GoPro Hero 3 Review: Black, White And Silver: Best Choice For You

GoPro Hero 3 Review 2022: Best Choice For You

The GoPro Hero 3 is a compact and lightweight camera that is perfect for capturing all of your outdoor adventures. This camera is easy to use and features a number of different recording modes, making it the perfect choice for anyone looking for an affordable and versatile camera. In this blog, we will discuss three GoPro 3 models ( Black, White, and Silver). Let’s explore with Lucidcam

GoPro Hero 3 Review

GoPro Hero 3 Black Edition Review

Pros

  • A huge range of settings for movie quality
  • Useful 30fps max still image burst rate
  • Remote and app control
  • High-quality video and photo quality
  • A good selection of accessories
  • Versatile shooting modes.

Cons

Software supplied is limited

The microphone built-in is too directional

Design and Features

GoPro Hero 3 Black Edition- Design

The Hero3 (Amazon: $179.99) is essentially a smaller Hero2 and weighs in at 1.6×2.3×0.8 inches (HWD) and 2.6 ounces, compared to 1.6×2.4×1.2 inches (HWD) and 3.3 ounces.

The silver cuboid design is the same, including two control buttons, a monochrome LCD, and a wide-angle zoom lens.

The Sony Action Cam ($179.99 on Amazon) and Drift Innovation HD Ghost ($179.99 on Amazon) have bullet-like designs that make them more suitable to side-mount on helmets or goggle straps.

The two main buttons located at the top and front of the device are the control points for all the functions. The power toggle and mode selector are located on the front of the device.

Tapping it will cycle through video recording, still capture and burst still photography, as well as the settings menu. The top button can be used to initiate recording, take a photo, or navigate through the menu system.

Although it can be cumbersome to navigate through menus and settings, this is not uncommon with all GoPro cameras. It’s easy to trigger recordings from helmets using the two-button setup.

The micro HDMI and mini USB ports are located along the left edge. There is also a microSD card slot that can hold cards up to 64GB. The Hero3 also has two LED indicators.

A red indicator indicates recording status, and a blue indicates WiFi status. The right edge houses a small WiFi On/Off button with three small holes for the microphone. The battery compartment is located at the back, along with a small red LED that indicates recording status.

The Hero3 has a wide range of accessories, including mounts and attachable BacPacs. These can be used to add features such as an LCD screen.

The Black Edition includes the camera, waterproof housing (submersible up to 197 feet), WiFi remote, and rechargeable battery. It also comes with a 3-way pivot arm, flat adhesive mount, flat adhesive mounting, and a USB charging cord.

Two indicator lights are located on the front panel. One is red to show that Hero is recording, and one is blue to show that WiFi has activated. You can also see the smaller indicator lights at the bottom, top and back panels.

The removable cover for the 1,050mAh Lithium-Ion battery is located on the back panel. If you intend to be out shooting for a long time, swappable batteries will work well. The proprietary BacPac connection is located next to the battery door. This is where accessory BacPacs such as the LCD or Battery BacPacs connect.

If you look at the unit from the front, the WiFi button activates or deactivates wireless connectivity using the GoPro app. It is also included with the Hero3 Black Edition. The Silver and White editions do not include the WiFi remote. We have previously described the WiFi remote’s workings in our GoPro WiFi BacPac review. The WiFi BacPac is no longer required for the new generation, but you might still use it if your Hero 2s are still around.

Although the WiFi remote is waterproof, it can be used to trigger wireless recording. However, we found it difficult to pair up and unnecessary for multi-camera shoots (the WiFi remote can control 50 GoPros).

The WiFi feature also proved to be a big draw for battery life during our testing. It is possible to set up an ad-hoc network between your Hero3 and a smartphone. You can use the iOS or Android app to control recording and viewfinder and to transfer files to the Web.

Video Quality

The GoPro Hero3 Black Edition is easily the most versatile action camera available.  While most cameras can only do 1080p30 and 720p60, the Hero3 can handle 720p at 120 frames/second, 1080p60 at 60 frames/second, and 4K video at 15 frames/second. Sony’s Action Cam has recently been updated to 1080p60. The Drift HD Ghost can also do 1080p30 and 1080p60. However, neither supports 4K.

We sent the Hero3, Sony Action Cam, and Drift HD Ghost along with our photographer to test. The Hero3’s 1080p60 video quality was exceptional, with sharp details and true-to-life colors, as well as smooth frame rates.

The Hero3 was able to shoot video in challenging lighting conditions and with low image noise. However, the Sony Action Cam was not able to match the Hero3 in clarity and crispness. The video was noticeably grainier, and Hero3’s video had less sharp details.

The Drift HD Ghost’s video is somewhere in between, with sharp details, and pleasantly saturated colors, though not quite accurate. Protune firmware is also available for more demanding video enthusiasts. This allows for far greater control over color correction.

The Hero3’s 4K shooting modes were also tested. This mode is not available in other action cameras or consumer camcorders. Although the footage is only 15 frames per second which makes it a bit slow, you will not find this same level of detail on any other competitor.

The still image quality is excellent, provided you are able to live with the distortion caused by wide-angle lenses. The Hero3 is capable of shooting 12-, 7, or 5-megapixel stills and can also use a variety of burst and time-lapse photo modes.

Continuous shooting mode captures 3, 5, and 10 photos per second, while burst can capture 30 shots per second. Time-lapse mode allows for intervals of 0.5, 1, 2, 5, 10, 30, and 60 seconds between shots. 12MP images are sharp and rich in detail but not as sharp as a good point-and shooter with a zoom lens.

The GoPro HD Hero3 also has burst mode and time-lapse mode. Although it adds to the list of features, I don’t think it is necessary. It’s best to leave that for DSLRs. The Hero3’s camera mode is more useful than it is – says, if the Hero3 wanted to take a self-shot with a nice background during a trail ride. The Hero3 is a VIDEO camera. If you wish to take still digital photos with it, you can use a dedicated point and shoot or DSLR.

GoPro Hero 3 White Review

GoPro Hero 3 White Review

PROS

  • Sharp 1080p video quality.
  • Excellent value.

CONS

  • There is some purple fringing in the footage.
  • In 1080p setting, narrow field of view

Lighter and smaller with built-in WiFi.

The HERO3 White Edition has the same high-performance specs as its predecessor, the Original HD HERO. However, it is 30% lighter and 25% smaller than the original HD HERO. The HERO3 White Edition can be worn and mounted on gear, is waterproof to 197 feet (60m), and can capture 1080p 30 frames and 720p 60 frames video at the same time as 5MP photos at a speed of 3 photos per sec.

Smaller, Lighter…Better

The HERO3 White Edition weighs in at a mere 2.6 ounces and is 25% lighter than the Original HD HERO cam it replaces.

Video and Photos Quality

The HERO3 White Edition captures professional-quality video at 1080p-30 to 720p-60, 960p-30 to WVGA-60 frame rates and resolutions. The HERO3 White Edition has a 5MP resolution and can take burst photos at three frames per second. Automatic photo capture in time-lapse mode allows automatic photo capture at intervals of 0.5, 2, 5, 10, 30, and 60 seconds.

Less distortion

The HERO3 White Edition’s reduced distortion lens is combined with the completely redesigned HERO3 flat lenses waterproof housing to produce stunning image sharpness above and below water.

Redesigned Sound System

GoPro engineers completely redesigned HERO3 White Edition to capture the natural sounds of music and voice as well as the intense sounds of sport. GoPro’s well-known wind-noise reduction has been improved. This means you will hear more of what interests you, such as your engine or expletives and less wind when high-speed activities are taking place.

Built-in Wi-Fi

Built-in Wi-Fi

The HERO3 White Edition has built-in WiFi and is compatible both with the WiFi Remote (not supplied) and the GoPro App. The WiFi remote (not included) is a waterproof, portable remote control that can be used to control up to 50 WiFi-enabled GoPros simultaneously.

It has a range of 600 feet. Built-in WiFi allows the HERO3 White Edition to be controlled from iOS and Android smartphones or tablets that run the GoPro App. You can control your camera and view live scenes on any compatible iOS, Android, or Windows smartphone or tablet using the GoPro App.

All GoPro mounting accessories, older generation BacPacs, and the newer generation LCD Touch BacPac are compatible with the HERO3:White Edition. All HERO3 cameras are different in size and shape, so you will need HERO3-specific Wrist and Skeleton housings.

Low-Light Performance

The GoPro Hero White performed well at night. However, it was still plagued by issues during the day, such as soft edges, washed-out images, and pixel binning. The superior image quality of the GoPro Hero + Black was still a major reason why we preferred it.

It’s Easy To Use

GoPro Hero 3 review 5

 

Two buttons are the basis of the GoPro design. One on the front and one at the top. These buttons can be difficult to press, hard to see if they are pressed, and difficult for users to use at first.

With some practice, they can be made easier, but it is still more difficult to press than the Sony Action Cams. This is especially true if your hands are cold and numb.

Although the buttons can be a little difficult to use, the menus are easy to understand and are based mostly on pictorial representations such as a trashcan or delete. It’s frustrating to miss one of the options since there is no back button.

The two main buttons do most of the functions. However, GoPro added a third button to the GoPro HERO series that turns on and off WiFi. Although this one was difficult to master, it’s easy to access the quick way to turn off the WiFi feature that consumes the battery.

GoPro offers an extensive smartphone app for Android and iPhone, which allows you to align your camera and modify settings that may be quite complex.

Mounting Options

The GoPro HERO+ Black has great mounting options, and the white is no exception. There are many mount options available because of the size and shape of this camera. You can find a counterweighted, counterweighted parallax mount that fits multiple cameras or even a helicopter mount for the GoPro line. This is unlike other competitors.

Reliability

We had some issues with the White model out of several we tried. Some models have battery issues, losing charge after a few minutes, while others shut down mid-recording. The + Black proved to be more reliable. We also experienced pixel overloading, as described in the image quality section. Additionally, there were issues with flickering exposure when skiing in flat light.

The Best Applications

Motorsports, underwater recording, snow sports in cold, tight places

Value

The GoPro Hero 3 White costs $199 and is a great choice for those who are tight on cash. However, we would recommend spending more for the Black. The White camera is a good choice, offering decent image quality in a small package. It also allows you to get creative with mounting options that are not available with other cameras.

GoPro Hero 3 Silver Review

GoPro Hero 3 Silver Review

Pros

  • Compact and small
  • Excellent video quality
  • Waterproof and sturdy case
  • Cameras that are more affordable than other cameras

Cons

  • Sticks awkwardly to helmet
  • Battery life is very short

Design

GoPro Hero 3 Silver- design

Click to EnlargeUnlike other action cameras, and the GoPro Hero3 has a square shape. It sits on top of the helmet instead of being flush with the sides. It is more awkward than other action cams like the Contour+2 or Drift Innovation Ghost. The Hero3 comes with a variety of mounting accessories that make it versatile, whether you are filming in a car, on a surfboard, or on a bike.

The Hero3’s lens is located on the Hero3’s front. Below it is a small monochrome LCD. The record button is located at the top, with a plastic cover protecting its micro USB and mini HDMI ports on the right.

Click to enlarge Hero3 is small at 2.25×1.6×1.2 inches and 2.7 ounces. To mount the camera, you will need its case. It makes it waterproof to up to 197 feet. This add-on makes it bulkier and heavier at 6.2 ounces.

The Contour+2 is a comparison. It measures 3.8×2.4×1.3 inches and weighs 5.8ozs. The Drift Innovation HD Ghost, which measures 4.1x2x1.3 inches and weighs 5.9 ounces, is even bulkier.

App

Click to Enlarge It was simple to use, and you can even remotely turn on or off cameras. You can also activate the “locate camera” feature to cause the camera’s alarm to sound intermittent when it is in range.

CineForm Studio is also available for free to GoPro users. It offers a variety of editing tools. The missing feature is a social network-friendly one-click uploader.

Performance

Performance

The GoPro Hero3 was our favorite camera. The colors were vivid and rich, the details were clear and crisp, and the contrast was great. The GoPro has a slight advantage over the Contour+2 and the Drift HD Ghost. The blues and reds of ski jackets looked the most real. However, the GoPro was more adept at picking up snowflakes as they fell.

The GoPros capture video at WVGA resolution and 30 frames per second continuously for 1 hour 30 minutes. This is two hours shorter than the Drift HD Ghost and one hour longer than the Contour+2. GoPro also sells a BacPac battery for $49, which should double its endurance.

Models

Click to enlarge tried the Silver GoPro Hero3 ($299), which is the mid-range model. The camera can record 1080p video at 30 frames/second, can take 11-MP stills at ten frames/second, and has WiFi built-in. The Black Edition, which costs $399, can capture 1080p video at 60 frames per second and 4K video at 15 frames per second.

The Black edition can also take 12-MP photos at 30 fps and is pro-low-light capable. The Black edition includes a WiFi remote, which is normally a $79 accessory. This small dongle allows you to wirelessly stop and begin recordings as well as check how much battery life remains.

Conclusion

The Hero 3 is not a perfect product, but it is the best action camera in its range and price. It will be excellent for beginners who are interested in capturing their adventures while diving, skiing, surfing, biking, or doing any other outdoor activities. If you want to take good-quality images or videos with an action camera, GoPro Hero 3 is the best option for you.

While the GoPro Hero3 Silver, White, and Black editions are solid contenders in the market for sports cameras, the more powerful Black Edition is the most popular.

 

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