The HD Hero is reasonably discreet and, surprisingly, any extra weight was barely noticeable. With just two buttons and a small LCD display, configuring is kept purposefully simple. No zoom, no tricky ISO settings to fiddle with, just a variety of resolutions (four plus an extra 60fps version for super-slow playback) and 5Mp stills.
Conveniently, the camera can take stills at set intervals, up to a 60-second gap, or a simple 3-shot burst. While the GoPro is never going to be a camera buff’s best friend, the lack of options is an absolute pleasure when scrabbling around in the ocean trying to change modes.
Whatever your activity, a simple button-press sets the camera recording (or snapping) with a useful beep. One more press to stop and the LCD screen displays the number of files now stored on your SD card.
The Helmet version's mounting kit
With no viewfinder as standard, there's something of the old ‘wait and see’ magic of film here – scoping out your yield of footage is immense fun. Both images and videos are better defined than I had initially expected – clear, lucid colours, and underwater footage of surprising clarity.
Next page: Sample Video
I keep telling this friend of mine that he really shouldn't mention "watersports" on his CV under the "interests" section without qualifying it in some way.
I mean, people could get the wrong idea.
You understand that they might think he likes swimming or some such.
..how about you strap one of those to Paris? Plane or socialite, I'm not fussy.
Contour HD worth a look at too
If you are looking at HD helmet cameras, the contour HD is the other option to consider. For me, videoing the cycle to work, they are both a tad expensive. Nice for fun use though
Chest mount is good too!
We have used the chest mount Go-Pro for firefighting training. When reviewing the video, it's much better than footage taken from a distance as you are right there in the thick of the action.
Good review - HD Hero is awesome when used for the purpose it is intended
I grabbed the HD Hero Motorsports camera. It's the exact same hardware just different mounting options. I do a fair amount of motorcycle riding and have it mounted on the very front edge of my BMW R1200GS.
When it is used for that kind application it cannot be beaten. The size and weight mean of the camera has zero effect on the handling of the bike and the quick release mounts mean I can mount it on the front or back in just seconds.
A recent ride on a beautiful road in low light at speeds of 80 mph (ish) showed that the capture is still absolutely superb even at speed, with no discernible digital artifacts.
I ran the camera for over 2 hours and there was still one bar of battery left.
Great for "action" type of video where any normal HD Video camera would be too heavy/bulky/expensive to use
No so great for day to day video of the family at DisneyLand.
As an aside, the camera crew for Discovery Channels "Deadliest Catch" started using these last season!