Little Frog in High Def by Shane Ross
GoPro Hero cameras are everywhere lately. It seems like there isn’t a production I am working on that doesn’t utilize this camera in some way. They are mounted in cars to either see the driver and passengers, or aimed at the road. They are mounted on back hoes as they dig, mounted on drills as they burrow into the ground. They are mounted on people as they do crazy things. They get angles that you normally cannot get.
First, let me mention the three models currently available from GoPro:
Hero 3 White Edition can shoot video at 1080p30, 960p30 and 720p60, and 5MP photos at up to 3 frames per second. It can shoot timelapse from half second to 60 second intervals. It has built in WiFi, and can work with the GoPro WiFi remote or a free smartphone app.
Hero 3+ Silver Edition does all that, but shoots up to 1080p60 and 720p120, and shoots still photos at 10MP up to 10 frames per second.
Hero 3+ Black Edition does all that the Silver Edition does, but adds 1440 at 48fps, 960p100, as well as 720p100 and 720p120. It also shoots in ultra-high resolution, going to 2.7k at 30fps and even 4k at 15fps. And it has an option called SUPERVIEW, which enables ultra-wide angle perspectives. It can shoot stills at 12MP stills, 30fps. All cameras have built in WiFi and work with the remote, or smart phone app, and all perform much better in low light situations than their predecessors.
For this post, I was provided with a Hero 3+ Black Edition camera, and a slew of accessories. What is really handy about the current model, the Hero 3+, is that it can shoot in a wide variety of ways that might suit various aspects of production. For example, there is a 720p 120 frames per second mode…great for slow motion conformed shots. There is a 2.7K mode…meaning the camera will shoot larger than 1080…and then we can reposition the shots in post to focus on the areas of interest we need to focus on. It shoots 4K, has a wireless controller, can be controlled wirelessly from an iPhone or Android device with a free app…and you can change the settings in those apps, far easier than the in-camera menus…it shoots a very sharp image, performs very well in low light, and mounts just about anywhere.
OK, so the Hero 3+ is a very useful camera. But the point of this post is to showcase workflows for ingesting the footage into various edit applications so that you can take advantage of these advanced shooting modes.
AVID MEDIA COMPOSER
Let me start with Avid Media Composer, only because that is what I have been using the most lately. If you set up the camera to shoot in normal shooting modes, like 1080p30 (29.97), 1080p24 23.98 or 720p60, then importing is easy. Simply access the footage via AMA, and then transcode to DNxHD…either full resolutions like 145, 175 or 220…or an offline codec like DNxHD36, DV25 or 15:1 so you can cut in low resolution, and then relink to the original footage and transcode to a higher resolution when you go to online. read more...