Are you an outdoor fitness enthusiast or athlete who is looking for a new action camera? Whether you are a mountain biker, skier, kayaker, climber, or hiker, choosing a camera with the right features and phenomenal photo and video quality is crucial when you want to capture your adventures. If you’ve considered trying out the GoPro Hero 8, but aren't sure if it's right for you, you're in the right place.
Known for its top-of-the-line video stabilization and tough, waterproof design, the GoPro Hero 8 is popular for a variety of reasons. It's able to be used with over 30 different mounts and accessories and captures incredible detail for videos and photos. You can also customize your setup with mods, helping creators personalize their filming experience.
But when it comes to workout accessories such as sports watches, heart rate monitors, and action cameras, evaluating the features and overall quality can be challenging. And with the Hero 8’s advanced features, it can be a little overwhelming to figure out if it’s the right match for you. That’s why we took the plunge and reviewed the Hero 8 to give you a breakdown of its features and help you decide if this is the action camera for you.
Why Trust Us?
ACTIVE.com's editorial team relies on the knowledge and experience of fitness and wellness experts including competitive athletes, coaches, physical therapists, nutritionists, and certified trainers. This helps us ensure the products we feature are of the highest standard. Collectively, the team has spent countless hours researching equipment, gear, and recovery tools in order to create the most accurate, authentic content for our readers. Customer satisfaction is also a key part of our review process, which is why we only feature products that are highly rated. More importantly, each member of our team is a fitness enthusiast. Fitness may be our job, but it is also our passion. Therefore, we strive to bring you products that we trust and would personally use.
A Quick Look at GoPro Hero 8
GoPro is one of the leading manufacturers of high-quality action cameras available today and was founded in 2002 by Nick Woodman. Nick was a photo and video enthusiast and avid surfer who wanted to find a better solution to film him and his friends surfing. Thus, GoPro was born. Known for its innovation, GoPro continued to develop industry-leading products, which caused the brand to grow tremendously. Now, GoPro has become the go-to supplier for outdoor fitness enthusiasts and adventurers looking for camera equipment and accessories.
In 2019, GoPro released the GoPro Hero 8, an upgrade to the Hero 7, with improved features at a great price. The GoPro Hero 8 is one of the most impressive action cameras available on the market. Sporting Night Lapse, Time Warp, and incredible stabilization features, this model strikes the balance between a great price, high-quality construction, and a variety of features. It’s also one of the few action cameras that’s waterproof without a protective housing, and you can even use it as a webcam.
GoPro Hero 8
- Video resolution: 4K
- Photo resolution: 12 megapixels (4000x3000)
- Zoom: Touch Zoom
- Connectivity: WiFi and Bluetooth
- Image stabilization: HyperSmooth 2.0; 3 levels of stabilization
- Special features: Time Warp, Night Lapse, Live Burst, Improved HDR
The GoPro Hero 8 is a sleek and stylish action camera that’s able to fit into your pocket for easy storage and transport. It features folding fingers that make it easier to swap mounts and has a new screen that’s two-times more impact resistant. Additionally, it now has a side door to make battery changes a breeze. Equipped with presets and on-screen shortcuts, it’s able to store your favorite settings so that you can take photos and videos quickly and easily. The touch screen is intuitive and simple to use, and the touch zoom feature allows you to seamlessly zoom in and out while taking photos or videos.
The camera also features 100Mbps bit rate and their proprietary GP1-Chip for faster uploads and improved image quality. A 1220mAh rechargeable battery gives you enough juice to power the camera for up to two hours of use and the Hero 8 has a USB-C port so that you can charge your GoPro on the go. When it comes to compatibility, Go Pro made sure to create a camera that would be compatible with existing GoPro accessories, including their Smart Remote and Protective Housing.
The GoPro Hero 8 sports a number of impressive video features including 4K video resolution and HyperSmooth 2.0 stabilization which ensures smooth footage—even when you're shooting action scenes or doing stunts. There are three levels of stabilization to choose from: On, High, and Boost, so you can find the level that best suits your needs. The Night Lapse feature lets you capture nighttime footage in spectacular detail, or you can use Time Warp to speed up your video for a fun effect.
Also great for live streaming, this camera has full 1080p HD capabilities. With the HyperSmooth stabilization, you’re also able to broadcast smooth footage right to Facebook, YouTube, or Twitch. The GoPro App allows you to use Horizon Leveling to level your videos, no matter how you're holding the camera. This is a great feature for anyone who wants to create professional-looking videos without having to worry about keeping the camera perfectly still (helpful for anyone performing action stunts).
Some of our favorite qualities about the GoPro Hero 8 are the 12-megapixel resolution, SuperPhoto, and improved HDR that delivers stunning detail and an increased range of colors and brightness for high-quality photos. The Hero 8 also features LiveBurst, which takes a flurry of photos 1.5 seconds before and after your shot, so you'll never miss a moment. With a 3- and 10-second timer, you can capture group shots. And thanks to the Protune controls, you can now experiment with the ISO limit, color, exposure, and sharpness of your photos for those who want to really fine-tune their results.
The Hero 8 also features Face, Smile, Blink + Scene Detection so you can quickly find your target and produce great results every time. Finally, the GoPro Hero 8 comes with four digital lenses: Narrow, Linear, Wide + SuperView to help you find the right frame for the ultimate shot.
The Hero 8 is a great choice for vloggers and creators who want to personalize their setup with three customization options that come included with your purchase, which helps you create the ideal setup for your needs. The Media Mod allows you to add a directional mic, HDMI port, and more, while the Display Mod gives you an extra-large flip-up screen for framing and vlogging. Finally, the Light Mod is lightweight, tough, and waterproof, making it an excellent accessory for your Hero 8. Able to pair with over 30 mounts and accessories, the GoPro Hero 8 is one of the most versatile cameras on the market.
The GoPro Hero 8 has high-fidelity audio from three audio mics and advanced wind-noise reduction. This combination gives you superior audio capabilities to help you capture your experiences with immaculate sound quality. We also like how the Hero 8 features Stereo Audio for a dynamic audio experience much like you'd experience with a high-quality headphone set or wireless earbuds. Feel free to capture RAW audio (.wav format) so you have the flexibility to edit your footage in your favorite editing program. And enjoy the 3.5mm Audio Mic Input with the Media Mod customization that comes included with the camera, or upgrade to the Pro 3.5mm Mic Adapter which is sold separately.
We like how GoPro went the extra mile with the Hero 8 to ensure that you had access to an array of helpful features. Waterproof up to 33 feet, the Hero 8 is built tough and able to withstand the unpredictable conditions of outdoor terrain. You also get access to the Quik app, which allows you to gather all your favorite shots in one spot for easy sharing. With voice control and Wake on Voice-enabled, you're able to control your GoPro without having to fumble with buttons.
Additionally, WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity make it easy to connect to the GoPro app for quick offloading of photos and videos and perform auto uploads to the cloud with a GoPro PLUS subscription. Plus, with a GoPro PLUS subscription, you can get even more features like unlimited storage, automatic highlight videos, camera replacements, and professional editing tools. Finally, the Hero 8 comes with GPS, which allows you to track your location and speed while recording.
- HyperSmooth 2.0 stabilization with three stabilization options for smoother videos
- 12MPS camera with SuperPhoto and HDR for detailed and high-quality images
- Hi-Fi Audio with wind-noise reduction
- TimeWarp and Night Lapse to create unique videos no matter the time of day
- Access to professional editing software and cloud storage through GoPro Subscription
- Waterproof and durable design
- More affordable than comparable models
- Only waterproof up to 33'
- Battery life is limited
- Front facing display is only available as an add-on accessory
Final Thoughts on GoPro Hero 8
For outdoor fitness enthusiasts and aficionados, we recommend the GoPro Hero 8 for your action camera needs. We like how it features a sturdy design that can withstand tough conditions, and it’s equipped with advanced features that allow you to capture stunning footage while you're on the go. Whether you’re hitting the slopes or hiking a trail, the GoPro Hero 8 is equipped to capture your adventures in stunning detail. And with its built-in stabilization, your footage will be smooth and steady.
However, for beginners or anyone who's never used an action camera before, this amount of features might intimidate you. In that case, you're probably better off with a more basic camera to start with. Once you grow more comfortable, you can upgrade to the GoPro.
Still though, compared to similar models on the market, the GoPro Hero 8 is more affordable (it’s priced under $400, while other models can top $1,000 or more). If you're looking for an action camera that can keep up with your active lifestyle (and if you are either open to learning how to use the features or are already an experienced camera user), the GoPro Hero 8 is a great choice.
FAQs about GoPro Hero 8
Is there a mount included with the GoPro Hero 8?
Yes! The GoPro Hero 8 features a built-in mount that flips down from the base of the camera, eliminating the need for an external mount.
Can I use old GoPro mounts with the GoPro Hero 8?
The swivel mount includes a three-pronged standard GoPro-style attachment system, so any accessories that function with this sort of connection will operate on the GoPro Hero 8.
What is the waterproof depth for GoPro Hero 8?
The GoPro Hero 8 is waterproof up to 33 feet (or ten meters). If you'd like to use the Hero 8 for depths beyond 33 feet, you’ll need to add a waterproof casing.
Does GoPro Hero 8 come with a smart remote?
While it doesn't come with a smart remote, it is compatible with GoPro's smart remote—you just have to purchase the device separately. The Hero 8 camera also comes with some of the functionality you might find in a remote like voice control features with 16 commands (available in 10 different languages), including Start Recording, Stop Recording, Take a Photo, and more.