For our trip to Hawaii this summer we purchased the GoPro Hero 4 Silver and I ‘m so glad we did. At first I was a bit hesitant to purchase this $400 tiny camera that is geared towards action/underwater photography mainly because I questioned whether or not we would use it beyond this trip. But now after having come back from our vacation and reviewing the amazing footage and images we captured (that I wouldn’t have otherwise), I’m so happy to have this camera as part of my collection and feel confident that it will be put to good use.
Overall I am really happy with the quality of the images as well as video. We had a less expensive version of the GoPro in the past but the real thing does a much better job. The key to ensuring that your images are clear and in focus is to try and remain steady when clicking. I know it sounds obvious buy keeping a steady hand while snorkeling is tougher than you’d think.
The great thing about a camera like this is it is perfect for a beach vacation. I didn’t want to take my nice DLSR to the beach because a. it is bulky and heavy and b. I didn’t want to risk getting sand/water in it. The GoPro was just the right tool to capture images of what we were doing i.e. snorkeling, boogie boarding and playing in the water. We purchased an inexpensive floating hand grip bobber so that in case it was dropped it would float. It worked really well and gave us all piece of mind that we wouldn’t lose the camera. We also received a chest harness as part of our bundle which we didn’t use at all. I think this would be a good accessory for mountain biking or skiing but for the water sports we were doing the bobber worked great.
While the GoPro definitely has a learning curve, overall it was easy to use. The hardest part for me was switching back and forth between camera mode and video mode and somehow I ended up in burst mode several times resulting in dozens of photos which I didn’t mean to take. Evidently you can set your GoPro to take high res stills while shooting video but I didn’t get to that part in the manual. 🙁 Oh well…next time!
My kids really enjoyed using the camera too. Everyone wanted to take it for a spin which never happens with my other cameras.
Here are a few of the underwater shots we captured. I’m working on putting some of the video footage together and will post that soon.