GoPro Hero Session 5 2018 - 2017 Review by A Better Ski
GoPro Hero 5 Session
GoPro’s release of the Hero5 Session maintains the small size and waterproof case of the the previous generation but adds voice controls, better image quality and stabilization.
GoPro Hero 5 Session Review
User Interface: While you can navigate through many of the camera settings using the menu button and the small screen on top of the camera, we recommend that you quickly download and pair the camera using GoPro’s “Capture” app. The app intuitive and works flawlessly with the Hero5 Session, it will among other things; review content, live view image, stop/start record, and provide full settings control. The Hero5 Sessions size is it’s biggest attribute but reduces onboard screen size and makes the onboard UI more difficult, this is a solid trade-off when we paired it with the app. Unlike some of the previous editions, GoPro removed the power button, once this was realized, controlling the camera was super simple. Record button one, and the camera turns on and starts recording automatically, hit it again and the camera stops recording and turns off. We liked this feature as we always fiddled with record and power buttons on previous models to try and conserve battery life, this takes all that work out of the equation.
Voice Controls: At first speaking to your GoPro felt a little strange but it quickly became evident that this was a HUGE benefit over fiddling with the buttons while you are wearing gloves. GoPro offers 12 commands that can be used to stop/start recording, change modes, take pictures and turn the camera off; among other things. Voice controls can only be used after the camera has been started manually for the first time which was great for friends that think its funny to talk to your GoPro while you are on the lift. Overall, the voice controls worked well as long as there wasn’t strong wind and you spoke clearly, the Remo looks like it will be a great addition to the system.
Build Quality: Beautiful build quality provides a small, compact design with built in 1000mAh battery. The camera is waterproof up to 33ft without an additional case and offers a better microphone as part of loosing the case. Like the last edition of the Hero5 Session, the lens cover is replaceable and readily available through GoPro if you do scratch it, it can be replaced which is GREAT. The accessory door has a positive lock which lets you know when the door is fully shut. We just wish GoPro could have found a way to build in a replaceable battery so we don’t have to use the camera sparingly, you can bring a small portable battery charger to keep the camera topped off if needed. The attachment system allows you to use legacy GoPro mounts that you have collected over the years, which is great.
Tech Specs: The GoPro Hero5 Session provides a large step forward over the previous model Hero Session with up to 4k at 30fps and 1080p at 90fps for you slow-mo lovers out there. A 10MP camera is a 2MP increase from the previous version with multiple burst and time lapse modes. The Hero5 Session offers an impressive image stabilization which did a good job smoothing out some bumpy footage.
Image/Footage Quality: Previous GoPro editions lacked sharpness and lighting control, the Hero5 Session is a clear step in the right direction making images clearer and colors richer right out of camera. We shot multiple days of low light conditions which also provided much better results. Wind noise reduction is provided on this model and was quickly evident, the case-less GoPro also took away the muffled sound we used to get from these cameras.
Overall: GoPro provided features that give the new Hero5 Session valuable upgrades, voice control, image and sound clarity, and size/build quality. Battery life is limited by the lack of a replaceable option, so we wouldn’t recommend this for someone who wants to record everything but we do believe that this camera would be the perfect camera for 90% of action cam users. The user interface will take a bit to get used to, just remember, download the app right away!
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