What lens does GoPro use? GoPro was born as an action camera, with the typical very wide view, and we all know this: but over the years, it has evolved a lot to obtain four digital lenses for every need!
What lens does GoPro use?
The GoPro cameras have a fixed lens on the lens and it is not possible to replace it or change it as per SLR. However, it offers the possibility of digitally zooming to simulate a wider or more zoomed lens than the generic, which we can define as a “wide” standard.
PROTIPS: The zoom, or in technical term “crop” of the image in a digital way, should theoretically lead to a lower quality of the final result. But thanks to GoPro’s excellent photosensor and the power of the software, it is now really difficult to have poor quality even if you have a zoomed image/video.
It is exclusive to GoPro and is the widest range available on action cam cameras. The effect is that of a truly complete view, almost 180 °. The edges are not super sharp, and the fisheye effect is quite noticeable, which is the typical action camera effect. Available only for the video format.
It is perfect for framing a very wide panorama in a single solution, emphasizing its size, or record a video where you may not have complete framing management. So, to not risk cutting a piece of the subject or framing perhaps too low, stay “wide” and use the Superwide. Therefore recommended for sports action and boundless landscapes.
At a photographic level, we can define it as a 14 mm, therefore a very strong wide-angle, without the possibility of digital zoom.
PROTIPS: I strongly advise you NOT to use it to photograph people, buildings, windows or specific details. The fisheye effect is quite marked and distorts the shapes: especially on the edges. It makes things curved and unreal.
In Italian “wide,” the Wide view is certainly the most common format among all GoPro lenses and the most used in the world of action cameras. It offers an excellent compromise between wide framing and reduced distortion at the edges, with a smaller and less invasive fisheye effect. It usually allows you to frame everything needed in the scene, even if you are very close.
This field is mainly used for sports activities or, in general, for general use with GoPro. Ideal for vlogging, then talking directly into the camera, framing yourself with the camera in hand or mounted on GoPro accessories while explaining a situation or action you will perform.
This format is available for both photos and videos and is set by default when we purchase our GoPro.
We can define it as 16 mm at a photographic level, therefore a classic wide-angle, which, thanks to the digital zoom, can go up to 34 mm.
I advise you not to go beyond 24 mm if you use the Widefield.
PROTIPS: If you still don’t know what to shoot and your video is a mix of speech, action, and a bit of travel/adventure, use this field of view. Be careful not to get too close for close-ups of people or windows so as not to distort the edges of the image.
In “linear” Italian, it is a new GoPro lens present only from HERO5 Black onwards. It represents a distortion-free field of view, which removes the typical action camera fisheye effect and simulates a traditional photographic lens.
This type of shot is perfect for using shots taken with GoPro together with other devices, such as reflex cameras or drones. It will be much easier not to have such a noticeable and distorted focal length change as if you were using a Widefield.
At a photographic level, we can define it as a 19 mm, therefore technically still a wide lens, which can go up to 39 mm thanks to the digital zoom.
I advise you to go beyond 30 mm only if you need some detailed shots.
PROTIPS: This field of view is perfect for creating cinematic-looking videos, especially when using 4K or 2.7K. I recommend using it to photograph people or take portraits, to take pictures of specific buildings or details: the fisheye effect, being much less present, will not create distortions.
The Italian “narrow field” simulates a fixed lens of 27 mm, where it is not possible to zoom in digitally. Ideal if you want to keep the same focal length constant throughout the shooting of the video or photos. This field is also very close to linear. In fact, the presence of the fisheye effect is not very marked, almost non-existent.
This comes in handy among the GoPro lenses if you need to get closer to the framed subject, having only your action camera available instead of a camera. The use of this visual field is certainly much less than the others available, and I consider it complementary to when I use the Linear.
GoPro provides us with all the lenses we need to face different situations, reminding us that it was born as a sports action cam and not as a camera to zoom in to meters away.
It is of fundamental importance to know each field of view’s characteristics, know how to best use it, and which one to use in certain situations.Tags: GoPro lens