In this GoPro Hero 7 Silver review, I will be going over all the camera’s specs and features in as much detail as I can.
So if you’re looking to buy one, I would advise you to go over this review first because it will help you decide whether or not this camera suits your needs.
The GoPro Hero 7 Silver is one of three Hero7 series action cameras launched by GoPro in September 2018.
The Hero 7 Black is GoPro’s pro-level camera which has the most features and capabilities, followed by the Hero 7 Silver which is a mid-level camera and then the Hero 7 White which is an entry-level camera.
With competition increasing in the action camera market, GoPro is trying to target different types of users with the Hero7 series, from extreme sports junkies to just anyone who is looking for a rugged waterproof action camera that can be used during holidays and vacations.
The Hero 7 Silver is closer to the White than to the Black Edition. Its maximum video resolution is 4K at 30 frames per second, it has a 10 megapixels image sensor that can shoot decent photos, and can shoot video time lapse.
Now, let me go into detail about each of these modes and help you understand where the Hero 7 Silver succeeds and where it fails.
I gathered as much information as I can on the Hero 7 Silver specifications and put them into this table:
GoPro Hero 7 Silver Specs
|Specs\Camera||Hero 7 Silver|
|Normal Video resolution||4K30fps, 1440p60/30fps, 1080p60/30fps|
|Time Lapse Video Intervals||0.5, 1, 2, 5, 10, 30, 60 seconds|
|Video File Format||MP4 (H.264)|
|Max Video Bit Rate||60 Mb/s in 4K|
|Megapixels||10MP + WDR|
|Burst Rates||Yes (up to 15fps)|
|Time Lapse Photo Intervals||No|
|Continuous Photo Capture||Yes|
|RAW Photo Capture||No|
|Time Lapse Photo||No|
|Time Lapse Video||Yes|
|Night Lapse Photo||No|
|Dimensions||62.3 W x 44.9 H x 28.3 D (mm)|
|Weight (Camera + Battery)||94.4g|
|3.5 mm Audio Mic In||No|
|Memory Storage||1 microSD|
|Rugged + Waterproof||Yes|
|Wake on Voice||No|
|Auto Cloud Backup||With GoPro PLUS Subscription|
|Advanced Wind-Noise Reduction||2-mic processing|
|RAW Audio Capture||No|
|Wi-Fi + Bluetooth®||Yes|
|Damaged Camera Replacement||Included with GoPro PLUS Subscription (US Only)|
Design & Components
Weight and Dimensions
The GoPro Hero 7 Silver looks very similar in design to its predecessor the Hero 6 Black and of course to the other two Hero7 series cameras the White and Black.
It looks almost identical to the White, the color being the only difference.
The GoPro Silver has a dark grey color whereas the White has more of a light grey color.
The camera’s dimensions are: 62.3 x 44.9 x 28.3 mm (2.45 x 1.76 x 1.11 inch) and it weighs 94.4 grams or 3.3 ounces.
Touchscreen vs LCD screen
There is a 2-inch touchscreen at the back of the camera that is used to frame your shots, change modes, and settings, all using your finger.
Unlike the Black edition cameras, there is no small LCD screen at the front of the camera. The one that displays the mode you’re into, the battery status, and memory left in the micro SD card.
It is not very useful anyway since you can see this information on the main touchscreen.
The front GoPro Hero 7 Silver lens can only capture a wide field of view or digital lens as GoPro calls it.
This means that you cannot capture a narrower angle when shooting videos or capturing still photos.
The lens size is 1/2.3 inch with an aperture of f/2.8. The same aperture you see on other GoPro cameras which is not great for shooting in low-light.
Ports and Sockets
Under the small door on the left, you will find a USB-C port used for charging the camera and transferring data (videos and photos) to your computer.
There is also a memory card socket that takes a micro SD card, the micro SD card should be either a Class 10 or UHS-I rating memory card that can write 60Mb/s with a maximum capacity of 128 GB.
I recommend this one from SANDisk.
You might have noticed that there is no HDMI port and that’s a bummer because many people would like to playback their videos on a TV or monitor.
There are two built-in microphones on the GoPro Hero 7 Silver which provide a decent audio quality knowing that these microphones provide wind-noise reduction using software.
There is no support for an external microphone.
Without a case, the GoPro Hero 7 Silver is waterproof up to 10 meters or 33 feet. Adding a protective housing with a waterproof backdoor will give you more depth, so up to 40 meters or 131 feet.
This housing comes with a skeleton backdoor for when you’re not using your GoPro near water, it protects from dirt and mud and gives you a less muffled sound.
Controls and Buttons
Accessing Menus and Modes
On the GoPro Hero 7 Silver, you will see two buttons, one at the top which is the shutter button to take videos, and still photos.
On the right side, there is a power/mode button to power on/off the camera and to switch between modes.
Usually for switching modes, you can do it using the touchscreen, however, if you’re underwater and you can’t use the touchscreen, you can then use that button.
The camera is very user-friendly. It is easy to navigate through the menu and change settings. You can use your finger to swipe the menu and tap to select the option you like.
There are three modes on the GoPro Hero 7 Silver: Video, photo, and time lapse video.
You can switch between those using the screen, the buttons or your voice using voice commands.
Voice control is one of the advantages of this camera. The ability to use your voice is crucial in situations where you can’t use your hands like when you’re skiing or biking for example.
GoPro has programmed a couple of voice commands you can use to start/stop videos, take photos, switch modes, and turn off the camera.
Once it is off, you cannot turn it back on using a voice command, it will have to be manually using the power button.
To control the Hero 7 Silver remotely, the only option would be to use your phone or tablet with the GoPro app via WiFi.
You can do everything using the GoPro app, shoot, playback, and even save your footage to your device.
The GoPro Hero 7 Silver is not compatible with the GoPro Smart Remote.
The highest video resolution on the Hero 7 Silver is Ultra HD or 4K. This is actually what differentiates it from the Hero 7 White.
Other than 4K, you also have two other resolutions: 1440p and 1080p.
4K and 1080p have an aspect ratio of 16:9. The 1440p have an aspect ratio of 4:3 which is more squarish.
The 1440p and 1080p here have the same width but different length, so what happens is when you choose 1080p, the camera will be actually shooting in 1440p but will crop off a bit from the top and bottom of the frame to get you to 1080p.
Here are the resolutions in pixels (width x length):
- 4K: 3840 x 2160
- 1440p: 1920 x 1440
- 1080p: 1920 x 1080
I didn’t really like the video quality on all three resolutions. It is not what you would normally expect from GoPro.
I would compare the 4K quality on the Hero 7 Silver with the 4K quality on GoPro Hero 5 Black.
The 4K quality on a GoPro Hero 6 Black is definitely better than the 7 Silver and I blame the cheap image sensor on the Hero 7 Silver.
As I said earlier, I advise you not to use the 1080p resolution, because the camera will simply shoot in 1440p but will crop the top and bottom of the video so you are left with a weird video footage.
Check the video I included at the end of this article to see a test of the video/audio quality.
Frame rates or FPS is the number of frames the camera can capture in one second.
On the GoPro Hero 7 Silver, the maximum frame rate is 60 fps. And it is only available with 1440p and 1080p.
The max frame rate on the 4K is 30 fps. This means that you won’t be able to shoot slow-motion videos in 4K and you will be limited to either 1440p and 1080p.
When shooting in 4K, the maximum bitrate is 60 Mb/s (Megabits per second). The Hero 5 Black’s bitrate was 60Mb/s when shooting in 4K, so the video quality between the two cameras is pretty close.
In 1440p and 1080p, the bitrate can reach a maximum of 40 Mb/s.
The only video codec available is the H.264. The video codec encodes the videos and compresses them when they are being written to the micro SD card.
I would definitely prefer to have the H.265 codec when shooting 4K, because it offers a much better compression without losing quality, so you get a much smaller file on your card.
H.264 will generate bigger files which take more space, but that’s fine as it is not very important for some people.
With the maximum frame rate at 60. You can get 2x times slow motion videos shot in 1440p or 1080p.
As I said earlier, you can’t shoot 4K videos in slow-motion due to the frame rate limitation (30 fps).
To shoot in slow-motion, just tap the slow-motion icon at the bottom center of the touchscreen then press the shutter button to start recording.
You cannot manually select the frame rate on the Hero 7 Silver.
Electronic image stabilization is a very important element in action cameras nowadays because no one wants a shaky footage of their favorite activity.
The GoPro Hero 7 Silver does have built-in electronic stabilization that uses software to make the video footage smoother.
It’s pretty close to the stabilization we saw on the Hero 6 Black so it works well in preventing shaky videos.
Protune for Video
Unfortunately, there no Protune on the Hero 7 Silver.
Digital Lenses (FOV)
FOV (Field of View) or as GoPro now calls it Digital Lenses is the camera’s field of view angle.
Unlike what we usually have on other GoPro cameras, the GoPro Hero 7 Silver has only one digital lens/FOV: Wide.
This means that you cannot take videos and photos in a normal non-wide angle. It may be a bummer for some people who like to take photos using a natural angle.
Digital Touch Zoom
You can zoom in while recording videos or taking photos easily by taping on the zoom icon then using the zoom slider on the touchscreen.
Zoom cannot be used with 4K or slow motion.
The Hero 7 Silver can shoot short clips that can be easily saved on your phone and shared on your social media channels or used for creating QuikStories with the GoPro app.
While in video mode, tap the rectangle icon at the bottom of the touchscreen, then click the shutter button to start recording a short clip.
You will see a red line along the screen border which will indicate how much time is left for the short clip.
Photo Resolution & Formats
The image sensor is capable of taking 10 megapixels photos with a resolution of 3648 x 2736 pixels.
All photos are shot in a wide field of view and with a 4:3 aspect ratio which is the square-shaped frame (non-widescreen).
All photos are saved in JPEG format on the memory card which is a lossy compression for images.
There is no option to save RAW photos, normally in a .gpr format which is available on the Hero 7 Black.
Photos quality is decent enough especially during the daytime. Night photos are ok but not great.
Here are some photos taken with the GoPro Hero 7 Silver:
WDR or Wide Dynamic Range is a type of image processing that helps the camera to better handle dark and bright conditions.
With WDR, you won’t get photos that have either very dark or very bright areas, it will kind of balance these areas to get the best lighting possible.
This is another addition that differentiates the Hero 7 Silver from the White.
WDR is always on by default and cannot be turned off.
Protune photo is not available on the Hero 7 Silver.
With exposure control, you can fix the dark or bright areas of your framed scene directly on your touchscreen.
You can tap the area that you would like to over or underexpose and choose either auto exposure or locked exposure.
Auto exposure will establish the exposure of the area that you selected automatically, whereas locked exposure will lock the exposure of the selected area until you unlock it.
The burst option is available under the photo mode. It is great for capturing fast-moving activities and sports with a single shutter click.
The GoPro Hero 7 Silver is capable of capturing 15 photos per second while in burst mode.
Continuous Photo Capture
Continuous photo capture is a feature and not a setting like the mode, so you don’t actually need to activate it.
To use it, simply press and hold the shutter button while you are in photo mode and the camera will take photos continuously until you release the shutter button.
It takes a maximum of 4 photos in one second. So if you hold the shutter button for 4 seconds, you will get 16 photos.
The GoPro Hero 7 Silver has can only do time lapse video, it’s not possible to shoot time lapse photo.
Time Lapse Video
Time lapse video is when the camera captures frames at a time interval then combines all these frames into one video.
It is great for shooting slow changing events over a long period, for example: moving clouds, night skies, sunsets or sunrises.
When shooting a time lapse, the Hero 7 Silver captures a frame every 0.5 seconds, and because time lapse speeds up your videos 15x, 10 minutes of recording can give you 40 seconds of video.
Something you need to know about the GoPro Hero 7 Silver is the battery. The battery has a capacity of 1220mAh but it is non-removable which means it is built in the camera.
Yes that’s right. The battery is one of the downsides of the Hero 7 Silver because, if a non-removable battery dies, you will not be able to use the camera until you recharge it.
The GoPro Hero 7 Silver battery life is around 90 to 120 minutes of 4K video recording, and around 110 minutes in 1440p at 60 fps in slow motion.
Of course, all these numbers are based on optimal conditions, like ambient temperature, WiFi off, voice control off, etc..
The two microphones capture a decent audio quality during video recording and those two microphones are capable of doing some wind-noise reduction using software processing.
I would say that the quality is not bad, but at the same time, it is not excellent.
Here’s a 4K video shot with Hero 7 Silver with stabilization ON:
Problems Encountered by Users
- Bad video quality especially in 1080p
- Cheap 4K quality
- Battery doesn’t last long enough
With the Hero 7 Silver, GoPro was trying to introduce this mid-level camera to a certain type of people, specifically those who do not need all the sophistication you find on a GoPro Black edition and also for those who are on a budget.
The Hero 7 Silver can shoot 4K at 30 frames per second, 1440, and 1080p at 60 fps. It takes 10 megapixels photos with WDR, can shoot time lapse video, is waterproof, and has voice control.
In my opinion, the 7 Silver shouldn’t be considered a mid-level but more of an entry-level action cam along with the 7 White.
It doesn’t deliver the 4K quality we are used to seeing on a GoPro, plus the non-removable battery gives it so much limitation when someone wishes to use it for more than a few hours.
I would not recommend the Hero 7 Silver, but instead if you can afford to pay more, go for the Hero 7 Black or Hero 8 Black.
I hope you liked my GoPro Hero 7 Silver review and found it useful.
If you have any questions, please leave a comment in the comments section below. 🙂