GoPro Hero 10 vs 12: Should You Upgrade?

By Elisabeth Christ
Published March 2024

GoPro Hero10 vs 12

Since being released, GoPro Hero 10 and Hero 12 are more than just cameras; they're gateways to relive your most exhilarating moments with crisp detail and vibrant color. While the Hero 10 continues to impress with its robust feature set and reliable performance, the Hero 12 steps up the game with even crisper visuals and enhanced user experiences. But with each offering its own unique advantages, choosing the right one can be as challenging as the adventures you're looking to capture. Let's delve into what sets these action-packed powerhouses apart.

Key Takeaways

GoPro Hero 10 caters to aspiring editors with its pro-quality ProRes recording, ideal for color grading and post-production magic. Hero 12, however, steals the show for action enthusiasts. Its enhanced low-light performance and the smoother HyperSmooth 5.0 stabilization ensure epic adventures are captured flawlessly, even in shaky conditions. 

GoPro Hero10 vs 12
GoPro Hero10

GoPro Hero10

Better choice for professional video editing

✓ ProRes Capture
✓ HyperSmooth 4.0 stabilization
✓ Improved Low-Light Performance
✓ Powerful GP1 Processor

GoPro Hero12

GoPro Hero12

Better choice for rugged sports and activities

✓ 5.3K video resolution
✓ 10 meters (33 feet) waterproof
✓ HyperSmooth 5.0 stabilisation
✓ 240fps on 2.7K footage

#1 Price & Design

GoPro Hero12

GoPro Hero12

At $499, GoPro Hero 10 keeps the aesthetic continuity with its predecessor but adds a touch of distinction with blue labeling. It sports a 1.4-inch front LCD and a slightly larger 2.27-inch rear touchscreen, both designed for durability and ease of use with their scratch-resistant and water-repelling lens cover.

On the other hand, the Hero 12, starting at $400, spices up the design with blue speckled dots, detachable hydrophobic lens cover offers various bundles, including an accessories package and a Max Lens Mod bundle. Despite its similar weight and dimensions to the Hero 10, it brings a fresh look with its dual color displays, promising a balance of function and style.

#2 Features & Performance

GoPro Hero10

GoPro Hero10

Talking about the features and performance, the Hero 10 is a testament to GoPro's relentless pursuit of perfection, harnessing the power of the new GP2 processor to enhance user experience with 30% faster operation and snappier footage uploads. Its arsenal includes the acclaimed HyperSmooth 4.0 stabilization and TimeWarp 3.0, allowing for silky-smooth time-lapse videos that make every moment cinematic. The Hero 10's prowess extends to its photo modes and color processing options, ensuring every shot is gallery-worthy. This model sets a high bar with its responsive front screen, minimizing lag during recording—a boon for vloggers and action enthusiasts alike who demand immediacy in capturing their adventures.

On the other hand, the Hero 12 introduces itself with a bang, offering a crisper picture and an impressive array of features. Its smaller sensor does not hinder but rather enhances image clarity, supported by a staggering 5.3K resolution at 60fps. The Hero 12's Easy Mode and Pro Mode cater to both novices and veterans, offering simplicity or a deep dive into custom settings. With HyperSmooth 6.0 and AutoBoost stabilization, it ensures that even the bumpiest rides result in footage that's as smooth as glass. The addition of Bluetooth microphone support and innovative night modes adds layers of versatility, making the Hero 12 a bit superior to its predecessor.

#3 Image & Video Quality

GoPro Hero12

GoPro Hero12

Of course, image and video quality is one of the crucial aspect for choosing the right one. The GoPro Hero 10, on one side, delivers an immersive viewing experience with its vivid, colorful imagery and the ability to capture moments in 5.3K at 60fps. It crafts visually stunning narrative, with features like SuperPhoto salvaging details from overexposed areas and providing a dynamic range that breathes life into each frame.

Stepping into the arena, the Hero 12 ups the ante with its 27MP stills and 5.3K 8:7 video, setting a new benchmark for action camera image quality. Its 10-bit 4K video capability introduces a spectrum of lively colors and a depth that allows for post-capture creativity, while the Horizon Lock feature ensures your world always stays upright, no matter how wild the adventure.

#4 Battery Life

GoPro Hero10

GoPro Hero10

Moving on to juice that powers the two cameras, Hero 10 and Hero 12 both house a 1720mAh battery. However, the Hero 12 extends its lead with a longer battery life, capable of supporting up to 4 hours of recording on a single charge. This stark improvement not only enhances usability but also ensures that adventurers won't miss a moment of action.

#5 Potential Downsides

GoPro Hero12

GoPro Hero12

Although there have been a bunch of impressive features within both cameras, they are not without flaws. While the Hero 10 has faced criticism for overheating and lacking a variable ND filter, the Hero 12’s menu and touchscreen are claimed to be sometime sluggish. There’s also an overheating issues and underwhelming low-light performance.

GoPro Hero10 vs 12

Final Thoughts

GoPro Hero10 vs 12

GoPro Hero10 vs 12

Final Thoughts When it comes down to choosing between the GoPro Hero 10 and Hero 12, it's a battle of nuances.

If you're seeking high-resolution adventures with extended battery life and are intrigued by the fresh design tweaks, the Hero 12 might be your go-to, especially considering its slightly lower base price and the value-added bundles. However, if you're content with the proven performance of the Hero 10 and its array of features that have solidified its place in the action camera hierarchy, it remains a formidable choice.

Ultimately, both cameras promise to immortalize your adventures with stunning clarity and vibrancy, making the decision a matter of personal preference and specific needs.

If you like to read more about action cameras, check out our other relevant guides here:

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