GoPro 12 vs Insta360 Ace Pro: Which is the best deal for Black Friday 2023

With the Ace Pro, it’s clear that Insta360 wants to offer a GoPro alternative. Even the most popular brands have haters, not just fans, so there is room for new companies in any market segment. Both action cameras were released in 2023, with a two-month gap between them, and are the flagship models of the companies.

Black Friday season has arrived, and if you’re in the market for a new action camera, you’ve landed on the right page. Right now, the GoPro Hero 12 Black and the Insta360 Ace Pro are the best action cams that you can get for your money. How do these two models compare to each other? Let’s dive into specifications!

Sensor size is one of the most important factors determining image quality and low-light performance. Insta360’s Ace Pro has a 1/1.3-inch sensor in traditional 4:3 format, and the GoPro 12 Black has a 1/1.9-inch sensor in an 8:7 ratio, which is something new for this market segment. Usually, a bigger sensor means better low-light performance, allowing shooting during the night without adding too much ISO noise. The Ace Pro has 48MP and the Hero 12 27.6MP effective pixels.

Like me, many others still record mostly in 1080P and only occasionally in 4K. So, the Insta360 Ace Pro’s 8K and the GoPro 12’s 5.3K max resolutions apparently seem useless. The higher resolution comes in handy when you use digital zoom or cropping during post-processing. The Ace Pro has 170 Mbps video bitrate on paper, and the HB12 only 120 Mbps.

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GoPro 12 Hero vs Insta360 Ace Pro comparison table

In the table below, I compared the most important specs of these two top action cameras. I highlighted blue where the GoPro 12 Hero excels and red where the Ace Pro shines.

GoPro 12Insta360 Ace Pro
Image sensor size1/1.9-inch1/1.3-inch
Effective pixels27.6MP48MP
Video resolutions5.3K@60fps8K@24fps
Max video bitrate120 Mbps170 Mbps
10-bit video modeYesNo (only 8-bit)
Slow Motion8x at FHD 1080p4x at FHD 1080p
Digital zoomUp to 4xClarity zoom
StabilizationHyperSmooth 6.0FlowState
ScreensFront: 1.4-inch
Rear: 2.27-inch
Front: 1.2-inch
Rear: 2.4-inch Flip
Waterproof10 meters10 meters
Lens protectorReplaceableFixed
Battery1720 mAh1650 mAh
Operation time155 mins100 mins
ConnectivityWi-Fi + BluetoothWi-Fi + Bluetooth
Dimensions71.8 x 50.8 x 33.6 mm71.9×52.15×38.5 mm
Weight154g179.8g
Release date06 September 202321 November 2023
Price$450$399

GoPro 12 vs Insta360 Ace Pro: Design, size, and weight

When you put side by side the GoPro 12 and the Ace Pro, you will notice that the cameras look very similar. Both have only two control buttons (mode/power on the side and an action button on top). Both cameras have a high-speed USB Type-C port for charging and file transfer. Both have two screens (front and rear) and a rectangle lens protector. The rear screen on the Ace Pro can be flipped up, making it the ideal video tool for vloggers who shoot a lot in selfie mode.

Intended for sports activities, both offer a rugged design with up to 10 meters of native waterproof protection.

The Hero 12 measures 71.8 x 50.8 x 33.6 mm and weighs 154 grams, and the Ace Pro is 71.9 x 52.15 x 38.5 mm and scales 179.8g. The extra 25.8 grams of the Insta360’s newest camera is a disadvantage for those who want to use it installed on an FPV drone.

The GP12 has built-in foldable metal mount fingers that allow it to be installed on your helmet, chest, bike, drone, or anything else. The twelve-generation GoPro also has a 1/4-20 tripod thread, extending its mounting capabilities. In contrast, the AcePro uses Insta360’s less spread proprietary quick-release mount.

GoPro 12 vs Insta360 Ace Pro: Video stabilization

Both action cameras offer excellent electronic stabilization, allowing gimbal-like silk-smooth footage. The Here 12 Black features, GoPro’s six-generation HyperSmooth, and the Ace Pro uses Insta360’s FlowStation stabilization.

Digital video stabilizations use 6-axis gyro sensors to identify the camera’s motion and crop the image sensor a small amount to reduce the shake seen in the video. You can expect a slightly narrow field of view when EIS is enabled.

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GoPro 12 vs Insta360 Ace Pro: Battery and working time

The Ace Pro camera is powered by a 1650 mAh battery, and the GoPro 12 has a higher-capacity 1720 mAh. According to technical specs, the Hero 12 recording continuously for up to 155 minutes, and the Ace Pro for about only 100 minutes. Both cameras use removable batteries.

GoPro 12 vs Insta360 Ace Pro: Pricing

The GoPro 12 Black was released in September 2023 and is priced at $399.99. During their Black Friday season sale, you can get it with $50 off for only $349.99. The Max Lens Mod 2.0 combo kit’s price is also reduced from $499.98 to $429.98.

The Insta360 Ace Pro was released this week on November 21, 2023, and made available to purchase on the same day. The standalone pack is priced at $449.99, and the Winter combo kit for $539. There are six other package options according to what you want to use this camera.

Bottom line

Truly, you can’t go wrong with any of these two action cameras. Both have a rugged design and provide excellent video quality.

If you are on a tight budget, the GoPro is probably a better option for you. If you wish for long-term accessory compatibility (battery and mounting) with upcoming models, GoPro is probably the brand for you. GoPro 12 has slightly better audio performance, and using the Max Lens Mod 2.0 case, it can be easily turned into a powerhouse.

On the other hand, the Insta360 Ace Pro’s flip-up screen is a must-have for vlogging. The 8K video resolution is great for video cropping. Being AI-powered, it has tons of smart features waiting to be discovered by tech lovers.