Sunday February 16 2020
November 21, 2016

GoPro Hero 5 Black Detailed Review

When I came home from work last week, I saw a note on my door, saying that bla bla bla cargo company weren’t able to find me home, so I must go to their office to take the package!

GoPro Hero 5 Black BoxI turned back to my car and drove to the cargo office.

When I showed my ID to the cargo officer, she brought me my new baby; GoPro Hero 5 Black!

After waiting for it for a very long time, there it was!!

I grabbed it and came back home to see this new GoPro family member and test it asap for my readers here.

What I did this week was to test the new GoPro Hero 5 Black, note all the pros and cons, features, tips for using and etc. to be able to write you a helpful GoPro Hero 5 Black review.

Let’s start…

What Is in the Box?

When you unbox your GoPro Hero 5 Black, you’ll find these:

  • GoPro Hero 5 Black camera
  • GoPro Hero 5 Black frame
  • Rechargeable battery
  • Adhesive mount (Curved)
  • Adhesive mount (Flat)
  • Buckle for mounting
  • USB Type-C cable*

*x2 faster data transfer (compared to USB 3.0), can be plugged from both sides, all-in-one (HDMI, VGA and DisplayPort from one port). For more info, please follow the link.

General Features of GoPro Hero 5 Black

Below are the prominent features without any comments.

For personal opinion and/or pros and cons (my personal GoPro Hero 5 Black review), please scroll down to other topics.

Video Quality

Higher video quality of GoPro Hero 5 Black is 4K at 30 fps.

Second and third highest qualities go on like following:

2.7K at 60 fps

1440p at 80 fps

GoPro Hero 5 Black Video Resolutions Chart

Photo Quality

You can take 12 MP still photos.


There are 3 microphones on our GoPro Hero 5 Black right now! It is like HD in sound.

Voice Control

You can say “GoPro take a photo!” and your camera does it without touching it.

Touch Screen

See what you are shooting.GoPro Hero 5 Black Underwater


Up to 33 feet/10 meters without housing.

Single Button Control

When you push the button once, it powers on and starts recording.

Video Stabilization

Better videos by its built-in stabilization features especially in handheld shots.

Built-in GPS

This new feature tags the location of the videos you take.


There are more than 30 new mounts including Karma.

I really advise you to see the video: Introducing Hero 5 Black from official GoPro YouTube channel below to hear more details about the general features of GoPro HEro 5 Black.

GoPro Applications & Cloud 

There are three GoPro applications that GoPro users may want to use.

All three applications are both for IOS and Android.

These are optional to install, but might be really helpful.


You can see previews of your shot by using this app and control your GoPro easily from your mobile phone/tablet. Your phone/tablet becomes a remote controller with this app.

Like to share your photos and videos on social media?

Capture will help you achieve this and you can share your masterpieces on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and etc.


This is an editing app that will help you create quick fun videos by using media either from your gallery or Google photos library.

GoPro VR

By using this app, you can watch 360 degree outdoor videos.

Don’t look at the apps name, you can watch these videos with VR or your smartphone.

If you would like to check the GoPro Apps from, follow this link.

GoPro Hero 5 Black TouchscreenGoPro PLUS

This is something new. GoPro PLUS is GoPro’s cloud storage solution.

You are creating a GoPro PLUS account, first 60 days is free-of-charge, then you have to pay $4.99 per month.

While I am writing this GoPro Hero 5 Black review, GoPro PLUS is still in beta version.

What GoPro PLUS does is storing your videos and photos for you.

When you plug your GoPro Hero 5 Black for charging, it automatically uploads your media in your GoPro to the cloud. This creates a backup actually.

By this way, you can reach your media anywhere, anytime, edit/share your photos and videos easily.

You can upload;

  • 35 hours of video (your videos are compressed and become 1080p if they are greater than this value)
  • 62000+ photos (12 MP)

Pros and Cons of GoPro Hero 5 Black

Just like every product, this action cam also has some advantages and disadvantages.GoPro Hero 5 Black Front

If you are a follower of, you already know that I don’t only cover the “goods” of the products I review here, but also “needs improvement” parts.

After I tested the camera for one week both on land and underwater (up to 10 meters though), I made a list with bunch of pros and cons for you guys who are willing to purchase one.

I think this part is the heart of this GoPro Hero 5 Black review.

Pros of GoPro Hero 5 Black
  • Waterproof up to 10 meters/33 feet (a pro if you are not a scuba diver) without housing.
  • Voice control might be helpful in some situations (even accent sensitive like USA, Australia and UK), especially if you are using a selfie-stick.
  • Built in GPS is doing good to be able to track where the video was taken.
  • Default touchscreen lets you get what you see and eases to change settings.
  • Interface is far more user-friendly this time, it is really easy to navigate and change the settings, you are just swiping and selecting. That’s it!
  • There is a tutorial that helps you how to use your GoPro.
  • Video stabilization really works.
  • No built-in battery, so you can change it and/or carry spare batteries with you.
  • High quality videos and photos.
Cons of GoPro Hero 5 Black
  • Previous GoPro models were waterproof up to 40 meters/131 feet with standard housing (maximum depth allowed for recreational scuba diving is 40 meters, so this was okay), then if desired, underwater housing were being purchased and in that case GoPro was waterproof up to 60 meters/197 feet. Now with GoPro Hero 5 Black, are we excited about diving up to 10 meters without housing? No. For scuba divers, underwater housing will be an extra way to loose money.
  • GoPro Plus is good for editing and sharing, but it is NOT free.
  • RAW photo format is not available for all options (only available in wide view). Actually, this is the nature of RAWs, because RAW is the uncompressed version, but just wanted to let you know about it.
  • If you have GoPro batteries (as well as housings) from previous models, they are not compatible with GoPro Hero 5 Black. So, you will not be able to use them as back-up batteries.
  • My battery last in 2 hours. So, you’ll need spare batteries if you are an outdoor person and want to record longer.
  •  Camera name cannot be changed, so your camera name will probably be something like GP20304053. We were able to change its name with Hero 4.

I suggest you to see Alex Chacon’s GoPro Hero 5 Black review video below, it is always good to hear and read from different people.

Tips for Using GoPro Hero 5 Black

Here, I listed 4 tips that I thought it would be helpful for you guys here.

These tips can be taken into consideration as my personal suggestions.

To maximize the benefit from GoPro Hero 5 Black, these will definitely help you.

  1. Choose a high quality and well-known SD card. I always use SanDisk Extreme Plus 64 GB and pleased with that. There are also other options available on (click here for the list). If you choose to buy a low-quality SD card, you may encounter some problems like screen freezing that sucks!
  2. On, there are several kits available to purchase. I recommend to check them up before you make your decision. You may have an advantage in purchasing phase.
  3. If you are an outdoor guy like me, camping, scuba diving etc., buy at least one extra battery as a backup. By this way, you can charge one and use the other one without waiting and loosing time.
  4. Capture, one of the GoPro Apps I have mentioned earlier in this post, has a “Locate My Camera” that will make your GoPro make some noise. This would be a life-saver sometimes.

GoPro Hero 4 Vs. GoPro Hero 5 Black Comparison Chart

GoPro Hero 5 Black and Hero 4 Comparison Chart

What Does Seaman Say?

InterviewIf I sum up this GoPro Hero 5 Black review, GoPro Hero 5 Black has unique features like Voice Command, water-proof without housing and GPS, which is for sure an improvement. If you are an “always-own-the-newest-model” type person, then you will simply purchase this model. These improvements are more than enough for you.

But if you are not, then let’s go into more details…

Well, in terms of video and photo resolutions, GoPro Hero 5 Black is not a “wow” product compared to GoPro Hero 4 as you can clearly see from the comparison chart above.

Hero 4 and Hero 5 have the identical photo resolutions. 

In video resolution part, there is only a remarkable difference when you look at 720p. Hero 5 Black has doubled the fps value and smashed Hero 4s.

Sometimes I prepare surveys for DiveWithSeaman readers and one of them was about “our action-cam usage.

78% of DiveWithSeaman readers use 1440p, 8% use 4K. 

Then let’s look at these two options on our chart…

GoPro Hero 4 Black offers 1440p @ 80 fps and 4K @ 30 fps.

Guess what?

GoPro Hero 5 Black is offering the very same fps values.

What I say is that;

Case 1: If you are new to action-cam area and don’t have any yet, then I strongly suggest you to GoPro Hero 5 Black Poolpurchase GoPro Hero 5 Black (see my reasons in Pros section above).

Case 2:  If you have a GoPro older than Hero 4 series, again I strongly suggest you to purchase GoPro Hero 5 Black. There is a huge gap between these previous models and Hero 5 in terms of resolution.


Case 3:  If you have a Hero 4 Black/Silver, I couldn’t see the value in upgrading to this new model.

As I always say…

This is my personal experience though.

I write reviews, you make choices. 

Hope you enjoyed my GoPro Hero 5 Black review.

Thank you for reading.

Any comments or questions, feel free to use the comment section below.

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About Seaman


Hi, my name is Murat Demirağ. I have been diving since 1996 and teaching scuba since 2005. I wanted to share my knowledge through

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  • Luke
    2017-12-22 19:45

    Good afternoon! As a recent graduate I received the Hero 5 Black for my trip to the Cayman Islands and we are excited to take underwater pictures and videos with this! However when reading around it sounds like the “built-in” waterproof housing has a higher than normal fail rate and damages the GoPro out of use. I have never owned one before so I don’t want me first one to be a failed experience and I especially am afraid to ruin the product after going underwater the second time.. I am very meticulous so those seals and doors will be inspected and shut (I’ve noticed already that sometimes the door doesn’t “lock” and I feel like that is what is messing up owners with issues). So my question is, have you had issues with the product now that is has been around for a year+? Is that super suit worth the investment? I am worried I may expose the lens unnecessarily as I will need to remove the casing to charge the battery (which I only have one of). Any advice on this would be greatly appreciated and thank you for your help!

    • Seaman
      2017-12-26 13:08

      Hello Luke,

      Thanks for reading my post and your comment.

      If you want to go deeper than 10 meters/33 feet, you do need a housing. It is not something that we can discuss or ask “does it worth it?” It is a MUST to take photos/videos below 10 meters/33 feet. But if you are not a scuba diver, but a snorkeler, the camera itself is already waterproof up to 10 meters/33 feet, so you don’t need an additional housing. Don’t waste money in this case and trust the default (original) waterproof camera housing itself.

      You are right Luke, sometimes the door seems not to be locked. That’s also what I feel. When I feel like this, I clean the door with a dry towel and apply some vaseline. Truth to be told, I cannot trust the original housing, too, but I have never had a problem with it. Still working fine after one year, buddy.

      Just do whatever is written in users manual. Then trust your GoPro.

      Hope this helps.

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