GoPro HERO4 Overheating Battery BacPac Test 3 – Surprise it may be your Camera

Ok, I really hate posting too many things on one subject, but this battery issue may or may not be a serious problem - I personally think it is. In fact, in order to confirm this issue I went ahead and opened up another brand new $500 dollar GoPro HERO4. That's a lot of money spent on testing (you owe me GoPro) but I think the results were worth it. Unfortunately this final test shows exactly what the problem is, but still leaves me completely clueless at the same time. Watch the video below to see what I mean.

So turns out the battery is not the problem. It's actually a bit disturbing. I have two brand new GoPro HERO4 cameras, both appear to be in perfect working condition. Yet the bacpac doesn't like one of them and it does it in a very dangerous way. Someone would never know this until after 3 minutes of powering on the camera. Had this been in the waterproof housing this could have ended up in a very different way.

With millions of these units shipping, I'm hesitant to say I have the only one in the world with this issue. If you plan to pick up a HERO4 camera with an external battery bacpac, you may want to give it a good long test outside of the housing before deciding if it's perfectly fine. As for now i'm still waiting to hear from GoPro support. If anyone else is experiencing something 'not quite right' with the HERO4, leave a comment below.

---------Updated Information--------------------

I picked up a Temp Gun earlier today and ran a quick scan. I can't vouch for the accuracy of this cheap gun, but after about 8 minutes powered on the general reading of this unique HERO4 was 156° F.

GoPro Temp Reading Hero4

So to put that in perspective, they say that a person will receive a second degree burn in 3 seconds of exposure and a third degree burn in 5 seconds of exposure to water at 140°F. And just for kicks if you've ever placed a powered on MacBook Retina over your skin that's about 102°F-113°F which is very uncomfortable. So again, i'm not vouching for the accuracy of this temp gun, but if it's close 150°F is not something you want to throw in your pocket.

---------Updated Information--------------------

[Update] I just got an email from GoPro support and I will be sending in the unit(s) over for them to inspect more in detail. Hopefully we'll have an answer soon and hopefully it's just a very isolated incident [with mine]. I'll try to keep you updated.

45 thoughts on “GoPro HERO4 Overheating Battery BacPac Test 3 – Surprise it may be your Camera

  1. i had purchased the Hero4 Black for a trip to the Philippines. I didn't test it until I got out there because I bought it the same day I flew out. I bought it with the gopro backpack and it overheated A LOT. I was not impressed. I was able to get few good, usable footage, but I ended up returning as soon as I returned back to the states. Garbage. Not being able to record and document all that I wanted to during this once-in-a-lifetime trip was devastating.

    Great review and thanks for taking your time and money to put this together!

  2. Dale Farmer

    Maybe a class action lawsuit would get GoPro's attention, they don't seem to have any interest in fixing problems with their camera's. I have owned a 3, 3+, and now a 4 black. Even though I am able to get video with the camera the backpack makes it run hot and the view finder back shuts off intermittently . Very frustrating.

  3. Peggy

    I bought the Hero 4 for my grandson for Christmas today. He charged the battery and inserted it into the camera. It immediately became hot and started smoking. It was so hot it melted the battery pack and the camera. It could easily have started a fire it had been left unattended. Amazon is refunding my money, but I am reluctant to buy him another unit.

  4. Brad

    Bought a Go Pro Hero 4 Silver 2 weeks ago. Gets hot and shuts down. Won't record more than 30 minutes. What a crappy product.

  5. Alejandro J

    I have the same issue. I have a theory. When I bought my Gopro 4 silver, all was ok. When I updated for the 3.0 version of software, the problems started.
    If I connect to the USB charger, the batery starts to overheat. When the battery get the 100% of charge, I un plug the camera and it is still hot. Before an hour or two, the battery is empty and needs to be recharged. This days I decided to charge the 100% of the battery, take it of and insert again when I need to record something.
    I think that with an update of the firmware, the problems could finish, but i dont know what are GP waiting for...

  6. Benjamin Accinelli

    i had purchased the Hero4 Black for a trip to the Philippines. I didn't test it until I got out there because I bought it the same day I flew out. I bought it with the gopro backpack and it overheated A LOT. I was not impressed. I was able to get few good, usable footage, but I ended up returning as soon as I returned back to the states. Garbage. Not being able to record and document all that I wanted to during this once-in-a-lifetime trip was devastating.

    Great review and thanks for taking your time and money to put this together!

  7. Randy

    Not sure if this was mentioned but have you ever changed chips. I have not narrowed it down yet but it did "seem" to be better after formatting the chip numerous times IN THE CAMERA. Maybe it was coincidence. I did some reading that some chip brands work better than others. I am using sandisk 32 gig class 10 chips. They did work for over a year so I cannot see why they would suddenly NOT work.

  8. I got hero4 with bacpac (ABPAK-301).
    Even in 1080/50p (but with WiFi On) it gets extremely hot and shuts down at about 25mins.
    I am forced to use WiFi 1min every 10min so I can get longer recording times..!!!
    64GB SDXC Extreme card here, I believe card is irrelevant

  9. Davy

    I have a mixed feelings on this review or testing. It is good but at the same time annoying as there was no final update if whether the issue was isolated to his cameras or the issue is a common problem to all cameras...

    So the end results is missing which is the most important part of the testing.

  10. Maico

    I have the GoPro Hero Black 4 with the back screen. I used it one day in a zoo and after about a half hour or so it shutdown due to overheating and the go pro was very hot.

    I've not experienced this when I use it underwater, given that the camera is likely being "water cooled" so to speak. However, it's made me hesitant to use it for anything other than underwater.

  11. Seema

    hey I bought a brand new Hero4 black in may 2015 and used it inside the casing with the battery bacpac. It became extremely hot after about 3 mins of recording. Am worried since I was not using the app on the smartphone, so not sure how I will see the message regarding overheating that Gopro says comes on before the camera shutsoff due to overheating!

  12. I just bought a go pro hero 4 black yesterday. I havent even tried using the video at all. Just photos and burst mode photos. The battery life is extremely short, the go pro gets really hot after being on for a couple minutes. Im really thinking about returning it. I am HIGHLY disappointed after spending $500 dollars on a go pro

  13. Jason

    I have a Hero 3 Black that gets hot enough to cause physical burns after ~30 minutes of recording [email protected] with the Bac Pac on. I need to have the Bac Pac because the recording times on the original Go Pro battery are absolutely terrible. I use the skeleton housing and attempt to charge the Go Pro while it's on and recording... bad idea... the camera overheats even faster.

    This seems like a very common theme. I'm beginning to look for the day that someone comes up w/ something better and takes over the market. I'm tired of buying expensive glitched cameras.

  14. s.Allen

    My husband got me a Hero4 last Christmas so I can use it when I'm teaching sailing.

    charged it from our laptop and I thought it was the laptop causing it to overheat when I used it the first time.

    Switched to a proper USB charger but still it heats up.

    Bought a new battery, and still the same thing, the camera battery really heats up After 30minute of using it.

    Hope GoPro Team has a solution now.

  15. k.salmon

    Just bought my very first gopro 4 silver yesterday. Got it home started playing around. Hooked it up to the app, let it sit stationary for 5 mins while i controlled it from my phone. Picked it up and it was extremely hot, seemingly around the lense. Turned it off straight away. Cant find much info about this problem. The main problem i found online seems to be linked to the battery bac pac. This is not my case. im just using the standard battery. Any info woukd be handy as im quite dissapointed in my flash new purchase.......

  16. David

    Same as Jack, I would love to know if you ever got another update from GoPro about this issue and whether or not it's an internal battery issue, a bad batch, bad design, or something else causing this problem. This upcoming fall I planned to purchase one of these for capturing inside the cockpit when I'm going through flight school but now after seeing lots of reports of this issue even without the bacpac I may go with another manufacturer altogether.

  17. Paul Abrahams

    Had my Hero 4 black since January, yesterday it got very warm after powering it from the DJI gimbal. Now it shows busy, is bricked and won't reset or update. Nothing. I have the LCD pac, Lexxar 64gb.

  18. Jack

    I'm wondering if you figured out the final solution or if GoPro ever answered you on your concern. I'm glad that I found your post, but I'm wondering what happened after the last date someone posted on here.
    The reason I found this site is because I did a Google search on the exact issue. I bought a hero 4 silver, I traveled out of the country to record a few hour event. I charged all my batteries. had the camera on a goose neck clip so I don't have to bother anyone or the camera in middle of the event. But after such a short time I realized my phone app is not communicating with the camera. I finally got a hold of one of the photographers who where authorized to walk in to the area where my camera was, and asked him to grab the camera for me. He gave the camera and it was not just hot, it was BOILING HOT. Good thing I had him take it down in time.
    I'm wondering if you were contacted by someone specific that I should call?
    I first was thinking maybe it had to do with the fact that I was using Bluetooth to communicate to my phone app. Maybe it was an over load? but you didn't even go that far.

    I got mine the the Microsoft website.

    if you have any solutions id appreciate an update. Thanks

  19. Teddy Y.

    Ahhh my New GoPro Hero 4 Black - I am having the same unusual over heating problem with and without my new bacpac. From recording on my lowest to highest settings 720p @30fps to 4k @30fps. It overheats around 3 to 8 minutes and shuts off randomly when it gets extremely hot. I just found your videos on YouTube and I thought I was the only one with this issue I need to contact GoPro! 🙁

  20. William S.

    Have a Hero 3+ Black and 4 Black. The 4 is becoming useless to why I purchased it with the compatibility in the weatherproof housing and Bacpac. The Camera after about 30 mins at 4k or in 1080p high frame rate in 65 degree weather will shutdown. I dont lose any video but it stops recording and Im not always at the camera as its shooting. It would be nice to find the cause. My Hero 3+ Black which I was going to sell on Ebay I guess has more life to live as the Hero 4 Black isnt ready for me to depend on.

  21. We Will Be Looking Into This Thank You,
    We Are Getting Little Complaints From GoPro Users.
    Sorry, To here That Your Having Problems With Your HERO4 Black.
    The HERO4 Silver Still Has All The HERO3+ Black Parts, The HERO4 Black All Started From A Whole New List Of Parts.
    "Be A HERO"

  22. xIceHoundx

    I wonder if maybe the batteries they use is part of the problem. Maybe the discharge rating isnt capable enough for what this camera demands just like you see in RC vehicles world if youve got one that is power hungry due to its high performance like some brushless motors and such the battery better be up to it or you see extreme heat and possible battery burn up in the case of Lipos. I wonder what the rating is on both the internal battery and the external bacpac battery. I could see how this could play a role in shooting high demand such as with 4k 30fps but seeing as how the bacpac overheats just in being turned on without recording im not sure what to think yet.

  23. Mony

    Do you guys have the same problem as me?

    I have a Gopro Hero 4 Black updated to HERO4 Black v01.02.00

    Using Windows 8.1. Latest Gopro app installed on my Iphone 5s firmware IoS 7.1.2.

    My gopro inside the case gets hot while not recording (only turned ON). Did you guys experience the same thing? I only use the internal battery.

    Gopro gets hot while recording at 720P 30fps and never shuts down during overheating. It doesnt alert me that the gopro is shutting down. I was recording for an hour but at the end the footage captured was only 22 minutes.

    It is getting super hot while recording at [email protected]. Well I guess it is normal since it uses the maximum performance of the gopro and gets heat up after couple minutes.

  24. Gary

    I bought 2 new 4's and they get screaming hot too! they both shut down at 34 minutes running at 4K recording.
    Let me know if GoPro will replace.

  25. Mike

    Yes please keep us updated, I sent an email to Gopro about my 4 black shutting down and hot to the point I wantd to try and hold it long enough to see if it would actually burn me. I couldn't believe how hot it was.
    My Contours have never once reached temperatures any ware near that of my gopro 4 black. I'm curious to see how long it is before they return my email, any response is better than nothing.

    Please keep us informed.

    By the way love the quality of the camera when it's working.

  26. Ryan

    Not surprising. They're like a lot of companies - speed to market but with flaws. I've owned all the versions of the GP except the new 4. In the beginning there's always something wrong. Some weird quirk like my GP2 would never start in the defaulted mode until an update after it was a year or two old. Freezing on GP3. GP1 still would hiccup every once in a while. Google it a lot of people have a lot of problems. I hate GP but I love them. When they work the way they are supposed to they are pretty handy. But sometimes when they dont I've been close to chucking the stupid things off a cliff in disgust. But that's why I dont jump on the latest version until they've worked out bugs.

    Most other equipment I use don't have the bugs the way GP does. I've never had the glitches I see on any Canon, Sony etc piece of equipment. But to me that just shows the new work ethic of some tech companies. Get it out there and fix it in "post". It makes you feel like you've funded a bad kickstarter/indiegogo project. Without the forewarning you're the guinea pig. I would gladly wait for a solid product that I can count on than deal with the frustration of every model so far.

  27. I haven't received my Hero4 yet, and already I'm wishing I hadn't bought it. Both with the Hero 3 and Hero4 release, early adopters pay a much higher price than just the cost of the camera.

  28. Mike

    I was doing some testing of my gopro 4 black doing a variety of resolution settings from 720-4k and burst mode. After about 30 minutes of use I thought I was going to burn myself as well due to the extreme amount of heat being generated. Not exceptable! I'm waiting a response from gopro as well. Great quality on the pics and video but after heating up the unit shut down twice on me and makes the camera unusable. Hope they fix the issue and quick. Not to mention I can't get the wifi to stay connected for more than a few minutes or it stops after making any adjustments.

  29. Reinis

    @Emm - Could you do a little test of that live view, to have more precise result? Gopro 3+ has about 2-3 second delay, I was thinking if this has improved with the hero 4.

  30. Sean White

    I have the GoPro 3 black edition. I bought the bacpac and a SanDisk Ultra 64gb micro sdxc card. I found out after testing the unit it would get extremely hot and freeze up the GoPro. I would have to take the battery out of the GoPro just to regain control. But after many trial and errors and reading many other forms, it was because of the size of the card. Tried the same brand but the 32gb card and it works perfect. I was lucky that my 64gb card didn't fry like others have that I read about.

  31. Emm

    Post author

    @Reinis - I have used the Wifi on my iPhone and it works great. There is a bit of a lag though. Also I am on iOS 7 still so it seems to work great, but others on iOS 8 are having a hard time staying connected. I think GoPro needs to make their app more compatible with iOS 8.

  32. Reinis

    Could you please, please test the wifi live view? I really need to know, how big is the delay.

  33. Emm

    Post author

    @Apostolos - There's definitely a problem and it's across two perfectly working GoPro cameras. Some people have suggested that I try to swap the internal batteries and retest. Some people say just let it run and it will power itself off safely. Some asked for me to grab a temp meter. I'm going to try and test all of those suggestions later today and let's see what happens.

  34. Sean

    My new Silver4 gets hot when charging , is that normal? never had a GoPro before and got the new one.

  35. Emm

    Post author

    @Nicholas Kincaid - I know these cameras can get hot because they are so small, but this one I have gets unusually hot. Comparing two exact same cameras, one responded very differently so I know this can't be typical.

  36. Nickolas Kincaid

    I have a hero 4+ with a screen attachment on the back and have noticed it would get extremely hot as well.

  37. Brian

    May sound weird, but have you tried swapping out the internal batteries between the two cameras yet? Clearly label all of your Hero4 series internal batteries and test with each. Worth eliminating as possible issue. I've had bad INTERNAL 3rd party batteries cause similar issues on DSLRs and DVCAM style cameras in the past, so I wouldn't be shocked if it's related somehow.

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