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Old 03-15-12, 04:01 PM   #1
IndianaRecRider 
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GoPro HD Hero question

I've got a GoPro HD Hero camera that I've had since last summer. Didn't use it much last year, but I did record a few of my rides. The only SD card I had was a 4GB, so with the settings I had, I was able to record for about an hour before the card was full.

Now fast forward to the present. Just bought a 16GB SD card to use in the camera, and I was curious as to how long I could record with the same settings I used last summer. For testings purposes, I decided to record for two hours, and then see how much space was used on the card. I started recording and then just the camera on my desk and let it do its thing.

After the two hours (and 4 minutes) were up, I put the SD card in my computer to look at the file size, and was surprised to see three files on the card instead of just the one I was expecting. The first two files were 3.66GB each and the third was only 168MB. When viewing the two large files, I noticed that each of them was just a few seconds over an hour long.

This has me curious, which brings me to my question. Does the HD Hero automatically "break up" long videos into smaller pieces? I looked through all the paperwork that came with the camera, plus an online search, but didn't find anything listed in the documentation. I'm hoping someone here has had experience along these lines and will have the answer.

Any information will be greatly appreciated. Many thanks in advance.

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Old 03-15-12, 06:59 PM   #2
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Yes, the GoPro automatically creates a new file after the file size reaches a certain point, as you found out. The ContourHD does the same thing, although I forgot what the file size has to be before a new file is created. I own both cameras.
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Old 03-15-12, 07:35 PM   #3
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4 Gigabytes is the individual file size limit for the disk filesystem used by cameras (FAT32), so the video files get broken up into chunks just under 4GB.
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Old 03-15-12, 08:37 PM   #4
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My new Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H70 point-and-shoot camera will only record continuously up to 2 GB, according to the manual. After that it stops recording and you have to press record again. I don't know why it doesn't adhere to the FAT32 standard of 4 GB like every other device.
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Old 03-16-12, 07:31 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freighttraininguphill View Post
Yes, the GoPro automatically creates a new file after the file size reaches a certain point, as you found out. The ContourHD does the same thing, although I forgot what the file size has to be before a new file is created. I own both cameras.
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4 Gigabytes is the individual file size limit for the disk filesystem used by cameras (FAT32), so the video files get broken up into chunks just under 4GB.
Thank you both for your replies. At 3.66GB for each of the two large files, that definitely falls under that 4GB limit. Not that it matters much, but I prefer one huge file, but I suppose I can edit multiple files into one when the time comes.

Thanks again, I appreciate the info.

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Old 03-16-12, 01:33 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IndianaRecRider View Post
Thank you both for your replies. At 3.66GB for each of the two large files, that definitely falls under that 4GB limit. Not that it matters much, but I prefer one huge file, but I suppose I can edit multiple files into one when the time comes.

Thanks again, I appreciate the info.

There are free or low cost programs that would let you join video files. Virtual Dub is one I know.

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My new Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H70 point-and-shoot camera will only record continuously up to 2 GB, according to the manual. After that it stops recording and you have to press record again. I don't know why it doesn't adhere to the FAT32 standard of 4 GB like every other device.
Perhaps SONY uses even older FAT16, I think it had 2GB filesize limit, but I'm not sure. I haven't seen anything using FAT16 in a decade.
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Old 03-19-12, 08:38 AM   #7
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The camera has no choice. You can't exceed 4GB file size on a FAT32 filesystem. It's not possible.

The only way they could do this would be to have the memory card formatted to NTFS or something like that, but that would be a mess; NTFS is not an open file system so they'd probably have to pay Microsoft royalties (MS is even trying to collect for FAT32), it would be a mess for compatibility (Mac and Linux users might have trouble), there may be rights issues when you went to read the files, you would have to reformat the card to use it in any other device again since they ALL use FAT32, etc.
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Old 03-19-12, 08:55 AM   #8
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Modern versions of OSX and Linux don't have any major issues reading (not writing) from NTFS, I think it's the licensing fees that's the main reason why vendors stick to FAT32.
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