Summary: Have a look at this post to learn how to compress a GoPro video without quality loss in 6 steps. And all you need is a lightweight yet robust GoPro video compressor.
GoPro camera, such as HERO11/10/9 Black, will capture stunning 5K/5.3K videos, and HERO8/7/6 black will deliver hi-res videos up to 4K. But what follows is the unreasonably huge file size. For example, recording a 60-second 4K@30fps video with GoPro HERO will occupy approximately 493MB of memory. Although GoPro HERO 11/10/9/8 Black uses more advanced HEVC format to encode 4K, the file still remains big.
When we shoot a 1-minute 4K@60fps video, it eats about 529MB memory when ProTune is off, and 643MB with ProTune turned on. In addition to taking up too much space, big file will result in choppy playback and edit, uploading time to increase, and failure to send video to WhatsApp, Snapchat, Email and other programs which have strict limitations on file size and length.
To help you solve uploading, playback, editing, and storage problems caused by bulky GoPro video files, in the following, we will explain to you how to compress GoPro videos and reduce its size to what you want, within 6 steps. Then you can freely upload the GoPro file to Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Email, etc. But for the record, there is no need for you to take all these 6 steps. And you have no need to apply them one by one as the order we give you, either. You can randomly choose one to start. And as long as you see the GoPro file size reaching the number you want, you can stop there.
And here is the overview of the 6 steps to compress GoPro video,
Step 1. Re-encode GoPro video
Step 2. Transcode GoPro H.264 to HEVC
Step 3. Compress GoPro 4K to 1080p
Step 4. Cut off unwanted GoPro images
Step 5. Tweak GoPro video audio parameters
Step 6. Split GoPro video
How to Compress GoPro Videos without Losing Quality
To complete this job, we need a helper or tool. Its name is VideoProc Converter. It comes with many great features to help you easily resize GoPro videos. It is the strongest and fastest video processing software owing to the flawless support for any UHD 4K and even 8K videos, the highest level hardware acceleration technology, and High Quality Engine.
VideoProc Converter - Compress GoPro Videos Easily
- Convert GoPro H.264 to HEVC/H.265 without compromise of quality.
- Cut off unwanted parts to shorten video length.
- Split a video into parts to fit for short file-sharing platforms.
- Tweak video audio parameters (resolution, bit rate, frame rate).
Now we'll show you six methods to resize GoPro 4K videos with VideoProc while preserving original quality maximally. You can choose any method below to process GoPro video compression. Click the proper download button below if you have not downloaded the setup file. Our operation below is based on Windows version. The procedure on Mac follows the similar rule.
Step 1. Re-encode GoPro Video File
To reduce power consumption, GoPro applies a fast yet inefficient algorithm for video compression and encoding. For this reason, the size of the GoPro video is extremely large. Luckily, we will see a significant reduction in file size and no quality loss if we re-encode GoPro video using VideoProc which is built with an advanced compression algorithm. Below are our test results. Re-encoding is processed without changing all the original parameter settings.
Well, how to re-encode a GoPro video to compress GoPro Video and reduce GoPro file size?
1. Download and install VideoProc, Open VideoProc and you will see four options - Video, DVD, Downloader and Recorder. To re-encode video, you should select "Video".
2. Load target GoPro video by clicking "+ Video".
3. Click "Target Format" to choose an output format. Keep the video/audio parameters to be the same as before.
4. Hit "RUN" to begin re-encoding GoPro video.
Step 2. Transcode GoPro H.264 to Highly Compressed HEVC
If you use an old GoPro model, HERO 5 for example, your 4K video is encoded with H.264. By converting H.264 to H.265 (aka. HEVC), the file size will be reduced by 50% or more while the quality won't be impacted at all. If you don't know which format your GoPro 4K footage is, you can check it through VideoProc. Load your footage into VideoProc and you'll see the video codec and audio codec under the title. If it is H.264, now follow the guide below to convert it to more advanced HEVC.
1. Open VideoProc Converter and then you should select "Video".
2. Click "+Video" to insert your GoPro 4K H.264 video from computer hard drive or your camera's SD card.
3. Navigate to "Video" tab on the bottom bar, and choose "MP4 HEVC" profile.
By default, the resolution will be changed to 1920x1080. If you want to keep original 4K resolution, simply click "Option" on the pending file, find "Resolution" and select 3840x2160 (4K).
4. Uncheck Nvidia/Intel/AMD for smaller size possibly. Software transcoding does very well in file size reducing. As a test shown, when we convert a 643MB file from H.264 to HEVC/H.265, the size of resulting file using CPU-only software transcoding is just 62.8MB! (But note that when hardware acceleration is turned off, the video processing and conversion speed will be slower.)
5. Hit "RUN" to begin converting GoPro 4K video codec from H.264 to HEVC/H.265.
Step 3. Compress GoPro 4K to 1080p
Theoretically, the quality will be degraded after down scaling from 4K to 1080p. However, you won't notice any quality loss when you play the compressed file on 1080p TV or mobile devices.
1. Start up VideoProc Converter and choose "Video".
2. Click "+Video" to import target GoPro 4K video.
3. Choose an output format from the shortcut menu at the bottom or click "Target Format" to get more presets.
4. Hit "Option" button, click the dropdown menu of "Resolution" and choose "1920x1080".
5. Click "RUN" to start decreasing resolution from 3840x2160 to 1920x1080.
Step 4. Cut off Unwanted GoPro Clips to Reduce GoPro File Size
When we just cut off extra clips while keeping original parameters, the original quality will be 100% preserved.
1. Launch VideoProc and click "Video" button on the main window.
2. Drag target GoPro 4K video into the interface or click "+Video" button in the top left corner to load source file.
3. After specifying an output format according to your own needs, click "Cut" button under the pending file and you will get access to a new panel.
4. Drag the green knobs on the slider to select the first clip you want to keep and click the orange "Cut" button. Repeat this operation to pick out other needed clips. Then, click "Done" to save your operations and exit this screen.
5. Hit "RUN" at the bottom right to export a new shorter GoPro 4K video.
Step 4. Tweak GoPro Video Audio Parameters
This is also a useful way to resize GoPro video. After loading target footage, simply click "Option" button and then you'll get access to the panel where you can adjust bit rate, frame rate, GOP and other parameters.
1. Lower bit rate
Bit rate is an important factor that affects video quality and file size. In theory, the higher the bit rate, the better the video quality and the larger the file size. However, when the bit rate reaches a critical point, our eyes will no longer notice enhancement of quality, but only increase of file size. Therefore, we can choose a relatively low bit rate to reduce the file size of GoPro 4K video.
To decrease bit rate:
- Locate "Bit Rate" and choose "Manual" from its dropdown menu.
- Choose "ABR" and then you can reduce the value of the "Target Bit Rate".
2. Reduce frame rate
Frame rate can also impact file size and fluidity of a video. You're suggested to choose a high frame rate when you need to record sports videos. However, it is not necessary to set too high to record a video that isn't full of action scenes. So, change your GoPro 4K 60/50fps to 30fps when necessary. To lower frame rate, tap "Option", locate "Frame Rate (FPS)", and then choose "30".
3. Increase the value of GOP
GOP, short for group of pictures, consists of I-, B-, and P-frames. Assume that the GOP is 250, there will be 1 I-frame and 249 B- and P-frames. When we increase GOP to 500, I-frame is still 1 and B- and P-frames increase to 499. The size of 1 I-frame is far larger than that of 249 B- and P-frames.
So, when we increase the value of GOP, the number of I-frames in a video will be decreased, thus reducing the file size. Click "Option", find "GOP", and now enter a desired GOP value.
4. Uncheck Force Copy
After clicking "Option" and then you'll find "Force Copy" under Audio Codec Options. When you transcode your GoPro 4K video with "Auto Copy" selected and "Force Copy" disabled, it will transcode the audio only and deliver a smaller file.
5. Remove audio track
If audio track doesn't mean much to you, you can remove the audio track off your GoPro 4K video to reduce the file size. Now, let me show you how to delete the audio track. Click audio track info in the pending file and uncheck it. Hit "RUN" and you will get a new file without audio.
Step 6. Split a GoPro Video into Several Small Parts
Splitting is another workaround if you don't want to compress GoPro video by converting video format, down scaling resolution, tweaking parameters or other methods we introduced above. After splitting, you will get some smaller video clips. Then you can send those files at different times to your friend or YouTube and the like.
1. Start up VideoProc if you have already installed it on your computer. Next, choose "Video".
2. Click "+Video" button to import the long GoPro 4K video.
3. Choose a compatible output profile.
4. Navigate to "ToolBox" tab, locate "Split" option and double click it.
Now, specify how many segments you want to split your video into, and how long each segment is. Click "Done" after you finish settings.
5. Click "RUN" button and you'll get shorter video clips later.
As you can see, VideoProc does provide so many great ways to resize videos without damaging the image and audio quality severely. Now download it and try it yourself!
4 Different Scenarios to Compress GoPro Videos
Scenario 1: Upload GoPro videos to sites that support long videos
Although YouTube and Facebook allow users to upload long and large files, there're still limits on file size and length. You can check details in the table below. If your GoPro 4K video goes over the limit of YouTube, Facebook or other site, you can use VideoProc Converter to reduce GoPro file size and compress it. Before the resizing, to upload a perfect copy for sharing, you can tone down background noise from your GoPro recorded videos.
VideoProc is a piece of one-stop video processing software that can easily resize 4K UHD videos shoot by GoPro HERO11/10/9/8, DJI drone, iPhone, or other devices. It helps users reduce both length and file size of a video with ease. Armed with Intel, AMD and NVIDIA powered level-3 hardware acceleration, it can finish resizing or other video processing tasks at superfast speed.
Scenario 2: Share GoPro 4K video to sites that accept short video clips
Instagram: only allows users to upload videos 3 to 60 seconds.
Twitter: restricts the video length to 2 minutes and 20 seconds.
Snapchat: only accepts a video that is less than 10 seconds.
WhatsApp: doesn't set limits for file length, but doesn't permit a video larger than 16MB.
If the video length of your GoPro 4K video goes beyond the limit, you can cut off unwanted segment or split it into multiple smaller pieces with VideoProc. We've illustrated how to cut a video and split a long video into several short video clips in next part.
Scenario 3: Send GoPro video via email
Email is a convenient way that can help us send files to anyone, only if we know his or her email address. But what we should note here is that every email provider has set maximum attachment size limit, 25MB for Gmail, 25MB for Yahoo Mail, and 20MB for Outlook. To bypass email client's meager attachment size limit, we can make use of a file sharing service such as Google Drive to generate a link to access your GoPro 4K video or resize it using VideoProc before uploading to email. Let's read thorough this article and learn how to send gopro videos without losing quality.
Scenario 4: Store GoPro 4K video footage to hard drive
When you capture a lot of fantastic 4K video footages with your GoPro camera, you may want to store them in an external hard drive, cloud storage server, NAS, or somewhere else, for further editing. However, what may trouble you are that 4K footages require for too much storage space and your video editor becomes choppy after you import a large 4K footage.
Although many GoPro video editors have announced the support for 4K video, users sometimes still run into errors while importing. Check out those Top ten 4K video editors. Professional video editing software like Adobe Premiere Pro itself is big and has high requirements for computer hardware. Importing a massive 4K video undoubtedly adds insult to jury.
To solve these issues, you're suggested to refer to the methods below to compress your GoPro 4K videos without compromising quality before saving and editing.
Best GoPro Settings to Shoot Video Between Quality & Size
Apart from enhancing GoPro video quality by post-processing, you can also get GoPro videos with good balance between quality and file size by changing the settings in camera. Here're some best GoPro video settings for a variety of activities.
|Activity||GoPro HERO8 Black video setting||GoPro HERO7 Black video setting||GoPro HERO6 Black video setting|
|Automobile||1080p, 2.7K, 60fps, Wide FOV||1440p 60 fps, Wide FOV; 4K 60 fps, Wide FOV; 5x TimeWarp Video||1080p 60fps, 2.7K 120fps, 4K 60fps, Wide FOV|
|Cycling/Mountain Biking||1080p, 2.7K, 60fps, Wide SuperView FOV||1440p 60fps, 2.7K 60fps, 4:3, Wide FOV; 15x TimeWarp Video||1080p 60fps, SuperView FOV; 1440p 60fps, Wide FOV; 2.7K 60fps 4:3, Wide FOV|
|Family/Travel||1080p, 4K, 60fps, Wide FOV||1440p, 60fps, Wide FOV; 4K 60fps, Wide FOV; 10x TimeWarp Video||1080p, 60fps, Wide or Linear FOV; 4K 60fps, Wide FOV|
|Flying the Karma Drone||1080p, 4K, 60fps, Wide FOV||1080p, 60fps, Linear FOV; 4K 60fps, Wide FOV||/|
|Hiking||1080p, 4K, 30fps, Wide FOV||1440p, 60fps, Wide FOV; 4K 30fps, 4:3, Wide FOV; 15x TimeWarp Video||1440p 30fps, Wide FOV; 4K 30fps, 4:3, Wide FOV|
|Motorcycle, Motocross||1080p, 2.7K, 120fps, Wide FOV||1440p, 60fps, Wide FOV; 2.7K 60fps, 4:3, Wide FOV; 15x TimeWarp Video||1080p, 60fps, SuperView FOV; 2.7K 60fps, 4:3, Wide FOV|
|Skiing, Snowboarding (non-POV)||1080p, 4K, 120fps, Wide FOV||1080p 120fps, Wide FOV; 1080p, 240fps, Wide FOV; 2.7K 120fps, Wide FOV; 4K 60fps, Wide FOV||1080p 120fps, Wide FOV; 4K 60fps, Wide FOV; 15x TimeWarp Video|
|Skiing, Snowboarding (POV)||1080p, 4K, 60fps, Wide FOV||1440p, 60fps, Wide FOV; 1440p120, Wide FOV; 15x TimeWarp Video||1440p, 60fps, Wide FOV; 2.7K60 4:3, Wide FOV|
|Surfing||1080p, 2.7k, 120fps, 240fps, Wide FOV||1080p 240fps, Wide FOV||1080p 240fps, Wide FOV; 1440p 120fps, Wide FOV|
|Underwater Activities||1080p, 4K, 30fps, 60fps, Wide FOV||1440p, 60fps, Wide FOV; 4K 60fps, Wide FOV||1080p, 60fps, Wide FOV; 4K 60fps, Wide FOV|
|Water Activities||1080p 120fps, Wide FOV||1440p, 60fps, Wide FOV; 1080p, 240fps, Wide FOV||1080p 120fps, Wide FOV|
GoPro cameras feature ProTune with which you can control white balance, ISO, color capture, exposure value compensation (EV) and sharpness. When Protune is on, your files will be easier to edit with professional editing software, but will be much larger than if ProTune is off. Therefore, if you don't want to spend much time in editing, leave it off to save space.