Diving back into a GoPro

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EL Pistoffo

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It's been a years since I shot UW video with a GoPro. My last such setup was a GoPro 3 black with BackScatter macromate, SRP red filter and tray, macro diopter lens and video lights, and tons of accessories. I later switched to a compact camera based setup with housing (LX7 and Nauticam) which I still currently own.

My compact system is naturally falling behind in video tech such as a lack of 4K. I got it for better low light and macro. Still pretty competent system for photo use and macro.

So now I'm considering getting another GoPro for UW video. The small size, 4K, and most of all price have me once again interested. I don't want to invest another couple of grand in a system that, sooner than later, becomes outdated.

How does the Hero 6 compare to the Hero 3? How's the WB (color) performance at depth? I'm guessing filter still needed (as does my LX7). How's the low light performance? Lastly, and one of the biggest letdowns of the older gens, how's the stabilization?

I imagine they still aren't great for macro, or at least no match for my compact with true diopters but if the rest is good then it may be worth it. I can still use my compact system for photography and even macro video if need be.

Thx
 

EL Pistoffo

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I'd expect as much. The IS seems to work pretty well in a demo video I saw. WB is improved but still needs a red filter at depth from what I've seen.

I always shot RAW then color corrected in post so I'd continue to do the same.

Low light and macro is what I'd like to know more about too.
 

djhenryhall

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Check with the folks at Backscatter. They put in a lot of work building filters for the gopro's. They might have a good perspective on the low light and macro aspect.
 

EL Pistoffo

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I'll likely do that. I'd like some independent opinions on it too.

I used their flip mount on my Hero 3 but with my own SRP red filter since it was the best performing back then. I'm not a subscriber to the multi-color filter setup. I also used my own cheap macro diopters but I wasn't too happy with the performance. I'm hoping the macro-mate lenses are much better or I may avoid macro altogether.
 

djhenryhall

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Macro and the Gopro has always been tough for me. The only time I get good results is if I put the gopro w/macro lens on a tripod. If it's not on a tripod, it become hard for it to focus.
 

EL Pistoffo

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Yes, now it's coming back to me. Since there's no auto focus, you have to rely on keeping the camera in the sweet spot which can be pretty small. Now I'm starting to remember why I went to a compact camera setup.

Regardless, the GoPro has it's place. As a quick, inexpensive and simple UW video device it's pretty darn good. Just gotta know and work within it's limitations.
 

large_diver

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The macro results can be great (in my case using the backscatter macromate mini lens)...it just takes practice. It's not rocket science - you just need to get used to the sweet spot of distance from subject, have decent lights that are positioned correctly and then hold the shot steady for as long as possible to maximize the change for good footage.

GOPR0272-3-XL.jpg

GOPR0258-XL.jpg


GOPR0830-2-XL.jpg

Lobster%20macro%20image%20v3-XL.jpg
 

EL Pistoffo

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Those don't seem bad. I may be biased now coming from proper macro on my current camera.

Your right about practice. I eventually got the sweet spot down preety good with practice. It was holding it there that was hard, especially with stronger currents.
 

Pearlman

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Not speaking from experience .. but IIRC If you use a camera with a built-in macro, you get near to infinity focus... was it the TG5 I read about on this? I use a Hero 3+ black with SRP red filter. Certainly prefer the SRP red over rival brands.
Unfortunately as I belatedly realized - so far used without protune, but still great clarity and color in many situations... from this year I hope to get even better color balance with protune on.

My next cam is going to be a Sony FDR3000X or an AS300 with bundled UW housing, depending on whether I budget upwards of $1500 for a 4K PC rig at the time. No point taking 4K footage if your desktop cannot handle the video editing part.

Check out the reviews for The Sony too as you decide.

Cheers

PS: Great colors on the lobster ^^
 
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