GoPro has introduced re-interchangeable lenses with the HERO9. The latest generation of the action camera allows users to rotate the lens cover counter-clockwise to remove and replace it with alternate lenses.
By having a lens platform, we are likely to see many accessories from 3rd party manufacturers that change the viewing angle and lighting with the HERO9.
While DSLR owners have had the luxury of changing lenses to increase the field of view, or even apply lens filters, this has been one drawback, one restriction when using GoPros.
At launch, we know of just 1 additional lense, the Max Mod. This takes feedback from GoPro’s 360 and attempts to recreate many of the benefits with the HERO9.
The Max Lens Mod, allows you to use HyperSmooth video stabilization, while shooting with an ultra-wide 155˚ FOV lens at 2.7K60. This is the widest ever on a HERO camera.
While a wider field of view is nice, the next logical conclusion would be to offer a lens with zoom capabilities.
On top of that, there’s also polarizing filters that can have dramatic impacts on the resulting photos and video produced. We’re now seeing these available for DJI’s drones and given how much GoPro footage is shot in direct sunlight, this makes loads of sense.
It’ll be interesting to see if GoPro opens this up to aftermarket accessory makers as well.
What we know about the Max Lens Mod is that it’s much more than just a straight cover on the front of the camera. The camera actually has an entire ‘Max Lens Mode’ dedicated to it. This can activate a horizon lock that keeps your shot level even if you rotate your camera 360°.
Given GoPro are then allowing the software and hardware to work together, that would suggest 3rd parties would really need to work with GoPro to achieve success with this.
Finally the big outstanding thing on the to-do-list for GoPro, is to add a Time of Flight (ToF) sensor when the HERO10 rolls around. This would enable depth of field for the first time on a GoPro.
All things considered, this is a fun new direction the company is going in and something clearly you only get if you upgrade.