Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini: Two Best Small Action Cameras

By Naila Syifa
Updated June 2024

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini

Two leading brands in the action camera industry, the Insta360 and GoPro, have mini action camera models that are specially designed for portability and versatility.

Insta360's mini camera lineup is known as the GO series, with the GO 3S being the newest and most feature-rich model. Meanwhile, GoPro has only released one small action camera to date, the Hero 11 Mini.

Both Insta360 GO 3S and GoPro Hero 11 Mini are suitable for people who want a compact and lightweight camera that can capture high-quality footage in various situations. However, which one offers the better value and features? Let's find out!

Key Takeaways

GoPro Hero 11 Mini may have better image quality and audio support than Insta360 GO 3S, but it lacks a display, photo capture, versatile shooting modes, and magnetic mounting options that the Insta360 GO 3S offers.
GoPro Hero 11 Mini is better for professionals who prioritize output quality, while the Insta360 GO 3S is more suitable for casual users who value versatility and convenience in a compact action camera.

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini
Insta360 GO 3S

Insta360 GO 3S

Tiny Mighty Action Cam

✓ 4K Video + 12 MP Photo
✓ Compact, Lightweight, Magnetic
✓ FreeFrame & Interval Video Mode
✓ Waterproof to 10m

GoPro Hero 11 Black Mini

GoPro Hero 11 Black Mini

High-Quality Mini Action Cam

✓ 5.3K Video + 24.7 MP Frame Grabs
✓ HyperSmooth 5.0
✓ 10-Bit Color
✓ External Mic Support

#1 Price

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini

Insta360 GO 3S

GoPro Hero 11 Mini has a launch price of US$299.99 during its first release in 2022. However, as of 2024, the price has dropped to US$249.99, making it more affordable for consumers.

Compared to the Hero 11 Mini, the Insta360 GO 3S is significantly more expensive. A 64GB model costs US$399.99, while the 128GB model is priced at US$429.99.

This sets the price difference between the two models at around $150 to $180, with the GoPro Hero 11 Mini being the more budget-friendly option.

#2 Design & Durability

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini

GoPro Hero 11 Black Mini

GoPro Hero 11 Mini retains the boxy shape of its full-sized version GoPro Hero 11, but with a smaller and more compact form factor. It measures 52.4 x 51.2 x 38 mm and weighs 133 grams, with two mounting fingers for easy attachment to various mounts.

Insta360 GO 3S is even smaller. With 25.6 x 54.4 x 24.8 mm dimensions and only 39 g weight, the GO 3S is as tiny as a thumb, making it easy to capture unique perspectives from tight spaces like from inside a cup or between the leaves of a plant. The camera is also magnetic for easy mounting to metal surfaces, and the package includes 3 mounting accessories (magnet pendant, easy clip, and pivot stand) for versatile mounting options.

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini

Magnet Pendant of Insta360 GO 3S

Unlike the Hero 11 Mini which comes in a single unit, the GO 3S comes in two units consisting of the camera and the Action Pod. The Action Pod makes the GO 3S larger in size compared to the Hero 11 Mini, but it also gives the GO 3S more advantages that the Hero 11 Mini doesn't offer, such as a flip touchscreen display (2.2") for real-time preview and remote control.

GoPro Hero 11 Mini, on the other hand, comes with no preview display. A 0.55" screen only displays status, so live preview can only be done via a connected smartphone using the Quik app. Controls on the device are also limited to just a single shutter button, so advanced settings and adjustments are easier to do in the Quik app. This makes the Hero 11 Mini heavily reliant on smartphones, compared to the Insta360 GO 3S with its Action Pod.

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini

Insta360 GO 3S

In terms of durability, the Insta360 GO 3S has another advantage. It can withstand extreme temperatures from -20°C to 40°C, while the Hero 11 Mini is only rated for -10°C to 35°C temperature range.

However, in terms of durability to rough handling and drops, both cameras are designed to be rugged and durable for action sports use. They are also waterproof to 33ft (10m) right out of the box, though the Action Pod of the GO 3S needs a Dive Case for underwater uses.

#3 Video & Photo

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini

GoPro Hero 11 Black Mini

Overall, the GoPro Hero 11 Mini has better image quality than the Insta360 GO 3S. The Hero 11 Mini delivers a maximum resolution of 5.3K/60 fps, which is 91% more resolution than the 4K/30fps maximum resolution of the Insta360 GO 3S.

GoPro Hero 11 Mini also offers a 10-bit color. This is a professional video feature that provides more color information and better dynamic range compared to the 8-bit color depth of the Insta360 GO 3S, making the footage more flexible for advanced video editing.

However, GoPro Hero 11 Mini can only record video and cannot capture photos. If you want still images, then you need to use the Frame Grab feature in the Quik app to extract up to 24.7MP still images from a video. Meanwhile, Insta360 GO 3S can directly capture photos up to 12MP resolution.

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini

Insta360 GO 3S

Insta360 GO 3S also comes with various video modes, including Pre-Recording for capturing unexpected moments, Loop Recording for continuous recording, and Interval Video for automatic recording in set time intervals. Meanwhile, the GoPro Hero 11 Mini lacks these advanced video modes, not even HindSight which is typically found in other GoPro models.

GoPro Hero 11 Mini offers a unique 8:7 aspect ratio, which makes the video flexible for cropping to various social media platforms. Insta360 GO 3S offers a similar capability with its FreeFrame Video mode, which allows the video to be exported in various aspect ratios.

#4 Audio

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini

GoPro Hero 11 Black Mini

In terms of audio features, the GoPro Hero 11 Mini has better advantages. It is equipped with 3 built-in microphones and support connection to external microphones, though a Pro Mic Adapter is required for the latter.

Meanwhile, Insta360 GO 3S only features 2 built-in microphones. It also doesn't support connection to external microphones, so users are limited to the built-in audio quality.

#5 Features

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini

Insta360 GO 3S

Insta360 GO 3S and GoPro Hero 11 Mini share many similar features that make both cameras easy to use, from hands-free voice control to a companion app for easy editing.

Both camera's editing app (Insta360 app for the GO 3S and Quik app for Hero 11 Mini) supports AI-powered auto editing that intelligently picks the best shots to create a ready-to-share video. Insta360 offers this Auto Editing for free, while GoPro requires a subscription for this Automatic Highlight Video feature.

Insta360 has even more advantages with gesture control capability, integration with Garmin devices or Apple Watch to overlay stats on footage, and location taking with Apple Find My in case the tiny camera is lost.

GoPro Hero 11 Mini doesn't offer those features, but it has its distinctive advantage with live streaming support, a feature that the Insta360 GO 3S does not have.

#6 Battery Life

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini

GoPro Hero 11 Black Mini

Insta360 GO 3S has a small battery capacity of 310mAh in its main camera unit, which allows it to last for only 38 minutes at maximum. However, the Action Pod provides an additional 1270mAh power, extending the total battery life to up to 140 minutes at 1080p/30 fps of continuous recording.

GoPro Hero 11 Mini is powered by a 1500mAh non-removable Enduro battery. The battery life depends on the recording settings, but it can generally last from 51-114 minutes, slightly shorter than the Insta360 GO 3S with the Action Pod.

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini

Final Thoughts

Insta360 GO 3S vs GoPro Hero 11 Mini

Insta360 GO 3S

While both the Insta360 GO 3S and GoPro Hero 11 Mini offer impressive features in a compact package, the choice between the two ultimately comes down to personal preferences and needs.

The Insta360 GO 3S excels in versatility and ease of use with its magnetic mounting options, touchscreen display, gesture control, advanced video modes, and free AI editing, making it a great option for casual users.

On the other hand, the GoPro Hero 11 Mini, at a more budget-friendly price, delivers superior image and audio quality, with 10-bit color and support for external microphone connection. It may not feature a display and is heavily reliant on a smartphone for preview and control, but it is the better choice for professional users who prioritize video output quality over convenience.

If you’d like to read more about Action Camera, check out our other relevant guides here:

Insta360 GO 3S vs GO 3

Insta360 GO 3S vs GO 2

Insta360 GO 3S vs X4

Insta360 GO 3S vs Ace Pro

Insta360 GO 3S vs DJI Osmo Pocket 3

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