Review: GoPro Hero 3


*This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.

As the world continues to embrace the concepts of vlogging and action shot capturing, the demand for small portable cameras continues to be at an all time high. The way in which action shots and even vacations are filmed has changed since the days of using Polaroid cameras. The brand at the helm of this change is GoPro. A name synonymous with action, GoPro has released several cameras, with one of the most popular being the Go Pro Hero 3.

Still the name at the pinnacle of sports and action, GoPro launched in 2002 and quickly became a smash hit. Revolutionizing the manner in which action sequences could be captured and experienced, this company continues to be at the forefront of little cameras that pack a big punch. The Go Pro Hero 3 is one such camera that lives up to that claim.

In this guide, you will learn what the Go Pro Hero 3 is, product specs of the camera, pricing of the Go Pro Hero 3 and then a comprehensive conclusion where the Go Pro is compared to three other cameras of similar value.  

What Is A Go Pro Hero 3?

Launched in 2012, the Go Pro Hero 3 was introduced as a line up that could be split into three categories: the Black, the Silver and the White. As with all other Go Pro cameras, the aim of the Go Pro Hero 3 was to allow people who consider themselves daredevils the ability to film incredible cinematic sequences from a first hand perspective. Through this first person perspective, viewers could experience the thrills and scenes of the person capturing the footage more fully.

A successor to the Hero2, the Go Pro Hero 3 camera has some improvements worth noting. Upon first glance, one will notice that it has a redesigned casing which features a flat lens. With this flat lens, fogging on the inside of the case (which is caused by moisture) has become severely reduced. When tested against the Hero2, the Go Pro Hero 3 did not mist up after an hour of use while the other camera fogged after 15 minutes.

Another great benefit of the new airtight casing is that the Go Pro Hero 3 can be taken down underwater without the need to purchase separate casing. The original casing is good enough to produce quality images during dives, which comes in handy for people who want to get close shots of marine life.

One last improvement to the design of this Go Pro Hero 3 is the smaller and lighter battery. While some may equate a smaller battery to less available shooting time, there is no difference from previous models in the amount of time that a person can shoot. Overall all, the Hero3 is around 25 grams lighter. Already a lightweight device, making this camera even lighter allows for a greater ability to maneuver the camera.

Product Specs  

Although already touched on in the previous section, the Go Pro Hero 3 cameras are separated into the three categories: the white, black and silver.
The black is the top one out of three being able to film with twelve megapixel sensor capabilities. The also comes with the impressive ability of having enough processing power to snap bursts of 11 MP images at around 30 frames per second. In comparison, the white is able to film with five megapixels and the silver is able to film with eleven.

The Go Pro Hero 3 black edition is the only model that can record in 4k or 2.7k frame per seconds. The other two versions do not have that ability. All the camera models can film in 1080, 960 and 720 frames per second.

The Hero3 models come with Wi-Fi built in which makes it a lot easier for people to connect to to the camera from the app. All the models also come with an approximate battery life of an hour and a half.

Pricing  

Depending on the where you purchase the cameras and which model (white, black or silver) that you purchase, the price range of this product is around $130 to $300. This camera can be purchased in places like Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy and eBay.

Although eBay may have the cheapest prices, (as a rule of thumb) always make sure to check seller reviews in order to make sure that the camera you purchase is coming from a legitimate source. Especially when purchasing something electronic, making sure that you do your due diligence is incredibly important. While eBay does their best to vet all of their sellers, it is still a good practice to perform research on the person you are potentially buying from.

How It Compares

In order to come up with a better case for the Go Pro Hero 3, it is important to compare it with other cameras. Luckily, the GoPro line has so many cameras, that while a comparison with other brands may be helpful, keeping it in the family is also a great choice. We picked a few similar products available on the market to see how they compare.  
   

GoPro HERO5 Black

GoPro HERO6 Black

GoPro HERO

GoPro HERO3

Price             $$$

The price point of this camera, which is around $130 to $250 is appropriate. With its high quality images and water resistant abilities, a person can get great footage with this camera.

Ease of Use         ****

Like any GoPro camera, the Go Pro Hero 3 comes ready to be used. With not much direction (if any) needed to make the camera work, it more about getting used to the feel of the camera. For those who do struggle, the camera comes with a manual and there are several videos online to help make the process easier.

Design Quality         ****

The design quality of this camera is quite impressive. With a smaller and lighter frame, the camera is incredibly easy to maneuver either freehand or on a mount. With the black edition, there are several shooting modes that range from cinematic to slow motion.

Warranty       ***

Besides a 30 day money-back guarantee, this camera also comes with 1-year warranty that stays effective one year from the date of purchase. Considering what GoPros are mostly used for, a longer warranty would have been appreciated.  

Pros

  • Reduced fogging because of airtight casing         
  • Built in Wi-Fi
  • Lightweight design

Cons

  • Does not have voice commands 
  • Battery life could be longer
  • 1-year warranty

https://www.amazon.com/GoPro-CHDHX-301-HERO3-Black-Edition/dp/B009TCD8V8?psc=1&SubscriptionId=AKIAIPHVZTVH6LZ5BFZA&tag=hawk-future-20&linkCode=xm2&camp=2025&creative=165953&creativeASIN=B009TCD8V8&ascsubtag=trd-7509731002536980852-20

GoPro HERO5 Black

One of the more acclaimed GoPro cameras, the Hero 5 is one that became an instant hit when it was released to the public. Featuring a stunning 4K video and 12MP photo abilities for singles, this camera also has a burst mode of 30 frames per second. This camera also has a time lapse feature that can be used at .5, 1,2,5,10,30 or 60 seconds. It also has the ability to go under water up to 33 ft without the use of housing.

Price   $$$

Considering that it is one of the new models and it has improvements not found in the Hero3, the pricing of the camera is in accordance with what a person can expect to get.

Ease of Use          ****

Like any GoPro camera, the GoPro Hero 5 comes ready to be used. With not much direction (if any) needed to make the camera work, it more about getting used to the feel of the camera. With the preview screen in the background a person can look over their footage and make changes.

Design Quality     ****

The design quality of this camera has not changed that much as it is still lightweight and easy to maneuver. The airtight casing has become a little better which has allowed the camera that ability to dive deeper without much protection.

Warranty   ****

This camera comes with a guaranteed 2-year warranty. This is an improvement from previous models which only came with a year.  

Pros

  • Waterproof up to 33 feet
  • Timelapse features
  • 2-year warranty

Cons

  • Voice commands sometimes lag

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01M14ATO0/ref=as_at?imprToken=SEe7I6EkzkKOSe8ZYI-0xw&slotNum=14&ie=UTF8&tag=unsponsored-20&creative=9325&linkCode=w61&creativeASIN=B01M14ATO0&linkId=d8c17914ddef9534b219c8c3e9ec8a67

GoPro HERO6 Black

One of the latest in the world of GoPros, the Hero6 takes all the best features of previous incarnations and improves upon them. Featuring an improved video stabilization feature, touch zoom capabilities and a 5GHz Wi-Fi, a user can copy photos and videos around 3 times as fast as on the GoPro Hero5.

The Hero6 is also the most phone friendly of GoPros as users can easily send footage from their camera to their phone. Most impressive is its 4k, 60 frames per second filming ability. In comparison to the GoPro Hero5, which films up to 4k, 30 frames per second, the Hero6 doubles that value. That means that a user can create intricate cinematic sequences without sacrificing the integrity of their shot.

Price   $$

The price of the GoPro Hero6 is one that could be very intimidating to those who do not want to make that big of investment. Though it has great features, a price of around $300 is steep.

Ease of Use        *****

With each release of a new GoPro camera, they become easier and more user friendly. With the ability to send images directly to your phone, everything becomes that much easier for a filmmaker.

Design Quality          ****

While nothing new has been added to the camera, this camera keeps everything that made the Hero5 great. The improvements in the camera are in features.

Warranty   ***

This camera comes with a guaranteed 20year warranty. This is an improvement from previous models which only came with a year.      
     

Pros

  • Improved video stabilization
  • Improved app capabilities 
  • 5GHz Wi-Fi
  • 4k, 60 frame per second filming

Cons

  • The price of the camera is quite steep

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B074X5WPC5/ref=as_at?imprToken=SEe7I6EkzkKOSe8ZYI-0xw&slotNum=13&ie=UTF8&tag=unsponsored-20&creative=9325&linkCode=w61&creativeASIN=B074X5WPC5&linkId=43d6146ae4b841818ccdb91b1885c072

GoPro HERO

A camera designed for the beginner filmmaker on a budget, the GoPro Hero is a camera that gets the job done. While lacking the quality of (for example) the GoPro Hero6, this camera can record 1080p30 and 720p60. It can also dive underwater up to about 130 feet and has burst photo options of 5 frames per
second.

Price $$$$

Because this is a lower quality GoPro camera, the price is very affordable at around only $150. This camera is a greater beginner investment to acquaint someone with the world of GoPro.

Ease of Use          ****

If you can press play, you can use this camera. While it lacks the features of newer models, it is still a viable choice for someone that wants to get action shots.

Design Quality      **

In comparison to the higher quality versions, the design quality of this camera is lacking. A lot clunkier in design, this camera was the first of the GoPro series. The built-in microphone has a tendency to distort sounds which could make footage unusable.

Warranty         ***

This camera comes with a guaranteed 2-year warranty. This is an improvement from previous models which only came with a year.      

Pros

  • Affordable price 
  • Waterproof up to 131 feet

Cons

  • Sound quality is lacking
  • Burst photos only up to 5 frames per second

https://www.amazon.com/GoPro-CHDHA-301-HERO/dp/B00NIYNUXO/ref=as_at?creativeASIN=B00NIYNUXO&imprToken=LlBsjxjOU2WAcLKwO53Rtg&slotNum=0&ie=UTF8&linkCode=w61&tag=insider04-20&linkId=9b27825992658995dd605284d8f7b897

Conclusion

As one can see, the Go Pro Hero 3 is a camera that tries to bridge together the worlds of performance and practicality. The Go Pro Hero 3 is a camera that is lightweight, easy mountable, films great video and images and is offered at a reasonable price for any budget. With an easy-to-use interface and the ability to choose between three different colors, (black, white and silver) a user can customize their experience.  

While the Go Pro Hero 3 does not have some of the innovative features of the Hero5 or Hero6, it is still a great camera. The biggest strike against the Hero3 is its lack of image stabilization. When looking to create action sequences, the ability to stabilize images is incredibly important. Without it, video could become unusable which would be a shame.

Rating: ****

Recent Posts