About a week ago, I was doing some spring cleaning and found my GoPro Hero 3 Black edition tucked away in my file cabinet. Out of curiosity, I grabbed one of our shipping scales and did a quick comparison of the GoPro and one of our newest cameras, the Reel Slayer HD.
I was surprised to find out that the Reel Slayer HD is smaller and lighter by a considerable margin (both with and without the plastic casing). Now I know what some of you may be thinking, “What’s a fraction of an ounce here and there?” And I agree. I’m not one to obsess, but the fact remains that the GoPro marketing always points out when newer models are 10%, 20% or 30% lighter / smaller than their previous models. And when I saw the scale readings, I had to do a double take, “Is this camera actually lighter than the GoPro?”
If my calculations are correct, the 2.4 ounce Reel Slayer HD is a little over 14% lighter than the 2.8 ounce Hero Black.
But the cool thing about the Reel is that it already includes an LCD screen that is built in, and includes a tripod mount in the case. Once you add the LCD screen and tripod adapter to the GoPro, and the weight difference becomes more significant.
To be completely fair though, the GoPro Hero 3 Black edition offers higher definition recording modes than the Reel Slayer HD. No camera can compare to the top of the line $400 GoPro. The Slayer HD doesn’t offer 4K, and records at a maximum of 1080P at 30 frames per second. But for almost all my videos, I record at 720P anyways. The higher resolutions seem to drain the battery and are difficult to work with while editing.
So if you’re on a budget, and want an all in one package, the Reel is a great option that will work for most sports enthusiasts, especially at $299.
My favorite camera of all time is still the Contour Roam 2. It had the best combination of ease of use and battery life (the thing only used battery while recording, which was great). It’s a shame they went out of business. But the Reel Camera is quickly becoming one of our favorites, especially as we’re able to use it more and get used to the settings and controls. And we love the LCD screen, even if we mostly use it to setup shots. The battery life is superior to the GoPro, which only lasted 2 runs (about 20 minutes) at Mission Ridge on Sunday in 20 degree weather. The Contour and Reel ran out of memory card space before the battery ran out, but both were used for the entire afternoon.