Flying a Cessna 172 with a GoPro Fusion 360

Flying a Cessna 172 with a GoPro Fusion 360

Jason Daniel Shaw

SANTA MONICA AIRPORT

GoPro cameras have made a huge impact on aviation by making the capturing of photos and video while flying so easy. Both the technological advancement of the camera and the development of various types of mounts have ushered in a new era. And general aviation pilots aren’t the only ones that are employing GoPros in their flights as their commercial and military counterparts are also using them regularly to capture their flights. The small form factor and ruggedness of the cameras have allowed them to be placed externally on the aircraft and/or in new places to capture unique perspectives.

GoPro Fusion on the Wing of Cessna 172

GOPRO FUSION | CESSNA 172

One of my new favorite ways to capture photos while flying is with the use of a 360 degree camera. I use the older GoPro Fusion attached to the wing strut and trigger it remotely using the GoPro application on my phone. I will then post the photo which allows people to scroll around the frame, looking in any direction. The same can be done with video but due to the performance of my computer, the rendering makes it difficult to work with. I will post a video of that down below. One of the new favorite things to do is to create the small world with the 360 camera which you can also see samples of down below. These are from our recent flight to San Diego for Phil’s BBQ. By varying the FOV (Field of View) in post, you can vary the amount of curvature. It can look like you are flying high enough to see the curvature of the earth, all the way to looking like you are a giant airplane flying over a tiny world.

LOS ANGELES FLYING

I still often take a regular stills camera while flying to capture aerial photos, whether that be with my DSLR or simply my iPhone. You can see some examples of photos taken with my iPhone below from that same flight to San Diego. However, there is something to be said for capturing unique perspectives, otherwise not feasible without a GoPro. The use of various GoPros inside and outside the cockpit can also be combined to create flight videos that give non-pilots the idea of what it is like to fly form the comfort of their home. I have included some examples of those that I have created over the years. Ok, time to go fly and see what else I can create – hope you enjoy.

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