When pilots are in their planes flying up and above in the clear blue skies, experiencing a new world of white clouds and beautiful views, they do think about sharing these mesmerizing moments with family and friends. And what better than recording the skies above to view it later with your loved ones using your GoPro?
This article will take you through the best settings for your GoPro to shoot Cockpit videos.
Things Required for Epic Cockpit Videos
Who wouldn’t agree that the best moments for a pilot happen in the cockpit? From take-off to landing, from flying to your favorite locations to catching the most astonishing sights in the air. A lot of things need to be checked marked before shooting your video. The most important ones are mentioned below :
- Selection of the GoPro model – GoPro action cameras provide stable, fine-quality footage. It is easy to carry and is packed with multiple features.
- Fully charged battery and additional batteries for the ride
- Fully formatted memory card
- A stable mount to hold your camera at position (preferably, a suction cup mount)
- Camera setup to yield the best results
Pro Tip: Plan and be prepared to minimize time wastage. Head mounts can be especially useful for student pilots who want to debrief after their flights.
10 Best GoPro Camera Settings For Cockpit Videos
Camera Settings are important to capture fine quality video both inside and outside the cockpit which thrills you and interests your viewers as well. Let’s look at some GoPro settings which will help you attain the desired results.
The general notion is to shoot the videos in the highest possible resolution which is 4K. Of course, the videos are more detailed and refined giving a professional look but, there are certain drawbacks. It occupies more space on the card and editing the footage later adds to the work if you do not have a powerful machine and software. So, you can choose to shoot your cockpit videos at 1080p. It allows you to store twice the footage on your memory card. Also, it becomes easier to edit the footage later.
#2. Frame Rate
Frame Rate is Frames per Second, the number of images consecutively displayed each second. Ideally, you may choose to go with 60fps to get better stabilization. But for recording cockpit videos, the best way to shoot is at 30fps. The higher frame rates like 60,120,240fps should be used for giving slo-mo effects. If you wish to edit a video later for giving those effects, you may choose these frame rates but for cockpit videos, it is ideal to shoot at 30fps for good results.
#3. Field of View
Now, you can choose between Wide and Superwide options, depending on the area you shoot from. A Wide view works best if you are shooting from the window. It accentuates the point of focus and prevents distortion at the edges. While shooting the videos from the cockpit, Superwide can give you good results, though it distorts the image a bit at the edges due to the crop but keeps everything in the shot. Alternatively, if you want to avoid that and just focus on a clear focused image, making smaller distances look large, then Wide is the standard choice.
#4. HyperSmooth Stabilization
HyperSmooth should always be left ON. It helps to keep the footage stable and avoid any kind of blurriness or shakiness in the video which may occur due to turbulence or other vibrations.
#5. Audio Settings
Audio makes your videos look more appealing. All GoPro models come with a built-in microphone. Pilots also use the intercom to record cockpit and ATC audio. For that, you require a compatible adapter that will connect your headset jack to the USB-C port on the camera.
Pro Tip: The input/output settings in the Preferences menu provides fine control over audio input settings.
#6. ND Filter and Protune Settings
ND Filters allow the camera’s auto exposure system to slow the shutter which supports fixing propeller issues to an extent. And the Protune Settings should be left ON while shooting cockpit videos with GoPro.
It is ideal to keep the Color Flat for cockpit videos as it gives far more control to edit the videos in post-production. You get a larger scope of color correction later. But if you do not wish to edit videos later, then you can set the profile to GoPro Color.
#8. White Balance
White Balance adjusts the camera’s color sensitivity to match the prevailing color of light. It adjusts the Color Temperature based on the current lighting. It is best to not fiddle with it and leave it on Auto.
#9. ISO Levels
ISO levels refer to how sensitive your camera sensor will be to the light. For cockpit videos, set the ISO minimum to 100 and ISO maximum to 400. You can also increase the maximum value a little more but it will come along with additional noise in the picture which can be avoided.
#10. EV Comp and Sharpness
EV Comp stands for Exposure Value Composition. This parameter lets you set the exposure to darker or brighter. It is recommended that under-exposure is far better than over-exposure as it is difficult to correct the latter in post-production if required.
The Sharpness levels can be set from Low to Medium as preferred.
So, here are the recommended settings for cockpit videos:
- Resolution/FPS: 1080p/30FPS
- Field of View: Wide or Superwide
- HyperSmooth: On
- Protune: ON
- Color: Flat
- White Balance: Auto
- ISO Minimum: 100
- ISO Maximum: 400
- Sharpness: Low/Medium
To have a full overview of the various GoPro Settings, take a look at this post:
GoPro cameras are portable and affordable action cameras stocked with amazing features. They provide a very unique perspective of filming especially when you are in the air. If you are someone who enjoys your time in the open skies, then experimenting with your cockpit videos will only add to the fun. The best way to revisit your dearest memories is to capture them while you are at it. So, get your GoPro ready and fly high in the world of clouds!
Thanks for reading! 🙏
I hope this guide helped you learn the best settings for recording the cockpit videos with your GoPro. 🙂
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