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GoPro Hero11 Black Mini Review

GoPro Hero11 Black Mini

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Our Verdict

The GoPro Hero11 Black Mini delivers the Hero11 Black in a compact, screen-less design reminiscent of the GoPro Hero Session. By focusing solely on video, this new GoPro is perfect for extreme sports enthusiasts or professionals who just need an easily mountable camera to capture class-leading video quality.

I’ve been testing the small camera for a couple of months, as the launch is well past, and it’s given me time to really get to know the camera. Over that time, I have to say it’s become my go-to camera for all sorts of reasons, and while I missed the screen at first, getting back into the screenless workflow and checking composition with a phone quickly made sense.

The 5.3K resolution and enhanced stabilisation deliver excellent quality even in low light, which makes it especially suited to this typically rainy British summer. While it might omit a few features, such as still-image capture and stereo audio, the quality, function and features make this my top action camera choice and the one I have repeatedly recommended to fellow cyclists and imaging professionals. However, the GoPro Hero11 Black with the screen is often a better choice for everyday use.


  • Compact video
  • Excellent Heat Dissipation
  • Screen-free simplicity


  • Lacks still photography
  • No stereo audio
  • Not compatible with some GoPro accessories

What is the GoPro Hero11 Black Mini?

The GoPro Hero11 Black Mini is the compact sibling of the renowned Hero11 Black that I looked back at in September last year. The main difference is that the Mini is a stripped-down version of the standard camera designed with a focus on streamlined functionality. The Mini dispenses with both the front and rear screens, maintaining a simple and lightweight design with two mount options — perfect for when every gram matters or when you’d rather not be sidetracked by another interface.

While the GoPro Hero11 Black Mini is stripped down, it isn’t as stripped down as the GoPro Hero10 Black Bones, designed for FPV use and only available in the US. It’s also not an update to the Session, as the Mini packs in the same video potential as the Hero11 Black. Interestingly, the rear of the Mini is completely covered by a metal heat sink, highlighting through the testing process that this is a far better option for pros who need a camera that can record for extended periods.

GoPro Hero11 Black Mini

While the standard Hero11 Black prides itself on its versatility with features such as two screens, still picture capture and stereo audio, the Mini drops these capabilities for a sleeker profile. One notable distinction is its incompatibility with certain accessories, including the Media Mod.

The Hero11 Black Mini is tailored for users who need a GoPro class-leading video quality but in a more pared-down and focused package.


  • Dimensions (W x H x D) (mm): 52.4 W x 51.2 H x 38 D
  • Weight (Camera w/mounting fingers + Embedded Battery): 133g
  • Battery: Embedded 1500mAh w/Enduro Battery Technology
  • Waterproof: 10m (33ft)
  • uilt-In Folding Fingers: Yes (2 Sets)
  • Removable Cover Glass / Spec: 2mm Thick Gorilla Glass with Hydrophobic Coating
  • System Processor: GP2
  • Image Sensor: 1/1.9″ CMOS, 27.6 MP active pixels (5599×4927)
  • Lens Aperture: F2.5
  • Video Res: 5.3K (8:7) 30/25/24 fps, 5.3K (16:9) 60/50/30/25/24 fps, 5.3K (4:3) 30/25/24 fps, 4K (8:7) 60/50 fps, 4K (16:9) 120/100/60/50/30/25/24 fps, 4K (4:3) 60/50/30/25/24 fps, 2.7K (16:9) 240/200/120/100/60/50 fps, 2.7K (4:3) 120/100/60/50 fps, 1080p (16:9) 240/200/120/100/60/50/30/25/24 fps.
  • Maximum Video Bit Rate: 120Mbps
  • Video Stabilisation: HyperSmooth 5.0 / Horizon Lock / Leveling: Multiple options

Build and Handling

The GoPro Hero11 Black Mini is more of what I’ve come to expect from GoPro’s line of rugged cameras. It draws inspiration from the GoPro Hero Session, a camera I loved despite its framerate and resolution limitations. Still, while the Session pulled back on the specifications, the Mini is equal to the Hero11 Black regarding the video.

The camera’s body is solid and created with the usual GoPro high-impact activities in mind. As all the video resolution and framerate features from the standard 11 Black have been replicated in the small form factor, the design sees an all-metal back to help dissipate the heat, which is a very welcome touch.

The rest of the build is typically GoPro tough, and I’d go as far as to say it’s a step-up, standing up to the inevitable jolts, knocks, and tumbles that these cameras and I are usually subjected to through the test period.

GoPro Hero11 Black Mini

The construction of the Mini has a premium feel with that metal back replacing the area that would usually be covered with a screen; as mentioned, this metal back essentially acts as a heatsink and, through the test, does get hot to the touch, but not too hot to handle. Another tweak is the dual mounting points: one at the base and another at the rear, making it the easiest GoPro yet for mount options.

The Mini is designed as a non-handheld camera, although you can add a grip or handle to the standard mount. As a note GoPro’s are designed for mounting, not manual holding, and the Mini embodies this philosophy. There’s a straightforward shutter button on top and a power/pair button on its front, and that’s really it. Though there’s an LCD present on top, although its size makes it rather challenging to discern any displayed settings. However, the red led in front of it lets you determine whether it’s recording at a glance. The camera’s primary functionalities and features are seamlessly managed through the GoPro Quik App if you do need to go a bot more indepth.

The GoPro mount is at the heart of this and many other action cameras and is well-established. While GoPro produces somewhere in the region of 40 official mounts, the reality is that you have access to hundreds, if not thousands, of mounting options. From a design perspective, GoPro’s additional set of fold-out fingers on the back as well as underneath for added mounting options is welcome, and of particular benefit for helmet and handlebar placements.

GoPro Hero11 Black Mini

The layout and function of this GoPro is like the design, simple. While professionals and those familiar with GoPro will find this streamlined approach refreshing, prioritising function over visual features, beginners occasionally will miss a screen’s ease of use.


GoPro has continuously set high benchmarks with its innovative designs and cutting-edge features that DJI and Insta360 have followed. The GoPro Hero11 Black Mini is a camera that only GoPro can do, stripping back those features to give you essentially the barebones that will appeal to the true GoPro user rather than the mass market. While I’m a big fan of the Insta360 camera, Insta360 should take note on this simple clutter free approach.

At the heart of its design is the miniaturisation. Weighing 133g and measuring 52.4mm x 51.2mm x 38mm, the Hero11 Black Mini is more portable than ever, except for the Session. Yet, despite its compactness, it doesn’t compromise on durability. It’s waterproof up to 10 meters, ensuring you can get on with riding in the rain, attaching to car, surfing, diving etc without the need for a dive cage or anything else. Adding to this durability is the 2mm thick Gorilla Glass cover with hydrophobic coating, this not only guards against scratches but also repels water droplets, all helping to keep the lens clear when in use and helping to cut down on lens cleaning stops.

Internally, like the Hero11 Black, the Hero11 Black Mini is powered by the formidable GP2 system processor, guaranteeing the video quality we expect from GoPro. The GP2 processor is partnered with a 1/1.9-inch CMOS sensor that boasts 27.6 MP active pixels, offering resolutions up to 5.3K60 down to 1080p240.

GoPro Hero11 Black Mini

One of the issues with high-resolution footage is that everything is amplified, including any camera shake. Here’s where GoPro’s HyperSmooth 5.0 stabilisation comes into play and does an incredible job smoothing out footage. This form of electronic stabilisation now directly compares, if not betters, the abilities of mechanical stabilisation. The addition of the Horizon Lock and in-camera levelling further boosts the performance, ensuring videos are always oriented right, irrespective of the camera’s movements.

If you need to capture audio, the Hero11 Black Mini, like the GoPro Hero11 Black, features three in-built microphones, advanced noise reduction, and RAW audio capture in WAV format. Although there are restrictions on stereo audio recording and there’s no option for MediMod, which I have to say I’m not too bothered about with this model.

When it comes to battery and storage, the battery like the session is built in and behind a small door is the MicroSD and USB Type-C port for charging.

GoPro Hero11 Black Mini

Adition features such as TimeWarp 3.0, Star Trails, and Light Painting all support up to 5.3K resolution and can again be accessed through the Quik App, which is identical to the version used for GoPro’s other cameras.

The Hero11 Black Mini offers a variety of connection options with 2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2, data transfers to your phone or connected device are quickly using the Quik App.


The GoPro Hero11 Black Mini stands in direct competition with GoPro Hero11 Black when it comes to video performance. Despite the different form factors, their video quality is strikingly identical. The 5.3K60 video capability ensures crisp and vivid footage. As for the 8:7 aspect ratio, while I’m not the biggest social media sharer, the camera’s design makes things smoother and that aspect ratio gives you plenty of options through the edit and upload. I also again really like the auto-highlight edits that pick the best bits based on motion and gyro sensor data which is all then edited on your phone.

As with the Hero11 Black, the 8x slo-mo feature is impressive. Shooting at 2.7K at 240fps is enough to blend in with 4K footage without a noticeable drop in video quality.

In low light and changing light conditions, the camera kept up with the exposure changes with ease and retained a good level of highlight and shadow detail as well as colour.

GoPro Hero11 Black Mini Stabilisation & Features

The current stabilisation features in the market are astounding. Be it GoPro, DJI, or Insta360, they all impress. GoPro’s HypreSmooth was the first out of the box, and while it had the lead on launch, it’s now running level pegging with the competition, in all seriousness they are all exceptionally good, and I’ll run a side-by-side review in the future.

GoPro Hero11 Black Mini

The AutoBoost or Horizon Lock are the development of the original HyperSmooth. The more I use Horizon Lock I feel it does over-smooth footage, making it appear somewhat artificial, so my preference remains with AutoBoost as it retains some of its original intensity.

Saying that Horizon Lock, is amazing. Rotating the camera without affecting the footage is a leap forward in stabilisation, but does look like game footage rather than real life!

GoPro Hero11 Black Mini usability & Software

The one-button shooting mode makes things easy and cuts out any pre-ride faffing. Once set up, tap the shutter button or use the Quik App, and the camera starts filming with the red LED showing the status.

The GoPro Subscription service is a mixed bag. While the online storage and community platform are excellent, the real star is the Auto highlight feature. It would be game-changing if this feature could be used across multiple GoPro devices for multi-camera editing.

GoPro Hero11 Black Mini Battery & Connectivity

The built-in Enduro battery is unseen and just seemed to do the job, I gave it a charge and it worked supplying power to the camera for as long as any activity I was doing lasted, which was generally an hour and a half. As a matter of course I usually take a small power bank with me to keep everything topped up with the UGREEN 145W being my present choice. If both the camera and powerbank had wireless charging that would be an impressive step forward, however, at present charging is through cable only.

Connectivity via Wi-Fi and Bluetooth is smooth. But I often run out of mobile storage, so direct downloads to my MacBook Pro are my more usual workflow.

On the whole workflow, there is one thing that I would like to note. While GoPro’s mount system has been iconic, some innovation would be welcome. DJI’s magnetic clamp system comes to mind.

Final thoughts

The GoPro Hero11 Black Mini is something a little different from GoPro – it’s a streamlined action camera that has versatility and video quality at its heart. It may not have the touch screen ease of functionality of the GoPro Hero11 Black and many of the cameras it competes with, but instead just focuses on the core of what these cameras are about.

Essentially when it comes to image quality, it’s alongside the GoPro Hero11 Black. There is no difference. The reason you would go for the Mini over the full-sized version might be the price but is more likely to be because it ticks all the boxes that you need as a very solid action camera that will capture the action.

GoPro Hero11 Black Mini

For enthusiasts, experienced users, those on a slight budget and professionals this camera stands out as the best quality camera for the money on the market.

If you’re looking for a camera with dual touchscreens and direct settings adjustments then the Hero11 Black is probably the better choice. However, with the speed and functionality of the Quik App, and with the auto-editing the Hero11 Black Mini is still a very attractive camera.