It seemed as though the world was waiting on tenterhooks for the release of GoPro’s Hero 7, since the gadget’s announcement in September. When Casey Neistat said he didn’t want to like the new GoPro Hero 7 but called it the ‘greatest ever’, it pretty much placed a gold star on the leaps and bounds of performance-orientation technology.
At first look, the rubberised and compact design of the GoPro remains unchanged, to not make it too much of an adjustment for those upgrading from previous models to the Hero 7 or for those getting their first GoPro.
Button positions are unchanged: record/snap button on top, power and mode-switch on the side and, of course, a two-inch touchscreen on the back. You’ll observe the same microSD card compatibility and the device uses the same batteries and charges via the same USB-C port. And fear not, the dimensions are also unchanged, so no need to repurchase fitted cages or accessories.
- Dimensions: 62.3mm x 44.9mm x 28.3mm
- Weight: 116g
- Max video resolution: 4K60
- Still photos: 12MP
- Slo-mo speed: 8x in 1080p240
- Waterproofing: 10 metres
- Voice control: go hands-free in 14 languages
- Image processor: GP1 Processor
- Wind-noise reduction: 3-mic
- Portrait mode: Native vertical capture for easy-sharing to social media
- Special features: HyperSmooth, TimeWarp, Livestreaming, GPS, QuikStories
- GPS Performance stickers: track speed, distance and elevation
A feast for the eyes
So what’s new? Plenty. GoPro founder Nick Woodman calls the HyperSmooth functionality ‘a Gimbal-killer’ and, well, let’s just say he was putting this lightly. Thanks to HyperSmooth, the irritating issue of cognitive dissonance is non-existent with this model, unlike its predecessors, reducing the number of re-shoots one may have to do. This is thanks to the Hero 7’s GP1 Processor, smoothing out sudden jerks and swerves.
Two time-enhancing features are TimeWarp and TimeLapse — utter catnip for the videography addict. While TimeLapse isn’t new to GoPro, TimeWarp is. Plus, how they both function can be truly appreciated only through trial. While HyperSmooth is a major part of this revamp, so is the steady and well-paced zoom slider. TimeWarp is GoPro’s answer to every video app out there. Dubbed ‘GoPro’s magic carpet ride’, it allows one to capture super-stabilised time-lapse videos, while moving about a scene and increasing the speed up to 30 times.
The Hero 7 has definitely upped GoPro’s photography game. While a lot of us have stopped thinking of smartphone photography in terms of megapixels, the 12-megapixel strength on the Hero 7 is remarkably upping the HDR for photos to come. Clarity, sharpness and resolution boost come together to produce better photographs than a lot of the top smartphones out there. The introduction of a timer helps too, for those selfies.
The GoPro app, available for Android and iPhone, feeds into the immediacy social media requires; with QuikStories, one can share raw footage from their GoPro straight away and the quality is uncompromised. Live streaming is also an option, so be sure that your data capacities meet the requirements of the 4K60 video in which the device shoots.
The downside of the new Hero 7 is its battery life, a long-standing issue with the brand. While the charging time is just 2 hours, give or take, consumption time is sadly unsatisfactory — be sure to carry a back-up and the easy-charge cord in case you’re travelling. With the hindrance of the somewhat weak battery-life, the mainstream camera market for DSLRs has managed to defend its corner in this ring.
So next time you’re off for a casual scuba-diving session or a dirt-biking experience, or even just taking a beautiful sunrise and sunset, keep this in your arsenal.
Shop for the GoPro Hero 7 at gopro.com, where the Hero 7 Black is ₹37,000, the Hero 7 Silver ₹28,000 and the Hero 7 White, ₹19,000.