When GoPro released the Hero 3, they let the tiny camera speak for itself in a five-minute, adrenaline-pumping, mind-boggling, awe-inspiring movie perfectly edited to every beat of Overwerk’s “Daybreak.” It left viewers repeatedly backtracking the video, asking themselves “How did they get that shot? And that one? And that one?”
(Only have a few seconds to be impressed? Skip to surfer Anthony Walsh’s GoPro bobbing in and out of a barrel at minute 1:52.)
The Hero 3 was a complete game changer. It proved that anyone could create cinema-quality clips for around $400 (plus however much they chose to spend on the plethora of accessories available to mount the camera, like a chesty or GoPole).
This week, GoPro released the Hero 3+, which, in their words, is “smaller, lighter, and mightier still.” They made another promo video, and while it gives us great new ideas on what to use GoPros for -- like mounting them to dolphins (minute 3:05) or wrestling with lions (3:50) -- to the untrained eye, the image quality looks about the same.
That said, the Hero 3+ does have handy improvements. It is smaller and lighter, the appeal of which is that it can be mounted in more ways and on more things, people, or animals. SuperView, a new video mode, allows for an even wider angle setting, allowing the user to capture themselves and more of their surroundings at the same time. The Auto Low Light feature is supposed to improve shooting capacity in dark settings. GoPro also promises a 33% improvement in image sharpness, a 30% longer lasting battery, and built-in Wi-Fi that is four times faster than its predecessor.
The price, incredibly, still tops out at $399.99 for the Black Edition, which packs 12MP photos up to 30 frames per second and 4K video resolution.