GoPro Hero3 Black


The GoPro Hero3 Black is a tiny camera with a lot of nice features, including a moderately high maximum frame rate (240 fps) and the ability to control the camera from a smartphone.


Unfortunately, the Hero3 has a big disadvantage for video analysis: The lens is extremely wide angle, so there is a lot of radial distortion. Even when the camera is set for a narrow field of view, there is very clear curvature of "straight" lines that are off-center. The newer Hero3+ is supposed to have less distortion, but we do not have one to test. A Hero3 should work well for one-dimensional motion that goes through the center of the image, but expect systematic errors in 2D or off-center 1D motion.


Right-click on the link GOPR_wide.MP4 and choose "Save Link As..." to download a 60 fps movie with the normal wide field of view.
Right-click on the link GOPR_narrow.MP4 and choose "Save Link As..." to download a 60 fps movie with narrow field of view. Notice the curvature in the ceiling and desk.

GoPro website
Comparison of Hero3 with the newer Hero3+ (Search YouTube for more reviews.)

Primary Author and Contributors

  • Primary Author: Bob Teese


The movie files available for download on this page are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution No-Derivative-Works Non-Commercial 3.0 License. You may distribute these materials to your students or use them for educational purposes in your classes, but other uses may require permission from the author(s).