GoPro has become the action cam category leader over the past decade, and while its breakthrough model was the HERO3, the HERO2 was an innovative camera for its time and continues to capture the interest of action sports enthusiasts everywhere.
The HERO HD2 was an early model from GoPro that came in three packages- Outdoor, Surf and Motorsport. Our personal favorite was the Outdoor Edition, but the difference between the three versions of the HERO HD2 was only the accessories included in the package, not the camera features themselves.
|Frame Rate||30fps @ 1080p, 30fps @ 960p, 60fps @ 720p, 60fps @ WVGA|
|Recording Media||SD memory card|
|Total Pixels||11 megapixels|
|Still Image Quality||11 megapixels|
|What's In The Box?||1 Waterproof Housing (197′ / 60m)
1 HD Skeleton Backdoor
1 Rechargeable Li-ion Battery
1 USB Cable
1 Vented Helmet Strap
1 Head Strap
2 Curved Surface Adhesive Mounts
2 Flat Surface Adhesive Mounts
1 Three-Way Pivot Arm
Assorted Mounting Hardware
The Outdoor Edition comes complete with an elastic head mount, four adhesive mount clips, a waterproof cover, a non-waterproof door for better audio delivery, a battery and three pivot arms. The camera is almost identical to the previous models of the series, but features subtle changes in its HDMI port, recording LEDs and the microphone input. As the device is similarly sized as the previous ones, all previously released accessories and covers work with it. The real difference between the HD HERO2 and previous models likes in the picture this camera delivers.
According to GoPro, the HERO2 is twice as powerful as its predecessor. That equals to two times sharper image, 11MP sensor from the 5MP one of the previous model, 10 photos per second from only 3 with the previous model, maximum fps is increased to 120 from 60, time lapse reduced to 0.5 seconds from 1 and the field of view now covers 1080p, instead of the 960p of the previous model. Luckily, you will not have to pay twice the price of the previous model.
The pivot arms will allow you to position the device in different positions. The adhesive clips will cling on to almost anything they are attached to. Clipping the camera could be a tricky job, especially with a bare hand. For this reason, the caps come with an exposed screw for assisting you in joining and unjoining the mounts and pivot arms. The tie-up helmet mount allows the users to use the camcorder while skydiving or recording videos from a jet plane.
Once you have attached the device with the proper mount in your intended place, the rest of the process is pretty straightforward. Like the HD HERO, the button on the front controls power and goes through various menu options. The top button confirms the actions and starts shooting videos. There is a small LCD display for assisting you with menus; the interface is an improved one. The icons have become clearer and texts have replaced the codes. Basic filming is as easy as selecting the proper shooting mode and going on. Once the shooting starts, a sound beeps and the LEDs on the top and side continue flashing in order to remind you that the device is shooting a video.
Like the previous models, you can’t see what you are shooting until you upload the video to your computer. However, you can play the videos in tablets that come with camera kits. The shooting resolutions are almost like the previous model, with some new addition including three new FOV settings for 720p along with 48fps facility for 960p. The 1,100 mAh battery is claimed to be capable enough for recording more than 2.5 hours of video.
The video quality of HD HERO2 is much clearer than its predecessors. Lots of people think of image quality in terms of the number of megapixels and resolutions, while they overlook other aspects which affect the picture quality too. Complex textures like grass, asphalt clearly shows off the sharper images produced by HD HERO2. The additional resolutions and the extra FOV settings works better with the enhanced sharpness. Audio quality suffers from the waterproof case, while the situation is slightly improved by using the sound friendly door. The HERO2 produces more lively colors, thanks to its improved white balance feature.
Low-light performance is also improved a lot in the device. It is provided with an 11MP sensor along with space-saving 5MP and 8MP modes. The photos also take the advantage of the wide angle FOV of the camera. Outdoor photos look crisp, clear and bright. The available photo modes are single shot, self-timer mode and time-lapse mode at various time intervals. It is also possible to convert the photos into a time-lapse video. GoPro has introduced a new feature called Photo Burst mode with the HERO2. Using this mode, the device can shoot 11 full-sized photos in a second only. The burst mode takes some time to save the photos in the SD card. In total, the HERO2 packs significant improvement than the previous models.
The seemingly difficult interface of the HD HERO seemed annoying to a lot of people. Though it has not become a fully functional interface with the HERO2, it can be said that the company has tried to make the most out of the two buttons. A good news for the rough and tough users of the device is the easy replacement of its different body parts.
Therefore, if you break the lens or the housing or anything else, you can order a replacement from the company. GoPro even sells a floatable housing for the device which lets the device float in case it fells on water. It can be said that the company has succeeded in improving and adding some innovations to an already popular product.
There is no doubt that the newcomers to the HERO family will definitely love the package. Upgraders, on the other hand, should analyze their needs and spend some time with the device before taking the final decision. Whatever your requirements are, there are good chances that the HERO2 will be a bit more capable than those.