Product Update: The Contour HD 1080p has been discontinued and is no longer available for purchase.
Hi and welcome to my review and comparison between these two great cameras.
This review will help you if you’re weighing up whether to get the GoPro HD HERO or the ContourHD camera but want to know the differences before you buy.
This quick look at both cameras will hopefully help you make the right decision in your purchase.
We’ll look at and compare the quality of the video and photos they take, size, weight, price and other important factors you want to know about.
HD Video Quality On Both Cameras
First, let’s look at the quality of the HD video each camera takes.
As you can expect, you get nothing less than the highest HD recording options from both of these cameras.
Slow-motion recording (60 fps) happens at 720p which is still HD (16:9) or your can choose a lower non-HD recording setting: WVGA (848×480 pixels).
The ContourHD 1080p has the same HD video setting options as the GoPro HD Hero so no difference in screen resolution.
The only differences would come down to the quality of the final picture.. things like color, contrast, smoothness etc.
Size and Design
Next, let’s look at the design and size of the two cameras.
GoPro is known for being a small compact camera, but did you know that the ContourHD is actually lighter than the GoPro?
That makes the ContourHD the smallest (lightest) HD action camera in the world weighing just a mere 4.3 ounces as compared to 5.3 ounces which the GoPro HERO weighs.
One ounce isn’t a whole lot. Both cameras are very light and small – both will fit easily in the palm of your hand.
So where does the GoPro HD HERO really vary from the ContourHD 1080p apart from size, shape and design?
Big Differences in Small Features
Probably the biggest differences are the small features one has but the other hasn’t.
For example, the ContourHD has a rotating lens so you can get a perfectly vertical or horizontal shot without messing with the mount too much. The GoPro HERO doesn’t.
The ContourHD has lasers that shoot out the front of the camera so you know exactly where the lens is pointing as neither of these HD action cameras have a LCD display.
The GoPro doesn’t have lasers or a screen (unless you have a Bacpac for it) so you kind of have to guess and hope you’re getting all you want in the frame.
The GoPro HERO comes with a waterproof housing which is good for up to 60m deep underwater where as the CotourHD is only water resistant. This is a big difference if you want to do underwater filming.
Battery life is a little different with the two cameras.
The GoPro’s battery will last approx 2.5 hours where as the ContourHD’s will last up to 3 hours.
One nice extra bonus feature that the ContourHD 1080p model has is the software that comes with it for easy editing and sharing.
No software comes with the GoPro so you’re left to yourself to us whatever editing software you have on your PC or Mac.
And finally, let’s look a the price comparisons between the GoPro HD HERO and the ContourHD 1080p.
For the base model of the GoPro Motorsport HERO, you’re looking at $299.99.
For the base model of the ContourHD 1080p it will cost you $249.99
Both packages come with battery, charger, various mounts and a warranty. Contour’s warranty is 180 days where as the GoPro’s is 365 days.
If you want extra mounts, batteries and SD cards, then a mega pack are the way to go.
GoPro HD Motorsports HERO Mega pack costs US$374.99 with free ground shipping in US and Canada.
ContourHD 1080p Megapack is a little less at US$319.99 (20% off regular price) with the same free shipping deal.
(prices as seen on pointofviewcameras.com as of July 2011)
The Winner Is…
With the current special price on the ContourHD 1080p mega pack, you’re looking at very attractive and affordable setup with all the professional perks you can expect from a HD action camera.
ContourHD 1080p – It’s the winner in my book!
The ContourHD 1080p proves to be better value for money and offers better features than the GoPro, but you have to remember that GoPro has other Add-on features like the BacPac LCD screen and option to do 3D videos at extra costs.
In the end it comes down to personal preference, but for high quality, fun and affordable HD filming of your favorite extreme sport (except for underwater stuff unless you get the underwater case) you can’t go past it compared the GoPro HD Hero.
NOTE: Because The ContourHD 1080p Has Been Discontinued, Click Here To Check Out The Contour+ or Contour GPS
Click Here To Check Out The Contour MegaPacks & Save Up To $125!
– Drift Cam