The Good The GoPro HD Hero2 boasts improved optics, a few new video- and still-photo-shooting modes, and backward compatibility with current HD Hero accessories. Most importantly, its interface has been overhauled and is now much easier to view and understand.
The Bad As improved as it is, the Hero2's interface can still be a bit confusing for the first-time user.
The Bottom Line The GoPro HD Hero2 is easily the best GoPro camera yet, with the ruggedness and quality that we've come to expect and a new user-friendly interface.
GoPro HD Hero2
I've had a bit of a love-hate relationship with the GoPro HD Hero that we've used during the recording of the Car Tech Live podcast for the last year or so. On the one hand, the Hero takes phenomenal wide-angle video, is ridiculously durable thanks to its polycarbonate shell, and (when you get the settings right) relatively easy to use. However, that last bit is also my biggest point of contention with the first few generations of the GoPro Hero cameras; I'm a self-proclaimed techie who's recorded hours of footage using the HD Hero and I still have to break out the poorly written instruction sheet to change any of the settings. More often than not, I just leave the settings where I left them and just point and shoot.
So, when the new generation GoPro HD Hero2 landed on my desk boasting an improved interface, I decided to challenge myself to full-test the device without cracking the spine on its (also improved) 90-page user manual.
Old design with a twist
Looking at the GoPro HD Hero2 side by side with the original HD Hero (hereafter referred to as the HD Hero1), reveals remarkably little change in the unit's form factor. Both units are dimensionally identical and feature the same lens, power button, shutter button, and LCD screen placement. This means that any waterproof cases or lens covers purchased for the HD Hero1 will still work with the HD Hero2, which is a good thing for GoPro devotees. Likewise, both units feature the same rear hook and connection port for GoPro's line of removable BacPacs, which we'll discuss later.
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