Go Pro HERO5 12 MP

Last updated date: March 4, 2019

DWYM Score
8.0

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We looked at the top 1 Gopro Camera and dug through the reviews from 8 of the most popular review sites including BestReviews, Trusted Reviews, Tech Radar, CNET, Wired, DP Review, Tom's Guide and more. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Gopro Camera you should buy.

Overall Take

Introduced in 2016, the GoPro Hero5 still remains an excellent value camera. Newer models have upgraded video capabilities, but it boasts most of the key features of the modern action cameras at a fraction of the cost. It has user-friendly features like a convenient touch display, voice activation and ready-to-go waterproof design. It captures video in 4K and 12-megapixel images with multiple shooting modes. In our analysis of 56 expert reviews, the GoPro Go Pro HERO5 12 MP placed 3rd when we looked at the top 8 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note March 17, 2019:
Checkout The Best Gopro Camera for a detailed review of all the top gopro camera.

Expert Summarized Score
8.1
8 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
7.8
1,606 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
Three shooting modes with 4K video and 12MP photos. Waterproof up to 33 ft. without buying a separate case.
- BestReviews
Not needing to worry about dropping the Hero 5 Black into an accompanying waterproof case is a time-saver you don’t really appreciate until you’re constantly moving around or taking impromptu dips in the middle of a hot and sweaty Vietnam day.
- Trusted Reviews
September 20, 2018 | Full review
Battery-smooth 4K video comes as standard with the Hero5 Black, while a touchscreen interface and voice activation makes it the most user-friendly GoPro to date.
- Tech Radar
October 16, 2018 | Full review
The GoPro Hero5 Black is a true flagship camera with all the shooting options from its predecessor plus raw and wide dynamic range photo capture and linear field of view video, a touchscreen, a waterproof body, GPS, electronic image stabilization, stereo audio, voice control, the option for auto cloud uploads, and the best photo and video quality in a GoPro.
- CNET
December 6, 2016 | Full review
Image quality has gotten much better, with far more detail, less noise, and a wider dynamic range.
- Wired
October 6, 2016 | Full review
The screen provides enough space for plain-English descriptions of each function along with graphical examples, rather than the terse abbreviations you get on a non-touchscreen model
- Forbes
October 31, 2016 | Full review
The Hero5 Black's redesigned body is waterproof to 33 feet without needing a protective case.
- Tom's Guide
March 29, 2018 | Full review
What experts didn't like
Two-hour battery life means you may need to buy a second battery to shoot all day.
- BestReviews
Sometimes taps at the screen aren’t registered, but more often my problem was with swiping into the screen from the edges.
- Trusted Reviews
September 20, 2018 | Full review
However, it doesn't feel as robust without its plastic casing, and that touchscreen can be awkward to use.
- Tech Radar
October 16, 2018 | Full review
Battery life, especially with GPS, Wi-Fi and EIS on, is predictably short and the camera is not compatible with older batterie
- CNET
December 6, 2016 | Full review

From The Manufacturer

Capture different with HERO5 Black. Share immersive 4K perspectives that make you feel like you’re there. HERO5 Black makes it easy with its one-button simplicity, convenient touch display and ready-to-go waterproof design. Smooth, stabilized video, crystal-clear audio, and pro-quality photo capture combine with voice control and GPS to make HERO5 Black the most impressive GoPro ever. And when it’s time to edit and share, HERO5 Black automatically uploads footage to your GoPro Plus cloud account to provide easy access on any device. Then, create amazing videos automatically with Quick, the GoPro mobile editing app. Your life as you’ve never seen it-HERO5 Black.

Overall Product Rankings

1. GoPro HERO7
Overall Score: 9.3
Expert Reviews: 5
2. GoPro HERO6
Overall Score: 8.8
Expert Reviews: 7
3. Go Pro HERO5 12 MP
Overall Score: 8.0
Expert Reviews: 8
4. GoPro HERO4
Overall Score: 7.9
Expert Reviews: 8
5. GoPro HERO5 Session
Overall Score: 7.7
Expert Reviews: 6
6. Go Pro HERO+
Overall Score: 7.7
Expert Reviews: 5
7. GoPro HERO 3+
Overall Score: 7.6
Expert Reviews: 5
8. GoPro Hero 2018
Overall Score: 6.2
Expert Reviews: 4

An Overview On Gopro Camera

GoPro has become synonymous with adventure. No matter where your definition of adventure takes you, from the highest mountains down to the depths of the ocean and anywhere in between, GoPro is the action camera of choice to capture it all.

All GoPro models are designed to capture high-resolution photo and video in the elements and on the go. In fact, these four models all boast 12-megapixel cameras. For reference, you can enlarge 12-megapixel images to a poster-size 24-inch by 36-inch print. In addition, GoPro cameras have an extremely wide field of view. All GoPro cameras have a fixed 170-degree lens, so they capture almost everything in front of the camera on video and photo. There’s only a small slice of 10 degrees that it doesn’t capture in that frontal field of view.

They are easy to mount on a person or vehicle with a handful of accessories and add-ons. Built tough, they are rugged enough to take just about anywhere in any conditions. All models are compact and lightweight, so they are easy to carry and pack on longer trips. You might even mistake them for a child’s toy, but they hold high-tech recording power inside that’s anything but child’s play.

GoPros also feature built-in WiFi. That means you don’t have to physically touch the camera to make changes. You can direct it all via Wi-fi from your phone or tablet within a reasonable range.

It’s not too surprising that the top GoPro camera is the latest and greatest model. The GoPro Hero7 Black doesn’t get the stamp of approval just because it is shiny and new. It comes with valuable upgrades and performance that testers believe are worth the extra cost. The most notable new feature is state-of-the-art stabilization technology called HyperSmooth. This market-leading addition means footage comes out clean and stable no matter how shaky or amateur the videographer behind the camera may be.

It also records in 4K60 video, 12MP and HDR Mode. All those numbers and specs sound complicated, and yes it is high end, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t right for newbies. For example, features like scene detection and voice command make it a user-friendly choice for all experience levels.

The sophisticated standout features aside, some may be disappointed that many of the core specs are essentially identical to the Hero6 Black, which is another solid choice. As a result, the Hero6 Black ended up with the second highest score. At a lower price point, it’s a solid option for those confident they have steady camera hands and don’t need the stabilization feature.

For an even thriftier option, one model earlier is the best choice. The GoPro Hero5 12 MP impresses with convenient touch display, voice activation and ready-to-go waterproof design. It captures video in 4K and 12-megapixel images with multiple shooting modes at a fraction of the cost of newer models.

All of these top picks come with waterproof features. This is an upgrade from older GoPro models that required a separate waterproof housing or dive case to protect against moisture. These come ready-to-go waterproof for planned or spontaneous plunges or inclement weather.

If your goal is capturing great-looking action footage, these GoPros will get the job done and then some.

DYWM Fun Fact

Nick Woodman created the company in October 2002, starting from very humble beginnings. At the time, he was sleeping in his 1971 Volkswagen Bus and selling 35mm film cameras. He tested his first makeshift models, strapping a camera to surfers, on a surf trip to Australia and Indonesia. Then, he decided to manufacture the camera, the protective housing and the strap all together.

It wasn’t an overnight success, but GoPro made Woodman a billionaire and forever changed the adventure world. During the early years of GoPro, each camera created its own advertising. Customers would share their footage online and inspire others to buy their own cameras and do the same. That spurred nearly out-of-control growth and tech innovations for each new model introduced. According to Bloomberg, Woodman was the highest-paid CEO in America in 2014. That was the height of GoPro.

When GoPro went public, it was one of the most successful tech IPOs of 2014 putting Woodman, some thought, on par with Steve Jobs. But knowing the strength of your company is important, as Woodman soon discovered.

In 2016, GoPro developed and launched a drone, the Karma, which had catastrophic problems and influenced a sharp decline in the company’s valuation. It would unexpectedly fall out of the sky, an obvious and serious hazard. As a result, GoPro quickly recalled the drone and worked on troubleshooting the issues and downsized the company back to its more streamlined roots.

“If you’re trying to be something you’re not, everybody’s going to know it, and nobody’s going to think highly of you for it,” Woodman told Inc. “And the truer that you can be to yourself, the better chance you have of fully realizing your potential.” The shift seems to be working, and the proof is in the last few years of reliable GoPro cameras.

The Gopro Camera Buying Guide

  • Battery life is a consistent issue with all GoPro models. It’s a smart move to bring along extra batteries and chargers to ensure your GoPro is powered.
  • All GoPro models after the Hero 3+ capture photos in 12-megapixels. This is fine enough quality to produce poster-size prints from the camera snaps.
  • There is a wide range of accessories and attachments to connect GoPros to people, vehicles and even pets.
  • HyperSmooth is an exciting feature built into GoPro Hero7 Black model that allows for stable footage, even for amateur videographers.
  • GoPros capture a super wide-angle view in video and photos. Only a small slice (about 10 percent) of what is in front of the camera doesn’t end up on film.
  • Prices range from model to model, depending on the features you’re looking for. For some, a more costly camera, like the GoPro Hero7 Black, may be worth it for its up-to-date HyperSmooth technology. Others with more camera experience may not require the stabilization feature. Make sure to look closely at the specs to ensure that you’re getting exactly what you want.
  • Each one of these models comes with waterproof features, protecting the camera from inclement weather or dips in the water.