I’d seen other photographers feature behind the scenes’ type videos and thought they were really cool, so I invested in a GoPro Hero 6 before peak wedding season really kicked in, and was excited to try it out at my first wedding on August 3rd. I saved a bit of cash by purchasing it from Digital Rev. The buying process was really easy, and it arrived from Hong Kong in only a few days. There was a shipment delay of one day, but I had regular notifications throughout, which is always reassuring.
I’d failed to notice it was not supplied with a micro SD card, but I purchased one from Amazon and it arrived the following day.
Here’s a video where I talk about the experience:
Pre-Wedding Gear Test
I can’t stress how important it is to thoroughly test gear out before a wedding. However, it can be tricky to accurately replicate a wedding environment. I popped the card in, updated the software (or, so I thought…) and recorded some footage of my apartment. I synced up the phone app, and tested sending the footage to my editor to ensure he could edit the file ok. Everything looked great!
This was a two wedding weekend for me, and the plan was to test it out at both weddings. I had not mentioned to either couple that I would be doing any filming, as I like to give any new equipment a proper field test first. The GoPro Hero 6 was no exception, and I was glad I’d kept this on the down low!
GoPro Hero 6 Test: Wedding One
I was shooting at the beautiful Shireburn Arms in the Ribble Valley. It’s a petite venue on the inside, with plenty of space in the gardens. I tested out filming some sections of the ceremony, and that part went well. I recorded some other sections of the day as well, but they appear not to have saved. The recording is a very simple process, literally just stop and start, so I don’t know what went wrong.
The following day I was organising my kit for the wedding I had on Sunday, and could not find the GoPro anywhere! Every bag was searched, every pouch in my belt, and my car. I figured it had perhaps fallen out of one of my pouches… or perhaps I’d dropped it in the car park? I didn’t want to call the venue and then find it… but that’s eventually what happened. It turns out finding things in my car is easier in the pitch dark with a torch, than it is in daylight. Who knew?
Anyway, the GoPro was now found, and I set about importing the footage.
Not finding it until 9pm at night meant there wasn’t a lot of time to troubleshoot the recording issue. At this stage, I wasn’t sure if the problem was the software, the camera itself, or the memory card.
I was hoping it was not the camera. Digital Rev has an awesome 14 day no quibble return warranty. However, I figured I had blown that as when the camera got lost in my car, it had got wedged between the seat mechanics and the car plastics, and neither party survived that encounter without battle scars.
GoPro Hero 6 Field Test: Wedding Two
This didn’t go so well.
This was a shorter coverage event, so I was starting just before the ceremony. I recorded some test footage as guests arrived and tried playing it back. It seemed to be working fine. I hit record just before the bride walked into the room, and after I’d shot my stills, I had a quick peek at the GoPro screen. It was showing a red error message.
This bride was not aware I was using the GoPro Hero 6, but I was still gutted that her entrance may not have been recorded.
I tested the camera out a few other times during the wedding. Each time I got the same error message, which alluded to there being a card problem.
I’d read online about some people experiencing micro SD card compatibility problems. For this reason, I’d purchased one that was on the list of recommended cards on the GoPro website.
GoPro Hero 6 Review: Final Verdict
I got home from the wedding, and I was gutted! I was pleased with my stills, but the ceremony had been in a beautiful, intimate candlelit room. I’d have loved to have shared some of the moments during the ceremony with the couple.
I plugged the camera in, and it was clear the video had not recorded properly. All of the files were corrupt.
It also appeared that the software update I had previously done had not worked. I tried updating again a few times, but it only got as far as 33% each time.
I then attempted it via the phone app and it worked. Success!!
So – the jury is out on this!
I feel like I’ve had a rollercoaster weekend with this camera. It recorded, then it didn’t. It was lost, and then it was found. Then it worked at the non-critical moments but failed when I needed it most.
To end on a positive note, here’s what I loved about it:
- It’s robust. I mean, I’ve dented it already, but I’m a wedding photographer, so of course I have! 😉
- It’s ridiculously simple to use
- It was super light on top of my camera, I could have easily left it there all day
- The image stabilisation is insanely good!
- The quality of the footage is really good quality, even on the lower 1080 HD mode
GoPro Hero 6: What’s Next?
I clearly can’t return this now, unless it’s actually faulty. So, I ordered a Sandisk memory card direct from GoPro. When this arrives, I’m going to thoroughly test it out before my next wedding.
I’ll report back at the end of August with how that all went!
Also, I got this handy hot shoe adapter for the GoPro Hero 6 from Amazon for less than a tenner. You’ll need this if you want to pop it on top of your camera. I was pretty impressed with the built quality of this for the price.