / 120fps
720p / 120fps
WVGA / 240fps
Still photo: 12 MP
Max Screen Resolution: 3840x2160
Video Format: H.264 codec, mp4 file format
SuperView video mode : captures the world's most immersive wide-angle perspective
Auto Low Light mode: automatically adjusts frame rates according to lighting conditions for enhanced low-light performance
Burst: Capture up to 30 photos per second.
Time Lapse: Automatically capture a series of photos at timed intervals
Night Lapse: Capture a series of photos at specific intervals and exposure times
Protune: Video + Photo
Hilight Tag: yes
Touchscreen display: Yes
Battery: Rechargeable Lithium-Ion Battery Pack, 3.8 VDC, 1160 mAh ; Providing up to 1.5 Hours per Charge
Charging Method: USB
best video quality of any GoPro camera, new user interface, improved camera controls, Supports 4K30, 2.7K60, and 1080p Video, Capture 12MP Photos at 30 fps.
In 2007, GoPro opened the action video camera market, dedicated for both amateurs and professionals. Over the years, GoPro earned the qualification of a premium brand, being used in extreme situations more and more, due to its very high performance. Today, GoPro cameras are used in shooting sports videos, documentaries or even movie scenes. Its compact size and good image quality make the GoPro THE action video camera of the world.
The new GoPro Hero 4 is an action video camera with an excelent price/quality ratio, that is capable to offer great results in most situations. It’s best suited for capturing the moments from vacation, travels and everyday life. It can also be used as a board camera.
GoPro Hero 4 Black is the masterpiece of this company and was designed for professionals and amateurs that want the best image quality from an action video camera. This video camera has a processor that is twice as powerful than GoPro Hero 3, giving you the opportunity to record at 4k resolution at 30 frames per second. At 120fps, GoPro Hero 4 can capture 1080p and that is very helpful both when you want to shoot at a fast pace or in slow motion, eventhough both of these two options can consume the battery pretty fast. With its high 60Mbps recording bitrate, this little video camera is one of the most powerful in the world at the moment.
The truth is that there are no huge differences between Hero 4 Black and its cheaper version Hero 4 Silver (that costs 100$ less), but Hero 4 Black has certain advantages for those who want the best quality and performance from an action camera.
Those who own a Hero 3 Black will be able to notice new features at the Hero 4, eventhough they are subtle changes. The most obvious would be the new design of the battery compartment. At its predecessor, the compartment slided in the back, but at the new Hero 4, it drops into the bottom, making it easier for you to swap them out. This comes with the disadvantage, though. You cannot use batteries from previous models because the battery itself was redesigned as well. Some of you that are more of a fault-finders would say that this was a trick to make you buy new batteries and new external chargers, but who knows?
Another important change was made to the camera’s buttons. The general layout did not suffer any modifications, but the Wi-Fi power button from the older models was replaced by a Hilight Tag. This is a very useful option when you want to jump directly to the coolest moment of your video without wasting time searching for it later. When you’re not recording, the same button will return the settings menu for you. GoPro made great improvements on the menus, and now its much easier to navigate through the menus compared with the old models.
The battery life is not so good, but that would be the most serious disadvantage you get for a powerful small video camera of this calibre. Wi-Fi is a vicious consumer of the battery, so you may want to turn it off when you’re not using it. The battery life would be around 50 minutes with all the options enabled (4 k at 30fps, Protune mode and Wi-Fi on). If you want to record more than 50 minute with your Hero 4, do it at a lower resolution and a slower frame rate.
There are endless combinations of resolutions and frame-rates that you can experiment with. If you take in consideration the stills and time-lapse options you will never get bored trying all the options in your videos. The biggest difference between Hero 4 Black and Hero 4 Silver consists in the recording resolutions, faster frame rates and higher bitrate. So, if you’re lookinf for the best of the best in quality and performance, you should choose Black over Silver.
Protune is the option that automatically enables you to record at the highest bit rate of this camera, 60 Mbps. Protune also allows you to set the color to GoPro color profile or Flat profie, a more neutral color profile that helps you edit the videos easier afterwards.
The video quality is amazing, even for low-light or night scenes. The sensor is the same size a point-and-shoot camera, but the advantage comes from the maximum performance this tiny camera can be up to. The photo quality is good as well. But don’t expect the same performance you get from a dSLR, for both videos and photos. dSLR is way superior, but you cannot attach it to your bike helmet!
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High quality videos at resolutions up to 4k at 30fps or 1080p at 120fps. Large range of mounting options
Low battery life and being unable to use old battery models (from Hero 3)