GO­PRO HERO4 BLACK VS GO­PRO HERO4 SIL­VER

NEW YEAR, NEW HE­ROES

HWM (Malaysia) - - FRONT PAGE - by Am­mar Uzair Amin­ud­din

Go­Pro is ar­guably the ‘king’ in the ac­tion cam­era mar­ket, hav­ing un­veiled sev­eral mod­els that have blown con­sumers’ minds with their ex­ten­sive fea­tures and ca­pa­bil­i­ties. Now, we get to see what the con­tin­ued ap­peal is with the com­pany’s new lineup, the Go­Pro HERO4 Black and HERO4 Sil­ver. Go­Pro claims that both mod­els are the most ad­vanced ac­tion cam­eras that they’ve ever made, but are they re­ally as good as they say? And what are the dif­fer­ences be­tween the two?

First, let’s look at the topof-the-line HERO4 Black, which mainly caters to pro­fes­sional users. It has the same de­sign and size as HERO3+ se­ries, and is slightly heav­ier than its pre­de­ces­sor by just a few grams. Ex­ist­ing Go­Pro cam­era own­ers will still be able to uti­lize the same ac­ces­sories as be­fore. There are also some changes to it, such as a new bat­tery com­part­ment de­sign. Users will only need to drop it into the bot­tom, rather than slide it into the back of the de­vice.

An­other ma­jor change to the HERO 4 Black is the cam­era’s but­ton place­ments. The tra­di­tional Wi-Fi but­ton on the right panel has been re­placed with a Hi­Light Tag/Set­ting but­ton, which only func­tions when it’s not record­ing. Users still can ac­ti­vate the Wi-Fi func­tion with a sin­gle long press of the same but­ton. On the left panel, there’s a mini-USB charge/sync port and ex­pand­able mi­croSD slot that can sup­port up to 64GB. While it doesn’t have a built-in touch­screen, it has a HERO port on the back panel that en­ables users to at­tach Go­Pro’s LCD Touch BacPac or Bat­tery BacPac.

Shoot­ing with the most ad­vanced Go­Pro is quite a straight­for­ward ex­pe­ri­ence. It’s equipped with an ul­tra­w­ide an­gle lens that cap­tures ev­ery­thing in front of it with­out a dis­play screen. This ac­tion cam­era also of­fers 47 types of res­o­lu­tion and frame rate com­bi­na­tions and over 150 cap­ture modes in such a small form fac­tor, which re­ally sur­prised us. Ad­di­tion­ally, its ca­pa­bil­ity to record up to 4K res­o­lu­tion at 30fps will def­i­nitely make pro­fes­sional videog­ra­phers go nuts for it. Not only that, but it also did an amaz­ing job with the high- speed video record­ing mode – a mode that is ca­pa­ble of shoot­ing video at frames of up to 120fps in Full HD.

For users who re­ally want to have full con­trol over the cam­era, they can switch to the Pro­tune mode, which al­lows them to shoot at higher bit-rates with their pre­ferred set­tings, such as colors, sharp­ness, ISO, white bal­ance and ex­po­sure. Ad­di­tion­ally, me­ter­ing can be ad­justed from eval­u­a­tive to spot – a good way to pre­vent over­ex­posed scenes when shoot­ing from in­doors or the shade. Pro­fes­sional users will def­i­nitely love th­ese fea­tures as they can pro­duce cinema-qual­ity footage that’s com­pat­i­ble with any color-grad­ing tools and video-edit­ing soft­ware. Un­like its pre­de­ces­sor, Pro­tune also now sup­ports photo mode on the HERO4 se­ries.

Its ca­pa­bil­ity to record a time-lapse with its 12MP cam­era sen­sor is an­other ‘wow’ fac­tor for the HERO4 Black. As we al­ready know its per­for­mance in bright day­light, we did a time-lapse test shot in low­light con­di­tion with its Night Lapse mode. The out­put video was amaz­ing, as it de­liv­ered

great amount of de­tails, while move­ments in the night sky were as smooth as we would nor­mally see with our naked eye.

If you’re not plan­ning on record­ing in 4K or high­qual­ity slow-mo­tion video, then the Go­Pro HERO4 Sil­ver is a more vi­able op­tion. It may be a midrange ac­tion cam­era, but don’t think it’s an un­der­per­former like its pre­de­ces­sor. In fact, it’s iden­ti­cal to the pre­vi­ous top-end Go­Pro cam­eras in al­most ev­ery way.

Aes­thet­i­cally, the HERO4 Sil­ver boasts the same de­sign and but­ton place­ments as other model in the Go­Pro fam­ily, save ex­cept for one es­sen­tial fea­ture. For the first time, there’s a built-in LCD touch dis­play on the back panel, which helps you frame your shots and lets you re­view footage on the spot, rather than us­ing the mo­bile app or wait­ing un­til you get your hands on a PC. Plus, users no longer need to mon­i­tor its set­tings via the square mono­chrome dis­play. Un­for­tu­nately, the Go­Pro’s bat­tery per­for­mance has never been stel­lar as its bat­tery only lasted around two hours of con­tin­u­ous use.

Per­for­mance-wise, it ac­tu­ally showed a num­ber of im­prove­ments over the pre­de­ces­sor. We also found out that this cam­era is able to record 4K video, but at 15fps and not at 30fps like the HERO4 Black. On top of that, its video res­o­lu­tions are slightly lower than that of the HERO4 Black.

This model also has the Su­perView op­tion for Full HD and 720p record­ings. It dy­nam­i­cally stretches the de­fault as­pect ra­tio to a full 16:9, where users will get to see more de­tails in their videos. Just like the HERO4 Black, it also has a range of great shoot­ing modes, such as QuikCap­ture, Auto Low Light, and Burst mode.

We did a nor­mal test shoot with the HERO4 Sil­ver, in 1080p at 60fps, with Su­perView. The video looked sharper and clearer, as claimed by the com­pany. Still pho­tos were still able to re­tain their clar­ity, even though they look sharp and crisp from afar.

Over­all, both Go­Pro cam­eras are built for a par­tic­u­lar set of peo­ple. For those who re­ally want a high-qual­ity cam­era with pro­fes­sional specs, the HERO4 Black is for you. As for the not-so-hard­core crowd, the HERO4 Sil­ver is more suited for out­door en­thu­si­asts, as they can di­rectly mon­i­tor its set­tings and fram­ing via the built-in LCD touch dis­play.

Not only are they rugged, but they also put out stunning HD video at frame rates that chal­lenge pro­fes­sional cinema cam­eras.

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