News about the GoPro Hero7 as a small camera for on the road and sports.Who is looking for an action camera, will have reached in recent years again and again to a GoPro HERO camera and we have also participated in some generations. But really happy was not with most cameras. We had the cameras in our inventory, but they were never in regular continuous use for the YouTube channel or other productions. With the new GoPro HERO7 black, this should now be different and, according to GoPro, the gimbal should become superfluous.
First impression of GoPro Hero7 – technical data
Of course, one is a bit cautious when one gets the information from the manufacturer that they will never need a gimbal again, it is all already included in the camera and that for a price of currently around 400 EUR.
We wanted to do the test and ordered a GoPro HERO7 black and used it for a few weeks to get a detailed impression.
In terms of design, nothing has changed between the GoPro HERO7 and its predecessors HERO6 and HERO5, and the camera still comes with a small additional housing. A waterproof housing, as it was still present in the GoPro HERO4, is of course no longer needed.
The big advantage with the new model is, of course, that all the accessories that you have already bought for the GoPro HERO6 and GoPro HERO5 can still be used. Especially for action filmmakers, it is of course important that new connections to the motocross machine, the ski helmet or even the surfboard do not have to be integrated again with the latest model.
On the camera side, the camera is again located on the top right, next to it on the left side the square display with display of the functions and the GoPro logo on the bottom right. Below the camera is again the slot for the battery and the microSD memory card. The back is filled by a touch screen across the surface and on the side below the camera lens are the ports for the USB-C port and the HDMI port.
Basically, this model from GoPro again feels very high-quality and slightly rubberized. You can hold the camera in your hands for longer periods of time without the additional case and even take it on short ski trips. According to GoPro, the camera is supposed to withstand falls from various heights well (but we did not test it).
The USB-C port compartment on our model is always a bit difficult to open, but it works well with a bit of practice and the right feeling. On the other hand, it is also very important that these contacts are always closed waterproof as well.
Those who want to take the camera to the swimming pool or the sea will not have any problems. The camera is protected up to a water depth of 10 meters even without an additional housing. For divers, there is an additional housing that allows a diving depth of over 50 meters. The camera is operated via a touchscreen and two buttons on the top and side of the camera. This makes the main menu items quick and easy to access.
Video recording on GoPro Hero7
The new GoPro HERO7 black has a 12-megapixel sensor and can record 4K videos at up to 60fps. Basically, a very good value for an action camera with also very impressive colors. However, those who want to use the camera together with other cameras for a movie should keep in mind that the video quotes are below 80MBit. As a comparison, the DSLR cameras from Sony and the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV have 100MBit, and the Canon EOS 1Dx Mark II even has 360MBit.
Those who only want to share their photos and videos with friends and family will have no problem at all with this and will also be able to document impressive shots of the last ski run, the special wave ride or even trips under water very well on the large 4K TV.
For special slow motion, the GoPro HERO7 has up to 240fps in full HD (1080p) and is also above the new Canon EOS-R system camera, which can only record in 720p with 120fps. But again, of course, you have to take into account the lower bit depth on the HERO7.
Like many other action cameras, the new GoPro HERO7 has a weakness when recording in the dark. The image starts to show noise in low darkness and should definitely be considered for professional video productions in the evening hours. The reason for this is the small image sensor with only 1:2.3″.
Hypersmooth – Image Stabilization & TimeWarp
GoPro currently advertises that you could directly forget about a stabilizer or a gimbal on your conventional camera, since the super-small GoPro HERO7 black agrees on all these functions and is often even better.
Of course, such statements can be taken with a grain of salt, and what might be easy to stabilize on a road bike ride (flat road, similar speed) becomes a whole different set of challenges on a motocross ride over hills or a fast walk.
To our absolute surprise, however, we have to admit that the results of the GoPro HERO7 black are absolutely impressive and quickly make you forget about a gimbal. Especially those who want to integrate spontaneous recordings for their vlogs without much effort will find the perfect solution for every day with the GoPro HERO7.
Thanks to the handy format, the camera fits in every jacket pocket and can therefore also record every-day scenes very well and be a constant companion.
At first glance, many shots look as if they were taken with a drone at an appropriate height, which follows the person and enables a smooth transition of the scenes. It’s hard to imagine that it’s actually filmed from the hand and thus offers completely different possibilities.
It should also be noted here that the hypersmooth effect of the GoPro HERO7 is not available in all shooting modes and leads to a significant drop in performance in low light.
Anyone who once wanted to produce elaborate time-lapse footage for their videos and was also on the move with it will remember how difficult it is to combine both versions and always move the tripod a few centimeters further. In the new GoPro HERO7, there is the TimeWarp effect for this, which creates exactly these situations, with the only difference that you can walk normally for this and use the camera hands-free. It no longer requires a tripod and creates impressive and smooth camera movements over longer distances. For videographers a very clear recommendation, if once other scenes should appear in a video.
Touchscreen at GoPro Hero7
The small GoPro HERO7 features a 2-inch touch screen that almost completely covers the back, with impressive image quality for the size of the camera. It’s not only useful for monitoring footage during and after production, but also for managing important shots or marking special shooting situations.
It is possible to adjust the various shooting settings respectively via the touch display or to go through the menus using the buttons on the side. However, for us, we decided to install the accompanying iPhone application to make it much easier to jump through the various settings.
At the same time, this also gives you the option to immediately view the finished footage in higher resolution via your smartphone. Likewise, the new GoPro HERO7 black also supports the recording function in portrait format, as used for Instagram Stories or Snapchat. So, of course, completely different recordings can be created and shared directly for the social networks.
Battery Life at GoPro Hero7
The smaller the camera, the smaller the battery capacity, of course, and with the GoPro, it was always a big problem in the early years to have enough batteries in the ski luggage, especially in cold temperatures, as the camera was often already unusable after less than twenty minutes and the batteries were used up.
In the current edition of the GoPro HERO7, the battery lasts about an hour at normal temperatures while shooting in 4K with little movement. Those who use a lot of stabilizers, switch the camera on and off frequently or generate new recording situations have to reckon with shorter battery runtimes accordingly.
Here, as with many cameras, it is generally recommended to buy a second battery and always have it in the photo luggage. Especially with the small size, the battery of the GoPro HERO7 can be taken everywhere. At the same time, it is also possible to charge the camera directly in the car via the cigarette lighter or a USB port, or to supply it with an external battery pack.
The battery problems and heat problems mentioned in many tests, we could not confirm so far with our inserts and models and also had no crashes with the camera.
CONCLUSION / OVERALL IMPRESSION – GoPro Hero7
GoPro succeeds with the GoPro HERO7 black a very clear further development of the already very good action camera. With the new Hypersmooth function and three very good microphones, the camera has become a good alternative not only for action fans, but also for many vloggers who want to quickly record footage of the day’s events or always have a mini camera with them.
We’ve used the GoPro HERO7 black on train rides, flights and many runs over the past few weeks and have been impressed with the overall picture. Of course, as a professional user, you have to be aware that the image can’t compete with a high-quality DSLR camera, but who wants to carry three kilograms of a Canon EOS 1Dx Mark II on a gimbal all the time or even use a RED camera for simple ski shots.
The camera’s scope of delivery is sufficient with a few accessories, a USB-C cable and the battery already in the camera. However, those who want to mount the camera on a tripod will have to purchase separate accessories for this. The prices for original GoPro accessories are very high. Various online stores, such as Amazon, offer a sufficient number of different accessory packages between 10 and 25 EUR, which often also include a bag or a small case.
We can definitely recommend the current version of the GoPro HERO7 black and you can’t go wrong with the new upgrade, both as a hobby filmmaker and as an action filmmaker. In addition, the risk with a GoPro is very low with less use, since the price drop of the cameras in various online auction houses is very low and you can still get very good prices for the camera even after one or two years. For us a gift tip in the Christmas season or for a birthday.