GoPro accessories. Which do I need? Here’s a cross section of ideas…

In the various GoPro forums I frequent, one of the most common questions I see is “what accessories should I get”?

The answer of course depends very much on what you use the camera for; someone who does mountain biking has very different needs than someone who does snorkelling for example.

However, over the many, many years at Australian Videocamera we have been playing around with GoPros (and other action cams of course), we have found a cross selection of goodies we reckon cover many needs.

And where something wasn’t available, we instead found a model online and 3D printed it on our Flashforge Adventurer 3D printer.

So, here is our selection of mounts we regularly use for various purposes.

The most used one without question is a simple mount that allows the camera to be attached to a standard tripod thread (1). Of course if you have a model pre the built in hinged “fingers”, you’ll also need the cage to mount the camera into.

Because we often use an external monitor and mic with our GoPro 9 and 10 when using the Media Mod, we also use a triple bracket allowing all three to be mounted on to a tripod (3).

For taking shots of our hands operating equipment, I have the GoPro 9 mounted onto what was originally I understand a helmet mount. However, when using this in conjunction with a set of GoPro “Jaws” (8), it reaches out far enough so that I can video, for example, what buttons to press on an Blackmagic Design ATEM Mini Pro to do different functions. It’s also great for top-down product shots into a lightbox.

For mounting to a car, when there is no high speed involved and the way is going to be v-e-r-y smooth, a simple three footed suction unit (4) is OK, but if I am doing deadly serious motor sport stuff, then we move up to the Hague (no relation) Camera Grip unit which will take up to a dSLR camera without getting upset (these I believe are what Top gear use on occasion).

For inside car shots a simpler single suction unit is fine, or alternately, I have a sticky GoPro mount on the windscreen or rear window and use a standard GoPro slide mount into that.

If I want shots from my boat, whilst I do have a sticky mount on the outside of the windscreen, I also have another mounted on the front deck, and for inside the rear deck shots, a couple of rail mounts (7). For down in the cabin video, there is another sticky mount on the forward bulkhead pointing backwards.

I am not a great fan of having cameras mounted physically on me as the movement I find way too jerky to watch, and while the inbuilt stabilisation of the later GoPros especially is very, very good, you cannot go past a proper gimbal. My unit of choice for this is the Zhiyun Crane 3.

Having said that, a new Zhiyun Smooth 4 is due to land any day soon so I am looking forward to that and of course DJI have a mystery unit arriving soon too and maybe that will be suitable for a GoPro. We’ll wait and see.

Surfers and bikers of all persuasions I understand do like a chest mount or head mounted unit and there are any number of these either from GoPro themselves or via 3rd party vendors. The same applies for surfboard and boogie board mounts that are very secure. But don’t forget the waterproof housing if you are pre- waterproofed GoPros …

The same applies to helmet mounts. There are a number of different models available to suit different types of helmet shapes and different curvatures.

But I am not averse to mounting a camera on Dougie the Doggie for entertainment value and GoPro make one just for this purpose. They are a bit fiddly to fit, but for the occasional fun shots, I can live with that.

For snorkelling I discovered a neat mount (6) at Thingiverse that I could print out on my 3D printer as mentioned. It is very simple and slips over the scuba mask and is quite stable. It takes about 2 hours to print – but if you do, make sure you use yellow or orange filament. I’ll tell you why in a second.

Another 3D printed mount is a little different in that it allows you to run a GoPro down a “zip line”, hanging underneath a two-wheel pulley system (5).  Fishing line makes the perfect medium for the line, and you can get some really interesting shots.

There is always room for handheld devices of course, and if you intend to use one when scuba diving or snorkelling, orange or yellow ones are best. Its even better if they are buoyant.

Why orange or yellow (as also in the scuba mask mount)?

Quite simple really. If you happen to drop it, these colours are much easier to see underwater.

An accessory I find indispensable, but is not a mount is the GoPro Zeus LED Mini light. There is a review of it here.

Effectively this is the light kit available for the Media Mod mounted on a GoPro Jaw mount and gives you three levels of illumination. The mount itself swivels and tilts and the mount is magnetic. I carry one in a backpack with me at all times.

Having mentioned the Media Mod, if you have a later GoPro, the Lens Mod also has its uses. I have reviews of these here and here.

Apart from GoPro branded mounts, there are a large number of vendors on the internet that can supply a grab bag of different mounts and attachments etc for a very reasonable price. Much of the stuff you see in the yellow case came from one of these and cost about AUD$30 +shipping off memory.

For more specialist jobs, Telesin make some interesting product. I am not sure where they are represented in Australia, but in the GoPro Owners Australia Facebook Group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/GoProOwnersAustralia) do a search for Richie Kirkbeck as he has access to product as an agent I understand.

If you have found an interesting mount, let me know via email to david@auscamonline.com and send a photograph. Alternatively, if you are after a specific mount and haven’t found one, also get in touch and we’ll ask the wider community!

 

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