GoPro is synonymous with action videography. From the slopes to the surf, athletes and adventure-seekers alike have sought out their small-but-tough cameras to document high-endurance activity. Now, with the arrival of the Karma drone and a growing need for high-resolution, portable cameras, GoPro has added a number of new features to its Hero 5, reemerging as a major contender in the camera market.

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Notable to the most recent changes in the GoPro lineup is the inclusion of 4K resolution at 30 frames-per-second, with an additional option of 2.7K (still photos can also now be taken in camera RAW). Images are crisper, brighter, and more detailed. Super slow-mo 720p at 240 frames-per-second also gets you dramatic video without too severe a loss in quality. New to Hero 5, linear mode removes the dreaded fish-eye look so common in previous wide-angle models. While a drain on battery life, this feature will stand out for bloggers and drone flyers (no more curved horizons!). Like all new devices made in 2016, GoPro has also embraced voice commands. Can’t reach the Hero 5 strapped to your helmet? No problem, just say “GoPro start recording,” and you will be on your way. If you have not gotten your hands on the Karma Grip yet, the Hero 5 comes with electronic image stabilization (EIS), trimming the edges of videos for a smoother shot. Love geotagging? The Hero 5 also welcomes in GPS to the GoPro lineup. As with all the more recent GoPro cameras, these features are all accessible via touchscreen, but be warned, they eat up battery life, and you may find yourself scrambling for a charger after a couple of hours.

Perhaps one of the biggest changes to the body of the Hero 5 is a waterproof design, making the camera usable in water without a case in depths up to 33 feet. This makes the camera much more pocket-friendly, according to a recent Engadget review, and changing memory cards is now a breeze. This case-less feature is a helpful remedy for the Hero 5 being slightly too big for all of your previous accessories.


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GoPro has also noticeably improved user experiences beyond the camera with the addition of apps like GoPro Plus. GoPro Plus, a $5-per-month cloud service that will store 35 hours of video or 62,500 photos, is designed to keep your work backed-up and easily accessible. Changes to the smartphone app Captur allow for immediate transfer of video and photos your phone, while GoPro’s $20-$30 Quick Key microSD fob provides and offline phone transfer to the Quik App.

GoPro’s Hero 5 is the much needed upgrade to the world’s iconic portable action cam.

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