The past decade has seen a major increase in video technology, from cell phones surpassing household digital cameras attributes, to three-dimensional video.
In this article, we will be looking at the infamous success of the proclaimed GOPRO series and diving deeper into its applications. Developed by Nick Woodman, the main goal of the GOPRO was to obtain some of the highest quality video and pictures while still being able to be durable and take a beating once in awhile, as its main application is focused towards action sports such as snowboarding, motocross, and surfing (thanks to its available waterproof casing). Despite this fact, the GOPRO can be (and has been) used to film numerous other interesting scenes such as time-lapse video and day-to-day filming.
If you currently have a GOPRO (or are seriously thinking of buying one), here are a couple key tips to get the most out of your GOPRO, unlocking unlimited potential.
TIP # 1: Lens Durability and Effectiveness
Like any novice filmer, you will soon understand how important it is to have a clean lens when filming. Make sure you lens is free of debris, scratches and any other remains, which may influence your shot. I highly recommend applying a hydrophobic silicone polymer such as RAINX, this will prevent water droplets (which may distort the image quality of the final video) from building up on your cameras lens.
TIP # 2: Know Your Settings
I know it may be a little tiresome at first to go over the different options available on the GOPRO, but trust me, once you get over that hill and understand the various different outputs for each filming situation, you’ll be glad you did!
Here are some of the basic know-to’s for Resolution Settings:
1080p – Full quality. If in doubt, use this setting. Slow motion can still be created with Twixtor (if you can afford it. I can’t). Also allows you to manually crop the FOV to 720p during editing for more standard looking footage.
720p 60fps – Use this setting for basic slow motion or high action sports. Can be slowed by 50% in a 30fps workspace.
720p 30fps – Use this setting if you’re short on memory, otherwise use 1080p.
960p 48fps/30fps – This setting is 4:3 by default, but it allows you to crop it into widescreen proportions in a 720p workspace. This is particular handy if you aren’t using the LCD BacPac, so if you misaligned your shot you can adjust the vertical position of the clip in your editing app. Otherwise use 1080p or 720p/60fps.
480p 120fps/60fps – Too small. Use Twixtor to create those slow motion effects in HD.
(Tips by: Chris Spooner)
TIP # 3: Audio
Sadly, the audio on the GOPRO camera is quite disappointing, especially when inside its protective casing. If sound is a major aspect when filming there are various ways around this. External mics are the most probable answer and can be purchased in various styles. The one downside when incorporating a mic onto your GOPRO is the need of a skeleton housing (certain type of protective casing) in order to obtain access to ports for the mic itself.
TIP # 4: Always Search For New Ideas
The best thing about the GOPRO is its unlimited possibility to explore its different uses. Whether it’s taking advantage of the slow motion feature, or looking up various cool tricks on the Internet other GOPRO users have uploaded, the potential is out there!
Here is one video, which incorporates an egg timer (a relatively inexpensive item) attached to a GOPRO to make a moving time-lapse video.
Hopefully the GOPRO will continue to live on in the future as long as various other competitors like Contour Cameras, cell phones, and the anticipated Google glass don’t drive it to the ground. With the number of new filming techniques discovered everyday, the GOPRO still has a lot of unlocked potential waiting to be explored. Personally I don’t see the GOPRO going anywhere anytime soon, mainly based on the fact that the life of GOPRO is, and always will be, based in the hands of users who are willing to go outside and push their limits while getting it on tape.
What do you think of the GOPRO’s competitors?