Is the GoPro Hero the Perfect Camera for Stand Up Paddleboarding?

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First some background…

Before getting our GoPro Hero 8, when we were out on Stand Up Paddleboarding adventures we would capture moments of the trip with our iPhones. We found this method of filming somewhat limiting as you can see in the results by watching these short videos here

While we were able to take some great photos, it was more difficult to take video.

Problems taking photos & videos on iPhone

  1. You need an iPhone waterproof case
  2. These generally don’t fit over the shatter proof screen protectors we have
  3. You need to have a lanyard or similar to ensure you don’t lose your phone into the water. However lots of waterproof cases don’t seem to have attachments for these.
  4. Having a phone around your neck is cumbersome. However we found it is best to wear something with pockets and belt loops. This way you can place the phone in your pocket and attach the lanyard to the belt loops.
  5. You can’t film while you are also in the act of paddling

These limitations meant that the quality of the photos and footage we were getting were a bit repetitive and we found it difficult to capture the session in the way we really wanted. So SUP Bloke went on a spending spree and bought a GoPro Hero 8. Since this purchase it has been a whole new ball game.

Our thoughts on the GoPro Hero 8 for Stand Up Paddleboarding

We’ve compiled a list of what we think are the pros and cons of the GoPro Hero 8 from an entirely unbiased point of view to help you work out if a GoPro Hero 8 is the right camera for you. As mentioned we purchased the camera outright however this article does contain affiliate links should you wish to make a purchase we may receive a small commission.

Click the image to find up to date price or to make a purchase

Pros and Cons of GoPro Hero 8

*It’s a really tough little camera and is built for action with it’s waterproof case it can handle most environments
*I actually find it really difficult to easily turn on and off which results in draining the battery
*GoPro have a dizzying array of attachments which allow you to attach the camera almost anywhere. Check out our favourite here
*With so many different attachment options unless you have a couple of different cameras you will find yourself always changing mount options
*It is really easy to download the images straight to your iPhone for editing
*We have found the bluetooth transfer slow and suggest getting a card reader which attaches to our phones which is a lot faster
*USB means charging is easy in your car*Make sure you have a couple of back up batteries, most of our sessions last a few hours and unfortunately we’ve found we’ve needed to change batteries mid paddle (again not really a con, just a ‘be prepared’)
*The camera takes some really great clear images compared to the iPhone and has different options for wide or narrow focus
*The microphone isn’t great in windy conditions
*GoPro Hero 8 has voice commands which come in really handy for taking that selfie and hands free filming*I have found the touch screen to be a little finicky when toggling between the live view and the viewing media option
Attachments for using GoPro while Stand Up Paddleboarding
Some of the many attachments you can get for your GoPro to film Stand Up Paddleboarding

The cameras functions

The camera has three main settings for capturing images. The settings can be toggled between by pressing the power button once the camera is on. They are;

  • Time Lapse – great for speeding up video if the subject matter is a little boring if played out in real time
  • Video – for taking real time video
  • Photo – mode for taking still images

Within each of these you are able to make adjustments to tailor the settings to your individual needs.

Does the GoPro Hero 8 do everything you want and need?

To be honest I don’t think there is a camera that can do absolutely everything, however for my money the GoPro Hero 8 comes pretty close. I think it’s adaptability is its best feature. For the most part you would be able to use it for pretty much all of your filming and photography needs. You can check the current price of the GoPro Hero 8 here. For more information on the best attachment to use while stand up paddleboarding check out our post on the handle bar attachment.

Handle bar attachment for the GoPro Hero 8 can be converted for use on SUP paddle
GoPro Hero 8 attached to SUP paddle handle

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