GoPro

GoPro Fusion vs Hero 7

December 4, 2019

Wondering whether you should choose GoPro Fusion or GoPro Hero 7? Both are very popular action cams, but they offer different sets of features and capabilities. Continue reading below if you want to learn more about the differences between GoPro Fusion vs Hero 7!


After reading this article, you will understand better about

  • The unique capabilities of GoPro Fusion and GoPro Hero 7
  • The comparison of their design, size, and weight
  • The available connectivity options on each model
  • Which action camera that has better image quality
  • The comparison of their battery life
  • Which GoPro that will give you the best value for the money

Overview

GoPro Fusion

GoPro is certainly not a stranger in the world of action cameras. Their products are known to be robust and resilient, able to withstand a variety of environmental conditions and reckless abandon without complaining. However, GoPro Fusion is unique that it is the company’s first 360-degree VR camera. See also: Insta360 One X vs Insta360 One

It is not only the ability to create a spherical video that makes GoPro Fusion vs Hero 7 interesting. Even if you only want a regular video, this action cam still has a few cool things to offer. In the OverCapture mode, GoPro Fusion will record a spherical video and transform that into a ‘flat’ Full HD video. You don’t need to worry about the framing because GoPro Fusion simply records everything happening around.

Of course, GoPro is not the first one to offer such a convenient capability. But the entire feature set of GoPro Fusion makes it really compelling. Then again, some advanced features that have been introduced in GoPro Hero 7 are not present in GoPro Fusion, such as the HyperSmooth stabilization and the stabilized timelapse recording.

GoPro Hero 7

Many people agree that GoPro Hero 7 is one of the best action cams available in the market right now. Although GoPro Hero 8 has been released and taken the flagship position, GoPro Hero 7 is still a solid pick because GoPro Hero 8 is still very expensive right now. And with the release of a new model, the price of GoPro Hero 7 will gradually drop off, making it an even better value for the money.

GoPro Hero 7 is a compact and easily pocketable 4K action cam with a waterproof body, top-of-the-class image stabilization, and various mounting accessories. It is robust, powerful, and versatile.

 GoPro FusionGoPro Hero 7
Best Offerclick hereclick here
Product Dimensions1.6 x 2.6 x 2.9 inches
1.8 x 2.4 x 1.3 inches
Item Weight2.05 pounds
14.4 ounces

To say that GoPro Hero 7 is only a minor step-up from its predecessor is an understatement. While it is true that the maximum video resolution is still capped at 4K/60p, GoPro Hero 7 now will allow you to use the HyperSmooth image stabilization in the said setting. Older models can only use stabilization in 1080p or lower. This will allow you to capture your trips and adventures in 4K without dizzying blurs and shakes.

Design

GoPro Fusion

GoPro Fusion is quite bigger than any previous GoPro camera. This is not surprising because the camera needs two wide-angle lenses in order to get a full 360-degree view. As a note, GoPro Fusion is also notably bigger than most of its rivals in the same category.

The body is wide and square, but it is quite slim. So, slipping the cam into your backpack won’t be a major pain. GoPro Fusion vs Hero 7 both have waterproof bodies, but GoPro Fusion is only waterproof to 5m. The body is finished in a rubberized coating to ensure solid handling. GoPro Fusion is one of the few 360-degree cams that can withstand wetness at all.

You may have noticed that GoPro Fusion’s two lenses aren’t exactly symmetrical. According to the company, the off-axis lens placement is intentional. This is to allow the images to stitch seamlessly. Also, GoPro Fusion does not have any display screen – which is perhaps not really needed because the camera simply captures everything from every direction.

GoPro Hero 7

GoPro Hero 7 looks very similar to its predecessors. Well, the color has changed, from gray to black, but the overall rectangular shape is still similar. Also, the company says that the mic membrane of GoPro Hero 7 has been re-designed to reduce mechanical vibrations and improve sound quality. The unit is compact and lightweight. You can easily carry it in your pocket.

The rubberized finish will ensure a solid and confident handling. The body is waterproof to 10m without requiring any additional case. This will allow you to run under rain or swim with the camera without worry. An optional external case called Super Suit is still available if you want to go deeper, providing waterproofing to 60m.

On the back, there is a two-inch display screen that is bright and sharp. On the front, there is a small vice screen that will provide essential information like recording duration and battery level. As usual, the power buttons are on the sides.

Features

GoPro Fusion

GoPro Fusion is equipped with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi for easy pairing with Android and iOS devices. You can use the same GoPro mobile app that has been used by previous models, so you will be instantly familiar with the user interface if you have ever used a GoPro camera before.

That said, the camera control of GoPro Fusion is quite different. Once the camera is connected to your mobile device, you will be able to see a live view from both of the camera’s lenses. You can swipe around the 360-degree view, and you can toggle between video, photo, and timelapse.

Once you have finished recording a 360-degree video, you can use the OverCapture function in the mobile app to re-record the video to produce a ‘flat’ Full HD video. In this mode, you can use your phone’s gyroscope to select the point of view.

Unfortunately, GoPro Fusion doesn’t support some well-known GoPro functionalities like QuikStories and Super Photo. GoPro Fusion indeed has a built-in image stabilization system, but this is not the sophisticated HyperSmooth technology. GoPro Fusion can’t live streaming to YouTube or Facebook.

GoPro Hero 7

When choosing between GoPro Fusion vs Hero 7, you should consider whether you need powerful image stabilization or not. If you intend to use your action camera to record your trail runs and off-road rides, GoPro Hero 7 is probably a better choice due to its HyperSmooth image stabilization.

HyperSmooth can be used in the 4K/60p recording, and is highly effective for ensuring a smooth and stable footage even in the most intense adventure. GoPro Hero 7 also comes with TimeWarp, which is a timelapse mode with the image stabilization enabled.

The built-in mic is good, and definitely better than any previous model, but if you want the absolute best audio, you can attach an external mic to the USB port with a 3.5mm adaptor. Last but not least, GoPro Hero 7 now supports live streaming in 720p or 480p.

Video & Image Quality

GoPro Fusion

GoPro Fusion is currently one of the 360-degree VR cameras with the highest resolutions. It can record a 5.2K (5228 x 2624) footage at 30fps all by itself. You won’t need to do any manual stitching; the processing is performed automatically by the engine.

The image quality is utterly impressive. While the image stabilization won’t be able to eliminate heavy shakes and impacts, it is sufficient for dealing with vibrations and judders that occur when you are recording and walking at the same time. Colors are solid and vibrant. Images have plenty of sharpness and detail.

The image stitching is definitely better than most other 360-degree cameras, but it is not perfect. It is not very noticeable, but if you look closely, you may notice slight overlaps in places where images from the two lenses merge. When using OverCapture, you may want to try to avoid the stitching hiccups by framing carefully.

The audio quality is excellent. GoPro Fusion vs Hero 7 is designed to capture spherical surround sound to create immersion. It also has a built-in wind noise reduction. Additionally, GoPro Fusion is able to capture 18MP 360-degree still images.

GoPro Hero 7

Right out of the box, GoPro Hero 7’s video quality is outstanding. It has plenty of detail, contrast, and dynamic range. In good light, the images sport rich, vibrant colors, and some scenes do look a little warm. In gloomy outdoor conditions, the image quality remains great without noise or smudge. Dark indoors are more challenging, but the overall performance is still fairly good.

In order to get the most out of GoPro Hero 7, you want to use the Protune mode. This will allow you to tweak advanced settings such as the exposure compensation, sharpness, and ISO value, as well as boost the bitrate. You can also change the color profile from GoPro’s standard color correction to ‘flat’ if you want to grade the footage later in post-production.

The audio quality is a noticeable improvement from the previous models. While not entirely impervious to wind noise, the mic can attenuate most of them and deliver clear, crisp sound. GoPro Hero 7 can capture 12MP still images, and there is the Super Photo mode which is essentially a sophisticated HDR function.

Battery Life

GoPro Fusion

GoPro Fusion can record a 5.2K 360-degree video continuously for about an hour. This is a respectable feat, especially if we consider the fact that the image stitching is done automatically by the camera. Other models can only last for thirty minutes or so.

And the battery is removable. You can carry a spare battery when going on a long trip. When the current battery is dead, just take it out and insert the spare to continue recording.

GoPro Hero 7

When recording in 1080p, GoPro Hero 7 can last for about 1.5 hours. This is fairly good. The problem with GoPro Hero 7 is not battery life, but heat.

When recording in 4K/60p with HyperSmooth, GoPro Hero 7 can last for about 30 minutes. Any longer than that and the camera will shut off suddenly due to overheating. So, recording a stabilized 4K footage all-day long is out of the question.

GoPro Fusion vs Hero 7

- Spherical video + photos capture incredible 5.2K videos and 18MP photos of everything around you by shooting in every direction at once
- OverCapture Turn 5.2K spherical videos into traditional 1080p videos from any angle right on your phone. Full compatibility on iPhone 6s, iPad mini 4 and later devices; compatibility varies for earlier devices
- Transform spherical photos into traditional shots Crop 18MP spherical photos any way you want to create standard resolution photos that are easier to save and share
- Create + share on your phone preview and play back shots, edit videos and share them on the spot with the GoPro app. Full compatibility on iPhone 6s, iPad mini 4 and later devices; compatibility varies for earlier devices.
- HyperSmooth Video Stabilization Get gimbal like stabilization without the gimbal. HERO7 Black predicts your movements and corrects for camera shake to deliver insanely smooth footage
- Time Warp Video Capture super stabilized time lapse videos while you move about a scene. Increase the speed up to 30x to turn longer activities into shareable moments
Super Photo: Get the best photos automatically. With Super Photo, - HERO7 Black intelligently applies HDR, local tone mapping or noise reduction to optimize your shots
- Rugged + Waterproof: Share experiences you can’t capture with your phone. HERO7 Black is rugged, waterproof without a housing to 33 feet (10 meter) and up for any adventure

Conclusion

In general, GoPro Hero 7 is a better value for the money. It has a more durable body and a wider feature set. The ability to record 4K videos with the HyperSmooth image stabilization is awesome. It can also live stream. On the other hand, GoPro Fusion is only recommended if you want to create 360-degree videos and photos, or if you don’t mind giving up HyperSmooth for the longer battery life.

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