GoPro unleashes all-new HERO9 Black to fix your biggest complaint

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GoPro has announced a new entry into its best-selling action camera range: the GoPro HERO9 Black. When it comes to lightweight and compact cameras, GoPro is comfortably ahead of the pack. In fact, its name has now become interchangeable with the entire action camera category for most people. However, if you’ve had complaints about its recent devices – chances are, the HERO9 Black solves ’em.

With the HERO9 Black, GoPro has finally introduced a front-facing display to its flagship camera. This was always one of the biggest omissions on previous GoPro kit. Sure, you could open the smartphone app to line-up your shot (or ask a friend to peer around the back of the selfie stick to make sure everyone had managed to squeeze into the viewfinder) but it wasn’t ideal.

Thankfully, those days are behind you. With the HERO9 Black, you’ll be able to line-up shots on the GoPro using the 1.4-inch colour front-facing display even when it’s attached in an awkward position – like at the end of your snowboard, squeezed into the wheel arch of your car, or strapped to the end of your arm. Of course, there’s still a rear touchscreen display that lets you tweak the settings and review footage you’ve just shot.

In fact, the HERO9 Black has a larger rear display than previous models, now clocking in at 2.27-inches, which should make it easier to toggle settings and navigate through the menus – perfect if you’re in the middle of an adrenaline-fuelled extreme sport and want to make a couple of quick changes.

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Elsewhere, the HERO9 Black has a truckload of improvements, including a redesigned sensor that lets you shoot in 5K video. This means you’ll be able to crop into your footage and still leave with a 4K file to watch in pixel-packed detail on your Ultra HD telly. Footage shot in 5K is limited to 30 frames-per-second compared with the 60fps option available at 4K and the 120fps in 2.7K and 1440p. The HERO9 Black is capable of shooting 20-megapixel still images too – and all of the previous camera modes are still supported, including SuperPhoto, Burst Mode, Continuous Shooting, Night Lapse and more.

There’s also an extra 30 percent extra battery compared to its predecessor. Granted, the new front-facing screen will probably drain some of that added battery life, so we’ll have to get our hands on the HERO9 Black to see whether it’s a substantial upgrade on its predecessor.

GoPro has overhauled its stabilisation smarts, now branded as HyperSmooth 3.0, which includes in-camera horizon levelling. Previously only available in the companion smartphone app, this means you’ll be able to twist and spin the camera as much as you want – but the image in the viewfinder (and the resulting footage) keeps the horizon perfectly level. This should prevent any nausea from any travel sick-prone viewers watching your mountain bike shudder down a rocky path. Of course, you don’t have to switch this option on if you’re looking for a more authentic bouncy look to your videos.

The built-in folding mounting fingers which were introduced with the HERO8 Black and GoPro Max make a welcome return to the HERO9 Black too. This design tweak means you won’t have to pop the GoPro in and out of a case to mount it to any of your accessories. The case is waterproof to 10metres, so you can take it for a swim (and a pretty deep swim at that) without any worries.

“HERO9 Black reflects our commitment to delivering what our customers have been asking for, including more value for their money,” said Nicholas Woodman, GoPro’s founder and CEO. “HERO9 Black is a beast of a product, and GoPro subscribers can get it for £100 off at GoPro.com while also enjoying unlimited cloud storage of their GoPro footage, up to 50 percent on everything at GoPro.com and no-questions-asked camera replacement. And we’re not done, with more value adds coming to GoPro subscribers later this year.”

HERO9 Black is available right now, starting from £429.99. You can pick it up from GoPro.com for £329.98 with a one-year subscription and existing GoPro subscribers will be able to upgrade to the latest camera at the discounted £329.98 price too.

For those who don’t know, the GoPro subscription offers no-questions-asked camera replacement, unlimited cloud storage for GoPro photos and video at original quality, enhanced live streaming to GoPro.com with fewer restrictions than other live streaming services, and up to 50 percent discount on mounts and accessories. The GoPro subscription is available for £49.99 annually or £4.99 a month.

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