DJI Promo Code Offer on B&H – Save Up To $239 on Select Drones and Gimbals

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Jun 152020

DJI offers an interesting discount of up to $239 on its gear on B&H using the promo code “BHOPTIC20”. The offer includes DJI Mavic 2 Zoom and Pro drones, Phantom 4 Pro 2.0 drones, and DJI Ronin-S and Ronin-SC gimbals. Additionally, there are interesting deals on DJI Osmo Pocket and Osmo Action.

From time to time, we are publishing the best current deals on filmmaking gear available in online stores. This time, the deals are specific to a certain brand and especially interesting for our readers in North and South America. Our partner store B&H currently offers interesting deals on select DJI drones and gimbals. The deals are time-limited until tomorrow June 11th, 2020. The discounts can be activated at checkout with the discount code “BHOPTIC20”.

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Why Should You Buy the DJI Mavic Air 2?

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Jun 142020

The Mavic Air 2, DJI’s latest drone, sits squarely between its other drones, the Mavic Mini and the Mavic 2 Pro, but what does it offer that its siblings don’t? Gena Nagata, a.k.a Potato Jet, takes all three for a spin to find out.

The size and convenience of the Mavic Mini made the world of drones suddenly incredibly accessible, and the Mavic Pro 2 offers some higher-end features that make it suitable for slightly bigger projects. As you’d expect, the Mavic Air 2 brings a little of both, and for Nagata, it’s enough that this is his day-to-day drone of choice.

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DJI Mavic Air 2 Review & First Look – 4K 60p, 1080p 240fps

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May 192020

DJI just announced the Mavic Air 2, its new generation of the popular consumer drone, which boasts 4K 60p video at 120Mbps and 1080p at up to 240fps slow motion, 48 Megapixel photos, 8K Hyperlapse function, a fly time of up to 34 minutes and enhanced autonomy features, and more. Let’s check it out!

Mavic Air … Two Years Ago

The original Mavic Air was launched over two years ago, and at the time, I flew it in Monaco at DJI’s launch event, and it offered video images with less compression than the more expensive Mavic Pro (Mark 1), in a much cheaper package. 

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Insta360 Unveils the One R Modular Action Cam ‘Co-Engineered’ with Leica

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Jan 082020

Insta360 has just revealed the (painfully) teased Insta360 One R “adaptive” action camera. The modular creation was co-engineered with Leica, and features a “unique interchangeable lens design” that lets you swap between modules for standard 4K, 360° video, 5.3K with a 1-inch sensor, and more.

It’s hard to see the Insta360 One R as anything other than a more versatile version of the GoPro Hero 8. While GoPro is showing off their Media Mods with attachable mics and lights at CES 2020, Insta360 just released an even more versatile creation that combines a “core” processing unit with a bunch of very useful modules.

“The concept is simple — one battery, one processor and a selection of quick-swapping lens Mods,” explains Insta360. “In an instant, ONE R transforms from a dual-lens 360 shooter to a standard action cam.”

Here’s the One R intro video just released by Insta360: 

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Sirui Swift M1 and Swift P1 Gimbals for Smartphones and Mirrorless Cameras

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Oct 172019

Sirui is launching an Indiegogo campaign for two new compact gimbals: the Sirui Swift M1 and Sirui Swift P1. The Sirui Swift M1 is designed for smartphones only, while the Swift P1 can take smartphones and mirrorless cameras up to 900 grams. Let’s take a closer look at these new stabilizers!


Image credit: Sirui

Sirui Swift M1 Gimbal for Smartphones

The Sirui Swift M1 is a gimbal for smartphones that is lightweight at just 498 grams/1.1 lbs, and that can take a maximum load of 300 grams/0.66 lbs. As a reference, the iPhone 11 Pro Max weight 226 grams. The gimbal folds down in two and has an internal non-removable battery that should last for 6 hours, according to Sirui. There are locking buttons on every axis, so the gimbal won’t move when you transport it.

On the front of the Sirui Swift M1, there is a little OLED display that shows you the mode you are in. Below the screen, there is a control jog and four buttons: functions/menu/record/power. On the back of the gimbal, there is a little trigger button to reset all the axis. On the left side, there is a small dial to adjust the roll axis or change modes.

There’s nothing extraordinary on the hardware side, so what makes this gimbal different?


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GoPro HERO8 Black, Mods and GoPro MAX Announced

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Oct 012019

One year after the release of the GoPro HERO7 Black and a couple of months after the launch of the DJI Osmo Action, GoPro is back with loads of new products: the GoPro HERO8 Black, a couple of modular accessories called Mods, and the GoPro MAX that replaces the GoPro Fusion. Let’s take a closer look at all these new products for action lovers!

GoPro HERO8 Black – If It Works, Don’t Fix It

The GoPro HERO8 Black replaces the previous HERO7 Black. Let’s start with the exterior design because there is not a massive difference between the two:

  • The HERO8 Black measures 66.3mm x 48.6mm x 28.4mm, whereas the HERO7 is 62.3mm x 44.9mm x 33mm.
  • The HERO8 Black weighs 126 grams, which is 10 grams heavier than the previous version.
  • You don’t need a frame to attach your HERO8 Black to all existing GoPro mounts. Instead, the two swapping mounts are now built-in at the bottom of the action camera. They are retractable, so you can fold them if you don’t need to attach your camera to an accessory.
  • The lens cover is slimmer and is equipped with Corning Gorilla Glass which, according to GoPro, is “two times more impact resistant than previous models.” Gorilla Glass is the same type of glass that is used on iPhones.
  • There is no HDMI port on the HERO8 Black.

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OCLU Action Cam: Delete Unwanted Footage on the Fly

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Sep 252019
OCLU Action Cam: Delete Unwanted Footage on the Fly

Offering in-body stabilization that seems to compete well with other action cameras on the market, the OCLU also has an aerodynamic design and a wide selection of accessories. These attachments and casings are sold as “Bundles” that are geared towards underwater usage or attaching the camera to specific pieces of equipment.

Perhaps most appealing to extreme sports enthusiasts is the ability to delete footage on the fly using the camera’s “Live Cut” mode. When you’ve finished filming a specific clip that you don’t plan to use, instead of hitting the record button again to stop, you press a different button to delete the clip. This allows you to avoid fill-in up your micro-SD card with unwanted footage.

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DJI Osmo Pocket – Tiny 3-Axis Stabilized Camera with 4K 60fps Recording

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Nov 282018

DJI just announced the smallest camera with mechanical gimbal ever – DJI Osmo Pocket. It can take 12MP stills and record true 4K video at up to 60fps. There will also be a handful of accessories available for the new Osmo Pocket.

DJI Osmo Pocket – Smallest Osmo ever. Source: DJI

Right now, DJI is having an event in New York City called “Because Life is Big” and they announced their smallest camera with a 3-axis mechanical gimbal ever – the DJI Osmo Pocket. Nino Leitner from the cinema5D team is attending the event to bring the fresh information to our readers – we will also share a video about the announcement with a first hands-on tomorrow.

DJI Osmo Pocket

Just like previous generations of Osmo, this is a very compact camera with a mechanical gimbal and a handle. Although the word compact is getting a whole new dimension here – the DJI Osmo pocket is incredibly tiny – it only weighs 4.1 oz (116g) and it is 4.8″ (122mm) long. The camera can record true 4K video at up to 60fps with 100Mbps bitrate.

The DJI Osmo Pocket uses built-in dual microphones and advanced noise-canceling algorithms to ensure high quality audio. The built-in Li-Po battery offers up to two hours shooting video in 4K (30fps), but it is not interchangeable. On the back of the camera grip there is a touchscreen display to monitor the image and control the camera, two buttons for quick controls and a universal port to connect various accessories.

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DJI Mavic 2 Is Coming – Leaks Reveal Not Just One, but Two New Drones

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Aug 012018

If you’re like us here at cinema5D eagerly waiting for some news on the anticipated DJI Mavic 2 drone, Well, here’s some solid information for you: British digital retailer Argos issued their latest (print) catalogue and in it, alert readers found two brand-new drone models : The Mavic 2 Pro and the Mavic 2 Zoom.

Cinema5D HQ actually received an invitation for an official event that should have taken place during July but this event has been postponed without any alternative date so far. So, now with everybody on the edges of their seats, let’s have a look at what surfaced in that aforementioned catalogue:

There will be not one but two models of the upcoming Mavic 2 drone and the difference lies within the actual camera gimbal. The so-called Mavic 2 Zoom will sport a 2x optical zoom (24mm – 48mm) while the Mavic 2 Pro will feature a Hasselblad camera with a 1-inch sensor but no zoom. You will have to decide whether Pro image quality or the flexibility of a zoom lens is your thing.

There’s no word on video recording capabilities. I assume 4K (UHD) recording but the amount of compression and the quality of the codec deployed are yet to be revealed. The gimbal itself doesn’t seem to be detachable, which is unfortunate but since we’re talking about a drone listed in the consumer section of the company’s lineup, it’s not surprising, really.

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DJI Mavic Air vs. Mavic Pro Footage Comparison

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May 282018

After our hands-on with the Mavic Air in Monaco earlier this year, it was time to put the Mavic Air up against its older brother, the Mavic Pro, and compare the footage. Which footage holds up better?

Does the Mavic Air Make Superior Images?

The irony about new technology is often that newer generations are simply better, even in a model that sits in a lower price bracket than a predecessor that is still in the market. And this is exactly what we are seeing with the new Mavic Air, which I took for a hands-on spin at their press event in Monaco earlier this year (watch the video here). The Mavic Air is a classic example for this conundrum that many manufacturers face, unless they want to artificially strip newer technology off of some of the features of older, but “higher end” version of their products (C200, cough-cough!).

DDJI Spark, Mavic, Phantom, or Inspire – Which Drone Should You Buy? by Oliver Kmia

 Action cams, Cinematography, Gear  Comments Off on DDJI Spark, Mavic, Phantom, or Inspire – Which Drone Should You Buy? by Oliver Kmia
Jul 162017

DJI has released many drones over the past few years. The different models may seem similar to a newcomer, but each one actually addresses a different need. In the end, it all boils down to size and portability versus image quality and performance. Here we’ll analyze the main differences between the DJI drones to help you determine which one is the right fit for you.


Price: The price point is an obvious criteria, but one must not forget all the associated costs of ownership, especially spare batteries which can run up to $169 each.

Portability: The drone size and weight will often dictate which model to buy. While the DJI Mavic won’t take more space than a 70-200mm f/2.8 lens in your bag, the mighty DJI Inspire requires a dedicated case for transportation. If you travel frequently, you may prefer a smaller model that fits in the plane’s carry-on compartment. The size also plays a role in public perception. Larger drones look more intimidating to the public and attract more attention (visibility and noise). Also, in some countries the applicable regulation on drones is based on weight threshold. The heavier it gets, the more constraints you will face (registration, mandatory parachute, and flight restrictions to name a few).

Image quality: Larger drones tend to carry better sensors and lenses. Entry-level models can only film in 1080p while the Inspire 2 can shoot up to 5.2K raw video. The Inspire 2 is also the only one to offer an interchangeable lens system while other models come with fixed focal length.

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Cinematic Motion with GoPro ND Filters – PolarPro Cinema Series Filter Review

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Mar 062017

A little edit of my recent skiiing holidays in Flachau, Austria. I used the GoPro Hero 5 black with the Karma Grip Gimbal and PolarPro ND filters – combo that works very well! Music is “High Speed Chase” by Terry Devine-King, licenced from

Let me know how you like it and feel free to share it!

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The timelapse sequences were shot on my Sony A7s II


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DJI announces the M600 Pro drone for payloads up to 6kg

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Nov 162016

DJI has announced yet another drone, but this time it is a lot larger than the Mavic Pro. The Matrice 600 Pro inherits everything from the M600 with the addition of improved flight performance and better loading capacity. The M600 now comes with pre-installed arms and antennas to help reduce the setup time. This is perhaps the biggest improvement over the older M600.


The airframe is equipped with the A3 Pro flight controller, Lightbridge 2 HD transmission system, intelligent batteries and battery management system. All Zenmuse cameras and gimbals are natively compatible and there is full integration with third party software and hardware.

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DJI’s New Mavic Pro Has All the Smarts of the P4, None of the Bulk

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Sep 282016

While drones can navigate pretty freely in the air, they’re still a hassle to port around on the ground. DJI’s newest aerial camera, the Mavic Pro, looks to change that. It boasts a foldable design that shrinks the drone down to a device that basically fits into the palm of your hand and slips easily into a backpack or purse.

The Mavic Pro may be far more compact than DJI’s Phantom models, but it doesn’t skimp on features. It features a 4K camera that can record at up to 3o (full HD at 96p) and snap 12-megapixel still images in the DNG or JPEG format. The lens has a 78-degree field of view and you’ll enjoy about 27 minutes of flight time with a top speed of 40 miles per hour in sport mode.

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GoPro Karma: Foldable, Removable Stabilizer, ‘More than a Drone’

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Sep 212016


GoPro finally revealed their Karma Drone, but in CEO Nick Woodman’s words: It’s so much more than a drone. Foldable, easy-to-use, and equipped with a removable stabilizer that you can use hand-held or mounted to something else, this is an incredibly impressive all-around machine.

Announced during this morning’s live stream, Karma is a big deal for GoPro. Not only does it let you take your Hero 5 Black, Hero 4 Black, or Hero 5 Session to the skies, the attached stabilization system can be removed and inserted into the included “Karma Grip” that lets you use it handheld or mount it to your helmet, bike, car, or self.

Combine that with GoPro’s built in digital stabilization and the stabilizer allows users to create buttery smooth footage never before possible with any action cam.

The included "Karma Grip" lets you take the stabilizer off your drone and into the world.

When it's folded, the Karma drone fits snugly into the included backpack case, alongside the Karma Grip and the Karma Remote.

When it’s folded, the Karma drone fits snugly into the included backpack case, alongside the Karma Grip and the Karma Remote.

Details like controller range, flight time, and other details that you would expect GoPro to mention right away were left out of the announcement.

Woodman, and by extension GoPro, instead focused on the experience of the thing. Like how easy it is to fly using the “game-style flight and camera control, how portable it is all folded up and packed in the Karma Case, and how cool it is that the stabilizer is removable.

Not to mention the The GoPro Passenger App, that lets a friend control your camera and see what you’re capturing using an iPad or iPhone while you pilot the drone itself.


If you dig into the landing page, you’ll find some details though. For instance, you’ll find out that that the Karma drone features built-in “No-Fly Zones” to keep you out of trouble, and a simple land button that brings the Karma drone back to you or the launch location, no matter where you’ve flown it to.

Battery wise, Karma will run for 20 minutes on a 1-hour charge, and GoPro has gone out of its way to make the drone easy to repair. Not just the “efficient” and “quiet” propellers that allegedly generate more lift with less noise, but the arms themselves can be replaced, and replacement arms come with all the tools you’ll need to do it yourself.

Here are some video intros to the Karma Drone, Karma Grip, and Karma Controller, along with product shots of the drone from all angles:

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The GoPro Hero5 Black: Waterproof, Stabilized, Voice Commands & More

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Sep 212016


GoPro is calling the new Hero 5 Black “Simply the best GoPro, ever.” They’re not wrong. Waterproof to 33ft out of the box and featuring 4K video, stabilization, voice commands, and more, the Hero 5 Black is a lot of action camera for $400.

This morning’s GoPro announcement was a product release bonanza. Not only did we get to see the Karma ‘so much more than a’ Drone, CEO Nick Woodman also debuted the new flagship GoPro Hero5 Black.

The big news on the surface is that the Hero5 Black can survive below the surface… of the water that is. Out of the box and without a casing of any kind, it’s waterproof to 10 meters (~33ft). This thanks to a new one-button design that takes away a lot of seams and looks pretty sleek doing it.



The second most ‘exciting’ bit of news about the Hero5 Black is the voice controls, which let you “stay in the moment” while capturing said moment. Available in 7 languages at launch, you can tell your Hero5 Black to start recording, take a photo, take a burst, and more.

Over and over during this morning’s release Woodman harped on the fact that GoPro’s goal was to make a camera that “disappears.” A camera that is so easy and intuitive to use that you forget you’re using a camera—an extension of your experience instead of something that interrupts it. Voice controls are a big piece of this.

Add to that the automatic upload to the cloud that comes with a GoPro Plus subscription—every time you plug in your GoPro to charge, it uploads automatically—and Woodman is getting closer to his “invisible” camera dream.

Here’s a quick into and an overview of “what’s new” with the Hero5:

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Review: Garmin Virb Ultra 30

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Sep 032016

Must be action cam season again. The recent Yi 4K camera—which is about as capable as a GoPro Hero4 Black for only half the price—really impressed me. While we’re all waiting to see how 800-pound gorilla GoPro will respond to that threat, Garmin has stepped into the game. Clearly, the company is swinging for the fences.

Garmin Virb Ultra 30



Innovative features like voice control and excellent case-on audio quality set it apart from a crowded field. Same resolution, framerates, and shooting mode as its competition. On-board sensors let you incorporate ride/stunt/adventure data into your videos. Works with most of the common mounts and accessories on the market.


Battery life is only meh. Image stabilization feature fails to impress.

The Virb Ultra 30 is the latest in Garmin’s Virb line of action sports accessories. There have been Virb-branded action cameras before, but the Ultra 30 represents a thorough rethink. It’s Garmin’s attempt at a kitchen-sink style, high-end action camera, and for the most part it really succeeds. Its resolution and speed reach up to 4K at 30 frames per second, or 1080p at 120fps, just like GoPro’s Hero4 Black. In fact it looks almost identical to a GoPro. Like the Yi 4K (another GoPro dead ringer) it also has a touchscreen on the back—something which the Hero4 Black lacks, but the mid-tier Silver edition has.

Remarkably, you can continue using the touchscreen even with its case on, which is waterproof to 133 feet. But that’s not the most notable thing about the case; Garmin specially designed a mic port for the waterproof case, and you may not believe it, but the sound is just as clear with the case on as it is with the case off. Crazy, I know, but watch the video comparison and you’ll see what I mean. It’s totally unprecedented in the arena of action cams, and its audio quality blows the doors off everything else.

Another terrific idea Garmin has implemented is voice control. You alert it by saying “OK Garmin…” and then “start recording,” “stop recording,” “take a photo,” or “remember that” (to add a tag to that part of the video). I tested it thoroughly while mountain biking some singletrack in the badlands of North Dakota, and I quickly grew to love the feature for one very important reason: It meant I didn’t have to take my hands off the handlebars. It’s always the dodgiest moments that you want to capture, which are the exact moments you really shouldn’t be letting go. Obviously, this applies to many different sports. It certainly doesn’t work perfectly, and your videos will always end with “OK Garmin, stop recording,” but true hands-free control is a major advantage.

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Garmin’s First 4K Action Camera Takes on GoPro

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Sep 032016

Garmin has unveiled its first-ever 4K action camera, the Garmin VIRB Ultra 30, with live streaming, voice control and image stabilization, now available on Amazon for $499.99.

It’s a step up from its older Garmin Virb XE Action Cam, which maxed out at 1080p video, but costs $100 more than its predecessor.

The camera’s sensors and GPS help it track location, distance traveled, and speed, which we’d expect from Garmin products, but it adds an LCD color touch screen that can be operated through its waterproof housing and voice control that allows users to tell the camera when to start and stop recording.

Image stabilization works on three axes, and live streaming can be activated with one touch, according to the company. The waterproof housing, which protects the camera in water up to 40 meters deep, comes free with the camera.

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New Sony FDR-X3000R – 4K Action Cam with Optical Stabilizer

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Sep 032016

In a week packed full of new camera announcements, the Sony FDR-X3000R action cam shows us that its not just about top-of-the-range, flagship cameras. With this significant announcement, Sony takes aim at the GoPro market yet again with their latest 4K-capable action cam with optical image stabilisation.

One of the main characteristics of the FDR-X3000R is the adoption of the Balanced Optical SteadyShot technology found in some of Sony’s handicam models. The B.O.SS system works by moving the entire optical path rather than just individual elements, and is supposed to achieve even greater shake reduction, making it ideal for action cam applications such as helmet or handlebar mounted operation.

In terms of hardware, the FDR-X3000R weighs only 114g, and features an 8.2MP Exmor R CMOS sensor backed by a BIONZ X processor, the very same brains inside the Sony ɑ7 range, which allows for a full pixel readout without pixel binning. In addition, the new low-distortion Zeiss Tessar f/2.8 lens is adjustable in-camera to f=17 mm, f=23 mm and f=32 mm for Wide, Medium and Narrow settings respectively, and features a 3x smooth zoom while recording. All of this is housed in a splash and freezeproof body, making this action cam suitable for a variety of situations.

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GoPro Hero 5 Photos and User Manual Leaked, Voice Commands Incoming

 Action cams, Gear  Comments Off on GoPro Hero 5 Photos and User Manual Leaked, Voice Commands Incoming
Aug 212016


Some photos of and a user manual for the upcoming GoPro Hero 5 have allegedly leaked online, showing a camera that looks like a hybrid between the Hero 4 and Hero Session cameras, will focus heavily on GoPro’s upcoming cloud service ‘GoPro Plus,’ and may feature voice commands.

The images first appeared on (and were subsequently pulled from) the Japanese blog Nokishita, but before they could be removed the folks at Mirrorless Rumors snagged some screenshots. That’s how we come to share these real life photos and an alleged schematic for the unreleased action cam.



The photos show more of what we reported in the past.

The camera will probably be waterproof out of the box (although an external casing will, we assume, still be required to take the camera to serious depths) given the rounded edges and rubberized look, it will feature a touch screen display, and otherwise looks very similar to the aging Hero 4.

Here’s another look at the leaked video from a couple of weeks ago, showing GoPro’s touchscreen interface at work:

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