Back in 1999, GoPro founder-CEO Nick Woodman wanted to create a camera that would enable surfers to take high-quality stills, and in 2004, GoPro released its first camera, a 28mm wrist camera that shot 35mm film. As digital technology and video-sharing websites exploded, the small upstart company became synonymous with the social-media generation, and within a short period, sold over three million cameras. (A new GoPro video is uploaded to YouTube every minute.) But for indie filmmakers, GoPro's fixed lens and "good enough" technology weren't worthy of producing cinematic movies.
THE HERO3 BLACK EDITION
At media excursions for camera companies, journalists typically sit in air-conditioned boardrooms taking notes as corporate executives or engineers conduct PowerPoint presentations on imaging sensors and lens mounts. To launch their new camera, GoPro invited journalists from all over the world to take part in a Land, Air and Sea Adventure, which included racing motorcycles at 130 mph around the Sonoma Raceway, flying in fighter jets and swimming with sharks. It's one thing for journalists to get excited about the presentation of a new camera system, but it's unthinkable for them to fear for their own lives—on a camera junket. In short, it was a media event for the ages!
One thing HERO cameras have lacked in the past is proper monitoring; you had to point the camera in a general direction, press record and hope for the best. Now, the HERO3 is compatible with GoPro's new LCD Touch BacPac (sold separately for $79.99), which enables you to monitor your shots while still keeping the HERO3 compact and light. Because the HERO3 is so small, the LCD Touch BacPac is equally small, but for filmmakers, it's a no-brainer to have this accessory. More importantly, the LCD's touch screen enables you to navigate the HERO3's menu settings instead of using the Shutter and Power buttons and the miniscule front display. The LCD Touch BacPac also has an integrated speaker and a 3.5mm headphone jack for better audio capture.