GoPro Hero 7 Black announced with gimbal-like ‘HyperSmooth’ feature

GoPro’s cameras have become synonymous with high-octane adventure sports like surfing, skydiving and snowboarding.

But by its own admission, the brand has had a few missteps over the last few years. Things like the Karma drone and the 20% staff reduction leave a bitter taste in the mouth.

To hear founder and CEO Nick Woodman tell it, those failings were needed so that GoPro could regain its focus and get back to what it’s good at: making the best action cameras.

‘We’re more focused doing fewer things,’ he told Metro as he introduced the company’s latest product: the GoPro Hero 7 Black.

The GoPro Hero 7 Black is the company’s flagship new action camera (Image: Jeff Parsons)

Outwardly, the new GoPro is very similar to last year’s but there are some notable changes on the inside. Specifically, the stabilisation technology that’s been built into the camera. The company calls it ‘HyperSmooth’ and claims that the gimbal technology that makes up the £300 Karma grip accessory is now right there inside the camera.

‘It’s going to save our customers hundreds of dollars,’ Woodman explained to Metro, with the kind of intense energy you would expect from the founder of an action camera company.

‘We’re upping the bar not just for our cameras but for the digital imaging industry as a whole,’ he said.

Nick Woodman is the CEO and founder of GoPro (Image: GoPro)

The HyperSmooth function can be enabled at 960 or 1,440 resolution but doesn’t yet reach up to 2.7k or 4k – the other two display settings the Hero 7 Black offers. Similarly, it doesn’t preclude you using the Karma grip but Woodman says it should only be necessary when you’re shooting in particularly unstable environments.

During our own testing of the Hero 7 Black, the picture is noticeably smoother than previous iterations of the action camera. Marketing fluff aside, you are going to notice some juddering no matter how still you try and hold the camera, but GoPro has undoubtedly made progress.

We’re at a point now where image quality upgrades are barely indistinguishable – especially if you’re peering at it on a 6-inch smartphone screen. But clamping down on shaky, bouncing footage should be a priority and it’s great to see GoPro engaging with this.

GoPro has made the UI more intuitive – like a smartphone (Image: Jeff Parsons)

The company says this camera has been developed by its research lab in Paris. They’ve tinkered with every part of this camera to make it as efficient as possible. Like re-engineering the microphone membrane to reduce the vibration sounds when you’re carving downhill through some fresh powder. Or specifically designing the drainage points to quickly get rid of water when you come up to the surface.

‘It’s fitting that the country that invented filmmaking is involved in the development of this,’ Woodman said.

Other refinements have been made to the camera, such as making the user interface a lot more intuitive. Like the Hero 6, the touchscreen takes up the entire back of the phone and different frame rates, camera modes or resolutions can be swiped through like on a phone. The company says it has been watching how people use their cameras and trying to adapt accordingly. For example, the GoPro Hero 7 now has a portrait mode for recording vertical video that looks better on a phone screen.

The new GoPro goes on sale on September 27 (Image: Jeff Parsons)

The Hero 7 is also the first GoPro that will let users broadcast a livestream directly from the camera to their Facebook friends with YouTube integration to follow.

To mark the launch of the Hero 7 Black, GoPro is announcing a ‘Million Dollar Challenge’ that gives owners a chance to have their footage used as part of the camera’s promotional campaign.

The action junkie’s favourite accessory (Image: Jeff Parsons)

Between September 27th and December 15th, anyone that buys a Hero 7 will be eligible to send footage to GoPro directly. If the company decides the footage is good enough to make it into one of its three or four minute adrenaline-fuelled promo videos, whoever supplied the footage will get a cut of a million dollar prize pot.

The GoPro Hero 7 Black will go on sale on September 27th and will cost £379 – making it cheaper than the £399 launch price of the Hero 6 Black last year.


Read More   These start-ups are racing to help doctors detect cancer early with a simple blood test

Leave a Reply

This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.