The memory card form factor that works best with a GoPro HERO5 camera is a microSD card. microSD cards come in multiple write speeds and formats. Which combination is best for your workflow? In this video, author Richard Harrington showcases some microSD cards available for your GoPro HERO5 camera and how they impact your shoot.
- Now the memory cards in the GoPro HERO are ridiculously small. You see here, it is practically the size of a thumb nail and it's really easy to lose this. But the memory cards had to go along for the ride, which means small camera, small memory card. Now, this is a Micro SD card and you can get them in a couple of different flavors. Micro SD, SDHC, or the newer SDXC which is pretty important, we'll talk more about those speeds in just a second. Now, if you're used to something like a standard SD card size, something more along like this.
This is really the same thing, it's just a smaller version. This, in this case, is an adapter and what's designed to happen here is we can actually take this and put this smaller card into this larger carrier card, which will make it easier to mount it into things like a computer or a traditional card reader or even a full size DSLR. But the GoPro uses the smaller Micro SD card form factor. I've put a small, adhesive label on here, with my initials, that's because I frequently work on multi-camera productions and I'd recommend labeling your cards if you're going to be using them with other people.
Be careful to avoid touching the gold contacts, on that side, you don't want to get oil. This is typically used in lots of devices, usually consumer electronics, cellphones, tablets. If you need to expand the capacity of an Android phone, these are pretty typical. What's going to happen here, is GoPro is using the same standard, so this means that you can get really high capacity cards in this day and age. You have to be mindful. How much do you want to put on a card? You've got to balance out all of the factors.
Where this goes in the GoPro is going to vary, depending upon the camera that you're using. In this case, I've got the HERO5. I'm going to go ahead and turn that camera upside down here and you'll see we've got the battery door. If I press and slide, that's going to open and you'll see inside there a very tiny slot for the card. This is designed that very carefully, with the finger nail, you can press and it's going to release. I recommend you do this with the camera facing down, so the card doesn't shoot out and fall on the ground.
You could then carefully grab it, with your finger nails, and remove the card. The label is going to face towards the back of the camera screen, think of it as the text here going to the text on the back of the camera. The contacts go towards the front. You just slip that in, very carefully, into the slot, line it up, and then gently press, using your finger nail.
If you miss, you might have to try again and press until it clicks into place. You'll know that it's properly seated there when it clicks in. Let's close that and snap it shut and with the new waterproof sealing, you have to be very careful that that closes properly. Here on the Session, it's also pretty similar. You'll see a small door here, on the side. If I press that it's going to open up and I can gently use that door.
You'll see that there's a small card in there as well. It's at a diagonal angle, so when you press, it's going to remove, reach in, and carefully remove this. You can use tweezers if you're fingers are a bit bigger. Similarly, just put it in so the label is facing towards the bottom of the camera, line that up so it fits, and you can gently press that into place.
It should click and latch. Once that's done it, you'll be able to close the door and snap it shut. If there's no card in the camera when you try turning it on, you'll likely see an error that says no SD card and the camera won't actually be able to record or take a picture. It'll also, typically, beep or give you some sort of indicator that you need a memory card. Alright, I put these in here, if I power this on and we don't get any particular warnings, it's up and it starts to record in this case.
That means the memory card is properly accessed. Same thing, if we turn this guy on and it powers on and it seems ready to go, I'll see here that there's an icon on the back, indicating the total storage capacity and that the SD card is properly mounted. With the older versions of the GoPro, things were a bit risky with the cards. They could vibrate and pop out, but now on both the HERO5 Black and HERO5 Session, the card is behind a closed, latched door, which greatly cuts down on the chance that things are going to shake loose or fall out.
To keep everything safe, I strongly recommend you invest in a card wallet. This is one here, available from Pelican and what you'll see is that there are dedicated slots to hold the cards. For example, there's a small notch here to easily hold the Micro SD card and if I'm using an adapter here, that will also easily slip into place, which is great. This means that the cards can be safely secured. You don't want something this small floating around your pocket, you see it falls right out.
You can have problems of it going through the wash or losing it with your change. Take a card like this, carefully place it in one of these slots, these are static resistant, going to keep everything safe, and then you can easily close that up and latch it and you've got a nice hard, protective case. The requirements for memory cards do change from time to time, as GoPro has updated firmware or you try to access some of the more robust shooting formats, like 4K at higher frame rates, you're going to want to make sure you have a fast enough card.
While you might be able to get by with the Micro SD card or an SDHC card for shooting HD video or shooting standard stills, as you start getting into mode, like burst mode or fast time lapse shooting, or you start looking at other types of shooting styles, like shooting raw photos or 4K video at high frame rates, you might find that you need the newer SDXC format to get the best performance. Remember, faster cards, while they cost a little bit more, are really quite a bit more robust at transferring data.
Alright, let's explore how we can go ahead and get that information out of the camera and into another device for backup.
- Choosing a GoPro model
- Understanding your GoPro camera's anatomy
- Charging the battery
- Tips to extend battery life
- Accessing video and photo shooting modes
- Setting white balance for videos and photos
- Shooting in Burst or Time-Lapse mode
- Shooting wirelessly
- Capturing VR with the GoPro Fusion
- Essential accessories for every GoPro owner