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Camera Modes

Selecting the best mode for your tour

Shooting Modes

The GoPro MAX supports both video and timelapse image photography in 360 and HERO modes.
Typically we'd recommend shooting in video mode (with the exception if you use a Windows PC -- see considerations)
However each shoot is different. When planning a shoot, there are a few considerations to keep in mind when choosing a mode.

Considerations when selecting a mode

GoPro Studio does not work properly on Windows
IMPORTANT: At the time of writing, only the GoPro Player for Mac will allow you to create .mp4 videos with GPS telemetry.
GoPro Player for Windows has a known bug that will not copy GPS from .360's to processed .mp4's.
If you only have access to a Windows machine, we recommend shooting in timelapse mode.

Timelapse photos are higher resolution than videos

360 photos on the MAX are 18mp (5760x2880).
The MAX has two video modes, 5.6k (5376x2688 processed mp4 video) and 3k (3072x1536 processed mp4 video).

360 video's require post processing before being usable

360 videos will produce a GoPro proprietary .360 file. If you want to upload the video to other platforms, it will first need to be processed and converted to a mode widely recognised format using GoPro Player (e.g. mp4).
Doing so allows you more flexibility to modify the entire video in post-production, but keep in mind GoPro Studio requires a good PC / laptop to work well.
Timelapse photos are delivered as .jpgs on the camera, so can be used straight away.

Videos can produce large file sizes

8 minutes of MAX 360 video is roughly 5 GB in filesize. An individual 360 photo frame shot in timelapse is about 20MB.
Shooting in timelapse mode at the highest rate (2 FPS) produces 30 frames per minute. That's 240 frames per 8 minutes, which also works out to about 5GB (5000Mb/20Mb = 250).
Keep in mind, you will also need to process the .360 file, which will result in a 2x increase in storage required (if you want to keep a copy of the original .360, which I'd recommend for future reprocessing).
The other big difference is getting access to files in the future. If you store files on other machines/cloud services, it's generally easier to download one or two images when needed. Grabbing a whole movie can take a long time on slower connections.
A word of warning: Videos longer than 8 minutes on the MAX will be separated into multiple videos (e.g. 14 minutes of 360 recording will produce two video files one 8 minute file and one 6 minute file). This is something to consider if you do plan to upload a single continuous long video to YouTube (or somewhere else). To do so will require some post processing to merge individual video files into one.

Video mode has a far superior frame rate

Videos can be recorded at a much higher frame rate. In video mode you can record up to 60 FPS @ 3k and 30 FPS @ 5.6k. In timelapse mode, the camera will only capture up to a rate of one photo every 2 seconds (0.5 FPS).
Travelling at 10 km/h (2.75 m/s) in 2 second timelapse mode will produce one photo every 6.5 meters. Ideally you're looking for a distance of less than 5 meters between photos at an absolute maximum.
Generally we tend to shoot in video mode, even when walking (1.4 m/s), as it allows us to capture more frames. More frames means more options to edit in post processing.
Higher frame rates are also required if you want to create 3D models (using Explorer). More frames provides software with more data points to model the world.

Power consumption between modes is negligible

On the Trek Pack v1, the GoPro Fusion was particularly power hungry in video mode. It's not so much of a problem for the MAX.
Power consumption for a video recording is slightly greater than compared to timelapse mode due to the extra processing power required by the camera.
A GoPro MAX battery will last for around 2 hours for continuous recording in good conditions (not too cold), versus about 2.5 hours in timelapse mode.

But power can cause heat problems

In warm conditions (above 25oC), the extra power required by the camera for video mode can cause issues with overheating not seen in timelapse mode.
If your camera is enclose in a case (especially in the Dive Pack's 360 Bubble), overheating can also occur.
When the camera gets too hot, it will automatically shut down before the heat risks damaging the camera.
Therefore when shooting in high temperatures, I would recommend using timelapse mode to avoid unwanted shutdowns.