GoPro Hero 11 Black In-Depth Review

Today GoPro announces not one, but two new action cameras. First, is the GoPro Hero 11 Black, which continues the same form factor as the existing Hero 10. As always, there’s a slate of new features including a wider digital lens option, faster frame rates for certain resolutions, a bigger sensor, and plenty more practical features like (optionally) automatically clearing off the SD card once it finishes uploading to the GoPro Cloud. All of which I’ve detailed below.

I’ve got my full in-depth review on YouTube already up, with my written review not far behind. But till that gets finished, you can hit play above, which is packed full of comparison footage (even to the new DJI Action 3 camera, also released today). The video has YouTube chapters in it to easily navigate around, though, you can hit any of the quick-links to send you right to the applicable section. Go forth and enjoy:

0:00 Overview & Hero 11 Black Mini
0:38 Pricing & Models
0:58 New Sensor & FOV
1:52 10-Bit Color
2:39 New HyperView Lens
3:30 Horizon Lock
3:59 HyperSmooth Auto Boost
4:58 Night Video Modes
6:04 SuperView in 5K/60 & 4K/120
6:35 App Changing Digital Lenses
7:07 Desktop Aspect Ratio Changing
7:29 Photo Mode to 27MP
8:02 Enduro Battery included
8:45 New Easy/Pro Mode Controls
9:24 New Video Management Modes
10:20 Does it overheat?
11:50 Auto Highlight Videos
12:12 Automatic SD Card Cleaning
12:30 Leftover Compatibility Tidbits
13:09 Is it worth the upgrade?

Then, atop that they announced the new GoPro Hero 11 Black Mini. This camera takes the guts of the Hero 11 Black, and stuffs it into a smaller case without a back screen. It’s not quite as small as the old GoPro Session was, but it’s a gazillion times more powerful. While that camera won’t start shipping till later in October, I had some brief hands-on time with it recently. That video is somehow coming up soon (somehow…), where I detail the key differences to the Hero 11 Black. After all, there were some space (and cost) savings to be made, with fitting it into a smaller form factor and a lower price. While I finish editing that (and the DJI Action 3 Video, and XYZ, and ZYX, and…), here’s a quick teaser pic.

GoProHero11-Black-and-Mini

Again, that video is on the way, and then a full in-depth review later in October (when the rest of the sports tech world will have hopefully calmed down a bit).

With that – thanks for watching (and reading!).

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46 Comments

  1. Steven

    Big Request to Ray:
    Please don’t post your videos in 25 frames per second. Especially when they include camera or drone tests – where you paste footage from a tested webcam working at 30 frames per second.

    In all Yours videos with camera / drone tests We can see how the movement is cutting / shaking.

    Even if you record the original material on the tested camera / drone in 25 frames – please remember that 99% of displays in monitors / TVs / smartphones work at 60/120 frames per second. And very often they are not able to smoothly display the motion from a movie shot with 25 frames (60 don’t dive by 25).

    So Big Request one more time: Do All Your movies in 30 / 60 fps.. This is the only format for sport based content (especially GoPro / drone materials)

    • MaciejP

      He is based in Europe and we have 25fps not 30fps.

    • Generally speaking, my A-roll (the part where you see me talking) is shot in 25fps, because in Europe, my lights are set to that. So I don’t do that, then I’ll get flickering in some scenarios. Obviously, outside, that’s not an issue, and in this case, I could have set it for 30FPS for the a-cam (non-GoPro). Except, then I’ll forget to change it back later, go back to the DCR Cave, shoot something, and have to throw away all my footage.

      Now, the workaround would be to have Final Cut Pro convert that from 25FPS to 30FPS. Almost all my action stuff is shot 30/60/120/etc. And, that’s logical, maybe I’ll do it for my Action 2 video in a second, since it’s an easy toggle. The only downside is it costs me some time in Final Cut, but that’s not a big deal.

      All that said, your TV actually isn’t the one doing the decoding here. YouTube is. YouTube transcribes it all from whatever I upload it to, to a gazillion resolution/FPS combos. 🙂 I’ll be honest, nobody has ever made this request/suggestion before, but I’ll keep it in mind.

    • Steven

      YouTube don’t touch / convert fps.. Only resolution and compression formats… You can always check this in Details for Nerds (right click in Youtube player)…

      If You will convert content in Final Cut Pro from 25 to 30 FPS, there will be one double frame every 5 frames (1 2 3 4 5 5 6 7 8 9 10 10). So some video frames will be display twice as long. Is very visible.

      25 FPS is only Europe thing from analog TV era. It is synchronised with frequency in electric grid (50 Hz). But in digital era is a thing from the past. I talking as person who is from Europe (Poland born / Portugal living).

      You have a lots content from GoPro / drone cameras, which in default configuration shots in 30/60 fps…
      And a lot of sports content, which looks best in higher frame rates (like 30/60 fps).

      If You have problems with mixing and matching FPS, the simplest and the best solution is simply STAY for all content (studio, outside, without lighting, with lighting, GoPro, drone, anything else) in 30 / 60 fps… And stay in 30 / 60 fps in all phases of production / distribution (Final Cut Pro, YouTube, Facebook etc).. And in on all Your cameras…

      You can mix 30 with 60 FPS (so use 60 FPS material from drone / GoPro in 30 FPS material published in Youtube) – conversion from 60 FPS to 30 FPS if flicker free.

      But not 30 FPS 24 FPS or 30 FPS 25 FPS – there will be always visible flicker.

      PS. With good modern studio lighting there is no any flicker. This lighting is used also for 24 FPS cinematic content (in Europe with 50Hz grid or USA with 60Hz grid) – no problem.

      T
      The

    • Dave Lusty

      It’s funny, when Ray said in the video about the Hero 10 walkthrough getting a million+ views in a year, I was also thinking “this guy needs my advice about YouTube”…
      😉

    • Yeah – I get it. I really do – everything your saying is logical in a perfect world. But unfortunately, it’s just not practical at scale.

      Let’s take the hotel room I’m in right now. That lighting? Doesn’t work at 30FPS (as I found out last night). I have to switch to 25FPS.

      When I travel to various company offices, trade shots, etc… all have whatever random lighting is in them, and in Europe, that’s virtually guaranteed to be 25FPS. I can’t afford to go shoot stuff and then have to re-shoot it.

      And all this entirely ignores the fun of shooting AMOLED displays on watches, which have all sorts of wonky frame rates I’m constantly trying to shoot around (and 25FPS actually fixes it almost all the time).

      If I remember, I’ll edit an outside timeline in 30FPS, and trust me, I’d love nothing more than to shoot everything in 30FPS and not worry about constant sync issues. But, I also can’t afford to lose footage and hours of time when things don’t line up. :-/

  2. Vladan Machacek

    Can you please tell me what framerates are in the 8:7 and 4:3 mode please?
    As no one seams to actually say it, not even GoPro

    Many thanks

  3. Zach

    Good stuff!
    Some things I’m hoping come up in the full review…

    GPS – Will the Hero 11 capture GPS while mounted upside-down from bike handlebars?
    This is my biggest gripe with the Hero 10 – it has failed to capture GPS on every single bike ride mounted upside-down.
    Workaround is to purchase 3rd party software, or use Garmins older virb edit and (manually) try to sync the fit files from my Garmin Edge. Extra work that shouldn’t be necessary.

    PC software – any word if it will be coming back? I realize there is 3rd party software, but I like the Gopro optimized UI, however their old PC Quik software being unsupported is really glitchy and lacking. This means using a phone or tablet to (slowly) process a video and take up space, when my desktop PC is wayyy more powerful.

    Aside from that, the horizon lock has me considering an upgrade from the Hero 10 to 11 (I believe the 10 requires max lens mod for this). The Hero 11 stock lens on the other hand may not even justify the need for the max lens for general bike footage?

    • Bruce Burkhalter

      That is weird about GPS. I have a Hero 10 and it always upside down on my bike. I checked a bunch of photos and they all have correct GPS. K-Edge mount with a Wahoo Roam. I have two Hero 10’s and neither have this issue.

      That must very frustrating!

  4. Alyssa

    My Photography Gear: The Cameras and Equipment I Use Daily

    Perhaps it’s time to update this article, as the date on it is years ago.

    Great site btw!

  5. Joseph

    Ray,

    The “App Changing Digital Lenses”, do you know if this is a feature only available to Hero11 or will also apply to the Hero10. Also are there any other features that are not exclusive to the Hero11?

    Thanks for great reviews

  6. Gianni

    Hi , What about lens mod and is it any usefull on the 11?

  7. Guy

    Really surprised there was no Max 2 announcement, especially with Insta360 bringing the X3 out. GoPro seem even further behind now in this area. Just bringing out year on year incremental changes on the Hero and forgetting the Max seems odd.

    • Dave Lusty

      Completely agree with this. The Hero 11 is so similar to the Hero 10 but a Max 2 with new CPU and bigger screen would be a huge step up and an immediate buy for me even though I bought the Max earlier this year. I can’t justify the 11 even though I’d like one as the 10 is good enough. I can only assume they have one ready, maybe a second marketing event so they each get sufficient attention?

  8. Mario

    Hi,

    do you know how long will battery hold for 11 mini model?
    Action 2 lives only approx half an hour that is way too short

    • gingerneil

      The mini looks awesome for running. Really hoping it can be configured to take photos as well as video, and not rely 100% on manual extraction of frames in the app to get a photo.. But not holding my breath.

  9. Adam

    It might just be me, but the Mini seems like a bit of a disappointment. Comparing sizes, it’s just not that “mini”.
    Hero 11 – 71.8×50.8×33.6mm = 122,553mm2
    Hero 11 Mini – 53x52x38mm = 104,726mm2
    So by volume the Hero 11 Mini is 85% of the Hero 11.
    Compared to the Hero Session 37.9×37.9×36.1mm = 51,854mm2 roughly 42% of a Hero11

    You look at how often users talk about battery life for their Gopro, sure an endurance battery gives a little more, but let’s face it most people have a spare. It made sense that the Session had a fixed battery, but I don’t see the same logic in the mini.

    I assume you have to make settings adjustments on a connected phone, and phone connection hasn’t been a strong point for many folks.

    As I said it may just be me, but I think the Mini just loses more than it gains. Maybe a niche product. I look forward to your review, where I’m sure you’ll elaborate and fill in what I might be missing.

  10. David

    Will any of the new features come to the Hero 10 via firmware?

  11. Cypher

    Hi Ray,

    In the video you mention that there will be a Dropbox link for original files but there is none in the description.

    Not a real bummer but if you do side by side comparison of the cameras, it would be very nice to have the original files of the same scenes to compare for yourself without YouTube.

    I am impressed by the DJI audio in the bay of Alcudia.

    Best regards,

    Cypher

  12. Aaron

    hey mate, great review as always. you’re my go to source for anything action tech related.

    something I’ve been wondering is how the hyperview mode compares to using the Max lens mod? as I understand it, the Max lens mod caps out at 2.7k 120, but hyperview can be used at 5.3k 60. but hyperview is digital, and the only review I’ve read that covers this says they prefer the Max lens over hyperview. can you comment on this?

    I’m a big fan of the Max and use it all the time as a single lens camera. my only reason for not upgrading to the hero is because the Max lens caps out at 2.7k.

    • Adam

      I have been scanning the internet and cannot find anything on this either! please answer go pro guru!

    • The FOV for the Max Lens mode is 155*, whereas Hyperview is 141*. However, keep in mind that Max Lens Mod is still limited to 2.7K recordings, whereas HyperView can go up to 5.3K. Inversely, I think Max Lens mod looks ‘cleaner’ because it’s optical, versus a digital squeeze of Hyperview.

      That said, as much of a Max Lens Mod fan as I am (I’ve gone long periods with only using it), the lack of ability to quickly get back to a Linear mode kinda sucks. So, I’ll probably just use Hyperview and be more aware of how best to use it (e.g. which situations look good/bad).

  13. Scott T

    Where’s the mini review, keen to see if this will be a good Session replacement (for helmet camera) but looks a tad big…

    What’s low light recording performance like? never saw it mentioned apart from the Night Video modes…

    • Matthew

      Second looking forward to the mini review. Plus what’s the battery life like?

    • Mini review will be closer to availability, which is currently slated for late October.

      As for low light recording, it’s the same as before – not super great.

      For battery life on the Mini, GoPro is saying you can use the Hero 11 figures, minus about 10-15%. However, they also say that the “apparent battery life” for most users will feel more, since there’s no screen. Thus, there’s nothing burning battery in between shots. It records and hangs out in a low-power mode compared to the more power hungry Hero 11 (which also has GPS that the Mini doesn’t).

    • gingerneil

      Is the Mini *only* video, or can you change modes?

    • gingerneil

      Ray has answered this elsewhere – it’s video only.

  14. Thija

    Hi Ray,

    Thanks for the review !

    Be careful for the Price, the Hero 11 is 449.98€ with subscription, the Hero 10 is 399.98€ (link to gopro.com)

  15. scarlett isla

    You shouldn’t require a channel for snorkeling as reds do not truly begin to decrease discernibly until around 15 feet.

    I continuously utilize a lodging with my camera indeed in case snorkeling as a security degree. Fair my inclination.

  16. Eugene

    How is the battery life? My VIRB decided it wouldn’t charge the battery inside it any more so I had to carry their external charger. Sold it with some accessories for enough for a GoPro 8 but seems every time I look down at the GoPro its already powered off due to a low battery. Seems to be less than an hour compared to the VIRB which was getting three. Now I review my video and find I missed most everything.

  17. Nuno Pinto

    Hi Ray, Couple years ago, there was some fuss around GOPRO Lab and the possibility of controlling the cameras using for example a garmin device (iq app). That would be great , specially with the MINI. Do you have any ideas of that will ever come to life. Cheers

  18. Tony

    Hi, Ray, thanks, my default go to for gear updates!
    Horizon lock:
    1. Is the lens cover still replaceable? ……have gone through a few Max mods from scratches…
    2. Does the new 11 have Horizon Lock for all FPS, Res and Lens view modes…ie Max Mod has this but videos max out at 2.7k 60fps, SV….will 11 go all the way to 5.3K…or just 4K 120fps…

    • 1) Yup!
      2) Not all lens views, just Linear only. So basically, it’s not as wide as the Max Lens mod.

    • Tony

      OK great so full horizon lock for all resolutions and frame rates just limited to Linear lens…that’s quite something and puts this way out front of competition…will still use the Max Mod for that wide angle shot though….

  19. Thanks for your review on the GoPro Hero 11.

  20. RubenKelevra

    Can you please stop recording content in 24/25 fps? The stuttering where the smartphone / computer is trying to align this low quality content to 60/120 fps is extremely eye tiring.

  21. Tom

    Hey Ray,
    Great video as usual! Question: sounds like you already have the 11 Mini in your hands. Can we expect a review before Oct.25th launch or does the GoPro NDA restrict that? Thanks!

  22. TwoWheelsDC

    Very helpful, thanks Ray!

    Probably a little late to ask, since my Hero11 is being delivered today, but what are your thoughts on mounting the Hero11 on an upside-down Garmin Out Front-style mount? I currently use a Cycliq Fly12 mounted under my Garmin as a dashcam, but I wanted the GoPro for other reasons and figured it would give me much better footage and be more flexible than the Cycliq. Since it will be mounted upside down, I’m not sure what the best settings to use…I think my ideal output would be stabilized 4k/60 (60 just in case there’s stuff I want to slow down).

  23. Rand

    Ray, I’m trying to figure out the right gear for rider safety, i.e. recoding drivers during close calls or worse. The mini seems like a really big hammer for this nail and doesn’t appear to have enough battery. There doesn’t seem to be anything that will last into a few hours or more of a ride. Do you have any recommendations (i’d love a video on our options and your thoughts on the current state of tech to solve this).

  24. Augsburg

    I’d be curious as to the resolution differences (if any) between the previous GoPro 9/10 models and the new 11/Mini for video capture. As you point out, most of us use vid caps for still photos taken with our GoPro and I’d like to know if vid caps from the 11 and 11 mini are any better than my current 9. (Improved vid caps would be a reason I would upgrade from the 9 – as this is a feature I use frequently.)