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Tourist
Posts: 7

GoPro Hero7 Black GPS issues?

Has anyone that has had GPS issues on the GoPro Hero7 Black figured them out?

 

It only works half the time, like the recording will start and then 4 min or so later the GPS starts working. At least how it appears when I view the GPS Gauge in Quik (when that isnt freezing up in Windows OR Mac) and on my iPhone.

 

I bought this particular model because of the GPS and wanting the ability to show the speedometer as I am recording my rides around town.

 

I live in Seattle, WA and no other GPS devices I own have ANY issues. I use my Apple Watch and iPhone Xs GPS all the time for tracking activities.

 

I have had this thing for less than a week and I am almost to the point I am going to return it to REI and look at other options.

 

What is even worse is that I got a Hero2 from a friend and tried to update firmware and bricked it, that is why I even went to get the Hero7. :(

 

Tourist
Posts: 7

Re: GoPro Hero7 Black GPS issues?

I've also just re-installed latest firmware and reset to factory defaults. Still not getting GPS.

Nomad
Posts: 1,302

Re: GoPro Hero7 Black GPS issues?

Yeah, the GPS chip in the camera is A:  Tiny, B: Very sensative to disruption.  You need to have a clear view of the sky and also it helps not to mount the camera upside down or mount it under anything metal (like the underside of an airplane).

 

You also need to turn on the camera and wait until you have a GPS lock before recording and this can take about 4 minutes.  

 

Your phone cheats by not only having a better larger GPS chip but it also uses Cell phone tower info to use a reference and for triangulation for when it loses GPS.  The GoPro doesn't have this option.  Your watch also gets into from the phone when it loses connection, again, the GoPro doesn't have this option.

 

What I actually do (when I want reliable GPS info) is I'll start all my camera's and wait about 4 or 5 mintues until the GPS locks.  Then at the same time I'll start a GPS logger on my phone.  I then start all the camera's recording at the same time (thank you GoPro Smart Remote!) and start the logging on the phone.   Then afterwards, just in case I lose GPS signal (and I will depending on what location I'm flying in) I can use a program like racerender to get the complete GPS info I need (whether it be from the camera's or my phone).

 

It's hard to brick a camera via a firmware update, have you tried removing the battery for a few minutes and then reflashing the camera again?  Could be an SD card issue.

Tourist
Posts: 7

Re: GoPro Hero7 Black GPS issues?

Hi @irishmanpdx thanks for responding!

 

I get that about GPS, I have had many GPS devices throughout the years. Nothing in recent years has been so bad though. My bicycle computer that is 1/3 size of GoPro and is 3 years old does just fine in the same conditions/areas of town.

 

I have the unit mounted to either my chest backpack strap, on the top of handle of my Electric Unicycle, and handlebar of bicycle. My goal of the camera is to have something recording my rides for fun and documentation if something happens. We have way too many aggressive drivers and cyclists in Seattle who do not follow the rules of the road/paths.

 

The 4 minute thing seems to be more than just at the start. My GoPro cuts longer recordings into 8-11 minute chunks (4GB) and its at the start of each segment it happens for about half the video. The majority of my rides are < 15 minutes so waiting an additional 4 min to just get going doesn't seem like the right flow for me.

 

If the GPS is going to be this finicky I might just return it and get a lower model (or something from another vendor) and use my phones GPS to record paths and add that in when I make/edit fun videos. Just seems like a hassle and the idea of built in GPS was neat.

 

On the Hero2 bricked, I started out with a non-recommended (class 4 SanDisk) card and the camera was working fine. I noticed the firmware was outdated and updated it which led to bricking. I since picked up a SanDisk Extreme UHS-I 32GB to try out a recommended card. I tried the new card, re-doing firmware steps, various tricks like chilling the unit, holding down many button combo's etc. The state its in right now is if you turn it on it shows the video camera icon, battery indicator, then the # 1 after battery.

 

Bricking that is what led me to buy the Hero7. Maybe that should have been an indicator of the quality of GoPro's. I am a pretty technical person and have never bricked a device I could not fix.

 

I wish the quality and effectiveness of the GoPro marketing team was shown in the actual product.

 

 

 

 

Nomad
Posts: 1,302

Re: GoPro Hero7 Black GPS issues?

Well your bicycle GPS only has one job to do and that's act as a GPS.  The GoPro has a lot more going on and the GPS is just a tiny chip on the board (which will be much smaller than your bicycle GPS).  

 

There are a lot of things that can affect GPS signal, being surrounded by tree's, buildings, electrical interference, WiFi interference, Weather conditions.  I fully commend you using the camera to record you trips though, it's a good way to keep things documented in the case of an accident.  

 

So the 4 minute thing happening on each chapter of a video is odd.  Usually what would happen is if you start recording without a GPS signal, you won't have GPS for the first chaptered file, but when the GoPro gets a GPS signal, you would then have it on the subsequent files.  

 

For me, when using my GPS enabled GoPro, I have a 20 minute drive but I power on the camera as I'm leaving the house, when I get to my car I have established a GPS lock, I mount my GoPro and then start recording.  It's just part of my routine now that I have the timing down.

 

You could always try a "lower" model if you will and use your phone GPS, but that wouldn't be of benefit to you.  The GoPro has much better shooting modes and better image stabilization than their other models (and if you're cycling, image stabiliztion is a must have).  You might try mounding your GoPro on the top of your helmet like other cyclists do.  Not only will it give a better perspective, your head also acts like it's own stabilizer and will offer steadier shooting then with a chest mount, the over all FOV will be better if your intention is to capture other people's bad driving or cycling habits and it will give the GoPro a less obstructed view of the sky and improve GPS reporting.  Also, unlike using a chest mount or mounting it on the handle of your electric unicycle, your body isn't going to be blocking the GPS signal path.  

 

Post a picture of the GPHero 2 display.  I wasn't even aware there was an active part of the LCD to display anything after the battery icon.  I'm not sure who recommended "Chilling" the unit, the only thing that's going to do is possibly contract the mainboard and cracking the solder.  

 

Anyway, as for GoPro Quality, My Hero 2 is going strong and for an 8 year old action camera, that actually speaks volumes about the quality of the product.  My GoPro Hero 4 is working just fine and that's nearly 5 years old.   My two GoPro Hero 6's have no issues and Iove editing and shooting with my GoPro Fusions.  Quality camera's, quality support.

 

Could things be better?  Sure, I mean, I'd love to fully recommend to you getting a GoPro Fusion as your cycling cam to be mounted on your helmet but I just can't do that.......... I mean.......  as much as I love the camera, there's just no way that will ever look good mounted on the top of someone's helmet....