GoPro introduces the HERO3, sporting higher quality video in a smaller package

Comments by Jonathan Glass/

This week GoPro introduced its latest POV camera, the HERO3 that packs higher video quality into a package 25% lighter and 30% smaller than its predecessor, the HERO2. At 2.6 ounces and 20mm wide without the waterproof case that now sports a flat lens, the HERO3 is the smallest offering from GoPro.

There are three new models to choose from: the Black, Silver or White Editions. Of the three, the Black Edition boasts the most technical features and retails for $399.99. Its lens is 2X sharper and is equipped with three new video modes: 4K at 15fps, 2.7K at 30fps and 1440p at up to 48fps. Still included are GoPro’s trusty 1080p at up to 60fps, 960p at up to 100fps and 720p at up to 120fps. The new 4k resolution at 15fps won’t have the smoothest video, but it will take excellent, high quality stills without having to use photo mode while the 2K at 30fps will allow you to zoom in once in the edition room.

When it comes to snapping photos, GoPro didn’t hold back as they improved the photo resolution to 12MP and threw in a burst mode of up to 30 frames per 3 seconds along with seven different time-lapse intervals ranging from 0.5 to 60 second intervals in the Black Edition.

Nothing’s changed in terms of the audio as the HERO3 is identical to the HERO2’s (mono, 48kHz, AAC compression w/AGC), but GoPro says it has been redesigned to capture more of the subtle sounds while still effectively cancelling out wind noise.

All of the HERO3 models come with built in Wi-Fi capabilities, a waterproof case and a Wi-Fi remote with the Black Edition. The remote has the ability to control up to 50 different Wi-Fi enabled GoPros simultaneously, finally allowing you to remake the matrix with a somewhat smaller budget.

The other two editions – White and Silver – are intended for users with a smaller budget who might not need all the features the Black Edition has to offer. The Silver Edition retails at $299.99 and boasts a respectable 1080p at 30fps and 11MP at a 10fps burst mode. The White Edition retails at only $199.99 and also captures 1080p at 30fps but with a 5MP, 30fps burst mode.

If you opt for either the White or Silver Editions and still need to control all 50 of your GoPros at once, you can purchase the Wi-Fi remote for $79.99. All three cameras can also be run by your iOS or Android smartphone while running the GoPro App which enables full camera control and live scene preview.

Pre-orders for the HERO3 are underway at gopro.com with an expected shipping date of November 14th.