GoPro HERO 11 Black : our complete test

Visually, nothing seems to distinguish the latest GoPro HERO 11 Black from its predecessor, the HERO 10, except for the “11” written on the side. But then, what did GoPro put inside to justify this new edition? Are these new features worth it? And most importantly, do you have to buy it? The answer in our full test!

GoPro HERO 11 Black : the design

gopro hero 11 black 2
Dimensions (W x H x D)71.8 x 50.8 x 33.6 mm
Weight154 g
Rear screen2.27 inches (touch)
Front screen1.4 inch
Waterproofing10 meters

As we said in the introduction, the GoPro HERO 11 Black has exactly the same design as the HERO 10. So much so that the only way to differentiate them is to check the number on the edge. As for measurements, the HERO 11 measures 71.8 mm in length, 50.8 mm in height and 33.6 mm in depth, for a weight of 154g.

Small tour of the owner :

  • On the front, there is a first 1.4 inch color screen, the removable lens, a microphone and a status light.
  • At the back, we have the large touch screen of 2.27 inches, as well as another indicator light.
  • On the left side (where it says “11”) is the power button and a water outlet with a second microphone.
  • On the right side, we have the waterproof door behind which are the battery, a microSD card slot (up to 1TB) and the USB-C charging port.
  • on the top, the shutter button and a third microphone.
  • below, we find the famous folding rods to attach the camera to a support such as a tripod or a selfie pole.

Unlike the new DJI Osmo Action 3, the small front screen of the new GoPro is not touch-sensitive. So you’ll need to control the device using the touchscreen on the back or the mobile app. The rear screen is bright enough to be used outdoors without any problem.

The fixing system is still the same as on the previous generations, with its two small articulated rods to be positioned and screwed on a support. On this point, we can regret that GoPro did not evolve towards a more practical and fast system as can be the ingenious quick release with magnets and hooks of DJI, but their system is still effective and if you are a regular GoPro camera, you will not be disoriented.

Finally, the same goes for waterproofing, the HERO 11 can still go down without an additional waterproof housing to a depth of 10 meters.

👍🏻 The fact that the GoPro HERO 11 Black has the same design as the previous versions has a valuable advantage: all accessories from versions 9 and 10 are compatible with this new edition. Very good news if you are the lucky owner of one of these previous versions.

GoPro HERO 11 Black: what’s new?

A new sensor and a new format

Let’s start with THE big news that is likely to leave you with a strong feeling. The GoPro HERO 11 Black incorporates a new 1/1.9-inch sensor, larger than previous versions, but more importantly it brings a new format in addition to the traditional 16:9 and 4:3 formats: the 8:7 format.

Usable in 5.3K up to 30 fps and in 4K up to 60 fps, the big advantage of this new almost square format is that it allows to shoot landscape and portrait videos at the same time. And that changes everything: no need to choose a format in advance, you shoot in 8:7, and you can then crop your video as easily as a photo, in post-production, on the GoPro Quik application, and without losing resolution. The same video can be cropped in portrait for TikTok or Instagram, and in landscape for Youtube.

As you can see, this new format has the advantage of being much more versatile. The only small drawback of this format is that the slow motion will be limited to x2 and in 4K maximum. So for quality slow motion, you’ll have to go back to traditional formats.

A new perspective: Hyperview

The new GoPro 11 sensor also introduces a new viewing angle: the Hyperview angle. While the Superview angle, already present on older versions, is equivalent to a 16mm lens, the new Hyperview angle is equivalent to a 12mm lens.

Available in 16:9 format only, this mode gives an ultra-wide feel to videos, adding a sense of speed and making first-person videos even more immersive. Ideal for motorcycle, mountain bike and ski enthusiasts.

Be careful though, this mode tends to distort the image, especially on the sides, where the distortion will be more visible.

Maintaining the horizon

While the HERO 10 allows you to hold the horizon at 45 degrees, the HERO 11 now allows you to hold the horizon straight at 360 degrees. So you can literally turn the camera around, the image will not move. Very useful, especially for vloggers.

While you had to get a Max Lens Mod to achieve this feat with a HERO 10, you can now do it with the HERO 11 right out of the box. In addition, the Max Lens Mod limited the resolution to 2.7K, while it is now possible to use this function with a resolution of 5.3K.

HyperSmooth 5.0 stabilization

The HyperSmooth stabilization is now at its version 5.0, and at this level, nothing to complain about, the GoPro HERO 11 still does the job well.

A new mode has been added: the Autoboost mode. This mode replicates the HERO 10’s maximum stabilization Boost mode, except that it is now automatic. The advantage is that the camera will now decide to use it or not, depending on the situation. So we might as well not deprive ourselves of it and let it work.

On the other hand, it is important to note that the stabilization works much less well in low light situations. So avoid running at night. 😁

Night modes

GoPro is pleased to introduce three new shooting modes specifically designed for nighttime: Light Painting, Vehicle Lights and Star Trails. These functions use the lights present in the darkness to create beautiful light trail effects. This can be done with an editing software of course, but it is now possible to do it automatically, and without any specific knowledge.

In the Light painting mode, the camera opens the shutter for an extended period of time, allowing you to draw light trails using a light source (lighter or flashlight, for example). In a similar way, if you shoot a road at night by activating the Vehicle Lights mode, the car lights will form beautiful lines of light as they move. Finally, Star Trails uses the Earth’s rotation to create circular light trails from the stars in the night sky.

10-bit colors

This new feature will especially appeal to fans of color retouching. Available in 4K and 5.3K, shooting in 10-bit color will give you greater flexibility in post-production, capturing 64 times more colors than in 8-bit video, which will allow you to bring out details in shadows and highlights better.

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GoPro HERO 11 Black : performance

Photo and video quality

Sensor1/1.9 inch CMOS
OpeningF2.5
Image formats16:9
4:3
8:7
Photo resolution27.13 MP
Video resolution (16:9)5.3K up to 60 fps
4K up to 120 fps
2.7K up to 240 fps
1080p up to 240 fps
Video resolution (4:3)5.3K up to 30 fps
4K up to 60 fps
2.7K up to 120 fps
Video resolution (8:7)5.3K up to 30 fps
4K up to 60 fps
ISO range100-3200 (photo)
100-6400 (video)
Video formatMP4 (H.265 (HEVC))
Maximum video rate120 Mbit/s
Zoom (photo)2x
Zoom (video)2x (1080)
1.4x (2.7K and above)
Idle time2.7K : x8
1080p : x8
4K : x4
5.3K : x2

The GoPro HERO 11 Black can take 27MP photos and shoot at the following resolutions and frame rates:

  • in 8:7 format: in 5.3K up to 30 fps, and in 4K up to 60 fps
  • in 16:9 format: in 5.3K up to 60 fps, in 4K up to 120 fps, and in 2.7K up to 240 fps

In good lighting conditions, the photos and videos captured by the HERO 11 are clearly of very good quality. In automatic, the camera does an excellent job of balancing exposures and you get images that are well contrasted, punchy and rich in detail. The difference with the HERO 10 is not obvious, but the HERO 11 is slightly better. For us, this is the best quality you can find on an action camera.

On the other hand, it still has a hard time in low light conditions. Indeed, with the limited size of its sensor, we lose quality and detail as soon as the light levels drop. Nevertheless, the automatic mode manages to limit the damage by giving priority to faces, and we could also see that functions such as Light Painting adapts better to the dark than other action cameras.

Audio quality

Number of microphones3
RAW audio captureWAV format

On the sound side, the three microphones placed around the camera are rather good quality. Of course, you’ll never get as good a result as with an external mic, but the camera does a good job of reducing surrounding noise and voices are clear enough, even outdoors.

Battery and autonomy

Drums1720 mAh removable Enduro battery
Charging timeAbout 3 hours
Operating temperature-10 ºC – 35 ºC

Good news, the Enduro battery that was previously available as an option is now directly integrated with the GoPro HERO 11. According to GoPro, this battery offers 38% more recording time, is more resistant to low temperatures and charges faster.

More concretely, you should not expect a crazy difference with the standard battery, even if it is true that it is superior. In our tests, 20 minutes of recording at 4K 120 fps drained the battery by 50%, and 20 minutes of recording at 4K 60 fps used about 40% of its capacity.

The interface

The GoPro HERO 11 is equipped with the same two front and rear screens already present on the HERO 10. The touch screen works very well, it is very fluid and responsive, and we never encountered a bug. The interface and menus have evolved slightly, and remain as simple to use as ever.

Overheating

Like all action cameras, GoPro’s tend to overheat after a while, and the HERO 11 is no exception. Undoubtedly, the video recording will eventually stop automatically in this case.

However, we could see that this new GoPro generally fared rather better than many other models. In 4K/120ips, we were able to shoot about 15 minutes before the camera stopped, and about 25-30 minutes in 4K/60ips. Note that the camera was placed on a table during these tests, and that a camera in motion will tend to overheat less because of better air circulation.

GoPro HERO 11 Black : the price

gopro hero 11 black 3

The GoPro HERO 11 Black is available in two packages:

  • The standard pack for $549.99, which includes the camera with an Enduro battery, curved adhesive mount, mounting loop, USB-C cable, knurled screw and case.
  • The pack with accessories for 599,99€ includes all the contents of the standard pack, plus a second Enduro battery, a handle, a headband and a clip, as well as a 32GB SD card.

Note that these two packs are also available respectively at 399,98€ and 449,98€ (at the time of writing) with 1 year GoPro subscriptionThis includes unlimited backup to the GoPro cloud, unlimited use of the GoPro Quik app, and a “no questions asked” camera replacement service in the event of a glitch.

➕ The GoPro HERO 11 Black also comes in a “Mini” version, available for £449.99 on its own and £549.96 with accessories. This version has the advantage of being more compact, which can be convenient depending on your use, especially since it is equipped with the same sensor as the “normal” HERO 11. On the other hand, it has no screen (you have to go through the application for settings), and its battery is integrated, impossible to replace it, you must recharge the camera directly.

Conclusion: should you buy the GoPro HERO 11 Black?

Even if the GoPro HERO 11 Black is more expensive than its direct competitor, the DJI Osmo Action 3, it is for us the best action camera on the market, thanks to its image quality above the rest. And the new features that appear with this new version, such as its new sensor with its 8/7 format, should please many content creators.

Buy it if you want to…

… you want the action camera with the best image quality. Even though the competition is doing pretty well, GoPro is still the best at this. The HERO 11 can shoot in 5.3K (compared to 4K for the DJI Osmo Action 3), and even at the same resolution, the HERO 11 offers a better rendering.

Don’t buy it if…

… you absolutely need features that are only available from the competition. For example, if you’re into extreme sports and need a camera that can be attached to a mount in no time, the DJI Osmo Action 3’s mounting system is better. And if you need a camera capable of filming in 360°, then it will be better to turn to what Insta360 offers.

I already have the Gopro HERO 10, should I buy the GoPro HERO 11?

The GoPro HERO 10 is already excellent, and if your only concern is image quality, don’t spend your money on the HERO 11, the difference isn’t worth it. However, if some of the new features of the new edition can be useful to you, such as the 8/7 format, the Hyperview or the Night modes, it may be worthwhile to upgrade to 11.

You can also find our complete test of the DJI Osmo Action 3 (click here).

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