GoPro HD Hero 2 – Is it Good for Video Pros?
GoPro has established itself as one of the leading brands in the action camera market, which as any enthusiast will know, is a fully justified achievement for the range of cameras that pack style, features and functionality by the truck load.
GoPro first hit the scene back in 2005, when it launched its first model, the Helmet Hero. This was soon followed by the Helmet Hero
Wide, another standard definition model with the addition of a 170º wide angle lens – a common feature in today’s market, but highly innovative at the time.
In late 2009 came the GoPro HD Hero, a model that made history by claiming its place as the first full HD 1080p helmet camera on the market, and continues to make headlines today. The GoPro HD Hero’s success is arguably down to its adaptability. Be it on snow, dirt or water, the Helmet Hero, Motorsport Hero and Surf Hero have every eventuality covered.
GoPro Hero 2 Promo Video (totally awesome, all shot on GoPro)
GoPro Hero 2
The latest addition to the GoPro family comes in the form of the GoPro HD2 and it’s the most advanced GoPro camera, yet.
On first inspection, you could be fooled in to thinking that there’s not great deal of difference between the old and new GoPro models, with both weighing in at 168g and both packing full 1080p resolution and a 170 degree wide angle lens. But take a look under the bonnet and you’ll soon see what makes the HD2 camera stand out from it’s predecessor.
The HD2′s new processor delivers twice the processing power as the HD, which as well as making it twice as fast, allows you to capture 11 megapixel photos at a rate of 10 photos per second, more than doubling that of the GoPro HD. In addition to this, low light performance has been improved considerably.
To take advantage of all that new processing power, the HD2 has been equipped with a new a glass lens that’s twice as sharp as the previous model. The new user interface has also had a complete overhaul, making the camera easy to use and eliminates the need for instructions.
One of the most hyped additions to the GoPro HD2 is future compatibility with the imminent arrival of GoPro’s new Wi-Fi BacPac and Wi-Fi Remote, which will allow you to control the camera wirelessly and stream content live to the web, from just about anywhere. (9/24/12) Note: A lot of people are pissed off about the fact that GoPro advertises this feature as currently existing but in reality the app has not been completed even though it’s supposed to be out. Right now it’s a remote, which is nice but there’s no streaming. The website says it will be available fall 2012 which is now.
Much like the HD, the HD2 comes in three variations. These are the Outdoor Edition, Motorsports Edition and the soon to be launched Surf Edition, each including the necessary mounts to get you up and running. In addition, the GoPro HD2 is also compatible with all existing GoPro mounts and accessories, which is good news if you’re upgrading from an older GoPro model.
Naturally, HD2 comes with a slightly heavier price tag than the GoPro HD, but for a camera that packs twice the power while maintaining a sleek, lightweight design, it’s more than worth the investment.
The reason I think it’s a must have for video professionals is because you can get high quality HD images from risky angles and locations and not have to worry about destroying your $4,000 main camera. Plus the GoPro shoots surprisingly high quality video and stills and can shoot at 60fps at 720p of course, but this makes for some nice action shots that you can slow down with twixtor for some ultra high speed slow motion.
Should I Buy?
The GoPro Hero 2 is a fantastic camera to use outside…. Using it indoors is going to result in unacceptably grainy footage unless you light the crap out of your shot. I just don’t use it unless I’m outdoors. Also the camera is unusable for video pros if you don’t have the lcd accessory because without it, obviously there’s no way to frame your shot and that is crucial.
Also the menu is terrible to navigate. You have to cycle through every option to get to your mode/setting, which sucks especially when the case is on (which is always) because the buttons are very difficult to push.
To power the camera on you hold the front button. If you hold it til the screen comes on then it jumps to the next mode every single time. Since you alsways turn it off on the mode you use, that means you have to cycle through the whole menu every time you turn it on. You can not have this happen if you hold the power button for a second then quickly take your finger off but you have to get good at it.
Overall I’d say if you shoot a lot of action footage outdoors, or need to shoot a bunch of car footage then the GoPro is a good buy. If you’re looking to use it indoors as a backup or second camera then don’t buy. Once you buy the necessary accessories that’s the same amount of money as a small hd consumer camera which is ultimately better indoors.