Review: GoPro HD HERO 2

Cameras Pro Reviews

Conclusions
The new 11MB sensor and sharper lens take the new GoPro HD HERO2 out in front of the pack of the POV sports cameras, and upgrading their UI, adding some new FOVs and slow motion settings really make the unit a sweet unit. Once the Wi-Fi system (BacPak and Remote) is available, I think it will complete the package, and I am looking forward to seeing how it works? I really liked the increased clarity and vivid colors from the new sensor, and the new 960p 48fps was my favorite resolution mode. Although they added better light sensitivity, it still isn’t the best, and there is no option to allow for light based tweaks in the UI.

GoPro has a great new camera on their hands with the HERO 2!

Pros

  • 11MB sensor
  • Image and color quality
  • Upgraded User-Interface
  • Sharper lens
  • Louder beeps
  • HDMI output
  • SDXC compatable
  • Wi-Fi BacPac’s (late Winter release)
  • 960p has 48fps
  • Mounts

Cons

  • Low light performance is improved but still medicore
  • UI is greatly improved, but still a bit slow and cumbersome
  • Stiff buttons
  • Without optional Wi-Fi or LCD BacPac’s, difficult to position what camera is capturing

 

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GoPro HD HERO2 Specs:

What’s Included:

  • 1 HD HERO2 Camera (11 megapixel)
  • 1 Rechargeable 1100 mAh Lithium-Ion Battery
  • 1 Waterproof Quick-Release Housing (180’/60 m)
  • 1 Headlamp-Style Head Strap
  • 1 Vented Helmet Strap
  • 2 Curved, 3M™ Adhesive Mounts
  • 2 Flat, 3M Adhesive Mounts
  • 1 Three-Way Pivoting Side Arm Assembly
  • 2 Quick-Release Buckles
  • 1 USB Cable
  • 1 Mini-HDMI cable
  • Warranty: One Year

Tech Specs:

Camera Optics

  • Lens Type: Fixed Focus (2ft/.6m – ∞), glass
  • Aperture: f/2.8 (high performance in low-light situations)
  • Angle of View: 170º ultra wide angle in WVGA, 720p, 960p, or 1080p mode
  • Angle of View: 127º medium angle in 1080p mode, 720p and WVGA (future firmware)
  • Angle of View: 90º medium angle in 1080p mode, 720p (future firmware)

Video

  • 1080p = 1920×1080 pixels (16:9), 30 fps
  • 960p = 1280×960 pixels (4:3), 48 & 30 fps
  • 720p = 1280×720 pixels (16:9), 60 & 30 fps
  • WVGA = 848×480 pixels (16:9), 120 & 60 fps
  • Sensor Type: 1/2.3″ HD CMOS
  • Light Sensitivity: Super low-light sensitivity (>.84 V/lux-sec)
  • Video Format: H.264 compression, saved as Windows- & Mac-compatible MPEG4 (.mp4) file
  • Exposure Control: Auto with user selectable center weighted average and spot metering settings
  • White Balance: Auto

Audio

  • Microphone: Built-in, mono with AGC (automatic gain control)
  • Audio Format: 48 kHz, AAC audio compression
  • Stereo external microphone (optional)

Photo

  • Resolution: 11 & 5 megapixel
  • Capture Modes: Single shot, photo every .5, 1, 2, 10, 30 or 60 secs.; 10 photo burst; self-timer

Storage

  • Memory: SD card, up to 32GB capacity (SDHC), up to 1TB (SDXC)
  • Average recording times (using 32GB SD card): 1080p (30 fps): 4hr, 960p (30 fps): 6hr, 720p (60 fps): 4hr, WVGA (120 fps): 4.5hr

Camera Connectors & Cables

  • PC Connection: USB 2.0 (data connection and battery charging)
  • HDMI: mini-HDMI to HDMI cable
  • PC Compatibility: Windows Vista 7; Mac OS® X 10.5 and later

Power & Battery

  • Battery Type: Rechargeable 1100 mAh lithium-ion
  • Battery Life: Approx. 2.5 hrs
  • Charging: via USB to computer or optional power adapter
  • Charge Time: 80% capacity after 1 hour with optional power adapter; or 2 hours with a computer’s USB port

Waterproof Camera Housing

  • Depth Rating: Up to 180 feet / 60 meters
  • Construction: Polycarbonate and stainless steel
  • Hardware: Stainless steel

Size & Weight

  • Dimensions (H x W x D): 1.6” x 2.4” x 1.2” (42mm x 60mm x 30mm)
  • Weight: ??oz (??g) incl. battery, ??oz (???g) incl. housing

Optional Accessories

  • Additional Rechargable 1100 mAh Lithium-Ion Battery
  • Full Line of Mounting Accessories

Optional Expansion BakPacs

  • LCD BakPac for on-camera preview and playback
  • Endurance Battery BakPac for double battery life
  • Wi-Fi BacPac
  • Wi-Fi Remote
  • More Bakpacs and expansion devices coming soon
About the author: Brian Mullin

Brian has been part of the Mtbr team since 2007, where he has become an integral member of the review and test staff, specializing in technical articles. He likes to push the limits in all the sports he obsesses in, whether it's mountain biking, whitewater kayaking, extreme skiing, or sport climbing. He takes those same strengths and a good dose of insanity to his reviewing and writing on mountain biking products, creating technical, in-depth and hyperbolic articles. Whenever he's not on the bike, he might be found watching MotoGP racing, otherwise look for him out on extremely technical singletrack.


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