Action Cameras

GoPro Hero 5 Session Review

GoPro Hero 5 Session Review

Being small isn’t always a disadvantage. When it comes to action cameras, small body opens up for more options in mounting. And it’s exactly what GoPro Hero 5 Session offers. But that’s not all. Within its tiny construction is a suite of great features that may interest the most hardened action shooters. Recording in true 4K resolution, high speed recording up to 120fps in HD, and completely waterproof body without the external housing are just a few of its key features. Sure, some bells and whistles are missing from the list, but if you want a small action camera that doesn’t skimp on performance, GoPro Hero 5 Session has got you covered.

What's Hot
  • Very small
  • More versatile than the original Hero 5 Black
  • Great 4K video quality
  • Easy to use
  • Good built-in microphones
  • Waterproof without case
  • Long battery life
What's Not
  • Battery is non-removable
  • No touchscreen
  • No GPS
 

GoPro Hero 5 Session Design

From afar, it’s not hard to confuse this camera with a kid’s toy. Its tiny rounded cubic design barely tells that it’s a functional action video camera. On the top, you can see a recording button and a small black and white LCD that showcases some important information, like battery life and recording mode. At the back, there’s one button that you will frequently deal with as it’s the only way to navigate the menus. On the left side, there’s a pop-out door that grants access to the card slot and charging port. You don’t need the camera’s case to make it waterproof, but it’s a different story if you want to attach it on the mounting bracket.

GoPro Hero 5 Session Recording Options

Even though its recording options are not as abundant as those of GoPro Hero 5 Black, there are still a few to play with. The maximum resolution is 4K and it’s limited to run at only 25 and 30fps in Wide mode. More FOV options are available in 2.7K where you can set the lens to shoot in Linear, Medium, Wide, and SuperView. Despite being built more towards video recording, GoPro Hero 5 Session does allow you to take some still photos. The highest resolution is up to 10MP and you can use the Burst and Time-Lapse mode to help you with it.

GoPro Hero 5 Session Performance

At its size, you’ll be surprised to find that the video quality it’s capable of delivering is on par with much bigger video cameras. On outdoor setting where there’s enough light, its 4K video looks brilliantly crisp and bright. While shooting in low light environment does show noticeable decrease in quality, it’s still worth appreciating given its small sensor. The 720p/120fps mode works best if you want to do some slow-motion editing. Highest rate is available but only in lower WVGA 480p resolution. As for the battery, GoPro Hero 5 Session couldn’t be any better. It can capture footage continuously for 2-3 hours before it sends out low battery alert. That’s three times longer than the full-fledged Hero 5 Black.

Conclusion

The fact that it’s not armed with an LCD touchscreen enables GoPro Hero 5 Session to last much longer before needing a recharge. On the other hand, the one-button control is just not practical for navigating the menus. Fortunately though, the mobile app offers a seamless pairing. You can change various settings and operate the camera more easily with your smartphone than using the on-board buttons. All in all, this camera is a great option if you want super tiny camera that performs great without all the bells and whistles.

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