2015 POV Camera Shootout: GoPro HERO4 Silver

Protune mode creates best-in-class helmet-cam video

Cameras

2015 POV Camera Shootout

The GoPro HERO4 Silver includes full HD video at 60 FPS, 720p HD video at 120 FPS, 2.7k at 30 FPS, and yes, even 4k capability.

The GoPro HERO4 Silver includes full HD video at 60 FPS, 720p HD video at 120 FPS, 2.7k at 30 FPS, and yes, even 4k capability.

Editor’s Note: This article is part of the 2015 Mtbr/RoadBikeReview POV Camera Shootout. We’ll also be publishing reviews of the Drift Ghost-S, Garmin Virb Elite, iON Air Pro 3 Wi-Fi, Shimano Sport Camera, and the Sony Action Cam Mini. These reviews will be followed by our final rankings, plus video samples from all six cameras. Read all POV Camera Shootout articles here. To download full resolution video files from all the tests, go HERE.

The Lowdown: GoPro HERO4 Silver

GoPro rules the POV camera universe and the HERO4 Silver is the sweet spot in their product lineup. With the GoPro HERO4 Silver you get full HD video at 60 FPS, 720p HD video at 120 FPS, 2.7k at 30 FPS, and yes, even 4k capability – although it’s not very useful at 15 FPS. What really sets the HERO4 Silver apart is GoPro’s Protune mode, which captures twice as much data as most POV cameras. It requires a little more editing effort but it’s worth it if you want helmet cam video that really looks good. Why the HERO4 Silver instead of the Black? The truth is, the HERO4 Black is overkill for anyone but a professional video maker. The Silver has the same sensor, most of the same features, and it adds a brand-new touchscreen LCD display to the back of the camera, making it more versatile and easier to use. It also costs $100 less than the Black, money you can use for more mount options — or post-ride beer.

Stat Box
Max Resolution: 4k Waterproof: 131 feet with supplied housing
Max Full HD Frame Rate: 60 FPS Battery Life: Approximately 1 hour and 50 minutes
Max HD Frame Rate: 120 FPS at 720p Built-in Wi-Fi: Yes
Time Lapse Controls: Yes GPS: No
Still Photo Resolution: 12 megapixels Weight: 147g (with housing)
Max. Still Photo Burst: 30 FPS MSRP: $399.99
Image Stabilization: No Rating: 4.5 Flamin' Chili Peppers 4.5 Chilies-out-of-5

Pluses
Minuses
  • Protune mode for truly excellent video quality
  • Pricey compared to some other options
  • Touchscreen LCD display
  • 4k at 15 FPS isn’t really useful
  • Best time-lapse system
  • No built-in image stabilization
  • 2.7k 30p video allows cropping and stabilizing in post without loss of quality
  • Awkward, blocky form factor
  • Records video and time-lapse, simultaneously
  • 30 FPS 12-MP still photos
  • Excellent built-in audio (mono)
  • Best mounting system in the business

GoPro HERO4 Silver Video

The GoPro HERO4 Silver tested on the trail at full HD (1920×1080) at the fastest frame rate.

Specification Comparison Chart

POV Spec Comparison Chart

For more information visit gopro.com.

Photo Thumbnails (click to enlarge)

About the author: John Shafer

John Shafer, a.k.a. Photo-John, is a respected photography expert and adventure photographer. He’s been an Mtbr forum member and contributor since 1999 and you can find his writing and photography across the Web, in mountain bike magazines and on his own Web site, Photo-John.net. John loves big mountains, rocky singletrack, low-visibility powder days, 6-inch trail bikes, coffee and tacos. Look for him pushing his bike uphill, carrying an inappropriate amount of camera gear in an overloaded backpack.


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  • valentin says:

    what’s up with the audio? no way that’s the gopro audio inside the waterproof case. it looks to me that all videos have the same audio….wird…

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