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Hiker
Posts: 18

Hero 7 Black freezing, crashing, unexpected behavior

Hi there,

So, I have my new Hero 7 Black. I love the quality and features... but the camera is severely misbehaving for no known reason. In many ways, these issues happen so often, they render the camera unusable. I have an advanced backround in computer hardware and electronics, for reference. I'd like to beleive that this is not a user-error type situation.

Hardware and configuration:

  1.  Version 1.51 (Have factory reset after flashing too, three times I have re-flashed the 1.51 firmware)

  2. Samsung EVO 256 GB SD [Samsung 256GB 100MB/s (U3) MicroSDXC EVO Select Memory Card with Adapter (MB-ME256GA/AM)] (This exact product is on the 'go' list. Card tested and clusters are checked, running well with no errors near 100 MB/sec for all operations)
  3. Generally speaking, the settings are set to minimalist modes; Voice control turned off, "screen saver" turned off, auto-power off disabled, WiFi disabled, GPS disabled, peizio speaker off, LED's off, landscape lock off, Video compression set to H.264/compatable, operating and recording in NTSC, HDMI OUT not in use.

  4. Camera is always on power-only (NO data/device on USB type-A end) type-C connector, always above 90% battery when running, used as a dash camera in lower-middle ambient tempuratures (less than 72 DEG F). The camera is mounted "upside-down". The 5v power source it is connected to is stable and filtered; the device is not subjected to any unusual or agressive interference of any electrical, magnetics, or radio domain. (Tested with environmental tools; very low uTesla, negligible, below-average noise from power source and cable run shown on oscilloscope, and no unusual electric fields generated by anything other than the camera)



Issues I experience multiple times per day, every day:


Random shutdowns and recording stops without warning, sometimes camera is entirely unresponsive. Camera does not appear to be overheating, SD card is less than 10% fillled, camera is on power and battery is full. All manners of settings and their combinations have been used, with no change in this behavior, although it does appear to occur slightly less with looping video or lower data rate videos, but I have no data and any single instance is anecdotal at best.

Issues appear to happen more frequently with higher data rate videos, such as 4k 60 frame/sec, vs 2.7k 60 frame/sec, naturally leading me to inspect the SD card filesystem and sectors. I'm going over it again with a more aggressive burn-in test across the entire card as this is typed to rule out any issues, but so far, there is no visible cause for this behavior. Even though this happens all the time, it doesn't seem to happen when I'm paying attention to the camera, so it's been difficult to itemize any potential environmental factors.

This is kind of annoying, I just paid $400 for this camera, it wasn't dropped or anything stupid, and it's just malfunctioning right out of the box. So, what's the deal? Is anyone else experiencing these issues? I've done everything I can without breaking open the hood, so to speak, since it's brand new and has a warranty. I almost wish I didn't trade-up my session; that thing sucked a lot, but at least it didn't just shut down all the time for no reason. Are we, the customers, just beta testers? Not happy.

Hopefully, someone out there has useful information, but I suspect that these issues may be common accross the platform.

Hiker
Posts: 18

Re: Hero 7 Black freezing, crashing, unexpected behavior

I will note this, I just noticed that the camera does overheat in LOW ambient temps when recording looping video in 4k, and my battery life dropped from 100% to 30% in LESS THAN 10 MINUTES! WTF? This is a very small single cell battery, I get it, I build my own lithium ion and lithium iron manganese phosphate batteries and battery management hardware, but this is ridiculous!

Hiker
Posts: 22

Re: Hero 7 Black freezing, crashing, unexpected behavior

I’d try with another SC card. I read somewhere 256GG cards may cause problems. I had Samsung EVO+ 128GB. It never worked with my Hero6 and I had some problems with Hero7. Now I’m using Sandisk Extreme 64GB and have no issues, it’s working perfectly. If you have a spare card, try it. Also, format the card with camera. Good luck!

Hiker
Posts: 18

Re: Hero 7 Black freezing, crashing, unexpected behavior

Well, I'll throw one of my older 64 GB sandisks in there and see what it does...

I have already reflashed the firmware multiple times manually. That's in my first post.

Why would the staff include explicit SD card model/product codes for SD cards that will not work with the device? 

Hiker
Posts: 18

Re: Hero 7 Black freezing, crashing, unexpected behavior

Tried with multiple other APPROVED cards, resulting in different failures, almost exclusively behaving as if I removed the power source from the camera 1/4 of the time. Flashed firmware one more time for sanity's sake. Honestly, I would open it up and hard flash the EEPROM outside of the user shell, but obviously that'd be bad for the warranty, even though I have credentials. (Just.... frustrating.)


I'm really disappointed overall with this thing. What a waste of money. It will not run stably with proper cards (From hardware, to volume alignment, partition parameters, everything is correct), within the operating tempuratures anywhere, with or without external power, under a variety of framerates/resolutions/encodings, it doesn't matter. It's all correct by the book, and yet this thing keeps shutting down like it's runnning into processor die level thermistor failsafe. 

It'd be really nice if someone from the company replied, and please do not bother if you did not read the post in its entirety.

Thanks.


Hiker
Posts: 10

Re: Hero 7 Black freezing, crashing, unexpected behavior

I have to concur - I see the same behavior with HERO7 and was wondering why I was the only one.  Firmware updated.  Samsung EVO+ 256GB.

 

GoPro
Posts: 3,505

Re: Hero 7 Black freezing, crashing, unexpected behavior

 

Hi @benj838,

 

Have you tried resetting the camera and install new update manually? 

If you already did maybe changing SD card might help. 

 

Choose a recommended SD card with lower capacity such as 32 or 64 G since they are more reliable based on my experience.

https://gopro.com/help/articles/block/microSD-Card-Considerations 

 

Regards.

-Jay

Hiker
Posts: 18

Re: Hero 7 Black freezing, crashing, unexpected behavior

I have already done this multiple times, it's in my posts.

Using a 64 or God forbid a 32 GB card with 4k video is terrible, storage wise. Right now, I'm using an old SanDisk 64 (good enough for 2.7k without hiccups) and it's *less* crabby. I just sent back the 128 GB Samsung Evo too under the guise that it, and potentially the 256 unit were counterfeits. I did test the cards on a low physical level, and a logical level using the GoPro formatting, and they passed. I'll be getting a v90 rated 128 GB SanDisk today, and a 64 GB Samsung Evo card too from an older order that's late. It's difficult to tell since my evidence is anecdotal, but it's possible that the Samsung cards are not usable, be it Samsung's fault, or GoPro's fault, I don't really care which but those cards should be investigated and promptly pulled from the top of the recommended equipment list.

It's not an acceptable answer for me, to just "use a smaller card" so the **bleep** 4k camera I (and many others) just spent several hundred dollars on from what's probably the leading (at least top three) consumer grade 'action cam' company in the world, when they tell me that their control software and opsys can handle a large storage environment without falling on its face. I expect that performance and absolutely nothing less for this price, and so should every other customer, as advertised.

I'm going to update this post after testing with the new 128 card. This is from a trusted hardware source, I do not expect a forgery. If the camera doesn't operate proper with it, I will have to blame the camera.

While I appreciate the interaction, please read the posts thoroughly before commenting. How many more people are going to suggest that I flash the firmware lol...

Since the severity and likelihood of these crashes are directly correlated with the bitstream density, I am starting to suspect a buffer overflow. Could be on the disk, could be in the processor cache, I don't know because I'm not employed at GoPro. I do have professional experience modifying the old cameras when I was working for Indycar team, I'm working in artificial intelligence hardware now to be clear, I am not some dummy who needs a quick-start guide to get this going. All of that probably makes this more frustrating to be honest, because when I'm not working or designing a part/system, and I AM on the consumer end of it, I just want the **bleep** thing to work.

Sorry for ranting on it, I am just fed up. Hopefully, on some off chance the Samsung cards were all junk somehow, the SanDisk card might let me use the camera as intended. Otherwise, I'm going to be having a phone call with the company about a refund and getting my old unit back that I traded up too.