GoPro has come a long ways since its introduction of the Hero action camera. Now, GoPro has made it all the way to the Hero 4 Black Edition and the relatively recent Hero 4 Session. This tiny camera has a lot of potential and will definitely aid in making some great films in the future. If you are not to familiar with the Hero 4 Session, you will be after reading this article.
The Hero 4 Session is by far the smallest GoPro produced to this day. Weighing in at only 2.6 oz. the Session will not cause problems for storage. Something that is unique to the Session and not many of the other GoPro models is the fact that the battery is internal and not removable. This is good for not losing any spare batteries and keeping everything together, but if you plan on making long films with only the Session you will be at a disadvantage. One of the great things about the Hero 4 Silver that I use is the replaceable battery aspect. I can be out on the water and just continuously replace batteries and SD cards to keep the footage rolling. However, I would not necessarily suggest the Session as your primary filming GoPro. What the Session is great for is getting the side shots and the secondary shots. What does this mean? Well this basically means that you should use it as the camera for your head mount, or on the end of your gun / fishing rod, mounted to the dog, or in really confined holes that could produce a neat angle. Since there is not a replaceable battery, you really only need a 32 GB Micro SD or a 16 GB Micro SD too.
So why not get a Hero 4 Black Edition instead of the Session? There are several reasons for this. The first would be the cost. You could get a couple Sessions for the cost of one Hero 4 Black Edition. The next reason would be to get the nifty shots I was talking about earlier. Although cameras such as the Hero 4 Silver Edition that I use are extremely small, the Session is even smaller. The Session will be great for getting shots on smaller items such as the fishing pole, the paddle, etc. The possibilities are endless when you put your mind to it. Quite possibly the absolute best aspect about the Hero 4 Session is that it does not require a case to be waterproof. Being around water all the time, it can be dangerous if I don’t have a case on my GoPro. The Session fixes this worry as it is always waterproof because it doesn’t have a case. This is a really nice feature and I hope one day GoPro will incorporate this into their other cameras. The only downside to this design is that audio quality will not be as sharp as a GoPro Hero 4 without a case, because the waterproofing takes away some of the audio quality. However, I do not plan to use the Session as a go to interview camera so it will work out great.
Now for some of the actual video specifications. The Session can shoot video at 1440p, 1080p, 960p, 720p, and WVGA for ultra slow motion. The Session can also shoot in GoPro’s Superview setting in 1080p and 720p. In 1080p you can shoot a maximum frame rate of 60 fps and a minimum frame rate of 25 fps. In 720p you can go to 100 fps, but of course video quality will be degraded slightly. You are limited slightly in your field of view, as you can only shoot in Ultra Wide mode except under 1080p and 720p, of which you can shoot a medium field of view. The Session can also take 8 MP and 5 MP still photos, which isn’t as high as the Hero 4 Silver and Black, but definitely plenty of resolution for some awesome photos. The Session can also utilize Protune, which maximizes your data rate for even higher quality footage. This is just a few of the features the Session has to offer.
As you can see, the Hero 4 Session is quite a good camera for $199.99. Expect to see a lot of footage and how-to articles in the future for the Session, as I am certain to be using it quite a bit. Until then, check out the Hero 4 Session and all of GoPro’s great products at www.gopro.com.