Tuesday, May 17, 2022

The GoPro Volta is a handgrip, remote control, tripod and external battery in one

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GoPro is announcing a new accessory for its action cameras that’s an all-rounder — the Volta doubles as a handgrip/tripod, wired or wireless remote, and packs a 4,900mAh battery that the company says can triple your camera’s battery life, delivers four hours of recording time with a fully charged internal battery when shooting 5.3K.

The Volta uses an integrated USB-C cable to connect and charge your GoPro at the touch of a button and has an additional USB-C port to charge the internal battery. GoPro says the integrated battery can be charged in just two and a half hours, and there’s a quick charge mode that takes it from 0 to 60 percent in an hour.

Like the GoPro Hero 10, the Volta charges via USB-C. GoPro says it can also serve as a battery bank for phones with USB-C.
Becca Farsace / The Verge

It also has a built-in remote, which you can use to start recording or cycle through the camera’s shooting modes – both when your GoPro is connected to the Volta and wirelessly via Bluetooth. (The Volta’s wireless remote functionality also works with GoPro’s 360-degree Max camera and older Hero models if you pair it as the company’s standalone remote.) Above the remote are a few indicator lights, which show and indicate battery life remaining. whether your camera is in video, photo, or time-lapse mode. GoPro says it should work from about 100 feet away, but also that range “may be affected when recording at higher resolutions and frame rates.”

The remote can also work wirelessly.
Becca Farsace / The Verge

Considering there’s a lot of electronics here, it’s no surprise that GoPro’s website warns that taking the Volta underwater will damage it and your camera. The company has no official water resistance rating, but Volta’s Manual calls it “weatherproof” when plugged into the camera – safe from splashes in principle, but not swimming. GoPro also warns that your camera won’t be waterproof when it has the USB pass-through cover that comes with the Volta, and that the Volta itself won’t be water-resistant when you use it in wireless remote mode.

The Volta has a top mount for attaching your GoPro, as well as a side folding one that folds out (with a rugged feel button) and can be used to attach the Volta to other GoPro accessories such as backpacks or bike mounts . With a 1/4-20 screw mount on the bottom, you can attach it to traditional film equipment such as a tripod. I suspect most people will want to use the Volta as a standalone accessory, but when folded it can act as a handgrip that you can use to hold the camera a little further away from your body. It also has two small legs that pop out to make it into a sort of mini tripod.

The “fingers” on the side pop out when you need them and can be tucked away when you don’t need them.
Becca Farsace / The Verge

The edgeVideo expert Becca Farsace was quite impressed with the Volta, calling it a “well-designed combination of some popular GoPro accessories.” She also found it quite easy to envision a scenario where she could use it: “GoPro recently released the Enduro battery that improved battery life, especially at low temperatures, but there’s only so much oomf that they can add to a part that needs to physically fit in a Hero 10. And even with an Enduro battery, on a recent ski trip I still found myself needing multiple batteries to power up a day’s long runs in 4K on the slope take.”

The Volta costs $130, and GoPro subscribers get a discount that cuts the cost down to about $90. (The subscription itself costs $50 per year and includes cloud storage, $100 off a new GoPro, and a few other features.)” For me,” Becca said of the Volta’s price, “that’s a great deal.” I agree – I totally plan on getting one so I don’t have to carry around batteries and a tripod separately to document my hikes and bike rides.

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