What if I told you that there was an easier way to capture every single moment with your GoPro? With the GoPro Spot Meter, it’s never been simpler!

So, are you wondering what the GoPro spot meter does?

Well, I’ve got answers.

This article will take you through everything there is to know about GoPro spot meter and how to use it.

What is GoPro Spot Meter

The GoPro Spot Meter is a great feature for those who have trouble with uneven lighting in their frame. It only uses the center of your image to calculate exposure, which will give you an accurate reading specifically on what’s important and not everything else that may be going on around it.

The word “spot” comes from its usage – the small center area can take up just about any type of light situation like when someone has too much backlighting or maybe when they’re under harsh direct sunlight. In such situations, the camera adjusts accordingly without affecting other parts of the picture because it doesn’t read them at all!

Therefore, in essence the Spot Meter allows you to capture what matters most by exposing only that part of the image correctly. This results in better looking videos and images even when you have uneven lighting across the frame, such as when you’re shooting into bright sunlight or dark shadows.

In order to know what setting to use, check out GoPro Settings Explained: Best for Action, Travel and More.


How Does GoPro Spot Meter Work

As default, the GoPro recognizes the entire frame of what’s in front of it and how bright or dark that scene is to set a correct exposure (usually by averaging that entire scene). Most of the time, this results in great looking shots! But, there are some situations where it doesn’t work that well.

For example, shooting in conditions like bright sunlight on snow can result in underexposed shots if the people you’re capturing are standing in a darker area. Similarly, if the camera is at a dark place and you’re shooting something bright (reverse situation), it will result in overexposed shots.

spot meter

That’s where the need of ‘GoPro Spot Meter’ arises! When you use the spot meter the GoPro camera, instead of averaging the exposure across the whole frame, uses a small, defined spot in the center to figure out what should be adjusted for proper brightness levels. It ignores any other part of your shot that is outside this center area. Therefore, you get focused and sharp images of the scene.

Which GoPros Have Spot Meter?

All the latest GoPro models have the spot meter feature. However, in many of the recent models (the ones that came after the Hero 5 Black), it is known as Exposure Control.

Exposure control is quite similar to Spot Meter, but it’s more flexible. Like Spot Meter, it calculates the exposure on a specific small part of your frame. But you’re not limited by an immovable area in the center anymore – you can change where this fixed point will be! This makes for much greater flexibility.

When to Use GoPro Spot Meter

Following are a few different occasions when you may want to use the Spot Meter function on your GoPro:

  1. If your subject is in the center of the shot with little or no movement: A great example of such a shot is – when you’re shooting from inside an automotive vehicle looking out through windshield. The spot meter would focus on the subject and provide required brightness to it.
  2. When you’re standing at a bright place and shooting a darker scene: Let’s say for example, we were trying to take pictures of the cave while standing at its entrance. The spot meter would know how to best expose your image.
  3. When you’re standing at a dark place and shooting a brighter scene: For example, when you’re skiing or snowboarding and you have the GoPro pointed at your face and there’s a lot of snow in the background. In this case, the GoPro would use the spot meter to appropriately set the exposure and ensure that it isn’t too bright.

When Not to Use GoPro Spot Meter

Here are the scenarios when you shouldn’t use GoPro Spot Meter:

  1. If your camera is going to be moving and your scene will change during filming, using Spot Metering may have unwanted results – for example if there are areas that require a lot of light while others need none!
  2. When shooting scenes with even lighting across different elements (e.g., landscape), Automatic Exposure should work well enough for your GoPro. So, you don’t need to use Spot Meter.



Thanks for reading!

I hope this article helped you understand the GoPro Spot Meter and how it can help you achieve great looking shots 🙂


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