It's worth mentioning, too, that the EIS is not available at all frame rates, including 4K at 60fps (you'll have to drop down to 30fps). Also, to work its magic, it crops the wide field of view (FOV) by 10 percent -- a five percent horizontal reduction on both left and right sides -- which is a small sacrifice for the results you get.
Speaking of crops, the Hero6 Black has a new digital zoom. Well, sort of. Past models gave you the option to shoot with a wide, medium or narrow FOV. The new zoom feature replaces this. Double-tap on the screen and up comes a little slider on the right side. It's nice to have, particularly when paired with the Karma drone, but it only gets you a tiny bit closer, it softens image quality and you can't use it once you've started recording.
GoPro spent much of the past year building out its mobile apps to make it easier for users to shoot, edit and share with their phones. The GP1 chip actually supplies extra power to speed up and smarten itsautomated editing feature with face detection and more. Of course, before you can edit and share, you need to get your videos off the camera and onto your phone or tablet, which is time consuming and a battery drain.
To that end, the Hero 6 Black has faster 5GHz Wi-Fi for speedier transfers, three times faster according to GoPro. But, you know, three times faster than slow is still kind of slow. In my testing it was quicker, but ideally you'll want to keep your clips short and, if you know you're going to want to edit and share from your phone, don't shoot in 4K.
I do have to say the experience of getting the camera connected to your phone has become about as painless as possible. Plus, once you establish the initial connection, the low-energy Bluetooth maintains a persistent link between your device and the camera, so you can open the app and start using it in a few seconds.
Something to definitely keep in mind, though, is with all these features -- Wi-Fi, 4K, high frame rates, GPS, EIS -- there's a power penalty: The more you ask of the camera, the shorter your battery life will be. To be fair, GoPro has done a decent job of bulking up on capabilities while keeping battery life relatively good. Still, you'll want to travel with a spare pack or two and maybe invest in GoPro's Supercharger.
Worth the investment
As you might expect, the Hero6 Black builds on all the things that made its predecessor an excellent camera. The image stabilization and video quality alone make it easy to recommend for anyone upgrading from a Hero3 or 4. And if you're buying your first GoPro, it's definitely the way to go, assuming you have the cash. If, however, you don't need the higher frame rates or EIS, the Hero5 Black is still a great choice, has a lot of the same features and is $100 less.