GoPro HERO 6—Better Color, Contrast, and Clarity with HERO 6 vs. HERO 5So far, the GoPro HERO6 has blown us away with it's improved image quality over the GoPro HERO5 Black. All of us here at Backscatter loved the GoPro HERO5 Black and thought that the underwater footage looked great, but then we saw what the GoPro HERO6 can do.
Our underwater testing conditions were not exactly great due to poor visibility and overcast conditions, but even in these tough conditions, the GoPro HERO6 clearly outshines the GoPro HERO5 Black. Watch the video to see for yourself, or read on for our conclusions.
When comparing the GoPro HERO5 Black and GoPro HERO6 side by side in wide shots without a filter, it's apparent that the GoPro HERO6 is light years ahead of the GoPro HERO5 Black in terms of contrast and clarity. It produces richer blacks, with more detail found in the shadows and highlights thanks to the improved dynamic range. The Auto White Balance on the GoPro HERO5 Black tends to lean towards the green side underwater, whereas the GoPro HERO6 has a significantly improved shift to a much more appealing blue underwater. The best results are achieved when a filter is used, and these color shifts are apparent whether a filter is used or not. The GoPro HERO6 produces a more natural and pleasing blue background than the GoPro HERO5 Black.
GoPro HERO 6 Still Works Well With Lights and a Filter at the Same TimeNo matter how awesome your water conditions are, the fact is that if the clouds are overcast and you need some light for your scene and subject, nothing beats a pair of at least 1200 lumen lights to get really balanced color while using a filter. Conventional wisdom says you should not use filters and lights together as in most cases it makes the lights look overly red. However, we've found this produces the best results from a GoPro when using either the Shallow (5-20ft) or Dive (20-50ft) filter, with great looking foreground color.
High Frame Rate and Improved StabilizationThe new imaging processor of the GoPro HERO6 is not only responsible for the improved image quality but also the faster 4K 60p and 1080 240p frame rates. The faster 4K 60p frame rate when played back on a compatible 4K 60p TV gives footage a stunning, hyper-real look that must be seen to be believed. Shooting at 60 frames per second in 4K or even 240 frames per second in HD can give you the option to play back split second interesting behavior or fleeting moments in stunning slow motion so that you don't miss a single detail. Slow motion also adds stability to shaky handheld footage, which compliments the camera's 3-Axis image stabilization, and can give even a basic scene a graceful, cinematic-like quality.
Narrow Mode Not Accessible In the Supersuit HousingThere are some interface changes that Macro shooters need to know. While we love the constant innovation that GoPro is known for, it seems they always forget about us SuperSuit housing users.
The GoPro HERO5 Black's 'Narrow' field of view setting allowed us to get macro shots without the need for any special skills to crop in the editing process. We are a little bummed because the GoPro HERO6 has dropped the 'Narrow' setting and now instead uses a touchscreen-only slider crop control.
This means this feature can only be used on land, and not in the SuperSuit. While technically you can work around this by pre-setting the crop before installation in the housing, you won't be able to change any modes or anything really without losing that crop setting. This basically means that you'll need to shoot most of your macro in full frame and crop down in post. If you are a die-hard macro junkie, you might even be happier to just buy a GoPro HERO5 Black for the narrow setting and keep your editing workflow simplified and easy. We will hold out hope that the GoPro gods will bestow upon us a 'narrow' field of view setting accessible in the housing on their next firmware update. Help us encourage them to do so by dropping them a line at: https://gopro.com/feedback
FLIP6 Is Compatible With 5 Generations of GoPro Right Out of the BoxBackscatter has been making underwater accessories for GoPro since way back to the HERO 1, and now we're very proud to have the most backward-compatible GoPro filter and lens system ever with the FLIP6. FLIP6 is fully compatible with HERO 3, 3+, 4, 5, and of course now the GoPro HERO6.
The idea behind the Flip Filters system is that you can run any two filters, lenses, or combination of the two. Just pick whatever works best for your dive profile or the shot you are after. Choose from any of the 3 different depth-rated blue water color correction filters, SHALLOW for between 5-20 feet, DIVE for 20 to 50 feet, and DEEP for 50 feet and below, or the +15 MacroMate Mini lens which is the sharpest macro lens available for GoPro underwater. We've developed these filters after literally hundreds of hours of test dives and we're confident that this color formula is what the narrow white balance range of the GoPro needs to unlock the best possible color underwater.
The FLIP6 is a complete filter system to cover all of your GoPro shooting needs. In addition to the blue water filters, we also have filters for green water, fluorescence, topside polarizing and ND filters, and powerful macro lenses like the Macromate Mini and the +10 Close-Up Lens when your subject is not quite macro, but still, requires a tighter shot.
HERO 5 and HERO 6 Share the Same Supersuit HousingBecause the bodies are the same, they'll use the same exact Super Suit housing as well. This also means that the FLIP6 system will be a change in title only from the FLIP Filter system, they will be exactly the same thing save for the name just to keep it current and consistent.
Remember, you'll need to remove the protective lens on the GoPro prior to it going in the SuperSuit. We developed and include in every FLIP6 kit this little Lens Removal Tool to make this a bit easier. Just slide it in and rotate and it will safely pop right off of there. Now just slide the camera in and latch up the housing.
ConclusionDespite its identical outward appearance, the GoPro HERO6 is quite a few steps ahead of the GoPro HERO5 Black and the FLIP6 system unlocks its full potential underwater. We hope that GoPro will have a firmware update soon to access full zoom for macro shooters using the Supersuit. Except for the macro capability, the GoPro HERO6 is the clear choice over the GoPro HERO5 Black for the vast majority of underwater shooters.
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