GoPro Hero 12 Black: 3 reasons that make it my new favorite action cam

Estimated read time 5 min read

GoPro Hero 12 Black: 3 reasons that make it my new favorite action cam

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

The GoPro Hero 12 Black is out, the latest in a long line of action cams that have revolutionized video capture in extreme conditions. And as usual, there are a bunch of new features and improvements.

There is no doubt that you will see tons of incredible images on social networks over the next few days. People who go skiing, surfing, bungee jumping and all kinds of intense sports activities. Well, this handling will be a little different.

Yes, the way I use GoPro (and I think I’ve had all the models released since the Hero 3) is a little different.

The water. There is no better testing ground for a camera’s low-light capabilities

Of course, I used the GoPro’s as action cams, I attached them to cars and took them underwater. But I also use them as portable cameras to capture several angles of a shot, indoors or outdoors. They are light, small and can be inserted in places where a larger camera cannot go or would be destroyed.

In short, I tend to think of them as versatile cameras, and not just as action cams. Therefore, the improvements that are important to me will focus more on possibilities for uses other than extreme sports.

The water. There is no better testing ground for a camera’s low-light capabilities than water. This is a real challenge, because water can go from darkness to brightness in the blink of an eye, which can translate into very variable results.

I tested this camera with the default settings. And I was not disappointed

In the same way that most people turn on their GoPro and start shooting directly, I tested this camera with the default settings. And I was not disappointed. The result is exceptional.

Here are images that come directly from the camera, without calibration or adjustment. If we consider that these images were shot at the end of the afternoon, in a rather cloudy river, the result is excellent.

And with a few tweaks, it could be even better. It is clear that the improved HDR (High Dynamic Range) gives good results. In terms of capture quality, this is one of the best action cameras on the market, the only rival being the DJI Osmo Action 4.

Significant improvement in battery capacity

But for me, it is the hardware improvements that I like the most. First point on this list: the battery life. The autonomy of GoPro has long been catastrophic. So it’s good to see that the engineers have worked to practically double it this time. Yes, double that! GoPro claims that you can now get up to 70 minutes of continuous recording at the definition of 5.3K, 60fps (using the highest performance setting of the Hero 12 Black), more than 95 minutes at 5.3K, 30fps, and more than 155 minutes of continuous recording at 1080p, 30fps, and my tests confirm it.

And this, with the same Enduro battery as that of the Hero 11 Black.

The only selfie stick I had!

The new GoPro also works with selfie sticks! Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

I used to never travel without a few batteries or some way to power the GoPro from an external battery. But from now on I can be content with just one or two batteries.

The 1/4″-20 thread below the housing allows it to be attached to a tripod or a selfie stick

Yes, this is a game changer! I would still need an external power supply for the production of long time-lapses, but for current videos and photos, the battery power supply is finally sufficient!

My other favorite improvement point of the Hero 12 Black is the 1/4″-20 thread below the case which allows it to be attached to a tripod or a selfie stick. Yes, I know, you can do it with a 1/4″-20 adapter, but it would still be an extra thing to carry.

Finally, a 1/4″-20 thread to allow the GoPro to be attached directly to a tripod or a selfie stick. Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

Being able to screw the GoPro directly onto a tripod or a selfie stick is something I’ve wanted for years!

Another highlight is that this is the first GoPro to support recording in a log profile — called GP-Log here. This is a flatter color profile that allows more detail to be extracted from the highlights and shadows during the editing process. If you are using this profile, don’t panic if the sequence looks dull initially; this is what it is supposed to look like before you start editing it!

GoPro sequences can be very particular, and the fact of being able to apply LUTs (editor’s note. short for look-up table, which are like smart filters) on this flatter GP-Log capture allows you to get just about any style and tone you are looking for.

Another advantage of this system is that it can help you match the footage you capture with your GoPro with footage from other cameras. This will allow a really interesting artistic editing of the captured sequences.

ZDNET’s buying tips for the GoPro Hero 12 Black

The GoPro Hero 12 Black offers a remarkable improvement. If you have to buy a new action cam, you can’t go wrong. Before thinking about whether you should upgrade, ask yourself if you think the new features are worth it. For me, the reinforced battery, the possibility of capturing in GP-Log format and the 1/4″-20 mount make it a convincing improvement.

Source: “ “

You May Also Like

More From Author