GoPro Hero 8 Black reviews: a ‘bombproof’ camera for vloggers and daring filmmakers
Latest action camera packs new accessories and better AI, but is that enough?
GoPro’s all-new Hero 8 Black action camera has arrived, bringing with it a host of accessories aimed at vloggers.
Following in the footsteps of smartphone makers such as Google, GoPro has upgraded its artificial intelligence (AI) to help improve the quality of footage recorded on the Hero 8 Black.
For example, the HyperSmooth mode, which improves shaky footage, has been reworked and is now available for all resolution settings, says Engadget.
There are also a range of new add-ons for those who want to record videos of themselves. These include a “shotgun microphone” for better audio, a light for “dim conditions” and a flip-up display so users “frame themselves” while taking a self-shot video, the BBC notes.
The upgrades are sure to be a hit with buyers looking to pick up an action camera for the first time, but has the company done enough to tempt existing GoPro owners to upgrade?
Here’s what the critics think:
On the surface, it’s difficult to distinguish the Hero 8 Black from its predecessor, says T3. Among the changes are a slightly “sleeker” body, “cleaner lines and a lens that’s not quite as prominent” despite being marginally larger than the old model’s.
“The camera feels bombproof, and essentially it is,” the tech site says. It claims that the Hero 8 Black was left “unscathed” following a cycling accident, while also “getting churned and bashed about while surfing” without being scratched.
Arguably the most significant difference is the “improvements in artificial intelligence and image algorithms”, says Pocket-lint.
For example, the revamped HyperSmooth 2.0 mode is so impressive that the tech site could “barely tell there were any bumps in the road” while recording footage from the passenger seat of a motorbike sidecar.
The function also has a “Boost” mode, which crops the image in favour of an even smoother video, Pocket-lint notes. HyperSmooth 2.0 applies to all recording options, making it ideal for both everyday video and for daring filmmakers capturing footage in more extreme environments.
The Hero 8 Black introduces a new battery pack that helps run the new stabilisation feature, The Verge notes. While the camera can be powered by older GoPro batteries, it’s “kind of a bummer” that doing so locks users out of activating HyperSmooth 2.0.
Overall, though, the Hero 8 Black “is a worthy successor to the throne” and will no doubt be the “go-to action camera” for many, the tech site says. There’s also a host of new accessories, such as an LED light for self-shot videos, which should make the Hero 8 Black a hit with vloggers.
Price and release
Prices start at £379.99, which T3 says is “steep” compared to the old GoPro Hero 7 Black at £319 and the similarly priced DJI Osmo Action.
An official UK release date has yet to be announced, but the tech site says customers in the US can pre-order the camera on 15 October and buy it from retailers five days later.