Best Waterproof Travel Camera – GoPro HERO5
Those who want to take awesome, high-octane videos, will love the GoPro HERO5, which is still one of the best small cameras for travel videography!
With the rugged and (nearly) waterproof GoPro HERO5, filmmakers can get those super close-up shots and be right in the middle of the action.
Because of its ultra wide angle lens, the GoPro HERO5 is also a solid choice for when you want to photograph those epic landscapes or very intimate interiors.
Though it’s a few years old and currently supplanted by the newer HERO6, the GoPro HERO5 is still very useful and one of the best GoPros for travel.
The GoPro HERO5 is for you if you…
- Need a rugged camera that can be beaten up.
- Like to film action-packed moments.
- Want a user-friendly experience
The GoPro HERO5 isn’t for you if you…
- Want to capture more than just close-ups or the occasional landscape.
- Want a camera that is responsive and glitch-free.
- Need long lasting batteries.
Why the GoPro HERO5 is One of the Best
GoPro was arguably the first action camera to really be popularized. People saw the amazing travel videos that GoPros produced and wanted one for themselves. Utilizing the GoPro’s tiny size and a wide selection of clever mounts, videographers have achieved some truly crazy perspectives. To this day, some of the most thrilling footage ever recorded is thanks to the GoPro.
The GoPro HERO5 was – and still is – one of the best action cameras available. Combining GoPro’s usual rugged ergonomics with advanced features like touchscreen, voice activation, and 4k recording really took the HERO5 to the next level.
Image quality has never been better in a GoPro. The GoPro HERO5’s sensor has improved dynamic range and is better equipped for harsh lighting. For the first time ever in a GoPro, RAW output is also possible – images can finally be edited effectively and competitively. The inclusion of image stabilization also ensures crisp photos and smooth recordings. 4k recording is also possible, which is a must for any professional filmmaker these days.
The body of GoPro HERO5 is also waterproof for up to 30 ft. Many users have reported that the HERO5’s own sealing is unreliable though. Cautious owners should still invest in an external waterproof case.
Where the GoPro HERO5 Falls Short
Many of the problems that have consistently plagued GoPros still haunt the HERO5. Battery life is atrocious. The internal software can be very glitchy and the HERO5’s responsiveness suffers as a result.
Finally, a GoPro will never offer the photographic flexibility that a mirrorless or DSLR does. You won’t be able to change the focal range (much) and altering the exposure settings – via the camera menus – is a total hassle. Most GoPro owners are aware of these limitations though and accept the device for what it is.
GoPro HERO5 Specs
- 1.75 x 2.4 x 1.25” / 4.12 ozs
- 12 MP 1/2.3” Sensor
- Built-in 9.5mm lens (14mm FF equivalent) – images can be cropped in-camera for simulated FOVs
- Waterproof up to 30 ft without a case
- Up to 4k video recording
GoPro HERO5 Upgrade
Want the next generation? The GoPro HERO6 has a better processor and higher resolution when filing 4k.
GoPro HERO5 Pro Tips
- You can mount a GoPro on just about anything: a bike, a helmet, a surfboard, and more. These mounts really bring out the best in GoPros. With them, you can film from lots of eye-catching angles.
- Battery life really is the GoPro’s achilles heel. Make sure you turn off tertiary hardware like GPS, WiFi, and Voice to maximize power savings.
- You can actually buy filters for the GoPro! Pick up an ND or polarizing filter to capture images that resemble those taken by the pros.
Is the GoPro HERO5 for You?
Do you want to record thrilling videos? Do you want a camera that can be mounted just about anywhere and in any environment? Then go grab a GoPro HERO5 and start recording! This camera is still one of the best cameras for travel.
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Need More Inspiration?
- How To Be a Freelance Photographer and Travel The World
- Pro guide to choosing the best travel camera
- Definitive Guide to the 11 Best Camera Bags
- Must have camera accessories
Noodle addict. City dweller. Aaron Radcliffe is the marketing ninja for The Broke Backpacker, founder of Nomads Nation and Co-Founder of Ditch Your Desk.