A new Mini model has joined the standard Hero Black in GoPro’s most recent Hero Black upgrade, which is now available on the company’s website. There is, as to be expected, the Hero 11 Black, but it is accompanied by the smaller Hero 11 Black Mini. Although it’s obvious that the Mini is a scaled-down version of the flagship, the way the firm has implemented it is a little more intriguing than, say, the old “Session” cameras (its spiritual predecessor).
Let’s start by taking a look at what the Hero 11 Black has fresh. Only the side number has changed in terms of design; it even makes use of the same colour scheme as the 10. There is only one piece of new hardware, a higher sensor, inside. Additionally, the Enduro battery, which was once an accessory, is now included as standard equipment with the Hero 11 Black.
It’s interesting to note that GoPro appears to be emphasising the new automated highlight movies as its main feature. The plan is for your camera to automatically upload your fresh footage and produce a stylish film for you as soon as you plug it in when you return from your journey. It’s fascinating because, if you have a GoPro membership, this capability is accessible to owners of any camera dating all the way back to the Hero 5.
Of course, certain hardware-specific upgrades utilise the larger sensor and utilise it. Not the least of which are the transition from 23 to 27 megapixel images and the addition of 10-bit colour. A “Full Frame” shooting option is also available, which records the whole 8:7 sensor in 5.3K. The concept is that you can afterwards output several videos in full quality and at various aspect ratios.
The addition of 360-degree horizon lock all the way up to 5.3K/30 is the new sensor’s second advantage. If your activity involves any form of spinning, you may maintain the subject level and only spin the sky, for example. This is either a useful technique to prevent lop-sided film or can be utilised for artistic effect.
The highest resolution is still 5K/60 or 4K 120, but in addition to Full Frame, there is also “HyperView,” which is the whole sensor view condensed into a 16:9 format. In essence, it’s the same SuperView as before, only with more pixels. It enhances the sensation of motion and is excellent for first-person shots.
Time Lapse’s new Vehicle Lights, Star Trails, and Light Paint tools are perfect for night owls. The effects have names that are similar to well-known ones that we have all seen before, and you can now use a preset on your GoPro to perform them.
Regarding HyperSmooth, the firm’s software stabilisation, it is currently in its sixth iteration and includes Auto Boost for those really taxing times. The capability to choose between Pro and Easy mode is another new menu option. While Easy just leaves the best click-and-go settings for the majority of circumstances, “Pro” is the current industry standard menu system.
That new Mini model is arguably the most exciting development for gadget enthusiasts. It has the same identical camera internals, however neither of the video screens is present. There are only two buttons and a little LCD that shows which settings are currently selected. The Mini’s two sets of integrated mounting fingers make it slightly more adaptable than its larger sister, and this is the pièce de résistance. A non-removable Enduro battery also powers the Mini.
GoPro is continuing with its unconventional pricing model, so choosing to add a subscription actually results in a lower price. While the Mini is priced at $300/$400, the Hero 11 Black maintains the $399/$500 (without a sub) pricing of the camera it replaces. While the Mini will begin shipping on October 25, the flagship goes on sale today (and our review is here).