GoPro's Hero 9 Black bulks up on power and performance but not price
I'm recording this with GoPros new hero nine black and one of his school's new features is called hindsight and captures up to 30 seconds of video before you even hit record.
Now that way you can [LAUGH] Look back and see just how I ended up like this.
So this is it.
Let's see here nine black and everything about it is bigger including its actual size.
I mean, look at the difference between the hero 9 and the hero 8. The 9 is taller and wider and it's heavier too, but it's all for a good reason.
And that's battery life.
The Hero 9 has a much larger battery pack.
Here it is against the Hero 8's battery.
Battery life was always a problem because the cameras were small but by going bigger this pack will last 30% longer than the 8's, and GoPro says it works better in the cold too.
I used it a bunch in the past few days and while I Don't have any hard numbers yet.
It lasted noticeably longer with whatever settings I used.
So you've got the bigger body with a bigger battery and inside is a bigger image sensor.
It's not physically larger, but it's now.
Now 23.6 megapixels, and with it you can shoot 20 megapixel pictures and five K video at 30 frames per second in addition to 4k at up to 60 frames per second 2.7 k at 120 and 1080 at 240 when you really want to Slow things down.
With more resolution you also get more of GoPros digital lenses.
Basically, these let you get tighter or wider on your subjects, and you can just slide between them with the touchscreen shortcut.
For example, if you're shooting in 4k, you can change from a narrow view to a linear view with horizon leveling, which is now done.
In camera instead of being an extra step editing, and then you can go to just a linear lens and then switch to the GoPros traditional wide view, and then you can bump all the way up to Super view for the widest tallest Picture, but for the most immersive shots you can add on the $99 max lens mod.
GoPro had dropped the twist on lens cover for the hero eight, but it's back for the nine.
It adds to the size but means you can replace it easily and use other lenses.
With the max lens you get a huge view just like what you get with the GoPro max cameras lenses.
You can record it up to 2.7 K and it can be used with the wide digital lens or the super view lens for a really big picture.
Next to the lens is the hero nine's worst Kept Secret and that's the new big color display.
GoPros not the first to have a front display like this, but it's a great addition and you can set it to show you just the information, a full widescreen picture so you can frame your shots or a tighter center shot.
The rear display is large too so it's just easier to see what you're shooting and change all your settings.
The camera I tested had pre launch firmware on it so the touchscreen was a little slower to respond.
But GoPro says the launch firmware improves the sensitivity as well as some of the image quality Although the image quality was already really good, overall the body feels actually tougher than the a two and the battery door is easier to open as well.
And the Micro SD card is easier to remove.
It's still waterproof down to 10 meters do
Okay, so those are some of the top new features.
We'll get to a couple more later on in the video.
But I wanted to go back to the five K video for a second now.
I thought that was a bit much.
ut apparently, GoPro says that a lot of their users wanted 5K.
And GoPro wants to keep up with what its users want and what's available and to push the boundaries of what their cameras can do.
So they added Five k now for the average Joe GoPro user like me, I don't necessarily need five K. But what it does do is give you enough resolution that you can shoot video and pull stills.
So if you can't decide between taking a photo and taking video really Theo, you can set it to 5k record video, and then go back and get still.
It's probably stills that you wouldn't have gotten otherwise.
So in the end, 5k, it's a nice addition to this camera.
To trigger a lot of the features from the hero eight carry over to the hero nine, but there are enhancements throughout GoPros hypersmooth for instance, the image stabilization it was already amazingly good on the hero eight, and it's just improved for the hero nine.
Here's some side by side footage of the hero eight, nine.
So you can judge it for yourself.
What's more is that with hyper smooth three you get boosted stabilisation in all settings for example, on the hero eight you couldn't use boost at 4k with the super view lens with the hero nine you can apply that extra bit of stabilisation to make your clips look As smooth as possible.
And just to show you how good the stabilization is on this camera, here's what it looks like with it off.
And here's what it looks like next to it with it on.
GoPros brand of hyperlapse it's stabilized motion time lapse mode.
It's on version three now as well.
So within time warp 3.0 you can pause in the middle and slow down the video to real speed.
But then when you're ready to go back up, you just tap on the back of the screen it goes back to regular time warp.
However, now you can record audio just like I'm doing right now.
So along with all the shooting modes in here 09 GoPro added three new tools.
Scheduled captures duration captures and hindsight, which you saw at the beginning of this video.
It creates a 15 or 32nd buffer constantly.
So as soon as you press record, it starts with a video stored in the buffer.
And as long as you turn off the camera beep, you'd never know you used it in the final clip.
Duration capture lets you set a time to recording from 15 seconds all the way up to three hours.
And scheduled capture lets you pick a time you want the camera to turn on automatically and start recording.
So that way you can capture things like a sunrise, without actually having to be up with the sunrise.
There are a handful of other small updates, but one that's actually pretty relevant right now is that the Hero 9 can be used as a webcam out of the box on both Windows and Mac.
So how much does all this cost?
Now With the pricing it's a little confusing this year because GoPro is offering some bundle options at launch.
Here's the rundown.
The Hero9 black is 449 or on GoPro comm you can get it for 349 when you get a one year subscription to go pro service.
So for 349 you're getting the camera Adding your service which gets you things like no questions asked camera replacement, cloud storage and enhanced live streaming and discounts on other gear for 499 you can get it in a new bundle that comes with a second battery floaty grip of magnetic swivel clip and micro SD.
The card and again you can get 100 bucks off if you sign up for the service.
Either way you get this nice case too because GoPro is getting rid of its plastic packaging, the max hero eight and hero seven all stay in the lineup with the eight and seven at reduced prices.
And I know I didn't mention it earlier specifically, but in case it wasn't clear, the bigger body does mean you can't use the old batteries in the hero nine, and the hero eight media mod won't fit on it either.
But GoPro is making one for the hero nine.
So there you have it.
That's the new GoPro Hero 9 black in a nutshell.
I really like having the front screen and I'm okay with the extra size and wait to get the removable lens cover and, of course more battery life.
What do you think?
Are the updates worth upgrading for?
Let us know in the comments and check out more details on the new camera on cnet.com.
Thanks for watching.
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