GoPro HD Motorsports
Top Line: GoPro is probably the best-known name in hero cams. The motorsports package of mounts is ideal for boaters, and the only one we’d add is the optional handlebar mount for grab rails or Bimini top hoops. We had no difficulty adjusting the settings on the approximately 1/2-inch LCD screen, but the optional backpack viewfinder eased that process and is essential in aiming the cam. GoPro plans a Wi-Fi app for smartphones shortly, but let’s hope it works more consistently than the Contour+. A completely waterproof case doesn’t let the camera record sound well, so GoPro includes an open back for the case that protects from direct wind and spray, allowing better sound. Like the CamOne, adjustments were easily made with the camera in or out of the underwater case.
Wins: High clarity, lower lens aberration and a close focus made this a strong contender in our tests.
Losses: The auto white balance system failed to render appropriate flesh tones and turned our blue grid panel gray, but worked fine in any normal shooting conditions. Ease-of-operation score was marked down due to lack of a standard viewfinder found in competitors’ cameras.
Photo Finish: GoPro gave solid video — the best of the test field. It lacked standard GPS and viewfinder but came with superior video power.
In the Box
A flat mount, a suction cup mount, articulating elbows and an open back for improved mic pickup complete the package.
An optional viewfinder backpack eliminates the headache of not knowing what the camera sees.
A floating backpack eases recovery.
The rail mount is ideal for wakeboard towers or Bimini tubes.