In the matchup of GoPro Hero 12 vs Hero 9, we’re witnessing a true clash of titans, pitting two exceptionally powerful action cameras against each other.

It feels like just yesterday the Hero 9 was unveiled, yet it’s been three years—a testament to how impressive this camera remains.

Today, you’ll learn about the differences between these two cameras and whether the upgrade is worth it.

QUICK TAKE

  • Hero 12 is the most advanced GoPro made for professionals
  • Hero 9 is an excellent choice for casual use
  • Hero 12 offers 5.3K at 60fps with HDR, surpassing Hero 9’s 5K at 30fps, allowing for more detailed and smoother footage.
  • Hero 12 comes almost twice expensive
  • Hero 12 has almost doubled its battery life as compared to the Hero 9

 

GoPro Hero 12 vs GoPro Hero 9: Quick Specs Comparison


Here is a specs comparison table for the GoPro Hero 12 and the GoPro Hero 9:

FeatureGoPro Hero 12GoPro Hero 9
ProcessorGP2GP1
Video Resolution5.3K at 60 fps5K at 30 fps
Screen size2.27 inches2.27 inches
Front-facing screenYesYes
Removable batteryYesYes
Waterproof depth10 meters10 meters
Voice controlYesYes
Live streamingYesYes
Image sensor size1/1.9 inch (8:7 aspect ratio)1/2.3 inch (4:3 aspect ratio)
Image stabilization typeHyperSmooth 6.0HyperSmooth 3.0
Image formatJPEG, RAW, HEIF, HDR, GP-Log, LUT supportJPEG, RAW, HEIF, HDR, GP-Log
Video formatMP4 (H.264/AVC), MP4 (H.265/HEVC)MP4 (H.264/AVC), MP4 (H.265/HEVC)
Video bit-rate10-bit8-bit
Photo resolutionUp to 27 MP (8:7 aspect ratio) or up to 24.7 MP stills from video (16:9 aspect ratio)Up to 20 MP (4:3 aspect ratio) or up to 14.7 MP stills from video (16:9 aspect ratio)

 

GoPro Hero 12 Review


gopro hero 12

The GoPro Hero 12, GoPro’s latest offering, takes action camera technology to new heights. With its cutting-edge GP2 processor, it boasts lightning-fast performance, top-notch stabilization, and a host of intelligent features.

It’s capable of recording in stunning 5.3K resolution at a silky-smooth 60 frames per second, a feat unmatched in GoPro’s history. The camera sports a larger 2.27-inch touchscreen, simplifying control and providing a crystal-clear preview of your shots.

What’s more, its interchangeable lens cover lets you adapt to different shooting scenarios.

And my favorite feature is the removable 1720mAh Enduro battery that ensures 155 min of filming in 1080p even in extreme cold conditions.

SPECIAL SALE
GoPro HERO9 Black - Waterproof Action Camera with Front LCD and Touch Rear Screens, 5K Ultra HD Video, 20MP Photos, 1080p Live Streaming, Webcam, Stabilization
  • 5K Video - Shoot stunning video with up to 5K resolution, perfect for maintaining...
  • 20MP Photo with SuperPhoto: Capture crisp, pro-quality photos with 20MP clarity. And...
  • Front Display plus Rear Touch Screen: A new, larger rear touch screen with touch zoom...

The Hero 12 can also brave the depths, as it’s waterproof up to 10 meters without the need for a housing. And if that weren’t enough, voice control functionality allows for hands-free operation with simple voice commands.

Plus, the live streaming feature enables you to share your adventures in real-time with friends and followers.

The GoPro Hero 12 undoubtedly shines as a top pick for those who demand the absolute best in video quality, performance, and features from their action camera.

It’s tailor-made for professional videographers, enthusiastic vloggers, and adventure seekers eager to capture every moment in exquisite detail.

However, there are a couple of caveats to consider. The Hero 12 does come with a higher price tag, making it a more substantial investment compared to the Hero 9.

Find the best SD cards for Hero 12 and tips on how to choose them:

To learn how to use the GoPro Hero 12 to its full potential, watch my tutorial:

How to Use GoPro HERO 12 [Beginner’s Guide 2024]

 

GoPro Hero 9 Review


gopro hero 9

The GoPro Hero 9, an older model in GoPro’s action camera lineup, packs a punch of its own. Capable of recording at a commendable 5K resolution with a frame rate of 30 frames per second, it offers high-quality video that meets the needs of most users.

An added bonus is the front-facing screen, ideal for vloggers and selfie enthusiasts who want to see themselves while capturing their adventures. The Hero 9 also boasts a removable battery, providing the flexibility to extend your shooting time by swapping in a spare.

Like its successor, it’s waterproof up to 10 meters without needing additional housing, and the convenient voice control feature allows for hands-free operation via simple voice commands.

Plus, it’s equipped with the ability to live-stream your escapades, allowing you to share your experiences in real-time with your audience.

SPECIAL SALE
GoPro HERO12 Black - Waterproof Action Camera with 5.3K60 Ultra HD Video, 27MP Photos, HDR, 1/1.9" Image Sensor, Live Streaming, Webcam, Stabilization
  • High Dynamic Range Video plus Photo: HERO12 Black takes its best-in-class image...
  • Unbelieveable Image Quality: With 5.3K video that gives you 91% more resolution than...
  • Emmy Award- Winning HyperSmooth 6.0 Stabilization: HyperSmooth continues to set the...

The GoPro Hero 9 proves itself as a dependable and adaptable action camera, especially if you are nor a professional videographer.

However, it does come with a few limitations to consider. It falls short in terms of resolution and frame rate compared to the GoPro Hero 12, potentially resulting in a slight loss of detail and smoothness in your videos.

Furthermore, it’s worth noting that the Hero 9 may exhibit a lower level of responsiveness and stability when compared to the more advanced GoPro Hero 12 with a newer GP2 processor. This could impact your overall user experience.

Find the best SD cards for Hero 12 and tips on how to choose them:

 

Detailed Comparison


Here, I break down the specs of the GoPro Hero 12 and the GoPro Hero 9, point by point, to help you make an informed decision:

Video Quality

Both the GoPro Hero 9 and Hero 12 offer impressive video quality. The Hero 9 captures footage in a remarkable 5K resolution, ensuring that even when you zoom in, you retain essential details in your videos.

On the other hand, the Hero 12 takes this a step further with a 5.3K video resolution and incorporates High Dynamic Range (HDR) for both videos (at 5.3K and 4K resolutions).

This HDR feature enhances your footage, capturing subtle details that might typically be lost in shadows or bright spots, resulting in dynamic, true-to-life colors and precision in various lighting conditions.

Photo Quality

In terms of photo quality, both cameras excel. The GoPro Hero 9 boasts a 20MP camera, ensuring you can capture crisp, pro-quality photos with ease. What sets it apart is the SuperPhoto mode, which automatically optimizes image processing to deliver the best possible photos.

Conversely, the GoPro Hero 12 takes a leap forward with an incredible 27MP camera and HDR capability for photos. This combination allows you to capture stunning images with exceptional detail and color accuracy.

Using the GoPro Quik app, you can extract stunning photos up to 24.7MP from your favorite video shots, further enhancing your creative possibilities.

Display

Both cameras feature user-friendly displays. The GoPro Hero 9 comes with a rear touch screen for intuitive navigation and a front display that’s incredibly handy for vlogging or taking selfies.

gopro hero 12 vs gopro hero 9

On the other hand, the Hero 12 offers a larger rear touch screen with touch zoom, making framing and camera control even more accessible. The larger screen can be particularly beneficial when previewing your shots or adjusting settings on the go.

Live Streaming

Live streaming capabilities are present in both models, ensuring you can share your adventures in real-time with your audience.

The GoPro Hero 9 supports 1080p live streaming on social platforms while maintaining HyperSmooth 3.0 stabilization for smooth broadcasts.

Similarly, the GoPro Hero 12 carries on this trend, providing reliable live streaming features that guarantee your viewers get a clear and steady feed of your adventures, all with the added benefit of HyperSmooth 6.0 for superior stabilization.

Do you fancy to learn how to do live streaming with your GoPro. Read the following article: GoPro Live Streaming Guide

Video Stabilization

Stabilization is crucial for action cameras, and both the GoPro Hero 9 and Hero 12 excel in this department. The Hero 9 utilizes HyperSmooth 3.0, which is known for delivering impressively smooth footage even in the midst of challenging action.

hypersmooth 6.0

Meanwhile, the Hero 12 takes this further with HyperSmooth 6.0, an Emmy Award-winning technology that not only minimizes shakiness but also reduces image cropping, preserving more of your valuable footage.

Time Lapse

Both models offer fantastic time-lapse capabilities. The GoPro Hero 9 features TimeWarp 3.0, allowing you to capture captivating time-lapse scenes seamlessly.

Building on this, the GoPro Hero 12 enhances your time-lapse creativity further, ensuring that your time-lapse sequences are not only mesmerizing but also filled with cinematic quality.

More information on how to create the best Time Lapse>>>

Durability

Durability is a hallmark of GoPro cameras, and both the Hero 9 and Hero 12 maintain this reputation. They are rugged and waterproof, capable of withstanding the harshest conditions. Both can be submerged down to 33 feet (10 meters) without the need for additional housing.

Their legendary toughness makes them ideal companions for adventures in mud, snow, water, and beyond, ensuring they can handle whatever you throw at them.

A water-repelling lens cover helps eliminate lens flare and other artifacts, enhancing the overall quality of your photos and videos.

Find all the GoPro’s best underwater cases for diving in the following article>>>

Processor Speed

One significant point of distinction between the GoPro Hero 12 and the GoPro Hero 9 is their processing power. The Hero 9 is equipped with a GP1 processor, which provides smooth performance and reliable operation.

However, the Hero 12 takes a substantial leap forward with the GP2 processor, delivering a faster and more intuitive user experience. This enhanced processing power not only ensures quicker response times when navigating menus and adjusting settings but also contributes to more efficient video rendering and data processing.

gopro hero 10 vs gopro hero 8 processor

Consequently, the Hero 12 offers a snappier and more responsive interface, making it a joy to use, especially when you need to capture the perfect shot or adjust settings on the fly.

The upgraded processor adds an extra layer of convenience and speed to your action camera experience, setting the Hero 12 apart as a more advanced and user-friendly option compared to the older GP1 processor found in the Hero 9.

Additional Features

Both cameras offer a range of additional features to enhance your shooting experience. The GoPro Hero 9 boasts a front-facing screen for vlogging and selfies, voice control functionality, and compatibility with various accessories, allowing you to tailor your camera setup to your specific needs.

gopro hero 9 time lapse

Meanwhile, the GoPro Hero 12 introduces HDR for both videos and photos, ensuring your footage captures the full spectrum of colors and details, even in challenging lighting conditions.

It enhances HyperSmooth AutoBoost performance, delivering superior stabilization while minimizing image cropping, resulting in smoother, more immersive footage.

Price

Price-wise, there’s a difference to consider. The GoPro Hero 9 costs twice less! It is indeed an affordable option for those looking for reliable performance without breaking the bank.

In contrast, the GoPro Hero 12 comes with a higher price point, reflecting its advanced features and capabilities, which might be particularly appealing to users seeking top-of-the-line performance and video quality.

Check Current Price of GoPro Hero 12:

SPECIAL SALE
GoPro HERO9 Black - Waterproof Action Camera with Front LCD and Touch Rear Screens, 5K Ultra HD Video, 20MP Photos, 1080p Live Streaming, Webcam, Stabilization
  • 5K Video - Shoot stunning video with up to 5K resolution, perfect for maintaining...
  • 20MP Photo with SuperPhoto: Capture crisp, pro-quality photos with 20MP clarity. And...
  • Front Display plus Rear Touch Screen: A new, larger rear touch screen with touch zoom...

Check Current Price of GoPro Hero 9:

SPECIAL SALE
GoPro HERO12 Black - Waterproof Action Camera with 5.3K60 Ultra HD Video, 27MP Photos, HDR, 1/1.9" Image Sensor, Live Streaming, Webcam, Stabilization
  • High Dynamic Range Video plus Photo: HERO12 Black takes its best-in-class image...
  • Unbelieveable Image Quality: With 5.3K video that gives you 91% more resolution than...
  • Emmy Award- Winning HyperSmooth 6.0 Stabilization: HyperSmooth continues to set the...

 

GoPro Hero 12 vs GoPro Hero 9: Worth the Upgrade?


In my view, if you already own the GoPro Hero 9 and use it occasionally, an upgrade isn’t necessary.

The Hero 9 remains a formidable action camera. True, it may not match the Hero 12 in terms of stabilization and video quality, but for the casual user, these differences are hardly noticeable.

On the other hand, if you’re a pro aiming for the top-notch features, the Hero 12 is the way to go. It’s packed with some seriously advanced upgrades that are perfect for elevating your work.

 

Cannot decide which one to choose?

Find more GoPro battles:

 

Thanks for reading! 🙏

I hope this guide helped you learn about which GoPro is better for you – GoPro Hero 12 vs GoPro Hero 9. 🙂

 

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