The biggest complaint I have and the majority of people I know that use a GOPRO is the battery life. Are you sick and tired of having to pack extra batteries around. How about always worrying about if the battery is going to die in the middle of a film shoot or project?
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I was having to carry around two or three extra batteries and a 120v car charger on every outdoor adventure I went on. I’ve dealt with this issue for several years now since the first GOPRO Hero was released. I’ve recently done my research and figured out how to at least get a little bit longer out of each battery I have. I want to share some of those GOPRO tips and tricks with you today.
For a GOPRO Hero 3 GoPro says the black edition should last roughly 1.5 hrs with a 1080 setting at 30 frames per second. With the LCD Touch BacPac mounted on the rear of the camera your looking at roughly one hour. If you purchase the Battery BacPac2 they claim on average you’d get around 2.5 hours of shooting in.
Below are some of the tips I’ve learned and or figured out over the last couple years that get me the most out of my camera.
1. Make sure you have the latest firmware installed on the GOPRO camera. They had some serious issues when they first released the Hero 3. I’m sure you’ve seen or read about it online. Upgrading to the latest software version will enable your cameras battery to last a bit longer. At least I’ve seen some minor improvements since upgrading the firmware on my GOPRO.
2. When you are not filming and don’t plan on filming turn the camera off. I’ve started setting up my camera angles and thinking about what I’m going to shoot long before I turn my camera on. If you leave the camera in stand by mode, it will eat the battery life realatively quick. Try to think about what you are going to shoot and from what angles basically playing the footage out in your mind before turning the GOPRO on.
3. Use the lowest power consumption setting. That setting would be the (1080-30) setting. This will use less battery because the camera is not having to work as hard to take and store the footage you are capturing. On the GoPro website they say using this setting will get you about 1.5 hours of battery life. Let’s be real here, most of use want to use different setting and usually those are the setting that eat up and suck the battery life right out of these little cameras.
4. Don’t use the remote. Using the remote will eat the battery life of the camera especially if the remotes battery is low. If the Wi-Fi BacPac’s battery is critically low it will use or run off of the GOPRO’s battery. According to GoPro’s website that will reduce the cameras battery life by about 25%. On the GoPro Hero 3 it has built in Wi-Fi again according to GoPro’s website this will in turn reduce the batteries life by about 10%.
5. Set up one button mode. Setting up this mode will let you start filming as soon as you turn it on. No messing around trying to figure out if you have the camera set to pictures or video. Just press the button and start shooting instantly. If you are going to use this mode, make sure you hold down the power button for 5 seconds to turn the camera off. If you just press it once it will stay on and in turn drain the battery just as fast as if you were using it. The one down side to using the one button mode is corrupt files. For some reason when using this mode the file gets corrupted and the footage can never be downloaded and made into a super sick video.
6. 1080p 30 FPS turn pro tune off and set white balance to auto. Using these setting will yield the best battery life on the newer GoPro Hero 2 and hero 3’s. The camera doesn’t have to work as hard to take video and to also adjust for different things such as lighting ect..
7.Leave the LCD screen at home. I’ve noticed from my personal test’s that using the LCD back pack cuts my battery in half! I really like the LCD backpack but I rarely use it now because the batteries poop out so quick. I know this is an obvious one but I just wanted to put it on the list.
8. Check out the Wasabi battery power packs. The Wasabi power pack batteries are rated at 1400mAh compared to 1100mAh of the original GoPro Battery pack. The Wasabi battery charges quick and are half the price of a new GoPro Battery pack. I have used the Wasabi battery packs and for how I use my cameras I get on the low end around 20 extra minutes and on the high end closer to 30 extra minutes of filming. I’d highly recommend checking the Wasabi battery packs out if you haven’t already.
9.Turn off the blinked red lights. I don’t know exactly how much battery this saves but any small adjust will help. To turn the light off go to settings Go to Set> hit the “on” button 8 times> Change BLO to BLF. That will save a little battery juice and may even get you a couple extra minutes of video footage. When I first got my GoPro I liked this feature because I could tell when the camera was on and recording. After using the cameras for several years now I can just listen to the beeps to determine if my camera is on, in standby, or is off. Three beeps means the camera is on, one beep means you are recording, three beeps means the camera has stopped recording. If you are recording or taking video in a really loud place I guess this option isn’t for you.
10. Use the “Auto Power off Setting” Did you know that your camera had that setting? I didn’t for a long time. You can set the Gopro to shut off after 60, 120, or 300 seconds. When I’m filming I usually just manually turn the camera off as soon as I’m done. I still have this setting enabled in case I get distracted and forget though. To set the “Auto Power Off Mode” Go to your setting mode and push the on button thirteen times until you see “Off” from there you can select your desired time of, 60, 120, or 300.
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What are your thoughts do you have some of your own GoPro battery saving tips and tricks? If so use the comment form below I’d like to hear what keeps you recording longer..