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GoPro unveils waterproof, voice controlled Hero 5 and Hero 5 Session 4K cameras

by on September 19, 2016

Stephan Jukic – September 19, 2016

A year and a half since the arrival of the GoPro Hero 4 Black and Silver cameras were released to the consumer market, the famous company behind them has now finally unveiled their newest and apparently best GoPro cam yet, the Hero 5, and based on what we’re seeing so far, this new shooter comes with some very cool features indeed.

Superficially even, the Hero 5 definitely looks a bit different from its predecessors but the changes in this version of the Hero line are about more than just looks, even if the basic look and functionality of a sturdy little cube for recording action on the fly in photos and video are essentially the same.

When it came to the old GoPro Hero 4 Silver and Black cameras, one major problem between the two shooters was that each on had something going for it while lacing other cool features from the other version. Thus, the Hero 4 Black could grab 4K video at 30fps and 1080p footage at 60 frames but lacked a touch screen and the Silver version only managed 2K footage but did offer a cool and nicely sized touch display for much easier recording control. This was a frustrating detail for many users and the Hero 5 nicely remedies it by combining the best of both previous cameras into a single model and then adding awesome new features of its own.

Thus, for starters, the $399 Hero 5 does indeed shoot 4K video at 30 fps and 1080p at 120 frames while also offering 2K video at 60 fps and coming with its own color touchscreen for much easier shot framing and other controls.

Then, aside from these 4K capabilities and touch display functions, the new Hero camera also offers image stabilization technology for shooting during movement and vibrations and of course it also comes with built-in GPS for location tagging and recording a course during an expedition in which the camera is being used to film what you’re doing.


On top of these features, the Hero 5 is built with some new physical robustness as well. Instead of a separate external waterproofing shell which you had to buy for the previous Hero cameras, the new model is built with its own integrated waterproof housing with resistance against water down to a depth of 30 feet and in addition to this, voice control of the camera’s main recording and settings functions is also possible, allowing for hands-free use. Thus, To get your camera’s attention, just address it by name (GoPro) and tell it what to do, such as starting a video at a certain resolution, capture a photo or a number of other things like powering up, powering down, doing timelapse vidos and tagging certain moments in a piece of footage. These different voice features can also be requested simultaneously in some cases.

Finally, GoPro has also given the Hero 5 one truly cool photo sharing/storage/backup option which really makes this little shooter shine. Now with the new GoPro Plus cloud service, you can upload all of your footage and photos to a remote cloud for easy access to the files from any mobile device or web-connected PC/mac which has the Quik and Splice photo/video editing apps for your GoPro account installed. This backup can be done automatically via WiFi as soon as the camera is plugged into a power source. The GoPro Plus cloud service is however not free and comes with a very cheap $5 per month subscription fee.

The ultra-compact Hero 5 Session 4K action camera

The ultra-compact Hero 5 Session 4K action camera

Finally, GoPro has also released an even more compact version of the Hero 5 called the Hero 5 Session. This tough little 4K camera is tiny, just as waterproof as its bigger cousin and it also offers 4K video at 30 frames per second along with voice command. However, the Session mini action camera lacks a touch screen and offers no GPS. On the other hand, it does cost a full $100 less than the full Hero 5 model.

Both cameras are going to be hitting shelves and getting sent out to buyers as of October 2.

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  • Garret L.
    September 20, 2016 at 7:46 am

    Sorry GoPro, but it looks like Garmin will be my next action camera purchase when my Hero 3’s kick the bucket. It ticks all the boxes and their software is better:


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