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Tourist
Posts: 3

Hero 8 Black very unreliable with Smart Remote

Hi, I'm using a Hero 8 Black (updated to v1.60) together with an old Hero 4 Black for front and rear-mounted bike ride shots controlled via my GoPro Smart Remote. The problem is that the Hero 8 Black very often fails to be powered up via the smart remote. The old Hero 4 always powers up 100% of the time. But the Hero 8 Black only powers up via the remote maybe 50% of the time at best, resulting in a ton of missing shots.

 

If I stop and manually power up the Hero 8, then the smart remote will always then pick it up and I can control both cameras remotely. So the problem seems to be just in the act of powering up the Hero 8 via the Smart Remote.

 

I have tried resetting the connections and re-pairing the Hero 8 several times over and I get a success message each time and it all works fine via the smart remote until I power off, or the battery dies. Then it won't power up remotely again. I have tried using both 2.4 and 5GHz bands but that seems to make no difference at all. Can anyone please advise if there is a solution here please?

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Nomad
Posts: 4,484

Re: Hero 8 Black very unreliable with Smart Remote

So with the Hero 8, if you remove the battery or the battery runs flat you basically kill the "wake on connection" protocal, you will have to power on your GoPro at least once to restore that feature.  Don't know if you are aware but with GoPro's, the WiFi connection usually stays active for 1 hour and the bluetooth connection stays active for 8 hours.  That's reset if the battery dies or is removed.

 

It takes a few moments for the smart remote to wake the Hero 8 while it's quicker with the Hero 4.  This is because the Hero 4 keeps it's WiFi active all the time (when enabled) at the cost of running down the battery.  The Hero 8 on the other hand conserves energy by having the WiFi enter a kinda sleep mode.  This means the battery lasts longer but it takes longer for the connection to establish.

 

IF you are still experiencing issues, then do a manual update of the Hero 8's firmware to fix any bugs that may be in there.  

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Tourist
Posts: 3

Re: Hero 8 Black very unreliable with Smart Remote

Thanks for the reply. There is nothing in the manual re the Wi-Fi going into sleep mode after an hour, but that might explain some of my fails to re-power-up the Hero 8 using my Smart Remote. Do you have any links to any official documentation re this "sleep mode" so that I can find out more about it please? However it must be said that I have also had many fails well under an hour, so I'm not sure that sleeping Wi-Fi is the culprit - unless it sometimes goes to sleep after only a few minutes?

Re firmware update: I did a manual SD card update to the latest 1.60 firmware on the day I received the Hero 8, so I don't think that's the issue here either unfortunately.

After searching this forum some more, I'm seeing lots of stuff about Smart Remotes being very unreliable on the Hero 7/8 with varying opinions of what people think might be happening. But I haven't seen any hard facts or cure suggestions from GoPro other than doing factory resets and trying it all over again. I'll try a support call tomorrow and see if GoPro have any further suggestions. I will report back here for anyone else with similar issues. I have to say it's a huge disappointment to me to discover how flaky remotely operating the Hero 8 is, especially as the old Hero 4 is 100% reliable with the Smart Remote. I really don't want to have break the flow of my ride to have to stop and manually power the thing up every time I want a shot :-(

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Tourist
Posts: 3

Re: Hero 8 Black very unreliable with Smart Remote

Replying to my own post here, but I just followed the official GoPro advice on many other posts here complaining about this exact same issue on the Hero7 & 8. The official word is to:

 

  • Manually re-flash the Hero8 with the latest firmware via SD card.
  • Reset it to factory settings.
  • Reset the Smart Remote (by holding power button for 10 secs).
  • Re-pair the Hero 8 (and the old Hero 4) to the Smart Remote like a first-time pairing.

So I did all of the above but I still have the same problems after a ton of testing tonight Smiley Frustrated  What happens many times over is this:

 

  • The smart remote powers up, operates & powers down the Hero 4 Black successfully 100% of the time (and my old Hero 4 Silver before that, now long gone).
  • It powers up the Hero 8 maybe 3 times out of 4, maybe less, maybe more -  it's not consistent.
  • When it does work, the H8 takes anything from 5 to 15 seconds longer to connect than the H4.
  • Once it has failed, the H8 never powers up again remotely (i.e. once it fails, it stays failed).

The only cure then is to manually power up the H8 before powering up the remote. Sometimes an H8 battery removal is also required to clear the fault. That seems to work most of the time to allow pairing up and remote operation of both cameras. But once you remotely power them both down again, it's a throw of the dice once more whether the H8 will power back up the next time. 

 

All my tests tonight were done less than 1m from both cameras with a clear line of sight, and both cameras (and the remote) have fully-charged batteries. All my failures outside have been during 4 three-hour rides over a 4 week period on my mountain bike in open countryside well clear of any interference or blocking. I don't have the GoPro app installed on my phone so there is no pairing conflict there.

 

This is surely a firmware bug? Please find a fix for us GoPro, it's super-frustrating and essentially makes the Smart Remote useless for the Hero 8 as things stand.

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GoPro
Posts: 19,832

Re: Hero 8 Black very unreliable with Smart Remote

Hi @bobosola

 

Thank you for the information shared.

We'll have this shared with the team.

 

Thanks!

Ej

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Tourist
Posts: 1

Re: Hero 8 Black very unreliable with Smart Remote

Delighted that you're looking into it. Ditto with all the previous descriptions of the smart-remote issue with Hero 8.