Drag site icon to your taskbar to pin site. Learn More

GoPro Hero Wide-Angle Product Review

Tuesday, February 3, 2009
GoPro Hero Motorsports wide angle.
GoPro Hero Motorsports wide-angle camera.
When it comes to making videos, one of the hardest parts is getting good on-board footage. Either the equipment is huge and tedious to mount or the quality is horrible. Until recently, that is. GoPro has come out with a new wide-angle version of their Hero Motorsports on-board camera and are on to something with this one.

Where the old unit had a far too focused field of view and the quality wasn’t quite up to snuff even for web videos, the new Hero has fixed all of these issues. Quality is more than enough for great web videos at 5 megapixels and the 170-degree wide angle makes it easy to get awesome angles from almost anywhere on any motorcycle/dirt bike/car/Jetski. We’ve done everything from tail-cam to fork-cam to brake-cam to helmet-cam and the video has come out great.

The GoPro in action. Note it mounted in front of our tester's right hand to get braking action. Its small size makes for easy mounting just about anywhere one desires.
The GoPro in action. Note it mounted in front of our tester's right hand to get braking action. Its small size makes for easy mounting just about anywhere one desires.
And like the previous unit, its small size and clever mounting hardware with sticky pads allows for easy placement that doesn’t intrude with riding much if any at all. The unit comes with five quick-release mounts and a large suction cup. It’s shockproof and waterproof up to 100 feet. All video is transferred directly to any SD memory card up to 2 GB and it runs on two AAA batteries. With a 2 GB card up to 56 minutes of video are possible and it can be easily downloaded to any newer computer. Resolution is 512 x 384 dpi and it has a 1 year warranty.

GoPro suction mount.
A suction mount is also included in the kit.
Our only complaints? If batteries are left in the unit it drains their power quite fast. Also, it’s easy to get mixed up when toggling through the button options and leave it on the wrong setting, thus not getting the desired shot or anything at all. Also, on occasion it will mysteriously shut off after five or six minutes of riding (sometimes less) while other times it plays for as long as one desires.

That being said, considering the extremely reasonable price of $199.99 and its ease of use and improved video quality, we have to commend GoPro for stepping up with their latest version of the Hero camera. It’s leaps and bounds better than the previous unit and is an awesome tool for any rider, especially those who ride at the racetrack – both dirt and street.

For more information go to: www.goprocamera.com.

Highs & Lows
  • Easy to mount
  • Great field of view
  • Very affordable
  • Tricky to set up at first
  • Drains batteries quickly
Videos Our Sponsor
GoPro Product Review
Click to view video

Login or sign up to comment.

HDBreeze -Wind Noise  October 4, 2009 02:48 PM
I have the GoPro Hero, and I love it! It works great, and the picture quality is awesome. I recently had it mounted on the front fender of my Road Glide, and it worked flawlessly, even when I hydroplaned through a deep puddle at the bottom of a hill. It held tight and captured everything without ever shutting off. I use the Energizer AAA batteries that are made for digital cameras, and I can fil two 2-gig cards before they need to be replaced. As far as wind noise, what would you expect? It's the same as what your ears experience when your head is hanging out in the wind. I have a $2500 Sony HandyCam with noise reduction, but on the bike, it still picks up wind noise. For under $200, this cam can't be beat!
MY- S281 -Sound quality  May 25, 2009 05:49 AM
I just got a new Go Pro and the sound seems a bit noisy, I think the video is awesome... but the sound seems a bit disappointing.. I have viewed some of the test videos people have posted on the web and it seems most of the time you really cant hear much of anything and usually they are dubbed over with music like I have done..I can honestly say I have tried the different settings , both hi and lo, and I have removed the seal, etc. I have tried all the tricks so to speak that are referenced in the user guide materials. On low with the seal in its very difficult to hear much of anything, even when mounted inside, and believe me there is no lack of sound from my car.. :) On hi it still seems to be a bit noisy , especially without the housing seal. vibration noises drown out my Borla exhaust sound on my Saleen most of the time, and if you know Borla it's not quiet.. maybe i have a defective unit ?
John -What about sound?  February 20, 2009 10:27 AM
Nothing in the review mentions sound quality. There's so many video on youtube that have anoying wind noise. It would be interesting to have that included in the review (when the cam is faces backward, forewards, sideways, etc..)
redzgrider -What about us poor suckers stuck with the earlier units?  February 4, 2009 05:21 PM
I bought one of the earlier units at BikeWeek in Daytona, with the promise from GoPro that a wide angle accessory lens was going to be available. Now, no accessory lens, just the option to buy another camera? Thanks. No, really, thanks...
Steve Atlas -RE Mounting?  February 3, 2009 08:09 PM
It comes with both sticky pads and suction-mounting hardware. It easily stands up to racetrack speeds, as this is where we use it mostly. Check out the video - that's all made from this GoPro unit. Also, all trackday organizations I know of allow the use of it as well. We highly recommend the product.
thewall -Mounting?  February 3, 2009 06:51 PM
So seriously this unit adheres to all of these different mounting points (helmet, forks, nose fairing, tail fairing, etc) with just a sucktion cup? Does it hold up to race track speeds and do track day organizations pass it for tech inspection? The combination of ease, cost, and quality if really attractive.
Steve Atlas -RE: GoPro Support  February 3, 2009 05:48 PM
Email sent. Thanks Ruben! Look forward to getting the updated unit.
Ruben Ducheyne -GoPro support  February 3, 2009 05:15 PM
Hey Steve, GoPro here. It sounds like you may have received a pre production unit of the new Wide HERO camera that wasn't quite up to snuff if you're not getting consistent recording times. The camera shouldn't be "mysteriously" shutting off if you're using the recommended NiMH or Energizer Lithium batteries. Shoot us an email at support@goprocamera.com and we'll get the camera swapped out for you. Thanks, GoPro Support