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821 of 863 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars GoPro Hero3+ Black vs GoPro Hero3 Black and brief mention of Sony HDR-AS30V
Customer Video Review     Length:: 9:52 Mins
UPDATE: 03/26/2014 - GoPro has recently released a firmware update v2.0 for the Hero3+ Black. Quoting the GoPro website:
"Camera software update 2.0 has lots in store for your GoPro. HERO3+ Black Edition cameras will get new SuperView(tm) video modes, new Auto Low Light settings, advanced Protune(tm) controls and more. For HERO3+ Silver...
Published 9 months ago by M. Erb

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1,668 of 1,741 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lens better up close; blurrier farther away
Be aware when purchasing that there are some aspects to the new "improved" lens that may not be for everyone. This week it has been fairly well documented (and confirmed by GoPro) that while the new lens produces much sharper images under 4', they are blurrier at distances greater than 4'. It does NOT focus at infinity. For reasons not fully explained, they moved the...
Published 11 months ago by A. Johnston


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1,668 of 1,741 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lens better up close; blurrier farther away, October 9, 2013
By 
A. Johnston (New York State) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: GoPro HERO3+: Black Edition (Electronics)
Be aware when purchasing that there are some aspects to the new "improved" lens that may not be for everyone. This week it has been fairly well documented (and confirmed by GoPro) that while the new lens produces much sharper images under 4', they are blurrier at distances greater than 4'. It does NOT focus at infinity. For reasons not fully explained, they moved the focal point of the lens in close and sacrificed distance clarity.

Update at bottom.

You will get great shots under 4' and soft focus beyond that. Depending on what you want it for, this camera may not be for you and the regular H3 might be a better bet. Since this is an effect of the lens it applies to both stills and video. On the other hand, it's still a decent small action camera, and if you take a lot of video in motion you may not notice this at all. For YouTube uploads and streaming it may not matter, I haven't tested this myself. If you want better clarity in your images the 3B is a good choice. I personally will play with it this week before deciding if I should return it. (Update: it's going back.)

It boggles the mind that they have produced a camera that claims to have a better lens and ignored the fact that it is in fact worse for 90% of what you'll be filming. Great clarity on your handlebars but not so good on the scenery.

Edit: other pluses- the color is much better with the 3+ than the 3. Low light shooting is also better, although sometimes lens flare from lights is a little worse, sometimes better. No more chromatic aberration (yellow/purple fringing). Just do some reading before buying this, they made some trade-offs in the new lens.

Updated 10/17:

Well after comparing the two (3+B and 3B) this week, there are some more problems that have had me downgrade this to a 3 star. For one, the right and left sides of the images on the 3+ are smeared. I mean really distorted, and I'm not using SuperView. Additionally the contrast seems to be set too high, causing some loss of detail in the shadows and blowing out whites a bit. This at least is changeable with a firmware update if they choose to do so. The blurry edges put me over the edge and I'm returning it. It's too bad, it's almost a great camera, with some nice improvements, but the lens is a definite problem, and not necessarily an improvement... certainly not 33% sharper.
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821 of 863 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars GoPro Hero3+ Black vs GoPro Hero3 Black and brief mention of Sony HDR-AS30V, November 27, 2013
This review is from: GoPro HERO3+: Black Edition (Electronics)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Length:: 9:52 Mins

UPDATE: 03/26/2014 - GoPro has recently released a firmware update v2.0 for the Hero3+ Black. Quoting the GoPro website:
"Camera software update 2.0 has lots in store for your GoPro. HERO3+ Black Edition cameras will get new SuperView(tm) video modes, new Auto Low Light settings, advanced Protune(tm) controls and more. For HERO3+ Silver Edition cameras, update 2.0 increases the field of view on all photo and video modes for even more immersive, wide-angle footage. And with new wireless camera software updates via the GoPro App, updating your GoPro has never been easier."

UPDATE - 12/9/2013 - I've just updated my video with additional video samples from the Hero3+ compared to the Hero3. I also stuck in a short video of the Sony HDR-AS30V for additional comparison.

-----

Just about a year ago I bought the GoPro Hero3 Black. It was frought with issues and I felt it had been rushed out the door without adequate testing. Fortunately, some 3 firmware updates later, the GoPro Hero3 Black has become a reliable sports cam for me.

I was both happy and frustrated to learn that the GoPro Hero3+ Black was being introduced. With promises of improved battery life and sharper lens, I wished I had waited to buy the Hero3+ instead of the Hero3. But now that I"ve also got the Hero3+ Black, I've learned that it's not that big of an upgrade really and I still use and thoroughly enjoy using the Hero3. In fact for some things the Hero3 Black is superior to the Hero3+ Black. But battery life is definitely better and some people will love the new "super wide" mode that really gives you a stronger fisheye effect.

I have been using the Hero3+ a lot for time lapse phtography and for recording bike rides. I also travel with it and use it for capturing stunning wide-angle still shots. A recent Hot Air Balloon ride enabled me to use the GoPro to caputre some utterly amazing video and stills from 1000 feet above ground.

As for the claimed increased sharpness... well that's a mixed bag. What they've actually done is slightly decreased the depth of field so that you now get increased sharpness for closer objects (like yourself) while the more distant background has become ever so slightly less sharp. I use mine more for photography where I want as sharp a focus as I can get for scenic shots but I have not noticed a very significant decrease in sharpness for distance. This is a non-issue for me. Some people complaining of significant loss of sharpness actually have a defective camera and this has been confirmed by GoPro.

One huge improvement I've noticed is the significantly better color accuracy. There is a pronounced color shift of the Hero3 Black when compared to the Hero3+. The Hero3+ has a much more accurate, neutrual color bias which is more pleasing to me. The Hero3 had a more yellowish bias.

The Hero3+ does much better in bright, snow (and probably sand) situations as can be seen in my video.

The new "super" size setting gives a significantly wider field of view. As such you will notice a marked curvature of the image at the edges. This bending is most noticeable when an edge is present, You notice this much less if you're shooting at sky,,, skydiving, ski jumping etc. This is typical of a super wide angle, nearly fisheye, lens.

▶︎ Battery LIfe:
The Hero3+ comes with a marginally higher capacity battery (AHDBT-302.) It's rated at 1180mAh vs the prior battery which was rated 1050mAh. That's not much of an increase but it is an increase nonetheless. Apparently GoPro has also made some internal tweaks that results in a claimed 30% longer battery life. I generally get no more than slightly 1;15 of recording time with the Hero3 but I'm really happy to discover that the Hero3+ gives me a solid 2 hour recording time. So the battery life has most definitely been improved in the Hero3+.

▶︎ Waterproof Housing:
The housing has seen a significant change. It is much lighter in weight, less bulky and the 2-step latching mechanism has been completely redesigned. It is now just a single latch. It doesn't feel as sturdy to me as the previous latch and I'm not sure I like it or not yet. I'll have to use it a while to see how it holds up and how it works in the field under more extensive use. One good thing is that the Hero3 and Hero3+ will fit and operate in either housing... they are interchangeable. The Hero3+ housing is rated to 30M (131') underwater vs 60M (197') underwater for the Hero3 housing. The best thing about the new housing is the ease with which the buttons now work. In the previous housing pushing the buttons required quite a bit of force and they were very inconvenient to use. This has been improved significantly in the with the new housing. The buttons are a larger diameter and much easier to push.

▶︎ Low Light setting:
The Low Light setting does improve video in lower light situations but there is still visible grain. I have compared video from both my 3 and 3+ and the 3+ allows more definition and brings out a lot more detail in what was just darkness in the conditions when compared to the Hero3 when the lighting level is low. It is a definite improvement but it's still not excellent... just a lot better.

▶︎ Firmware updates:
GoPro has made the process of updating the firmware on the Hero3+ different. On the Hero3 all you needed to do was download the firmware to your computer, unzip it and move the files from the firmware update folder to the top level of a formatted MicroSD card. You then inserted the card into your GoPro and then turned the camera on... the firmware would be installed.
The Hero3+ firmware update process has changed. When on the GoPro website you go through a web-based update process before you can download the firmware. You have to decide whether you want to update the WiFi and the camera firmware or just one or the other. Then you download the update and unzip it, you do not move just the files from the firmware update folder to the MicroSD card, but rather you move the entire firmware update folder to the MicroSD card which you then put into the GoPro Hero3+ and turn on the camera to initiate the firmware upgrade process.

▶︎ Blurry backgrounds:
GoPro has already acknowledged that a random number of cameras are exhibiting the exceedingly blurry background issue. My camera is perfect and has no such issue but others are having the problem and downgrading their review of the camera because of the issue. If you get a camera that has a really bad lack of sharpness, you may have gotten a defective camera and should either immediately exchange it or at least contact GoPro for further guidance.

I like the Hero3+. It's more evolutionary of an update rather than revolutionary. If you are a current Hero3 Black owner, I wouldn't necessarily feel like you are stuck with a dinosaur. The Hero3 is still a very respectable camera in many ways. But there are some definite improvements in color balance and shooting options with the Hero 3+ and the new housing is easier to use but may not actually be as sturdy... that remains to be seen.

I'd also like to mention that I recently got a Sony HDR-AS30V and the short story is that it's not nearly as good as the GoPro Hero3+ Black. It is much more basic in its availabe shooting modes. The Sony has downright lousy battery life. The waterproof enclosure is only good to 16' underwater and the display is pretty poor if you ask me. I find it difficult to read because Sony has chosen a some kind of a segmented font that looks like a 1970's Texas Instruments calculator. It's really really bad.

I'll be updating my review as I use the Hero3+ more and more. But for now I can say that if you are feeling like you are "stuck" with your Hero3, just know that you've still got a great camera. The main improvements that are most significant for me with the Hero3+ are: improved battery life and somewhat better low light image capture.
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706 of 789 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The best action camera you can get your hands on..*see update*, October 4, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: GoPro HERO3+: Black Edition (Electronics)
UPDATE 25/12/2013

Finally I did a comparison of HERO3+ BE with HERO3 BE and the HERO+ BE lens is out of focus for objects that are far away but crisp for closeups. I use my GoPro cameras to record my motorsport activities so closeup sharpness is more important to me that is why I never noticed the out of focus background scenes. I do not use the GoPro cameras to capture images and instead use a Canon 60D for photography. I have removed one star as my older HERO3 BE was sharp even for distant objects.

(End of Update)
---------------

This review is about GoPro HERO3+ Black Edition which I have bought but there are some comments about other editions, casing and microSD card also which you may find useful for a comparison.

When GoPro released HERO3, the whole internet was flooded with customers complaining about several issues which GoPro kept fixing with new firmware updates. I owned a HERO3 Black Edition and luckily encountered no issues as I always kept it up-to-date with the latest firmware. I also bought a recommended microSD card supporting full bitrate (more on this at the end of review).

GoPro HERO3+ is exactly what the name says..an upgraded and more polished HERO3 but with a new lens and several new useful features, GoPro would have just changed the shape and easily called it HERO4.

- Smaller and lighter
The waterproof case that comes with the package is now smaller and lighter but the actual camera is still the same size and weight. Smaller also means that unlike the previous waterproof case which supported maximum depth of 60m, the new smaller case now supports only 40m. Mounting base is same so it is still compatible with older accessories using the same mount. Smaller case is an improvement but what I found more interesting is that now the case buttons feel better and easier to use. The case locking mechanism has improved also which is another improvement.

- 2x faster pocessor
This only applies to HERO+ Silver Edition as the processor in HERO3+ Black Edition is exactly the same as HERO3 Black Edition.

- Improved lens
The new lens is one of the biggest improvements of the camera. Colors look sharper and you don't get a white washed look when shooting in low light conditions. GoPro claims 33% increase in image sharpness and and 2x reduction in imaging artifacts. If you look at two videos or pictures shot using HERO3+ BE and HERO3 BE then you can immediately tell without knowing which one is shot by the new lens. Yes, the difference is easily noticeable and the result nods to the GoPro claim of sharper image and less artifacts.

- Auto Low Light mode
This is a feature which adjusts frame rate based on lightening conditions. The output is a brighter video which using the new lens saves more details and better quality videos without adding that white washed effect. In some low light conditions, the HERO3 BE completely missed some areas of the frame which were picked brighter by the HERO3 BE. I will be using this a lot while mounting it inside the car during midnight racing.

- SuperView
Another great feature for people who want to shoot wide angel shots or want more of themselves in the videos. I have read the technical details of how GoPro has achieved this and I had a feeling that the result would be distorted but to my surprise it turned out really good and covered a whole lot bigger area in good quality.

- 30% longer battery life
GoPro has achieved better battery life by adding a slightly bigger battery and tweaking the software for better battery management. The new battery is 1180mAH compared to older 1050mAh battery. If you have the old HERO3 batteries then they are still compatible with the new camera and thanks to the new battery management, the older batteries will give you more shooting time compared to the older HERO3 cameras. This is a huge improvement as battery life was significantly reduced from HERO2 to HERO3 cameras. Now you can record without the fear of battery dying in the middle of action.

- 4x faster Wi-Fi
The new Wi-Fi chip speeds up the Wi-Fi 4x for transferring and sharing media off the camera. It also speeds up controlling the camera from the remote or mobile app.

After using the new features, I am extremely satisfied and do not regret upgrading from HERO3 BE to HERO3+ BE and would recommend the upgrade to others who want an improved experience and better video results. The new lens, better battery, new auto low light mode, superview and faster Wi-Fi are all features that end users would benefit regularly. If you have a HERO3 and shoot a lot of low light footage, miss out details or focus in direct sun light or want even more clear and detailed captures with sharper colors then HERO3+ BE won't disappoint you.

I know a lot of people are unhappy that GoPro launched an upgrade sooner but considering how the industry is moving very fast with new technology coming up every few months, GoPro have to be on top of their game with new and improved cameras and HERO3+ Black Edition is the new name of the game. The HERO3 BE was the best action cam and now with the launch of the new camera, GoPro HERO3+ Black Edition has now taken the crown.

Note on LCD/Battery bacpac, backdoors and casings
Older LCD and battery bacpac are compatible with HERO3 but the backdoors are not compatible with the new case. If you have the older waterproof, skeleton or frame case then you can still use them with the HERO3+. Currently the LCD and battery bacpac are not in stock on GoPro website and I assume that with the new 1180mAH battery, GoPro would soon launch a new bacpac so hold a little if you want to get the new product. GoPro would soon launch backdoors for new casing so meanwhile you can use older casing with the LCD and battery bacpac.

Note on microSD card compatibility
A lot of HERO3 issues were related to unsupported/slower microSD cards and even though now you can find a list of supported cards on GoPro website, not all of them can take full advantage of the Black Edition. If the GoPro HERO3 BE or HERO3+ Black Edition detects an unsupported or slower card, then it automatically reduces the recording bitrate from 45Mb/sec to 35Mb/sec while shooting in 4K, 2.7K and Protune video modes. SanDisk Extreme cards are on the compatibility list but are throttled to 35Mb/sec only. I would recommend the Samsung Electronics 64GB Pro microSDXC Extreme Speed (UHS-1) Class 10 Memory Card (MB-MGCGB/AM) card which is on the compatibility list and also records at the max 45Mb/s speed. To find out the video bitrate, record a video in 4K, 2.7K or Protune mode, transfer the file on PC and look at the properties which will tell you about the recorded bitrate.
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214 of 244 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The camera froze two weeks after I got it...this review is for both the camera and customer service experience., February 10, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: GoPro HERO3+: Black Edition (Electronics)
This review is being written for both the camera and subsequent customer service experience when the camera froze. Unfortunately, the abysmal customer service experience is driving the rating for this review.

The good: The camera takes great still photos and video. It looks amazing on a hi-definition television. The camera is easy to use and setup. Changing settings in the Go Pro app is a very nice touch as well.

The bad: I received the camera on December 31 2013. The camera was purchased to take on a snorkeling trip the second week in January. After a few uses, the camera froze on January 18. I contacted Go Pro customer service the day that the camera failed and spoke with Thomas who ran through the standard troubleshooting steps on the phone. After a few minutes, Thomas informed me that I would need to make a warranty claim. He set it up and told me to call back after the camera had shipped to expedite Go Pro getting a replacement in the mail to me. I shipped the camera on the 18th but because it was a Saturday, the camera did not actually go out until Monday morning.

I called and emailed Monday January 20th to let them know that the camera had shipped. I received an email from Sterling with the following “Thank you for reaching out to us today, I'm glad to hear the package has been shipped! I've created the order for your replacement camera to be shipped out and we will be dropping this in the mail shorty.”

I had not received the camera so I called back the following Monday (January 27th). I can’t remember the name of the person that I spoke with but he informed me that the cameras were back ordered the week before and my replacement had not been shipped yet but the replacement would go out that day. He told me that if I did not see my replacement by the end of the week to call back.

Friday January 31st comes and goes and I still have not received my replacement. I called Go Pro and spoke with Austin this time. At this point, I am getting pretty frustrated with all of the lip service! Austin informs me that the camera had not shipped yet but would that afternoon. I expressed my frustration with the process and informed him what was told to me in previous conversations. His response was “well, sir, that was not what you were told”. As a matter of fact, it certainly was! I am again told to call back if I don’t see my replacement by the end of the following week.

Friday February 7th comes and no camera. At this point, I call Go Pro AGAIN and speak with Nicole. Nicole informs me that she is not showing tracking information, nor is she showing that the camera has shipped. I am pretty irate at this point. Nicole tells me that she needs to go hunt this down and asks if she can call me back. Based on the poor customer service experience so far, I ask her is she is taking hours or a few days before she would have an answer and call me back. Nicole states that she will call me back within the hour. This was at 2:50 PM.
At 5 PM, I had not yet heard back from Nicole. I called Go Pro back AGAIN. This time I spoke with Ryan. Ryan puts me on hold for a few minutes to research the issue. When he gets back on the line, he proceeds to tell me that the camera STILL has not shipped because Go Pro did not fill out the shipping information correctly…specifically, they had entered a billing address but no shipping address! Are you kidding me? Why was no one else able to fix the issue, or at a minimum, figure out that the camera was never shipped. Ryan was helpful and very apologetic. He shipped the camera and I should have it tomorrow. Nicole never called back either to make sure that everything was squared away.

I guess when you are pretty much the only game in town you can treat customers any way that you want. While I have no issues with the fact that the camera froze (seems a bit odd, but sometimes things happen), I am appalled at the manner with which the “customer service” people treated the entire issue. If I owned Go Pro, I would be extremely embarrassed at the manner in which my employees treated a user of my product.
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198 of 234 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blurring of background in Hero3+ cameras, November 27, 2013
This review is from: GoPro HERO3+: Black Edition (Electronics)
GoPro customer support told me today that they are aware that some of the HERO3+ do have problems with the distant part of images being blurred. He stated that it was a random thing and was not related to a certain batch nor date of manufacture. He stated that GOPRO would replace cameras with this problem.
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196 of 235 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Out Of Focus Backgrounds -- Fixed by GoPro!, October 16, 2013
This review is from: GoPro HERO3+: Black Edition (Electronics)
UPDATE: 12/24/2013 (see below)

So far, it's ok.

PROS: The battery IS better which is a plus. Kudos to GoPro for addressing that issue. Camera housing is much smaller overall too which is nice. I don't use the GoPro app much, but I did test it out and the Wifi IS much quicker as they claim.

CONS: (Very surprised there is no review mentioning this issue yet...)

The 33% sharper lens comes with a trade off. Backgrounds are blurry. It's not HORRID, but it's definitely soft like a greasy lens would be If you have a Hero3 Black to compare footage and stills, give it a shot. It's pretty obvious. Still, it's crazy sharp up close. So if you're the focus of everything you film, it'll be great for you. Just don't expect any definition in your surroundings.

I'm not even talking about super-far away (which wide angle lenses have never been good at by nature). I'm talking about subjects and backgrounds around 10' away. 10 feet!

It doesn't only affect stills. It also affects video footage.

OVERALL: Yep! It's an improvement. Just about everything on the camera is better except for the lens (which really bothers me). I just wish they didn't bumble the lens. :(

-------------------------------------------------------------

UPDATE 12/24/2013

As of December 24th, I have the camera I wanted. After RMA exchange with GoPro, my camera is a thing of beauty. I gave it an extra star as a result.

Certainly was a headache for me, but all is well again.

GoPro service is very tight-lipped about the focus issue, and will probably never speak of it officially. But... they were also very helpful in replacing the camera.

I can't wait to be a "beta tester" for the Hero4! Lol... it's the GoPro way.

I'm still cheesed at you, GoPro, but I love my camera. Finally!
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124 of 148 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars READ BEFORE BUYING HERO3!!! Do yourself a favor!, October 4, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: GoPro HERO3+: Black Edition (Electronics)
Length:: 1:05 Mins

I'll be updating this review as I play around with it more, so check for updates!

NEW UPDATE!! 11/27/13

After a month more of playing around with this camera, I am really really happy with it. Battery life has consistently been around 2 hrs, which should provide you with ample time of recording. Buttons are all still working well, no issues there, the wireless trigger runs pretty well, albeit a little slow. I really cannot complain about this camera, and given my past with GoPro cameras, this is saying a good amount.

BUY THIS CAMERA FROM AMAZON, DO NOT BUY FROM GOPRO. I hate giving GoPro money, because they have awful customer service and for a period of two years sent me broken camera after broken camera. However, the footage that you get from these cameras are second to none. Feel free to read my review of the Hero3 (http://www.amazon.com/review/R1RRHRRBEKP0CC/ref=cm_cr_rdp_perm) if you want to get a review on that camera and of the company.

Have a great holiday season, thanks for reading my review!

NEW UPDATE 10/26/13

To start off, one common theme of the GoPro cameras throughout their existence is that the video quality has been top notch. Even on the older models where the cameras were much maligned (and rightfully so), nobody could write off the beautiful video that the camera COULD obtain (when it worked). This was the major underlying reason why these cameras were so loved/hated; when they worked, they'd take incredible video, but, they often had many bugs and flaws.

The GoPro Hero3 was a SIGNIFICANT upgrade over the hero2 in terms of video quality. I was one of the first to get that camera and couldn't believe how much better the quality was. Not simply in terms of resolution, but light sensitivity, frame rate, depth of field; the video that the camera could record was stunning. However, as I alluded to before, this camera was so full of bugs you could have taught an entomology class on it! To compound issues, GoPro had AWFUL customer service and no ways to resolve the problems that these cameras faced.

Enter the Hero3+. In many ways, this camera is very much like its predecessor. While being a little smaller, having the case slimmed down, the guts are almost the same, and the video quality is almost the same too. They have added a "super" mode, which is supposed to produce even better quality video, however I have not seen much of an effect while using it (keep in mind, you have to drop the frame rate to use it). However, they have really fixed a LOT of small issues which make this camera worth the $400.

The BIGGEST change they have done on this camera is FIXED THE BATTERY LIFE!!!!!!!!!!!!! The 30% increase is misleading; I would normally only get about 20-30 minutes of recording time on my old hero3, but now with the hero3+, I recored for 2 hours on one battery!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That's almost a 400% increase! I don't know what they did to increase it so much, but this was one of THE most frustrating aspects of the camera. Now that you can safely record on one battery for the majority of whatever you're doing, you don't have to worry about changing the battery, getting the camera dirty/wet, and fussing with it when you may not be in a good environment to do so (mud/snow/water/dirt...). I have tried many times recording on this camera, and I can say with confidence that the battery life is far far improved.

I recently attended the Albuquerque, NM hot air balloon festival, and took some video with the GoPro to demonstrate a few things. While this video may look good, keep in mind that the quality is severely handcuffed since Amazon limits the size to 100mb.

1.) The dynamic range of this camera is great. You'll see it capture both light and dark areas extremely well; this was early early morning and there were a ton of shadows as the sun was starting to rise. It did a great job keeping everything evenly lit and balanced.
2.) Pronounced fish eye. This is good/bad, because you'll be able to capture a large range of field from the camera's view point, however the edges are very fish eyed.
3.) I naturally want to hold the camera on the black frame that houses the lens, however you may see on the video that my finger kinda pops into the frame of the video. BE CAREFUL IF SHOOTING WITH HANDS!! The lens must be set to record everything directly outside of that black frame, so don't put anything near there.
4.) Frame rate is great at 1080, but for anything above, it is garbage. It may seem attractive to some people to shoot video in 2.7K and 4K, however you are not going to want to after trying. The frame rate is way to slow to make any jump in resolution worth it. Even these hot air balloons, which rise slowly, still look bad in the 2.7k resolution. 1080 is where it is at.
5.) Not sure if this is an isolated occurrence, but 720 does not look good at all. Very grainy, very choppy, and I didn't like the video at all. Stick to 1080.

Of note: The camera did freeze on me once, but this only happened once, as compared to dozens of times with the hero3. Not perfect, but a huge improvement.

Hope this helps!! I have a lot more video I can upload at a later time, let me know if you have any questions!

10/4/13:

At first glance, the Hero3+ does not look much different than the Hero3. The packaging is the same, the accompanying accessories are the same, however as the title implied, there are a bunch of small improvements that are of note.

1.) The lock button is SIGNIFICANTLY upgraded. For users of the Hero3, this may have been one of the more frustrating aspects of the camera. There was a two step mechanism required to unlock the case, which often got jammed with mud/dirt/debris, and even after rigorous cleaning made for difficult operation. They have improved the lock mechanism to one big bar that flips open without much effort or strain. Much MUCH easier to use, and I'm sure will be MUCH more durable.
2.) The buttons controlling the camera are WAY easier to use. I have been a Hero user since the original models, and these two buttons, on the side and on the top, have always been extremely difficult to push/get to respond. This new case/camera has reworked the sensitivity of these buttons and as a result, all you need is a simple push to get the camera to respond. While this may not seem like much, those buttons were such an annoyance previously that this upgrade helps out a LOT.
3.) Battery life. If the case lock was not the worst aspect of the Hero3, the battery life was. For an event covering 2 hours, I had to bring 3 batteries and HOPE that they got me through. I brought this camera to the Bills vs. Browns game last night, and recorded a ton of footage with a lot of pictures and the battery didn't drop one bar throughout the entire game!!! THIS IS A HUGE UPGRADE. From other tests that I've done, I have been able to record about two hours of video before the battery died (shooting 1080p 48fps) and I cannot stress enough how big of an improvement this is.
4.) New Video modes. As you'll read about in the product description, they have included new "super" video modes for 1080p and 720p. While the video looks good on it, one thing to note is that these "super" modes are unable to be shot at the full FPS that the regular 1080p and 720p modes can handle (1080p can shoot 60fps, at super it is at 48).

Overall, GoPro has address the MAJOR critiques to their product and should be commended for this new iteration. While there aren't any new significant additions/features/toys, they have SIGNIFICANTLY improved the existing Hero3, and finally made it worth a $400 investment.
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200 of 241 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Hero3+ apparently is set for closer focus, not infinity=fail, October 28, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: GoPro HERO3+: Black Edition (Electronics)
I initially loved the camera, function with WiFi and iPhone app very cool. But I found the distance focus to be not so clear. I found a forum, aerial photographers, and they were all upset with the poor detail of this model vs the Hero3. Many were brave enough to open their 3+ and manually twist the lens and re-focus for infinity. The posted before and after photos were substantially better! Apparently GoPro set the 3+ for nearer focus to get the subject better but giving a softer focus at distance. For us airborne users, this is a deal breaker. I contacted GoPro and they sent me a software update, it made no difference. So I returned this camera, and won't buy again until I see either a statement from GoPro or and independent review that this has been fixed. Too bad.
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51 of 59 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars GoPro Hero3 Silver vs. Hero3+ Silver, November 1, 2013
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
While looking at this new camera, I'm also going to focus on my comparison between the GoPro Hero3 Silver and the new Hero3+ Silver. What's different, how does it work on its own, is it worth an upgrade? Let's find out.

OUT OF THE BOX

First out is the camera, as it's nicely mounted in the glass container at the top of the box. It's already obvious the new housing for the Hero3+ is noticeably smaller and more compact than the older one. The housing buttons are larger and easier to press, but everything else was downsized. The latch no longer requires an extra tab to slide over, yet still feels very secure and tight when closed. The front covering over the lens has become simplified as there are no longer rivets or a large bezel adding to bulk.

There is some concern this could reduce durability, but short of throwing it into a wall, I'm going to just base this on look and feel. Which is to say it appear to be just a solid and durable as the old one. Otherwise the camera itself is identical in size to the old one, so everything is interchangeable. Extra batteries and cables will work just fine with both. You can check the product description to see what exactly is included, but it's just the basics. A few basic mounting brackets, stickers, mini-USB cable, etc. No charger is included.

CAMERA SETUP

After charging, the first step will be to supply a micro-sd card. I did run into an issue where my 32GB Sandisk Class 10 card wouldn't work. I just got an Error on the display. Despite manually cleaning and formatting the card to the specific exFat file system the camera required, it was never happy. At least not until I found the menu option within the camera itself to format the card for me (trash can icon). After that, it's been working great.

Speaking of the menu, going through the initial setup via the on-board controls is still as annoying as it was in the previous version. In other words, we have the same basic menu layout and 2 buttons to change menus and make your selections. If you've used them before, you're all set. If not, I do suggest going over the user's guide which has a menu layout that'll help you find what you want and avoid getting lost. As this camera has wireless functionality, it's usually best to get this part setup and use your smartphone to connect and make changes.

The GoPro Android app, which I'm using on 2 separate phones, worked great. I used my LG G2 and Note 2 so we could test them out separately. There was virtually no difference between the two, other than the additional video modes the Hero3+ added in the drop-down menus. The preview still has a 1-2 second delay, but more than enough as a basic view-finder. Once again, really no change on the software side of things. At least nothing cosmetic.

VIDEO QUALITY

This is of course the important part. So for this test I've basically got them mounted side-by-side on the windshield of the car. Both phones were wirelessly connected to the android phones as well we could easily make identical changes on the fly. Testing was done in daylight and in multiple different video modes. You can check Amazon or GoPro's website to see an exact list of video mode changes going to the plus model, but the important ones are some things that have trickled down from the older Black Series.

This includes 1080p @ 60hz, 960p @ 60hz, and 720p @ 120hz which is basically double the frame-rate of older GoPro Silver. Whether I was taking advantage of the higher frame rate of the new model, the video quality was noticeable improved. The image was brighter, more vibrant, and seemed to have more detail than the older non-plus model. And once you take advantage of the higher FPS, action shots look considerably smoother.

The camera's megapixels have dropped from 11MP to 10MP, although I didn't notice any change in still photo quality. It's also not something I use all that much with the GoPro. Even though it of course has plenty of features such as burst shot mode.

AUDIO

While playing both videos back to back, it's very obvious there is an improvement in audio quality. We're using the same backing (with 2 openings) while it was in the car. With the older model, our voices and other audio were quiet and muffled. But with the plus, our voice was very clear and easy to understand. The audio was simply more crisp and detailed. Really a night and day difference.

CURRENT ISSUE (PENDING RESOLUTION)

While in the car, I have the cameras mounted upside down. There is a quick setting in each camera to flip the image vertically. However, the new GP3+ also flipped the image horizontally, something the old one didn't do. This of course creates a very odd perspective as it makes it appear as though you're on the wrong side of the road. This occurred at any resolution where the image had to be flipped to upside down mode. With the free downloadable GoPro video editing software, you can of course manually flip the video horizontally, but it's certainly not ideal.

I'm still working with GoPro to find a resolution. We've already swapped out the camera and the new one does the same thing. Will update when I have more info.

PROS:

+ More compact housing
+ Increased battery capacity
+ Improved High resolution video quality
+ Noticable audio quality improvement
+ Higher FPS video recording at all HD resolutions
+ Durable and Waterproof (in housing)
+ Wireless smartphone connectivity
+ Has most important features of older Black series

CONS:

- Battery life could always be better
- Menu controls can still be confusing
- Slightly expensive
- Camera gets very warm
- Picky with SD card formatting
- Current horizontal flip issue (pending resolution)

CONCLUSION:

Overall there wasn't much to dislike about the new camera. Considering its intended purpose, I don't think you can really find anything better for the money. The GoPro Hero3+ Silver basically offers many of the improved video quality/FPS of the older Black series, for less money. And other than 4K recording of the new Black series, the Silver series fits into a nice "mid-range" providing everything most folks are looking for. All while making several minor but very welcome design improvements.

Bottom line, spend a little more for the new plus model and you won't be disappointed.
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125 of 150 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Terrible Image Quality! Very disappointed!, October 18, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: GoPro HERO3+: Black Edition (Electronics)
I am a professional photographer who has used the GoPro Hero3 Black for quite a while... with excellent results! I was very excited to try the Hero3+ Black... I was expecting even sharper images, along with longer battery life. After the first few still images, from the GoPro3+, popped up on my computer screen... I could not believe how terrible the images looked! I don't know if I got a bad production copy... but the images were simply unusable. The whole image looked out of focus, and for some strange reason, the right side of all the images appeared even more out of focus. I tried the same shots with my old GoPro3 and got the standard great results. I've read about other users experiencing soft focus issues with the Hero3+ as well... but thought I would give it a try anyway... now I wish I had not. Sending the GoPro3+ back and ordering another, tried and true, GoPro3 while they last. Maybe I just got a "lemon" but, it appears GoPro has some work to do!
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GoPro HERO3+: Black Edition
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