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How to use your GoPro as a webcam as Zoom calls are here to stay



GoPro Hero 8 Black

Turn your GoPro Hero8 into a webcam.

Joshua Goldman / CNET

although corona vaccines are being distributed now, many of us will still be working and socializing from home for the foreseeable future. That means it’s time to upgrade your webcam to make sure you look your best while virtually meeting colleagues and friends (changing your Zoom background and turn on the beauty filter can only do so much). If you have a GoPro camera, this handy software upgrade turns it into a compatible webcam Zoom Microsoft Teams Google Meet and pretty much every other major video chat service you can think of. (And if you don’t have a GoPro, you can turn your phone camera into a webcam

Here’s how to do it.

Read more: Ultimate Webcam Tips: How to Look and Sound Great Online

What you need to turn your GoPro into a webcam

You have a GoPro Hero8 camera or a GoPro Hero9 camera – the latest versions of the popular solid camera, released in 2019 and 2020 respectively. You can pick up the Hero8 Amazon for $ 300You also need a USB-C cable (there is one that comes with the camera that works) to connect the camera to your computer.

For the initial setup, you will need a microSD card and card reader to update your camera. If your computer doesn’t have a built-in USB port, you also need a dongle.

This trick currently only works for Mac users, although a Windows version is in development.

Finally, you’ll need something to mount your GoPro to use as a webcam. You have a lot of options here that you can buy from GoPro like the JawsFlex clamp ($ 49.99), the Magnetic swivel clip ($ 24.99) or the Suction cup ($ 39.99).

It’s not required, but it’s so useful Ulanzi G8-7 battery holder ($ 19.95 on Amazon) gives you access to the camera’s USB port while covering the battery and SD card, so you don’t have to worry about something going out while in webcam mode .

Read more: Best equipment for home video chats: webcams, lights, microphones and more

How to turn your GoPro into a webcam

Here are the step-by-step instructions on how to update your Hero8 camera to a webcam, according to GoPro.

Step 1: Update your camera

1. Download the GoPro Webcam Beta Firmware to your computer. (This download contains the update folder that will update your camera to support the webcam function.)

2. Insert the microSD card from your camera into your computer using a microSD card adapter or USB reader.

3. Transfer the update file to your microSD card. To do this, open a new Finder window and select Downloads on the left to find the UPDATE.zip file. Double-click the UPDATE.zip file, which will create an UPDATE folder.

4. In the Devices section of the sidebar, look for your microSD card, which will show as Untitled. Drag the UPDATE folder to your microSD card.

5. Eject your microSD card by selecting the eject icon.

6. Update your camera: Make sure your camera is turned off. Insert your microSD card and turn it on. The camera will automatically start updating, beep and turn itself off several times. When it is done, you will see a check mark on the front screen. (If you get a message that the update has failed, remove and reinsert the battery and restart the update from the beginning.)

Step 2: Install the GoPro Webcam App and connect your camera

1. Download GoPro Webcam Desktop Utility and install the software on your computer. You will see a GoPro icon in the status bar.

2. Turn on your camera and connect it to your computer with the USB cable. In the status bar you will see that the GoPro icon shows a blue dot, which means that you have connected. You will also see the camera enter USB mode, with a red light and a picture of a USB cable appearing on the screen.

Step 3: Preview your webcam

To preview what your webcam settings will look like, click the GoPro icon in the status bar and click Show previewThis will help you make sure your photo looks good before you start webcamming. You can also switch between mirror mode and flip mode, whichever you prefer.

Step 4: Start your GoPro webcam

Open the video chat service you want to use. GoPro’s webcam software is compatible with Zoom, Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, Skype, Twitch, BlueJeans, GoTo Meeting, Snap Camera and Facebook Rooms. It is also compatible with YouTube Live and Webex if you are using a Google Chrome browser.

When you open your video chat service, select GoPro as your favorite camera. That may be an option when you first sign in, or you may need to go to Settings to do so. For example, in Zoom, go to the Start Video icon at the bottom of the screen, click the up arrow and select GoPro cameraIf you don’t see the GoPro camera option right away, you may need to quit and restart the video chat app.

Once the webcam is running, the GoPro icon in the status bar will show a red dot to indicate that it is turned on.

Step 5: Perfect your webcam settings

Now that your webcam is active, you can make adjustments.

Resolution: To change the resolution, click the GoPro icon in the status bar and select PreferencesYou can switch from 1080p (default) to 720p if desired.

Field of view: To adjust your field of view, you can switch to different digital lenses. Click the GoPro icon in the status bar and select Digital lensChoose from wide, narrow or linear lenses.

There are plenty of other ways to use the equipment you already have, such as your old phone and old laptopOnce you’ve started your installation, you can also use the online classes and equipment you need to become a YouTuber, or just get the best equipment for online meetings


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