You can use a GoPro HERO4 Black or Silver as a webcam or for real-time capture to a computer. But it’s not quite as simple as just plugging your camera in with a USB cable. Here’s a guide on how to do it.
GoPro HERO4 Silver
The HERO4 Silver shoots video up to 4K15 or 1080p60. For slow motion, it can shoot 720p120 or 480p240. And it has a 12MP sensor that shoots photos saved as JPGs (no RAW) measuring up to 4000x3000 pixels.
The Silver was the first GoPro to have a built-in LCD screen on the back. You could add a screen onto some earlier models, but the HERO4 Silver was the first to have it built into the camera's body. It's a design that several of the newer models have since incorporated.
Along with the HERO4 Black, the Silver was the last in the line of GoPro cameras that required an external housing for the camera to be waterproof. Starting with the HERO4 Session and continuing through newer models, GoPro starting making the camera's main body waterproof, with a waterproof housing only necessary for more extreme uses at depth.
After extensive use and testing, here are my practical recommendations on the best SD cards for GoPro cameras.
GoPro cameras have used three different USB charging cables. Which type of charging cable you need depends on which camera you’re using. Here’s a master list.
If you’re taking your GoPro out on the water, sometimes you need something that combines flotation with extended reach. Here are some of the best GoPro float pole options.
If your underwater photos are coming out blue and with washed-out colors, a good option is to add an underwater filter. There are several approaches; Backscatter’s Flip7 is unique and convenient.
Controlling a single GoPro camera remotely is pretty straightforward. The most obvious way to do that is to use the GoPro mobile app. But what if you want to control more than one camera? For that, you’ll need to use a dedicated remote. Here’s an overview of how it works.
Turning on a GoPro is usually very simple. But sometimes you can run into situations where your GoPro won’t turn on. Here are some things to try.
Formating the GoPro’s SD card gets the card ready for use and keeps the filesystem healthy and minimizes the risk of errors. Here are the various ways to do it on different GoPro models.
Here’s a rundown of the video resolutions, framerates, fields of view, and Protune options available when shooting video on the GoPro HERO4 Silver.
GoPro’s QuickCapture feature is designed as a one-press way to power the camera up and start shooting immediately. There are a few tricks to using it, though.
Wondering if you can use a 128GB, 256GB, or 512GB microSD card in your GoPro? So long as you’re using one of these GoPro models and the card is fast enough, you can.
Here’s a rundown of the options for charging your GoPro depending on the model of camera you’re using.
Ugly water drops on the GoPro lens can really ruin the shot. The XClear Hydrophobic Lens Protectors are designed to solve this problem. Here’s my take on how well they work.
If you’re looking to get split photos of above and below the water line, a dome port is what you want. Here’s a rundown of how they work with GoPros.
It’s always a good idea to format the SD card in the camera. Here’s a rundown of how to do it with recent GoPro models.
The Wasabi Power Hand Grip is an external USB battery and hand grip in one. It’s a convenient way to add extra battery power to extend your GoPro filming.
Wondering if the touchscreen on the back of your GoPro camera works underwater?
Wondering what the GoPro spot meter does? Here’s an explanation what it does, how it works, and which GoPros have it.
Sennheiser has released a microphone for the GoPro HERO4 Black and Silver, the MKE 2 Elements. It attaches directly to the camera and is waterproof.
GoPro cameras are best known for video. But they’re also very capable at taking photos. Here are some real-world examples I’ve taken with the HERO 4 Silver.
If you’d prefer your GoPro not to draw attention to itself while filming, there are several options for making it more discreet.
If you’re looking to add a neutral density, polarizer, or macro filter to your GoPro HERO4 Black or Silver, PolarPro has a 3-pack that’s worth a look.
If you’re trying to decide whether to upgrade to the HERO5 Black, or have found a good deal on the HERO4 Silver, here’s how they compare.
These aren’t your everyday run-of-the-mill GoPro selfie sticks. Each offers something unique that sets it apart.
This is a detailed comparison of how the GoPro HERO4 Silver compares with the HERO+ LCD, including video, photo, and time-lapse modes, as well as other features.
Wondering which of your HERO4 accessories will work on the new GoPro HERO5 Black? Here’s a rundown of what will and won’t work.
Some GoPros, like the HERO7 Black, offer a choice between two color modes in the photo mode: GoPro and Flat. Here are some examples and when they’re best used.
Some GoPro models give you the option to choose between high, medium, and low levels of sharpening. Here are some examples to help demystify what these different settings do.
Trying to work out which type of GoPro housing is best for what you want to use it for? Here’s a rundown of the different types.
The GVB 3-Axis Action Gimbal smoothes out the jerkiness that comes naturally with handheld video footage shot with GoPro cameras.
That distinctive fisheye look isn’t always what you want. Here’s how to remove it from GoPro videos with the free GoPro Studio app.
GoPro photos have that distinctive fisheye look. But that might not be what you want all the time. Here’s an effective and quick way to remove the fisheye look using Lightroom.
Can you use a GoPro as a travel camera? Absolutely. But before you rely exclusively on your GoPro for that once-in-a-lifetime trip, here’s a rundown of what I see as the main pros and cons.
There are multiple options for doing long-term timelapse with a GoPro HERO4 Silver or Black. Here’s a rundown of the options–each has its own pros and cons.
There are a lot of GoPro cases available. GoCase is shooting for the premium end of the market. Here’s my hands-on review of their smallest, compact case for the HERO4 Silver and Black.
Battery life is a weak point of GoPros. The new Brunton All Day battery pack for the GoPro HERO4 series aims to do something about that. Here’s my hands-on review.
While there are several areas of overlap comparing the HERO4 Silver with the Session, there are also some key differences. Here’s a detailed breakdown of how they compare in terms of features, capabilities, and performance.
If you’re looking to improve the sound quality of your GoPro videos, using an external mic will make a big difference. Here’s a rundown of what mics will work with which GoPro.
Nitecore’s chargers for GoPro HERO4 or HERO3/3+ batteries can charge two batteries directly and a third indirectly. It also has an LCD screen with percentage progress and integrated USB cable.
A detailed side-by-side comparison of how the GoPro HERO (2014) compares with the HERO4 Silver in terms of specs, features, capabilities, and performance.
If you’re wondering why your GoPro is breaking your videos up into smaller segments, it’s not an error and you’re not doing anything wrong. It’s normal–here’s why.
GoPro has released new firmware for the GoPro HERO4 Black and Silver. It includes new video modes for the Black and a new timelapse video mode for both cameras.
Wondering how much video footage or how many photos you can fit on a memory card with the new GoPro HERO4 Black and Silver cameras? Here are some guides.
Here’s a roundup of some options for spare batteries and battery chargers for the GoPro HERO 4 Silver and Black editions.
A detailed side-by-side comparison of how the GoPro HERO4 Silver compares with the HERO3+ Silver in terms of features, capabilities, and performance.
Here’s a detailed comparison of how the GoPro HERO4 Black and the HERO4 Silver compare in terms of features, capabilities, and performance.
GoPros use quite a lot of icons for various modes and functions. But it’s not always clear what they mean. Here’s a cheat sheet.
Here are some practical recommendations for SD cards for the GoPro HERO4 Black and Silver. Not every microSD card you can find will work–you’ll need a card that’s fast enough to keep up with the high-bitrate recording that these cameras are capable of.
Review of the Fotodiox Pro WonderPana Go H3+ Standard Kit for installing a polarizer filter or neutral density filter to the GoPro HERO3+, HERO4 Silver, and HERO4 Black.